10 Best Tourist Places to Visit in Kerala | Things to do!

Panoramic view of Kerala, showcasing the diverse tourist places to visit in Kerala.

Introduction to Kerala’s Beauty

Kerala, located in the southwest region of India, is commonly referred to as “God’s Own Country” for good reason. The variety of tourist places to visit in Kerala is nothing short of breathtaking, with its beautiful landscapes, fascinating rivers, and colorful culture. This coastal state is a treasure mine for explorers, with extensive tea gardens and gorgeous beaches.

However, before we delve into Kerala’s attractions, it’s critical to emphasize the importance of sustainable tourism. Our choices as visitors may help to preserve Kerala’s natural and cultural beauties, ensuring that they continue to inspire future generations. Let us travel responsibly!

Outline of the Article

10 Best Places to Visit in Kerala

Kerala, with its wide array of tourist spots, can leave travelers spoiled for choice. Here’s a handpicked list of the best destinations to consider:

1. The Serenity of Alleppey’s Backwaters:

Serene Alleppey's Backwaters, a prominent attraction among tourist places to visit in Kerala.
The enchanting backwaters of Alleppey, Kerala: A mosaic of lagoons, canals, and lakes.

Alleppey, in the heart of Kerala, is famous for its calm backwaters. These tranquil rivers, surrounded by thick flora, make it one of the top tourist places to visit in Kerala. Cruising aboard a houseboat in Alleppey provides unrivaled views of everything from sun-kissed paddy fields to inhabitants going about their daily lives. The soothing lull of the seas combined with the bustling local life creates a tranquil and culturally stimulating experience. The peacefulness of Alleppey’s backwaters is not to be missed by anyone looking for a true Kerala experience.

Things to do:

  • Houseboat Cruises: Experience the tranquility of the backwaters, undoubtedly one of the best places to visit in Kerala.
  • Village Walks: Explore local communities and witness the authentic Keralan lifestyle.
  • Canoeing: Navigate the narrower channels for a closer look at nature.
  • Kuttanad Region: Also known as the ‘Rice Bowl of Kerala.’
  • Pathiramanal Island: A haven for bird watchers
  • Alappuzha Beach: a serene coastline with a historic pier

Best Time/Season:

  • Winter (November to February): Pleasant weather makes it the ideal time to explore the backwaters.

Ideal Duration:

  • 2-3 days: This gives enough time to soak in the beauty and culture.

How to Get There:

  • By Air: Cochin International Airport, then a short drive to Alleppey.
  • By Train: Alleppey Railway Station connects to major Indian cities.
  • By Road: Well-maintained roads and highways link Alleppey to other parts of Kerala.

Suggestion to Read: Explore Alleppey, Kerala: A Serene Backwater Paradise

2. Munnar’s Tea Gardens: Your Essential Guide

Lush green terraced tea gardens of Munnar, showcasing the beautiful tourist places to visit in Kerala.
Endless stretches of green: The captivating tea gardens of Munnar, Kerala’s pride.

Munnar is one of the crown jewels among tourist places to visit in Kerala. Imagine enjoying freshly brewed tea while surrounded by mist-kissed hills and beautiful tea plantations that spread for miles. The aroma of tea leaves wafting in the chilly breeze adds to the sensory experience. However, Munnar is not just for the leisure traveler.

If you enjoy adrenaline-pumping adventure activities, the region has plenty to offer. Munnar assures that every visitor departs with experiences that last a lifetime, whether walking through its rolling terrain or paragliding into the skies. Come discover and be enchanted.

Things to do:

  • Tea Garden Tours: Dive deep into the world of tea-making in these verdant plantations, a highlight among the best places to visit in Kerala.
  • Trekking: Conquer trails like Anamudi Peak for breathtaking views.
  • Cycling: Explore the hills at your pace, feeling the cool breeze.
  • Eravikulam National Park: home of the endangered Nilgiri Tahr.
  • Mattupetty Dam: is a picturesque spot perfect for picnics.
  • Attukal Waterfalls: Experience the majesty of nature up close.

Best Time/Season:

  • Winter (September to March): Mild temperatures make it perfect for sightseeing.

Ideal Duration:

  • 3–4 days: Allow yourself time to truly immerse yourself in Munnar’s beauty.

