fun things to do with kids kerala india   Travel for Kids


Chinese fishing nets Cochin
Traveling with kids in India, Kerala is a haven – no huge cities to navigate, warm tropical weather, lush coconut palms and rice paddies, wild life reserves, and a best of all, rivers and inlets to explore in a houseboat. Kerala has monsoon rains in the summer months, so the best time to visit is October to April.

Kochi (Cochin) – KOCHI is a good jumping-off point for your stay in Kerala.

      Old city – The old district of Cochin is located on a peninsula, accessible by road and ferry (taking the ferry is fun). Founded in 1341, Cochin was famous for its spice trade and culturally diverse Chinese, Arab, Jewish, Portuguese, Dutch, British, and Indian population. Wander through the old streets, starting with Mattancherry Palace near the ferry jetty, then walk through the spice markets to Fort Cochin (streets with European style houses), and on to the waterfront.

- Mattancherry Palace (Dutch Palace) – The palace looks pretty ordinary from the outside, but the reason to visit are the extraordinary 16th - 18th century murals inside. Painted in vivid red, green, yellow and white colors, the murals depict scenes from the Ramayana, Mahabharata and Hindu gods Vishnu, Shiva, Parvati, and more. Mattancherry Palace is open daily, closed on Friday.

      - Waterfront – Kids will enjoy walking along the waterfront and looking at the colorful boats and distinctive Chinese fishing nets.
      Tip: If you have little kids, three wheeler auto-rickshaws or taxis are a good way to get around town, so they don't have to walk too much.
    Kathakali – Take in a one hour performance of Kathakali, the classical dance drama of Kerala. Actors dressed in amazing costumes and boggling headdresses, accompanied by musicians, enact stories from the Ramayana and Mahabharata, heroes battling the evil forces of evil. Performances daily, commentary in English. Come early to see a makeup demonstration (how do they create those red and green faces).
      For more info, check out the Kerala Kathakali Centre (theater is near the Santa Cruz Cathedral).
      Veega Land – Need a relaxing afternoon at a water park? Everyone in the family will enjoy Veega Land – wave pool, water coasters, water slides, kids' pool and play area, amusement park rides. Changing rooms, lockers, restaurants and snack bars.
  Backwaters of Kerala (Kuttanadu) – The backwaters of Kerala are a network of canals, rivers, lakes and inlets, surrounded by lush palm trees and tropical greenery. Cruising on a houseboat (one day or more) is a must-do for families, highly recommended.
    On the houseboat, glide through lagoons, past islands, villages in the distance, temples and shrines on the banks, emerald green rice fields, coconut groves, ducks and frogs in the water, colorful birds overhead.
    Houseboats (kettuvallam) come equipped with bedrooms and bathroom, outdoor dining area and kitchen, electric lights and all the comforts of home. The onboard staff (boat men and cook) will pilot the boat and provide all your meals and snacks. One parent writes, " There were lots of wonderful staff whose job was to look after you, and if you have little kids, there was an extra person just to keep an eye on the kids."
    Periyar Tiger Reserve (Thekkady) – The big attraction at Periyar is tigers, but the amazing wildlife you're likely to see are elephants, gaur (like buffalo), sambar deer, langur and macaques, the Malabar giant squirrel, birds and butterflies.
      There are two ways to explore the reserve – on a boat ride, or guided walks. The boat ride is easy if you have little kids, but the animals are all viewed at a distance. It's best to take the 3 hour guided nature walk, accompanied by a naturalist (they know where to find the wildlife).
    Munnar – To escape the tropical heat, head up to the tea plantations at Munnar in the misty mountains. Kids will have fun wandering through the tea plantations, and exploring the market in town. Nearby, go pedal boating on Lake Kundala.
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