Weekly Photo Challenge: Express Yourself (through rainbow and rain)

Kerala express yourself

Quilon, Kerala, India

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Kovalam – an almost forgotten place by the sea

Fishermen pulling net Kovalam Samudra beach Kerala India

A place that not too many heard about. A crescent-shaped seaside that is often overlooked by winter beachgoers. A little oasis where tourism forms a perfect blend with age-old traditions. An exotic escape alive and laid back at the same time. Somewhere by the Arabian sea, towards the Southern tip of India, Kerala’s little beach town is something called love at first sight I guess.

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The Niagara of India

Monkey at Athirapally waterfall Kerala India

Tiny monkey learning the rules of nature

With nature’s scenic backdrop this natural phenomenon is worthy of its nickname. 70 km from Cochin, Athirapally has two remarkable waterfalls, the lush green Vazhachal forest and the wildlife infused Vachumaram lake on offer.

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Munnar reflects fifty shades of green

Passing by steep valleys, robust waterfalls, colorful roadside shacks and the greenest tea plantations the drive from Thekkady to Munnar is mind-blowing. In Munnar everything is pretty much about tea, the city itself is not so impressive but the surrounding area is something you don’t come across with everywhere.

Tea estate junction sign Munnar Kerala India

Do not miss the junction – tea estate junction sign, Munnar

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Spice kick and high tea in Thekkady

Touristic and off-the-beaten-track at the same time, Thekkady is a green delight you wouldn’t want to skip if you are down in the southwestern county of India. From wildlife to lush green vegetation from spices and herbs to Ayurvedic treatments there is simply an abundant list of activities you can immerse yourself in during your stay out there.

Tea plantation workers Thekkady

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Where the mysterious backwaters join the open sea

Varkala view between bamboo poles

From crowded Trivandrum we headed onto quiet Varkala in the evening. The peak season hasn’t come in yet, so there was enough and more personal space to finally experience some serenity far away from mad drivers and the freaking toots and honks.

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Ayurveda meets movie Life of Pi in Trivandrum

Trivandrum zoo

After the off-beaten trip in Quilon it was time to venture into Kerala’s polluted capital, Trivandrum. The city itself did not look like any attention puller and I would have easily skipped it if I didn’t have an appointment in Kottakkal Ayurveda hospital. It was a morning session. The hospital itself is not the typical 3 to 5 star Ayurveda resort but more like a modest looking facility. Very simple building with no fountains, no incense sticks, no rose petals, no music and shoes to be strictly removed before crossing the threshold.

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Quilon – Kerala’s hidden gem

Quilon backwaters village life

Visited by far less crowd, untouristy Quilon (or Kollam) is an authentic experience if you are craving for the real taste of the local lifestyle. During my Kerala visit I guess one of the most relaxing days of my entire stay goes for this old coastal place. If you already have some time scheduled in trendy Varkala at a 35 km distance just pop over to Kollam for a quiet day. Sure you won’t leave disappointed. Here’s how you can make the most out of your journey:

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Racing against time in Kerala

Kerala boat God’s own country taught me some lessons from the moment I landed on its territories. The lush green scenery, endless coconut palms, quiet backwaters and seemingly laid-back life made me believe I am only here to unwind and relax so I would have never thought I will be experiencing the unexpected.

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Once upon a time in Kerala…

Traveling without your camera is traveling without shoes. You are physically able to do it but you constantly feel something is missing.

Luckily even in my early years of traveling I thought the same and even though the photos are a far cry from being professional they are good enough to recall the moments of my wanderings in this astonishing South Indian state.

Kerala Chinese fishing netsFishermen at work – Chinese fishing nets in Cochin

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Nature escapes – off the beaten track

Feel like jetting off to a place to leave the rat race behind for a while and just find your little escape in nature? Have you dreamed about being offline for more than 24 hours and enjoy the pure serenity of flora and fauna? Three hidden accommodations built right in the heart of nature await those with adventurous soul.

Bathroom in the rainforest- Elephant Hills, Thailand

Rainforest bathroom – Elephant Hills, Thailand

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Travel globally – eat locally

The best way to start immersing in a country’s culture and heritage is to get a taste of their cuisine. Skipping the luring restaurants on busy shopping streets targeting masses of tourists, the real secrets of a country’s gastronomy are waiting to be discovered away from the city’s buzz. The following restaurants are offering unforgettable journeys around (the world) to the traditional gastronomic delights of 3 countries.

Seagull restaurant Kerala

Can’t get more local than this – Seagull restaurant, Kerala

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