How to Get There:

  • By Air: Cochin International Airport is the closest airport.
  • By Train: Aluva Railway Station is the closest, followed by a scenic drive.
  • By Road: accessible routes from major cities in Kerala and Tamil Nadu.

Suggestion to Read: Explore the Beauty of Munnar, Kerala. Complete Travel Guide

3. Thekkady’s Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary: Your Adventure Awaits

Serene Periyar Lake in Thekkady, showcasing the tranquil tourist places to visit in Kerala.
The Calm Waters of Periyar Lake: A Reflection of Kerala’s Natural Beauty.

Thekkady is a nature lover’s dream, known for its beautiful green woods and various species. Thekkady is one of the prominent tourist destinations in Kerala, offering a unique blend of adventure and calm. Elephants, tigers, and various bird species can be found in its deep forests. With its peaceful lake, the Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary is a refuge for wildlife sightings. Whether on a boat trip or a forest hike, Thekkady guarantees exhilarating and touching encounters. For those looking for a wild encounter in the midst of nature, Thekkady should be on your Kerala bucket list.

Things to do:

  • Boat Rides: Glide through Periyar Lake, catching glimpses of wildlife—a must in the best places to visit in Kerala.
  • Jungle Treks: Immerse yourself in the wilderness, with the possibility of animal sightings.
  • Bamboo Rafting: Experience Thekkady’s wild side from the water, paddling through serene settings.
  • Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary: A biodiversity hotspot, home to elephants, tigers, and more.
  • Mangla Devi Temple: an ancient temple with stunning views.
  • Elephant Junction: Get up close and personal with these majestic creatures.

Best Time/Season:

  • Winter (October to February): cool climate ideal for exploring the forests.

Ideal Duration:

  • 2-3 Days: Enough time to delve deep into Thekkady’s wild offerings.

How to Get There:

  • By Air: Madurai Airport in Tamil Nadu is the closest airport.
  • By Train: Kottayam Railway Station, followed by a road journey.
  • By Road: Well-connected routes from major cities in Kerala.

4. Kovalam’s Beach Paradise: Your Seaside Retreat

Sunset view of Kovalam beach with palm trees, one of the premier tourist places to visit in Kerala.
The pristine Kovalam beach basking in the golden hues of the setting sun, is a must-visit destination in Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala.

Kovalam is Kerala’s seaside treasure, with its golden sandy beaches and crystal-clear waters. A premier destination among the tourist places to visit in Kerala, offering both relaxation and adventure, This coastal paradise caters to every beach lover’s desire, whether you’re resting under the shade of coconut palms or engaging in water sports. The renowned lighthouse, which towers over the beach, adds to the allure of this tropical paradise. Kovalam is an unmissable stop on your Kerala itinerary for anyone looking for a combination of sun, sea, and sand.

Things to do:

  • Sunbathing: Relax under the sun and enjoy the pristine beaches, a highlight among the best places to visit in Kerala.
  • Surfing: Ride the waves and feel the thrill of the Arabian Sea.
  • Ayurvedic Treatments: Experience Kerala’s renowned healing practices by the beach.
  • Lighthouse Beach: Known for its tall lighthouse, offering panoramic views of the coastline,
  • Hawah Beach: Perfect for serene evening walks.
  • Samudra Beach: A quieter beach option for relaxation.

Best Time/Season:

  • Winter (November to February): Pleasant weather for beach activities.

Ideal Duration:

  • 2 Days: Enough to soak in the sun and explore Kovalam’s attractions.

How to Get There:

  • By Air: Trivandrum International Airport is the nearest, just 15 km away.
  • By Train: Thiruvananthapuram Central Railway Station, followed by a short drive.
  • By Road: Easily accessible via well-maintained roads from major cities in Kerala.

5. Wayanad: The Green Paradise: A Verdant Escape

Scenic landscape of Wayanad, highlighting one of the must-visit tourist places to visit in Kerala.
Wayanad – A Mosaic of Lush Greenery and Serene Waters in Kerala.

