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QUICK TOUR OF KOTTAYAM & KUMARAKOM

Lake & Backwaters | Nature & Scenic | Pilgrimage

Photo Credit: Flickr

ITINERARY SUMMARY

Trip Starting Point: Kochi City

Mode of Travel: Car (or Cab)

Trip Duration: 2 Days

Ideal Start Time: 7 AM (Day 1) & 9 AM (Day 2)

Total Places Visited: 10

Day 1 Destinations | Day 2 Destinations
Day 1 Attractions | Day 2 Attractions

DAY 1 : THIRUNAKKARA MAHADEVA TEMPLE - CHERIAPALLY CHURCH - ETTUMANNUR SHIVA TEMPLE

Travel from Kochi to Kottayam

Pilgrimage

Duration of visit: 1 Hour
Timings: 5 AM - 11.30 AM & 5 PM - 8 PM
Entry Fee: Free Entry

At a distance of 1 Kms from Kottayam Railway Station, Thirunakkara Mahadeva Temple dedicated to Lord Shiva is one of the oldest and best temples in Kottayam.

Built in early 16th century, this temple is located in heart of the Kottayam town and is famous for its rich architecture. Constructed by Thekkumkoor Maharaja, this temple showcases the typical South Indian architecture. The walls of the temples are decorated with beautiful paintings of different scenes from the Hindu epics. The innermost sanctum of the temple is adorned with impressive images of epic characters from the Hindu mythology.

The annual festival is celebrated for 10 days in the month of March. Nine well decorated elephants participate in this procession. The major attraction of the festival is the all-night Kathakali presentation on third and fourth days of the festival.

Timings: 5 AM to 12 PM & 5 PM to 8 PM.

Pilgrimage

Duration of visit: 30 Mins
Timings: 5 AM - 11.30 AM & 5 PM - 8 PM
Entry Fee: Free Entry

At a distance of 1 Kms from Kottayam Railway Station, Thirunakkara Sri Krishna Temple is located near Thirunakkara Mahadeva Temple.

The pilgrims visiting Sabarimala take a dip in the holy pond of this temple. There are separate smaller shrines available in the temple for Lord Ganesh and Goddess Bhagavati. An annual 7 day festival, 'Araattu', held here is a major draw.

Pilgrimage

Duration of visit: 30 Mins
Timings: 8 AM - 6 PM
Entry Fee: Free

At a distance of 3 Kms from Kottayam Railway Station, Cheriapally Church dedicated to mother Mary is the first church built in Kottayam.

Constructed by the Portuguese in 1579, it is one of the oldest churches in Kerala. It is also believed that Thekkumkur Maharaja has built this holy place. The architecture of the church is a blend of European architecture along with Hindu temple architecture. The Hindu influence is seen in the large brick walls outside, suspended lamps of the halls and granite pillars while the Portuguese impressions manifest themselves in the dye paintings on the walls and ceilings, depicting the life of Christ.

The main festival of the church is celebrated on January 15th.

Timings: 8 AM to 6 PM.

Pilgrimage

Duration of visit: 30 Mins
Timings: 7 AM - 5 PM
Entry Fee: Free

At a distance of 3 Kms from Kottayam Railway Station, Thazhathangadi Juma Masjid is one of the oldest mosques in India built around 10th century.

Situated on the banks of Meeachil River, it was built by Habib Dinar, son of Malik Dinar who introduced Islam in the country. This magnificent mosque is famous for its rich architecture & wooden carvings, constructed in typical Kerala Architecture. The Government of Kerala has declared it as one of the protected monuments of the state.

The sacred well of the mosque differs from those of other Islamic places of worship. The well has stone steps resembling the steps noticed in most of the temples of India.

Pilgrimage

Duration of visit: 1 Hour
Timings: 4 AM - 12 PM & 5 PM - 8 PM
Entry Fee: Free

At a distance of 11 Kms from Kottayam Railway Station, Mahadeva Temple located in Ettumanoor is one of the most celebrated Siva temples in Kerala. This is one of the popular tourist & pilgrimage sites to visit near Kottayam & Kochi.

This temple is known for its exceptional murals and woodcarvings made in 16th century. The themes of these murals are stills from the Hindu epics, Ramayana and Mahabharata and the and Puranas.The oil lamp at the entrance of the temple is believed to have been lighted for more than 450 years and it is fed with oil by the devotees everyday. There are 14 decorative gopuras in the temple built in 16th century.

Another attraction of the temple is Ezhara Punnana (golden elephants) donated to the temple by Maharaja of Travancore. The golden elephants are kept on display during the temple annual festival celebrated in the month of February / March. Only Hindus are allowed into this temple.

