Mythology has it that Kerala was carved out of sea by the sage Vishwamitra. When his wrath had stained mainland India with the blood of the thousand slain Kshatriyas, he created Kerala out of sea by throwing an axe into the sea to be populated by the pure minded. This land is indeed pure and pristine. Kerala is one of the most popular tourist destinations. The tropical Sun, long stretch of beach on the west and misty hills in the east, rains for large periods of the year have given rise to a unique landscape blessed backwaters and perennial rivers. The land is fertile and supports dense tropical rain forests and lush green paddy fields and tea plantations. The famous beaches of Kovalam, Varkala, Kappad and others have been making tourists return year after year for more. Historic towns, lush forests and tranquil hill stations attract globetrotter from every nook and corner of the world. Kerala also owes its popularity to reasons such as easy accessibility, widespread use of English, friendly people and superlative food and accommodation. An added attraction is the authentic Ayurveda treatments provided here. But one of the most important things to do while in Kerala is go on a houseboat cruise on the backwaters. These riceboats fashioned with comfortable interiors helps you discover the real Kerala and absolute peace. And be sure to enjoy the sumptuous Kerala Sadya, a feast served on plantain leaf.
Munnar A popular hill resort, Munnar is about 3 hours drive away from Cochin. It is famous for its tea plantations which appear to be a green carpet spread on the hills. The mountain covered with mist in the mornings is so beautiful to look at that you keep coming back. Munnar is also known as the only sanctuary for the Nilgir tahr. The Chinnar sanctuary and Eravikulam National Park offer some of the rarest of flora and fauna. Trekking and cycling in Munnar is popular sport.
Known as the business nerve center of Kerala, the city of Cochin or Kochi as it is now called has been famous since ancient times as a major port. Its erstwhile rulers, the Maharajas of Cochin, were very welcoming and broadminded and gave asylum to people of different faiths and traded with countries as far as China and Arabia. Because of it importance as a major port in the international sea route, it was desired and conquered by the colonial powers. The Dutch, French and British legacy remain in the architecture left behind.The Jewish synagogue and Jew town, The Dutch palace, Fort and cemetery, the fort Kochi beach and seafood joints, The Thripunithara Hill Palace and Museum and shopping for spices are some of major attractions.
Tellichery in north Kerala is a less frequented place. Known for the martial art of Kalari Payattu, Telicherry has many schools (kalaris) which teach and showcase the art. The beach at Tellicherry is also nice of a walk. Theyyam, a temple performing art can be seen at the local temple. The overtly big headdress of the performer is a great attraction. The Gundhert Museum where the German missionary lived and worked is a local attraction.
One of Kerala's well known destinations, Kovalam's sandy beaches lined with palmfringed lagoons and rocky coves have been a favorite haunt of Europeans since the 1930s. Kovalam's three beaches are lined with shops, the Light House beach and the adjoining Hawah beach being more popular. The third beach called Samudra beach is used by the local fishermen. The rocky outcroppings that separate the three beaches give each a distinct identity. Sunbathing, swimming, ayurvedic rejuvenation, yoga and meditation, herbal body toning massages, special cultural programmes and catamaran cruising are all available Kovalam
Kumarakom Known for its backwaters and the bird sanctuary, Kumarakom is one most visited destinations in Kerala. Houseboats gliding along the motionless waters make perfect picture postcard. Birds from as far as Siberia come to this beautiful waterscape to nest. The 12-acre Kumarakom Bird Sanctuary has its own island, a breeding ground for migratory birds, and is only accessible by boat; species there include native kingfishers, golden-backed woodpeckers, flycatchers, teal and Siberian stork.
Periyar Tiger Reserve in Thekkady is a great attraction for visitors of all kinds. It appeals to the adventuralist, the naturalist, the photographer and the general tourist. The place is one of the best place to see and experience tropical forests. Elephants,Tiger, deer, Wild Buffalo, Monkeys and a wealth of flora is found here. At an altitude of 700-1900 m above sea level, this place has a cool and comfortable climate suitable for treks and mountain walks.