Wayanad, a symphony of undulating green hills and lush forests, encapsulates Kerala’s unrivaled splendor. It stands tall among the best tourist attractions to visit in Kerala, serving as a treasure trove for nature enthusiasts and explorers. The area’s rich tribal traditions and enthralling waterfalls contribute to its allure. Wayanad delivers an immersive experience, whether it’s the perfume of spice farms or the call of wild animals. This lush paradise welcomes visitors seeking a getaway from the hustle and bustle.

Things to do:

  • Trekking: Explore the lush trails of the Western Ghats.
  • Wildlife Spotting: Encounter Wayanad’s diverse fauna in its natural habitat.
  • Camping: Experience the tranquility of the forests under a starlit sky, showcasing why it’s among the best places to visit in Kerala.
  • Edakkal Caves: Historic rock formations with ancient carvings
  • Banasura Sagar Dam: India’s largest earthen dam with picturesque views
  • Pookode Lake: A natural freshwater lake ideal for boating.

Best Time/Season:

  • Winter (October to March): comfortable climate for outdoor activities.

Ideal Duration:

  • 3 Days: Ample time to experience Wayanad’s multifaceted beauty.

How to Get There:

  • By Air: Kozhikode International Airport, followed by a 2-hour drive.
  • By Train: Kozhikode Railway Station, then a scenic drive to Wayanad.
  • By Road: Well-connected by road with major cities in Kerala.

Suggestion to Read: Exploring Wayanad Kerala’s Paradise: A Complete Travel Guide

6. Varkala Beach’s Clifftop Views

Breathtaking view of Varkala Cliff, showcasing one of the top tourist places to visit in Kerala.
Varkala Cliff – Where the Sky Meets the Arabian Sea in God’s Own Country.

Varkala Beach, in the beautiful state of Kerala, stands out for its amazing clifftop vistas. More than just a sandy refuge, it provides visitors with a unique vantage point from which to observe the Arabian Sea’s vast grandeur. Varkala, as one of the popular tourist attractions in Kerala, offers a wonderful blend of natural wonder and spiritual peace. Varkala Beach provides a revitalizing vacation with its sweeping coastlines, ancient temples, and active local markets, making every moment picturesque.

Things to do:

  • Take a serene walk along the clifftop and soak in panoramic views of the Arabian Sea.
  • Attend a yoga or meditation session at one of the beachside centers.
  • Indulge in local Keralite cuisine at beachfront cafes.
  • Go paragliding for a bird’s-eye view of Varkala’s pristine coastline.
  • Varkala Cliff: A natural wonder offering a mesmerizing sunset view.
  • Janardhana Swamy Temple: An ancient temple holding immense historical and cultural significance
  • Papanasam Beach: Believed to wash away sins, it’s among the best places to visit in Kerala for spiritual seekers.

Best Time/Season:

  • November to March: Pleasant weather with cool breezes, perfect for beach activities and sightseeing.

Ideal Duration:

  • 2 to 3 days: Enough to explore the major attractions and savor the tranquil ambiance.

How to Get There:

  • By Air: The nearest airport is Trivandrum International Airport, about 50 km away.
  • By Rail: Varkala Railway Station connects the beach town to major Indian cities.
  • By Road: Regular bus services and taxis are available from major cities in Kerala.

7. The Historic Fort Kochi

Historic Fort Kochi, a key representation of the colonial past and one of the prime tourist places to visit in Kerala.
Fort Kochi’s tranquil streets, colonial architecture, and Chinese fishing nets paint a picture of a bygone era.

Discover Fort Kochi’s ageless beauty, where history comes alive around every corner. Wander along its cobblestone streets, admiring the Dutch, Portuguese, and British colonial buildings. Stroll by the distinctive Chinese fishing nets that have come to symbolize Fort Kochi’s beach. This small town, as one of the must-visit tourist places to visit in Kerala, provides a unique mix of art, culture, and heritage. Engage with people, enjoy traditional art forms, and dine on coastal foods to make your journey a memorable trip back in time.

Things to do:

  • Immerse in local history with guided walking tours.
  • Attend traditional Kathakali performances.
  • Sample Fort Kochi’s fusion of cuisines, from seafood to coconut-rich curries.
  • The iconic Chinese fishing nets
  • Dutch Palace, showcasing Kerala’s intricate murals
  • St. Francis Church: One of the earliest European churches in India.

