Kerala, God’s own country, a tropical symphony!
Kerala, at the southwestern tip of the sub-continent, plays a singular note in the Indian concert. Firstly by its geography, with its unique backwaters, a unique aquatic network that crisscrosses the region, but also with its pleasing beaches of fine sand and mountains covered in certain places with graceful tea plantations. Not bad for a small state of 38 000 km2! No wonder it is named in the ‘50 places of a lifetime’ as well as ‘50 of the world’s top destinations’ by National Geographic.
Having hosted many cultures of the Indian Ocean, Kerala has always been tolerant, open minded and relatively progressive. It holds the highest human development index and literacy rate in India. Kerala is overall cleaner, poverty is less visible, people are better off, more welcoming and quite friendly, sollicitation and heavy looks are much less frequent than in other parts of India. This is appreciable for tourists and makes a safe place for solo travelers and families, contributes to a certain sweetness of life when we are there.
In a tense global context, it is interesting to notice the rather harmonious cohabitation of different religions. It isn’t rare to find a Hindu temple, mosque, church and synagogue side by side, all believers living in mutual tolerance and acceptance. There is a certain sweetness to Kerala no other state has to offer.
Kerala is also an original culture, through Kalarippayat and Kathakali, respectively the states martial art and dance cultures, but also through delicious south-Indian gastronomy and world renown Ayurvedic treatments, which attract more more well-being inquisitive tourists. Kerala is the pioneering state in sustainable tourism development, which drastically improves the living conditions of local populations and minimizes potential ecological and social damage.
It is often said that Kerala is a good gateway to gently immerge in the Indian ways, in this country of extremes. Nature itself is soothing for the traveler who discovers this lush green region of southwestern India, bordered by long sandy beaches.
In this idyllic setting, it’s no wonder that Kerala cultivates the art of well-being!