Popularly known as the Venice of the east, Alleppey or Alappuzha, crisscrossed by waterways. Kayal as they are known in native Malayalam, these backwaters were arterial to Kerala once and still is in parts. Big and small, they were used to get people and goods to place far flung as islands or remote villages. Cruise in the traditional rice barges fashioned into houseboats and laze around as the Kerala opens up before you. Paddy fields, coconut groves, banana plantations, villages and small townships or just drink in the scenic beautyâ€¦. Alleppey is known for its beautiful coir products and delectable cuisine. The ancient churches, the old quay at the redundant harbour, the beach are some other attractions. Ambalapuzha temple known for its sweet palapayasam or milk dessert, is also in this district.Some popular Backwater boat cruises routes are - Alleppey-Kottayam , Alleppey-Ernakulam , Alleppey-Champakulam and Alleppey-Kollam)
Thiruvananthapuram The capital city of Kerala, it is one of the most visited places in Kerala. With an International airport of its own, the city is a mix of old and new. The well known Padmanabhaswamy temple is the one of few temples where you see Lord Vishnu in a lying position which can be viewed only in parts. The other attractions are the Veli tourist village, Shankmugham beach and Museum. Trivandrum is also the gateway to the nearby beach destinations of Varkala and Kovalam. The hill resort of Ponmudi is another highlight. The forests nearby are also famous for the eco tourism projects like Thenmala walkway through forest.
Sulthan Bathery Nestled in the hills, Sulthan Bathery is a place known for its plantations. Large estates of coffee and cardamom plantations showcase is a true slice of rural Kerala. Once known as Ganapathivattom - "the fields of Ganapathi" (or Ganesh, the elephant-headed son of Shiva) , it got its present name when Tipu Sultan built a fort and battery for his army here in the 18th Century. The nearby Edakkal Caves on the summit of Ambukuthimala Hill, with petroglyphs of humans and animals dating back to 2500BC, and Muthanga National Park, a successful Project Elephant reserve are some other attractions.
Mararikulam A small hamlet near Alleppey, Mararikulam is a sleepy fishing village between the Backwaters and the Arabian Sea. Here life has not changed much. Many live in mud-walled huts with steep roofs of palm thatch secured by coir rope. While the men are mostly fishermen, womenfolk lend hand by dring fish or working in the coir industry. The long, wide beach with a shady hinterland of grass and palms is perfect place to unwind.
Neeleshwaram is one of those yet undiscovered destinations. This beach paradise is the home to the rare and endangered species of turtle called Olive Ridley. The best time to see them is the nesting season between August-March. Females turtles swim on to the beach to lay their eggs on the full moon. The famous temples of Madhur VInayak and Anantpur Vishnu are also close by. Ananthpur Vishnu temple is an ancient temple with mirals. The sanctum sanctorum is accedded only by a bridge over the surrounding moat. It is believed that a crocodile lives in the moat and eats the prasadam given by the temple priest. Another belief is that the there is a tunnel hidden by the moat that takes you to the southern tip of Kerala. Located at the far north of Kerala, Neeleshawaram is connected by road and rail.
Bekal Located at the northernmost tip of Kerala is Bekal. Famous for the fort of Tipu Sultan called the Tiger of Mysore, Bekal also has a lovely beach. The Fort with its ramparts jutting out into the sea is a real sentinel. the military improvisation in the fort was so good that the colonial powers had a hard time to conquer it. The spot is so scenic that many film songs and sequences have been shot here. It is about 10 kms north of the town of Kanghang
Varkala A beautiful beach resort near Trivandrum, it is also a pilgrim center. The saint Sree Narayana Guruâ€™s samadhi or final resting place is here. Here, the beach is peaceful as there are no eateries or hotels on the beach. Those are situated atop the cliffs bordering the beach.
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Langkawi is a beautiful island in the northwestern part of Peninsular Malaysia; many people describe the island as one of the most beautiful islands in the world. The island is not (yet) spoiled by tourists, which makes it a perfect holiday destination for travelers. Accommodation is affordable on the island. You can stay in a resort for a mere $30 a night, but also for $3000 for a single night. The island is especially renowned for the many great attractions. Besides that you can shop at some of the shopping malls, you can have splendid dinners at one of the many hawkers, or you can rent a motorcycle (moped) to explore the island (RM40 for 24h). The island is easy accessible from Kuala Lumpur or the neighboring island of Penang.