Best Time/Season:

  • Visit between October and February for pleasant weather, ideal for exploring.

Ideal Duration:

  • Spend 2-3 days thoroughly experience the cultural richness.

How to get there:

  • Reach via Cochin International Airport, followed by a short drive or ferry. Local taxis and rickshaws are abundant.

Fort Kochi, one of the best places to visit in Kerala, blends colonial history with vibrant Keralan culture, making it a treasure trove for travelers.

Suggestion to Read: Kochi’s Attractions | Explore The best places to go in Kochi

8. Athirapally Waterfalls’ Majestic Beauty

Majestic Athirapally Waterfalls, a highlight among tourist places to visit in Kerala.
The mesmerizing Athirapally Waterfalls cascaded down the verdant landscapes of Kerala.

The Athirapally Waterfalls are a magnificent sight, cascading softly amidst thick flora. It’s been termed the “Niagara of India” and is a must-see among tourist places to visit in Kerala. This spectacular waterfall, flanked by the lush Sholayar hills, offers a tranquil respite for visitors and nature lovers. Whether you want to take panoramic photos, go on a restorative trip, or simply enjoy the scenery, Athirapally ensures a memorable experience for every visitor.

Things to do:

  • Take a guided trek to the base of the waterfall.
  • Capture the cascades with photography or videography.
  • Enjoy a picnic amidst the lush surroundings.
  • Explore the nearby rainforest and spot exotic wildlife.
  • The main waterfall viewpoint
  • Vazhachal Falls, a nearby cascade
  • Charpa Falls offers a quieter retreat.

Best Time/Season:

  • Monsoon and post-monsoon months, from June to November, have the most voluminous flow.

Ideal Duration:

  • Half-day to a full day.

How to get there:

  • Accessible by road from Kochi (approximately a 2-hour drive).
  • The nearest railway station: is Chalakudy.
  • The nearest airport: is Cochin International Airport.

Nestled in the Sholayar ranges, Athirapally is truly one of the best places to visit in Kerala, offering visitors a mesmerizing experience amidst nature’s bounty.

9. Kumarakom’s Bird Sanctuary:

A variety of birds perched amidst the lush greenery of Kumarakom's Bird Sanctuary, highlighting the tourist places to visit in Kerala.
The vibrant and diverse avian life at Kumarakom’s Bird Sanctuary, a haven for nature and bird enthusiasts in Kerala.

Kumarakom’s Bird Sanctuary, located on the banks of Vembanad Lake, is a refuge for birdwatchers and environmental aficionados. With its deep mangroves, beautiful landscapes, and the musical songs of both migratory and native birds, it is one of the premier tourist places to visit in Kerala. Whether you’re a birder with a checklist or someone looking for peace and quiet in nature, this refuge promises an unforgettable experience. With the mesmerizing backwaters of Kumarakom nearby, it’s no surprise that this site has become a must-see in Kerala’s extensive tapestry of attractions.

Things to do:

  • Bird watching: Spot exotic migratory birds and local avian species.
  • Take guided tours to learn more about the diverse ecosystems.
  • Enjoy a leisurely boat ride on the nearby Vembanad Lake.
  • Capture nature’s beauty through your lens; it’s a haven for photographers.
  • The watchtower is for panoramic views of the sanctuary.
  • Local village tours: Experience the culture and lifestyle of Kumarakom.

Best Time/Season:

  • November through February, during which time migratory birds visit.

Ideal Duration:

  • Half-day to a full day, depending on the depth of your exploration.

How to get there:

  • The nearest airport: is Cochin International Airport.
  • By road: well-connected roads from major cities in Kerala
  • Local transport options like autorickshaws and cabs are also available.

Nestled beside Vembanad Lake, Kumarakom’s Bird Sanctuary stands out as one of the best places to visit in Kerala for nature and bird enthusiasts. With the gentle lapping of lake waters and the symphony of bird calls, it’s a tranquil getaway unlike any other.

10. Thrissur: The Cultural Capital

Cultural and vibrant views of Thrissur, highlighting the tourist places to visit in Kerala.
Thrissur – A Blend of Tradition, Culture, and Nature.

