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Kayamkulam (Kerala)

FACTS & FIGURESkayakulam

Languages : Malayalam & English
Best time to visit : Throughout the year
STD code : 0479

Kayamkulam is a small village on the western coast of India in the state of Kerala. Washed by the waters of the Arabian Sea, the place is almost equidistant from Alleppey and Quilon, both of which connect the Kerala backwaters. The place is connected by rail and road with other cities in the region as well as other parts of the country.

The climate of Kayamkulam is pleasant throughout the year. The rainy season starts from June/July and continues till October/November. The temperature never goes too high or low throughout the year.

Kayamkulam got its name from the blending of two words: kayam (sap of a spice tree) and kulam (a pond). Kayamkulam was a part of erstwhile Travancore state for a long time and was a prominent center of art and architecture. Many temples and palaces were built during that period.

The famous temple dedicated to goddess Bhagavathy is about 5 km from Kayamkulam. Situated amidst vast paddy fields, it houses a huge traditional lamp made of granite and accommodating a thousand wicks, which are lit everyday.

The 18th-century Krishnapuram Palace built during the reign of the Travancore monarch Martand Varma is a double-storied structure that displays typical characteristics of Kerala architecture—gabled roofs, dormer windows, and narrow corridors. It houses one of the largest mural paintings in Kerala called the Gajendra Moksham. It measures 14 feet by 11 feet and is at the western end of the ground floor, a walking distance from the Palace Pool. There is also a museum of antique sculptures, paintings, and bronzes inside the palace.

Oachira Temple is the only idol-less temple in whole of Kerala. It is believed that Lord Shiva meditated under the gigantic Ficus tree still there. These trees are the points of worship in this temple apart from the Naga (cobra) idols nearby. One of the many rituals that this place has is the worship of bulls. They are decorated and can be seen in the premises of the temple in the abundance.

Kayamkulam is also famous for its backwaters and the lake. The wide opening of the lake into the Arabian Sea offers spectacular sunset view through the web of Chinese fishing nets to the tourists cruising in the houseboats.

There are some health resorts in Kayamkulam that specialize in Ayurvedic treatment and oil therapy.

Alappuzha, the district headquarters, is situated some 50 km off Kayamkulam and connected with rail, road, and boats. The place is famous for the Mullakal Temple, its backwaters, and the annual Nehru Cup Snake Boat Race.

Quilon or Kollam is situated around 70 km off Kayamkulam. This place is famous for its backwaters, Ashtamudi Lake, Ayurvedic treatment, and art and craft fair.

The one-day annual festival at Bhagavathy Temple includes 1200-year-old rituals like Kuthiyottam and Kettukazcha. These colorful rituals have boys dancing in trance, colossal effigies of horses, decorated chariots and art forms like Padayani and Kolkkali.

Oachira festival is celebrated every year at the Oachira Temple.

The best way to enjoy oneself in Kayamkulam is to cruise on the backwaters and the Kayal Lake. One can book houseboats at Alleppey, Trivandrum, and Quilon. Houseboats come in different price ranges depending on one’s budget.

There are no major hotels in Kayamkulam. Some small lodges are there, with only basic facilities for the travelers. One can arrange for accommodation at Alleppey or Quilon, depending on the itinerary.

Kayamkulam does not have an airport. Cochin International Airport (85 km) is the nearest airhead from Kayamkulam. There are flights to other destinations in India and Middle East from this airport. Trivandrum airport is also another option for the travelers as there are connecting flights for Europe and North America from this place.

Kayamkulam is linked to an extensive link of trains connecting it to Trivandrum, Delhi, Mumbai, and Chennai. Not all the express trains have their stoppage at Kayamkulam, but all the passenger trains stop here.

Kayamkulam is connected by a good road network to Alleppey, Quilon, Cochin, and Thiruvananthapuram. There are buses every three minutes for Kayamkulam from Quilon and Alappuzha.


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