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  1. 1. KERELA
  2. 2. Profile  The state capital isThiruvananthapuram, other major cities includeThrissur, Kochi, Kozhikode,and Kollam.  Nickname(s): God's Own Country  It also has the highest Literacy rate:95.5%  the highest life expectancy (Almost 77 years)  A survey in 2005 byTransparency International ranked it as the least corrupt state in the country.  Official Languages: Malayalam, English  Hinduism is practised by more than half of the population, followed by Islam andChristianity.  Production of pepper and natural rubber contributes to a significant portion of the total national output. In the agricultural sector, coconut, tea, coffee, cashew and spices are important.  The state has the highest media exposure in India with newspapers publishing in nine different languages; mainly English and Malayalam.  Kerala is an important tourist destination, with backwaters, beaches, Ayurvedic tourism, and tropical greenery among its major attractions.  World-class health care systems.  India's lowest infant mortality  Peaceful and pristine, Kerala is India's cleanest state.
  3. 3. Tourism  Kerala a state situated on the tropical Malabar Coast, is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the country.  Named as one of the ten paradises of the world by the National GeographicTraveler, Kerala is famous especially for its ecotourism initiatives  Aggressive marketing campaigns launched by the KeralaTourism Development Corporation—the government agency that oversees tourism prospects of the state—laid the foundation for the growth of the tourism industry.  Kerala is well known for her beaches, backwaters, mountain ranges and wildlife sanctuaries.  Other popular attractions in the state include the beaches at Kovalam, Varkala, backwater tourism and lake resorts aroundVembanad Lake, andAlapuzha; hill stations and resorts at Munnar,Wayanad, and national parks and wildlife sanctuaries at Periyar and Eravikulam National Park.  The "backwaters" region—an extensive network of interlocking rivers, lakes, and canals that centre on Alleppey, Kumarakom—also see heavy tourist traffic.  The city of Kochi ranks first in the total number of international and domestic tourists in Kerala.  To further promote tourism in Kerala Grand Kerala Shopping Festival was started by the Government of Kerala in 2007.Since then it has been held every year during the December– January period.  The state's tourism agenda promotes ecologically sustained tourism which focuses on the local culture, wilderness adventures, volunteering and personal growth of the local population. Efforts are taken to minimise the adverse effects of traditional tourism on the natural environment, and enhance the cultural integrity of local people.
  4. 4.  The major festival in Kerala is Onam. Kerala has a number of religious festivals. Thrissur Pooram.TheThrissur Pooram is conducted at theVadakumnathan temple,Thrissur.  The Sivarathri is also an important festival in Kerala.This festival is mainly celebrated in AluvaTemple and Padanilam ParabrahmaTemple. Muslims also have many important festivals.  To further promote tourism in Kerala, the Government of Kerala started the Grand Kerala Shopping Festival in the year 2007. Since then it has become an annual shopping event being conducted in the December–January period. During this period stores and shops registered under the GKSF offer wide range of discounts, vat refunds etc. Along with the guaranteed shopping experience, shoppers are provided with gift coupons for a fixed worth of purchase entering them into weekly and mega lucky draws. It incorporates not just the big players, but also the small and medium scale industries.Through this shopping festival, the Kerala Government intends to transform the State into a hub for international shopping experience and there by launch "ShoppingTourism" in the state.  Medical tourism, promoted by traditional systems of medicine likeAyurveda and Siddha are widely popular in the state, and draws increasing numbers of tourists. A combination of many factors has led to the increase in popularity of medical tourism: high costs of healthcare in industrialised nations, ease and affordability of international travel, improving technology and standards of care.  With increasing threats posed by global warming and changing weather patterns, it is feared that much of Kerala's low lying areas might be susceptible to beach erosions and coastal flooding .The differing monsoon patterns also suggest possible tropical cyclones in the future.
  5. 5. Thiruvananthapuram  Located in the southwestern tip of India,Thiruvananthapuram is bound by the Arabian Sea in the west andTamil Nadu in the east.  Named after Anantha Padmanabha or LordVishnu, the city is home to many ancient temples.  But the landmark is the Sree Padmanabha SwamyTemple around which the city has been built on seven low hills.  The wooded highlands of theWestern Ghats in the eastern and northeastern borders giveThiruvananthapuram some of the most enchanting picnic spots.  A long shoreline with internationally renowned beaches, historic monuments, backwater stretches and a rich cultural heritage make this district a much sought-after tourist destination.  Clean and green,Thiruvananthapuram, the capital of Kerala is one of the most beautiful cities in the country.
  6. 6. Wayanad  Wayanad is a bright green mountainous region that stretches along theWestern Ghats. It has a great deal of scenic appeal. Abundant coconut palms, thick forests, paddy fields, and lofty peaks form the landscape. Due to the nature of its terrain, the area also has much to offer adventure enthusiasts.  Popular attractions include trekking to Chembra Peak and Meenmutty Falls, exploring old Jain temples, climbing to Edakkal Caves, and wildlife spotting at Muthanga andTholpettyWildlife Sanctuaries. Another highlight of Wayanad is the many delightful homestays in the area.
  7. 7. Kochi  Kochi, formerly known as Cochin.  Kochi or Cochin is popularly known as the Queen of Arabian Sea, is famous for it’s finest natural harbours of the world.  It and was the centre of the world spice trade for many centuries.  Old Kochi loosely refers to a group of islands which comprise Willingdon Island, Fort Kochi, Mattancherry, etc.Today Kochi includes Ernakulam city, old parts of Kochi, Kumbalangi, and outlying islands.  Fort Kochi Known  as the "Gateway to Kerala", Kochi is an enchanting city that's had an eclectic influence.Arabs, British, Dutch,Chinese, and Portuguese have all left their mark on the city.The architecture and historical sites in Fort Kochi attract most of the visitors to the area.There you'll find the Saint Francis Church, said to be the oldest European built church in India. Fort Kochi is an excellent place to explore on foot. In the late afternoon head to the waterfront, where theChinese fishing nets line the shore, and relax in one of the many casual restaurants as the sun sets.You can also catch a Kathakali dance performance at the Kerala Kathakali Center. AgastyatheeramAyurvedicCenter is the place.
  8. 8. Kozhikode or Calicut  Kozhikode found its place in the world map when in 1498,Vasco Da Gama, the Portuguese explorer landed here on the Kappad Beach. Also known as Calicut, Kozhikode is a place that has historical sites galore.The ‘Jewel of the Malabar’ has Hindus, Muslims and Christians living in harmony, keeping their beliefs and traditions alive. A green countryside with serene beaches, historic sites, wildlife sanctuaries, rivers and hills make Kozhikode a popular destination.The district has three distinct regions - the sandy, the rocky highlands formed by the hilly portion of theWestern Ghats and the Lateritic midlands. Of the total area of 2344 sq.kms., the sandy coastal belt comprises 362.85 sq.kms., the lateritic midlands occupy 1343.50 sq.kms and the rocky highlands cover 637.65 sq.kms.The district has a coastal length of about 80 kms.The highland region accounts for 26.80 per cent and the lowland region covers 15.55 per cent of the total area of the district.
  9. 9. Kasargod  Tourist Attractions in Kasaragod Bekal Fort, Bekal Fort Beach, Kappil Beach, Anandasram, Ananthapuram LakeTemple, Manjeswaram, Kanhangad or Hosdurg Fort, Sri MahalingeswaraTemple, Cheruvathur, Madhur Temple, Ranipuram, Pandiyan kallu, Malik Deenar Mosque and Nileswaram are the famous tourist attractions in Kasaragod.