In Thrissur, immerse yourself in the rich tapestry of Kerala’s traditions. As the state’s cultural center, it’s no surprise that Thrissur is at the top of the list of tourist places to visit in Kerala. Thrissur’s dynamic atmosphere resonates with every visitor, from the rhythmic beats of traditional drum performances to the grand temples. The annual Thrissur Pooram festival, a beautiful display of Kerala’s cultural history, should not be missed. Thrissur promises a trip back in time, whether you’re a history buff or a culture aficionado.

Things to do:

  • Dive into the history at local museums.
  • Attend traditional Kerala art performances.
  • Taste authentic Kerala cuisine at local eateries.
  • Participate in the Thrissur Pooram festival if visiting during the season.
  • Vadakkunnathan Temple: An Architectural Marvel
  • Thrissur Zoo & Museum: Get a glimpse of Kerala’s diverse fauna.
  • Basilica of Our Lady of Dolours: Marvel at its intricate design.

Best Time/Season:

  • November to March: Pleasant weather and a great time for sightseeing. It’s when Thrissur showcases some of the best places to visit in Kerala.

Ideal Duration:

  • 2 to 3 days: Enough time to explore the major attractions and soak in the cultural vibe.

How to get there:

  • By Air: The nearest airport is Cochin International Airport, roughly 58 km away.
  • By Train: Thrissur Railway Station connects the city to major Indian destinations.
  • By Road: well-connected by Kerala State Road Transport Corporation buses and national highways.

Reasons to Visit Kerala

1. Breathtaking Natural Beauty:

Panoramic view of lush green landscapes, representing the natural beauty of the prime tourist places to visit in Kerala.
Breathtaking vistas of Kerala’s pristine landscapes, showcase the reason why it’s dubbed as “God’s Own Country.”

Kerala is located in the heart of South India and is recognized for its amazing landscapes that spread across numerous terrains. Waterfalls, verdant meadows, and dense woods abound in the state, which range from rolling hills to tranquil backwaters. Travelers can get up close and personal with nature, encountering unusual plants and creatures. The state encourages visitors to participate in immersive experiences such as treks, boat trips, and peaceful nature walks.

Kerala’s commitment to sustainable tourism, with eco-friendly resorts and practices prioritized, adds to its allure. All of these factors combine to make Kerala’s magnificent natural beauty one of the top tourist places to visit in Kerala. Nature is discovered in its purest form here, not just witnessed.

2. Rich Cultural Festivals:

Vibrant Kerala Cultural Festivals, showcasing the rich heritage and tourist places to visit in Kerala.
An array of colors, music, and dance – Kerala’s cultural festivals epitomize the state’s rich heritage.

Kerala, a destination steeped in traditions, is well-known for its lively cultural events. Every event, from the explosive boat races to the mystical Theyyam dances, conveys a story about its origins. These festivals transform communities into bustling spectacles, attracting visitors from all around. While the mesmerizing backwaters and verdant landscapes are top tourist places to visit in Kerala, it is these festivals that provide a deep dive into the heart of Kerala’s culture. Visiting during these festivals offers not only a visual delight but also an incredible voyage through the soulful rhythms of the state.

3. Unique Boat Races:

Oarsmen vigorously rowing traditional snake boats in Kerala, highlighting the vibrant tourist places to visit in Kerala.
Synchronized Strength: Oarsmen in action during Kerala’s iconic snake boat race.

Kerala’s boat races demonstrate the state’s distinct blend of tradition and exhilaration. Observers are enthralled as synchronized oarsmen cut over the water in snake boats. These events, held in the state’s picturesque backwaters, are more than just competitions; they’re communal festivities. If you’re looking for tourist attractions in Kerala, plan your trip around boat racing. It is more than a show; it is an immersion into a tradition, with rhythmic chanting and loud audiences echoing the very heart of Kerala’s vivid energy.

4. Delectable Kerala Cuisine:

Kerala’s gastronomic delights are as captivating as its natural beauty. Every dish tells a story of history and creativity, from the tantalizing taste of hot seafood to the aromatic blend of spices in vegetarian delights. As you explore tourist places to visit in Kerala, make sure to take your taste buds along for the ride. Tasting local cuisine like appams, the legendary Kerala sadya, is like tasting God’s own country’s essence. Dive into this delightful experience, and you’ll discover yet another reason to love Kerala.