Ezharaponnaana Ezhunallathu is the main festival celebrated .....

Pilgrimage

Duration of visit: 30 Mins - 1 Hr
Timings: 4 AM - 11.30 AM & 5 PM - 8 PM
Entry Fee: Free Entry

At a distance of 5 Kms from Kottayam Railway Station, Bhagavathy Temple at Kumaranalloor is one of the most important Devi temples in Kerala.

The idol of the Goddess is in standing position and is about 3 feet high. The temple has been identified by Sri Adi Sankaracharya as one of the five important centers in India to worship Durga. The temple was built in sreechakra style and known for its unique architecture. It is also renowned for its temple towers constructed in Tamil Nadu style of architecture. The temple has many attractive mural paintings and wood carvings.

The annual festival of the temple is celebrated in the month of November / December.

Overnight Stay in Kottayam

DAY 2 : KUMARAKOM BIRD SANCTUARY - BACKWATER CRUISES

Travel from Kottayam to Kumarakom

Pilgrimage

Duration of visit: 30 Mins
Timings: 4 AM - 11. 30 AM & 5 PM - 8 PM
Entry Fee: Free entry

At a distance of 1 Km from Kumarakom Bus Station, Sri Kumaramangalam Temple dedicated for Sri Subrahmanya Swamy, this temple is situated on the banks of Meenachil River.

This temple was inaugurated by Sri Narayana Guru in 1905.

Wildlife

Duration of visit: 2 Hours
Timings: 6 AM to 6 PM
Entry Fee: Rs. 50 for Adults & Rs. 100 for Foreigners

At a distance of 5 kms from Kumarakom Bus Station, Kumarakom Bird Sanctuary is one of the famous bird sanctuaries in Kerala, situated on the banks of Vembanad Lake. The sanctuary is an amazing paradise of mangrove forests, emerald green paddy fields and coconut groves. This is one of the best places to visit in Kumarakom, among the best places to visit in Kerala.

Spread across 14 acres, it is a favorite haunt for many migratory birds. The main attractions are local birds like the waterfowl, cuckoo, owl, egret, heron, cormorant, moorhen, darter, Brahminy kite and the duck, as well as the migratory Siberian crane. Parrot, teal, lark, flycatcher, and other birds are seen here during their respective migratory seasons.

The sanctuary is accessible by road & boat from Kumarakom village. It has well laid out paths for moving around within the sanctuary (1-2 hours by foot). The best way to watch .....

Lake & Backwaters

Duration of visit: 4 Hours/Half Day
Timings: 9 AM to 3 PM
Entry Fee: price depends on duration & type of boat

Kumarakom is the most enchanting backwater destination in Kerala. It is located on the banks of Vembanad Lake in the Kuttanad region of Kottayam district. Vembanad Lake is one of the largest fresh water lakes in India. Also known as the Queen of Vembanad, Kumarakom is the most famous kerala backwaters destination for traditional houseboat rides and it is among the most popular Kerala tourist places. The major sightseeing option at Kumarakom is houseboat cruise in backwaters of Vembanad.

Kumarakom backwater cruises are a unique experience which leaves memories for lifetime. There are Country boats and Houseboats for the boat cruise experience. A Houseboat cruise along the backwaters is really an amazing experience for every traveler to Kumarakom. Excellent marine and freshwater fish including tasty karimeen, shrimp, and prawns are available .....

Vaikom

Lake & Backwaters | Pilgrimage

Duration of visit: 1 Hour
Timings: 4 AM - 11.30 AM & 5 PM - 8 PM
Entry Fee: Free

At a distance of 35 km from Kottayam and 18 km from Kumarakom, Vaikom, situated on the eastern side of Vembanad lake is the oldest township in Kottayam district. Vaikom is famous as a temple town and a popular getaway to experience beautiful backwaters in kerala.

Vaikom is well known for the the ancient Mahadeva temple dedicated to Lord Shiva and believed to be built by Parasurama, the founder of Kerala. The temple has a huge courtyard spanning over to 8 acres of land and four towers on each side of the temple. Other major attractions of the Mahadeva Temple includes the Garbagriha, a golden Stupa surmounting Garbagriha, 19.5m tall golden staff, etc. The exterior walls of the Garbagriha exhibit several pieces of artwork.

This is the place which had made a significance in Indian history with the Vaikom Sathyagraham in 1924, i.e the movement against untouchability in Hindu society. Leader of the Indian Freedom Movement Mahatma .....

Travel from Kumarakom to Kochi

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