Kerala. It truly is ‘God’s own country’. With mountains, an ocean, greenery, backwater, waterfalls, you will find everything you’re looking for. But it was the people here that truly restored my faith in human beings. I always wanted to visit Kerala, and when I really did, I was in awe. I had heard a lot about Wayanad, so I was very excited about that. Also, my dad is really into hill stations and so he wanted a trip to this place specifically. As far as my mom is concerned, Kathakali performances have always drawn her to Kerala, and she had always wanted to visit Alleppey and Wayanad. My love for the state truly came from Dulquer Salmaan, though! Being a Mani Ratnam fan, I watched OK Kanmani and then fell for Dulquer, quickly watching all of his movies thereon. For me, he truly represented Kerala; his films really put forward what the state is really about.
We reached Varkala from Trivandrum airport in less than 1.5 hours (the distance is 44.7 km). We started our journey with one of the most earthy resorts I have ever come across. My mom chose V Resorts Bohemian Masala Varkala and they made our stay very comfortable. The moment I saw this resort, I fell in love with it instantly. It was vibrant and comfortable, and the charming greens around the property took my whole stay experience to a whole new level.
We reached the resort at around 2 pm, got freshened up and rushed to the much famous Varkala Beach. Also known as the Papanasam Beach, this place had some really amazing views. Not sure if it cleanses sins, but it definitely is a photographer’s retreat.
- For the first time, I saw a beach with cliffs adjacent to the sea in Kerala.
The people I came across in this beautiful state were really amazing people, be it in Alleppey, Varkala, Wayanad or Munnar. The first thing to notice for a Bengali is that Kerala’s culture is actually quite similar to the Bongs. Of course not everything, but on a base level.
Alleppey, also known as the ‘Venice of India’, lives up to its name. The structure of this city and its famed backwaters are the same as Venice, but it is the desi-ness which makes it closer to our heart. The moment you enter Alleppey, you see lagoons, vast farms and mini houses everywhere. Moreover, we stayed adjacent to the backwater of Alleppey in V Resorts The Backwater Rhapsody Alleppey.
- I saw backwaters for the first time.
- Spending time in a houseboat on Alleppey’s backwaters was a completely unique experience. It was not just the houseboat itself that was beautiful, but it was also the breathtaking views from it that made the experience so beautiful for me.
- I saw floating shops for the first time in Alleppey. People were selling snacks and ice-creams on boats right in the middle of the lagoon.
On one of the days during our trip, me, my mom and dad were sitting on the roadside sipping filter coffee (how can we not have that when we are in Kerala?), when my dad suddenly quipped, “Do you know, in Kerala, the political party changes in every election!” I was amazed and he further said, “They do not choose parties over their biases but on the basis of the work they did”. Then he said, “Therefore, the competition amongst the political parties are more on the work front”, to which I said, “Having 100% literacy sure does make a difference.”
Our stay in Wayanad, after having so much of expectation, did not disappoint at all. The V Resorts Cliffhanger Wayanad provided us with everything that was promised to us. We had a delightful experience during our stay and in fact, during the booking for the resort, the executives were very helpful by giving us tips to plan the trip. The best part about this resort’s location is that the beautiful Banasura Hills is just 45 minutes away.
From Wayanad, we reached Kovalam, our final destination of the trip. We travelled through the night for more than 11 hours to cover the distance of 477 km. It goes without saying that after Goa, Kovalam has become the go-to place for all party animals. We stayed at V Resorts Kovalam, which is situated in a beautiful spot of the beach town. The popular Lighthouse Beach of Kovalam was just eight kilometres away from the resort. It was a comfortable stay and the management of V Resorts really deserves brownie points for their hospitality.
Since we stayed in the beach town, the parties, restaurants, bars and beaches, everything was quite close to our retreat. We had a lot of fun and the sunset at Lighthouse Beach must not be missed.
I learned a few Malayali words because language truly can be a barrier in Kerala. Being a Bengali, using my mother tongue in this place was out of the question and by all the popular suggestions I got, they said everyone understands English in Kerala. The local people didn’t understand my English accent and vice versa, as their English accent was nothing less than Malayali to me.
I learned Thayir, which means curd, Vellam, which means water and many more.
The first reason why I am grateful is because I got to travel with great company. I travelled with my family and had V Resorts by my side. If I would have travelled solo to this state, it would have been really difficult for me.
What the trip did was that it made me even more curious about Kerala’s culture. It was good to see how the locals behave with travellers. Even though they don’t understand what one is trying to convey, but they don’t give up easily either. At least once in your lifetime, you should go to Kerala. I promise you will crave to go back to the destination soon again. You might even start daydreaming about the backwaters.