Kerala – India’s steamy, steamy, really, really, hot, hot, hot South!

Kerala, the southern most state of India and the final leg of our Indian adventure. I’d heard great things about this part of India so I was very excited to check it out for myself.  We arrived at about midday absolutely knackered, like I said in my last post we had an overnight bus ride and a 3 hour flight to get from Rishikesh to Delhi to Kerala… we pretty much went from the high north to the far south of India all in the space of about 12 hours, it was exhausting to say the least!

We flew into Cochin airport and then caught a taxi to our accomodation in Fort Cochin. We expected it to be hot, we had just arrived in India’s steamy south but nothing could have prepared us for this sort of heat and humidity! This is the kind of heat that has you sweating like a monster in all of 5 minutes.

Fort Cochin is a small waterfront town famous for its Chinese fishing nets and fresh caught seafood… I don’t eat seafood so this wasn’t such a big draw card for me but I was excited to check out the Chinese fishing nets, giant fishing nets that have been used by locals for centuries. Ryan was still feeling quite unwell so we waited until the early evening when it started to get a bit cooler. We also made a visit to St Francis Church, this is the oldest church in India!

The Chinese fishing nets
The Chinese fishing nets
St Francis Church
St Francis Church

Other than the fishing nets and the church there wasn’t all that much more to do and see in Fort Cochin but we ended up spending three nights there in the hope that Ryan would make a recovery, he’d picked up some sort of nasty stomach bug and couldn’t throw it off. In the end I gave him antibiotics for giardia and that seemed to do the trick. Who knows what he actually had but the tablets worked and that’s the main thing, it was getting close to the point where I thought I was going to have to take him to hospital!

We planned our final few days in India when Ryan was feeling a bit better and the first thing on our agenda was an overnight houseboat ride through the backwaters of Alleppey. We’d been told you haven’t truly experienced Kerala until you’ve explored it’s winding and fascinating backwaters by houseboat so we were keen to get out on the water. We opted to take local transport from Fort Cochin to Alleppey to save some funds so first of all we jumped on the ferry to get to the main bus station and then a 2 hour bus ride had us arriving in Alleppey. I find that catching local transport is always a great way to experience a place and its people.

Riding the local ferry
Riding the local ferry

Our houseboat was adorable and it truly was a wonderful experience but the heat did make it a little uncomfortable.  The down season in India has just begun and I can completely understand why, I wouldn’t recommend visiting at this time of the year unless your happy to spend the majority of your time hidden away in an air conditioned refuge.

The backwaters of Alleppey
The backwaters of Alleppey
umbrella man
This guy and his umbrella hat…
The cute sitting area in our houseboat
The cute sitting area in our houseboat
Colours of the backwaters
Colours of the backwaters

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boat

Our next stop in Kerala and our final stop in India was a quaint little fishing village located on Marari Beach. The best thing about this place? There were hardly any other tourists and most of the day, outside fishing hours, we had the whole beach to ourselves. With 2 days to waste away in this little slice of paradise we spent our time watching the fishermen go about their daily work, sun baking, consuming way too much fresh juice and trying to keep cool by swimming in the Arabian sea. The latter was easier said than done, there was a shore break that would literally knock you off your feet if you timed your entrance into the water wrong (you can ask Ryan about this) and the water was so warm it was hardly a relief from the heat anyway!

Paradise
Paradise
crabs
These crabs entertained us for hours! They were crazy, they’d ryn head first into the crashing waves, I swear they were suicidal!
Local fisherman
Local fisherman
colourful boats
Colourful boats
deserted beach
Whole beach to ourselves
fisherman
I was fascinated by these fisherman that would launch their tiny boats headfirst into the crashing waves! Somehow they’d make it past the shore break and come back hours later with a net full of fish and prawns
Catch of the day
Catch of the day

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With one final sunset our time in India sadly came to an end. The 6 weeks we spent exploring this crazy chaotic country will never be forgotten.  It was a roller coaster ride filled with lots of ups and few downs every now and then (mainly of the stomach bug variety and dodgy tuk tuk drivers). It’s hard for me to pin point which parts of the trip were my favourite and I was going to finish this post with my top 5 moments in India but in trying to do so I realised there’s no way I can chose 5 moments that were my favourite! So all I’m going to say is India really is incredible and if you take the time to see past the craziness you’ll love this country as much as I do! As we speak I’m on the plane on the way to the Maldives so this is where I’m going to leave you for now. I’ve got 4 glorious days of complete luxury coming my way and I can not wait!!!

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