Genting Highlands otherwise known as Resorts World Genting, is a hill resort in Malaysia developed by Genting Group.The hill resort is at an average elevation of 1,740 metres (5,710 ft) within the Titiwangsa Mountains on the border between the states of Pahang and Selangor of Malaysia. Resorts World Genting is operated by Genting Malaysia Berhad (formerly known as Resorts World Bhd), which also operates Awana chain of resorts & hotels. It is accessible by car from Kuala Lumpur in one hour, or also accessible by a cable car called Genting Skyway, which at its opening was the world's fastest and South East Asia's longest gondola lift.The comprehensive indoor and outdoor theme-park was promoted as the destination for "Fun at The Peak". The entire resort was subsequently billed; "The City of Entertainment".Resorts World Genting is the only legal land-based casino, Casino de Genting, in the country and is owned by Genting Malaysia Berhad, a subsidiary of Genting Group.
Tung Choi Street is a street situated between south of Sai Yeung Choi Street and Fa Yuen Street in Mong Kok, Kowloon, Hong Kong. It is one of the most well-known street markets in Hong Kong. Its southern section, popularly known as Ladies' Market or Ladies' Street sells various, low-priced products for women and also other general merchandise. Its northern section not far above Bute Street, has a wide variety of affordable plants, pet supplies and animals especially goldfish since it is also known as "Goldfish Street".
The Ten Thousand Buddhas Monastery (Man Fat Tsz), located Po Fook Hill at Pai Tau Village, Sha Tin in the New Territories is one of Hong Kongâ€™s most famous Buddhist temples and popular tourist attractions. The temple was founded in 1949 by the Reverend Yuet Kai and completed in 1957. The monastery is not residential and is managed by lay-persons. It should not be confused with the Po Fook Hill Ancestral Halls which lie directly below it. The monastery, which occupies over 8 hectares, is made up of two groups of architectural structures at lower and higher levels respectively. There is a pagoda, a hall, two pavilions and a tower in the architectural structure at the lower level. There are four halls in another structure at the higher level. The five halls in the monastery are used to house the statues of Buddhas. The main journey up to the monastery is an attraction itself, as the path is lined on both sides with golden Buddhas, each unique and in different poses.
Wong Tai Sin Temple is a well known shrine and major tourist attraction in Hong Kong. It is dedicated to Wong Tai Sin, or the Great Immortal Wong. The temple is located on the southern side of Lion Rock in the north of Kowloon. The architecture is the traditional Chinese temple style with grand red pillars, a golden roof adorned with blue friezes, yellow latticework, and multi-coloured carvings. Aside from the Daxiong-baodian or Grand Hall, Sansheng Hall and the Good Wish Garden are also worth seeing. The temple grounds also feature three memorial archways. The first one stands outside the temple and is carved with the name of the temple. If you walk past the soothsayers and the fortune-telling stalls, you can see another memorial archway. And if you continue further along the third memorial archway standing before you.
Standing 44-metres tall, the old Clock Tower was erected in 1915 as part of the Kowloonâ€“Canton Railway terminus. The once-bustling station is long gone, but this red brick and granite tower, now preserved as a Declared Monument, survives as an elegant reminder of the Age of Steam. It has also been a memorable landmark for the millions of Chinese immigrants who passed through the terminus to begin new lives not just in Hong Kong, but in other parts of the world via the cityâ€™s harbour.
Tian Tan Buddha, also known as the Big Buddha, is a large bronze statue of Buddha Shakyamuni, completed in 1993, and located at Ngong Ping, Lantau Island, in Hong Kong. The statue is sited near Po Lin Monastery and symbolises the harmonious relationship between man and nature, people and faith. It is a major centre of Buddhism in Hong Kong, and is also a popular tourist attraction.The statue is named Tian Tan Buddha because its base is a model of the Altar of Heaven or Earthly Mount of Tian Tan, the Temple of Heaven in Beijing. One of the five large Buddha statues in China, it is enthroned on a lotus on top of a three-platform altar. Surrounding it are six smaller bronze statues known as "The Offering of the Six Devas" that are posed offering flowers, incense, lamp, ointment, fruit, and music to the Buddha. These symbolise the Six Perfections of generosity, morality, patience, zeal, meditation, and wisdom, all of which are necessary for enlightenment