Suggestion to Read: Explore the Beauty of Kerala Tourism: A Gateway to Paradise.

Travel tips for Kerala:

Best Time to Visit:

  • October to March, when the climate is cooler and less humid.

Essential Items to Pack:

  • Light cotton clothes
  • Sturdy umbrella
  • Mosquito repellent

Local Customs and Etiquette:

  • Greet locals with a gentle nod.
  • Dress modestly, especially at religious sites.
  • Respect and follow the local traditions when visiting tourist places in Kerala.

Kerala’s Culinary Delights:

Traditional Dishes Every Tourist Must Try:

Kerala’s cuisine is a rich tapestry of flavors, from the aromatic Malabari biryani to the acidic fish curries. While touring Kerala’s tourist attractions, try staples like Sadya, a vegetarian feast.

Kerala often serves cool refreshments such as tender coconut water and sulaimani tea in addition to the main dishes. Payasam and banana fritters are must-tries for individuals with a sweet palate. Dive into these gastronomic adventures for a whole Kerala experience.

Sustainable Tourism in Kerala:

Importance of Being an Eco-friendly Tourist:

Embracing sustainability while touring the myriad tourist places to visit in Kerala not only preserves its pristine beauty but also guarantees future generations can enjoy it. Mindful choices, such as minimizing plastic usage and supporting local businesses, can make a big difference.

Community-based Tourism Initiatives:

Kerala has a number of projects that empower local communities, allowing tourists to have real experiences. Travelers who choose community-driven experiences immediately contribute to the livelihoods of people, promoting responsible tourism. Dive into Kerala’s natural beauty in a sustainable way.

Getting Around Kerala:

Local Transportation Options:

The most authentic way to travel while experiencing the lovely tourist places to visit in Kerala is by local conveyances. Choose from a number of modes of transportation, including vehicles for short trips, buses for inexpensive long routes, and trains to see Kerala’s picturesque beauty.

Tips for Hiring Taxis and Rickshaws:

Always agree on a fare or check if the meter is operational before boarding. Choose reputed cab providers or ask locals for reliable rickshaw drivers to ensure a smooth travel across God’s Own Country.

Safety and Health Precautions in Kerala:

While exploring the serene tourist places to visit in Kerala, it’s vital to prioritize your health and safety.

Drinking Water and Food Safety:

Stick to bottled or boiled water and enjoy local delicacies from reputable eateries to avoid any health issues.

Common Health Precautions for Tourists:

Carry a basic first-aid kit, be cautious of mosquitoes (apply repellents), and consult a local physician if you become ill. Kerala warmly welcomes you, but please travel responsibly and safely.


As we travel across the many tourist attractions in Kerala, it becomes clear that the state is a mosaic of natural beauty, cultural treasures, and time-honored customs. Kerala’s diversity is its inherent attraction, from misty hilltops to lively festivities. However, as travelers, let us treasure these moments and commit to exploring responsibly. We ensure that the enchantment of Kerala is preserved for future generations by stepping softly and respecting the local ethos. Happy and mindful traveling!


Q1: Why is Kerala called ‘God’s Own Country’?

  • The unparalleled beauty and rich cultural heritage of Kerala have earned it this title, portraying it as a land blessed by the divine.

Q2: How can one experience Kerala’s backwaters?

  • Renting a houseboat in places like Alleppey or Kumarakom is the best way to explore Kerala’s mesmerizing backwaters.

Q3: Is Kerala safe for solo female travelers?

  • Absolutely! Kerala, with its friendly locals and well-maintained public spaces, is considered safe for solo female travelers. However, it’s always wise to take standard safety precautions.

Q4: What’s the primary language spoken in Kerala?

  • Malayalam is the official and most widely spoken language in Kerala. However, English and Hindi are also understood by many.

Q5: What’s unique about Kerala’s cuisine?

  • Kerala’s cuisine is known for its rich flavors, with ample use of coconut, spices, and rice. Seafood is also a major part of the local diet, thanks to its extensive coastline.
Adventure travel, photography are my passions. Let me inspire you to travel more with crazy stories, photography, and useful tips from my travel adventures.

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