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6 Best Places to Visit in Kerala with Family & Kids on Your Next Vacation

Kerala, otherwise lovingly referred to as ‘God’s Own Country’, is a true gem of India’s south. With swaying palms, roaring seas, and sunny beaches, to misty hills, rough mountains, and dense forests, Kerala is the best destination for family trips, helping you relax and rejuvenate along its magical landscape.

A family friendly destination, Kerala has an abundance of places to explore, bound to leave you in awe every time. The land of ayurveda, kathakali, and a vibrant culture to boast about, the state will not disappoint. Explore this tropical paradise for your next family holiday and witness the divinity of this place for yourself.

We hope, with our recommendations for some of the best destinations to visit in the state, you will be able to curate a fun itinerary when planning for a Kerala trip with your family. With plenty of things to do for all age groups, and unique places to explore, a visit to Kerala is bound to keep you coming back for more.

  • Alappuzha
  • Munnar
  • Kovalam
  • Periyar National Park
  • Kochi
  • Wayanad

Also Check Out: Popular Tour Packages Kerala

Alappuzha- Sail Through the Beloved Backwaters!

Kerala Houseboat Backwater

A landscape of swaying trees of palm and coconut, open skies, and lazy lakes, Alappuzha’s backwaters are some of the best places to see in Kerala with kids. Lovingly referred to as the “Venice of the East”, Alappuzha’s backwaters are something that you must not miss when exploring Kerala. An enchanting spread of lakes, rivers, and lagoons, these backwaters drain out directly into the Arabian Sea, and run along the state for hundreds of kilometers. Today, what makes these backwaters a top tourist place in Kerala is its houseboat cruising experience.

Houseboats that began as a way to transport essential goods and spices, today form the backbone of Kerala’s tourism industry. Cruising through Alapppuzha’s backwaters on a houseboat, you get to experience the state in a different way, witnessing native birds, aquatic species, and a chance to observe the lives of the locals who live along these backwaters. With a variety of houseboats available today, you can choose from a variety of options for a cruise, choosing to travel around for a few hours to opting for a multi-day stay.

Offering a chance to explore Kerala through its waters, a houseboat cruising experience is one of the best things to do here, promising an especially enjoyable time for your kids that they will be sure to remember.

Best thing to do at Alappuzha’s Backwaters: Opt for a multi-day stay at a houseboat and experience the beauty of Kerala’s backwaters with your family.

Best time to visit Alappuzha’s Backwaters: October to March

Also Read: Top Places to Explore in Alleppey

Munnar- Discover the Magic of This Magical Hill Station!

Mattupetty Dam Munnar Kerala

Beautifully manicured tea gardens, winding mountain roads, and misty hills are some of the things that describe the picturesque hill station of Munnar. Located among the high hills of southwestern Kerala, Munnar is just perfect for spending holidays with your family. Among south India’s true gems, this hill station offers a calm, and serene escapade, from the chaotic city to the quaint town.

With its name referring to “three rivers”, Munnar is situated at the confluence of three rivers namely, Muthirapuzha, Nallathanni and Kundala. One of the best places to see in Kerala with kids, Munnar has always been a favored destination for travel, even by the British Government who saw the hill station as a choice summer resort. Some of the popular places to visit in Munnar with your family include the Eravikulam National Park, a protected habitat of the Nilgiri Tahr, Pothamedu View Point for the perfect view of the rising sun, Mattupetty Dam, for a fun picnic spot and for watersports, Lakkam Waterfalls, for a beautifully cascading waterfall among dense forests, and ofcourse, it’s bountiful tea estates that dot the whole town of Munnar.

A relaxing destination that will rejuvenate your body, mind and soul, Munnar needs to be a spot in your Kerala itinerary.

Best thing to do at Munnar: Visit the scenic Mattupetty Dam and try out the many adventure and leisure activities offered there with your family, while surrounded by the verdant, green hills of Munnar.

Best time to visit Munnar: October to February

Also Read:  Beautiful Places to Explore in Munnar

Kovalam Beach- A Relaxing Tropical Paradise!

Kovalam Beach Kerala

Among southern India’s best beaches, Kovalam Beach is one of the top tourist places in Kerala to visit for a family holiday. A popular spot for ayurvedic treatment and watersports, Kovalam Beach is made up of 3 crescent-shaped beaches, namely, the Lighthouse Beach, Samudra Beach, and the Hawa Beach, with each of them offering a different experience for its visitors.

A haven for water sports and adventure activities, at Kovalam Beach, you can try out activities such as swimming, parasailing, surfing, body surfing, canoe rides, catamaran cruising, and boating through the delightful mangroves and swaying coconut trees for a memorable adventure with your family in Kerala. A mesmerizing beach in Kerala’s Trivandrum, Kovalam Beach is known for its shallow waters and low tides, offering an endearing and relaxing landscape.

At Kovalam, walk along the Lighthouse Beach for a perfect view of the setting sun, enjoy a sip of refreshing coconut water, try authentic seafood, and take in the views of the calming waters of the sea from the many beach shacks at the beach. A calm and peaceful beach to spend some quality time with your family, Kovalam Beach is among the best destinations to visit in Kerala for a family holiday.

Best thing to do at Kovalam Beach: Try out one of the many water sports available at the beach with your family, try authentic Kerala food at the beach shacks, soak in the sun with a leisurely view of the sea, and wrap up your day with an enchanting sunset view.

Best time to visit Kovalam Beach: October to February

Also Read: Top Tourist Destinations in Kovalam

Periyar National Park- Listen to The Call of The Wild!

Periyar National Park Kerala

Southern part of Kerala has some great places to visit for a memorable and fun family time, among which is the Periyar National Park and Tiger Reserve. As the name suggests, the national park is home to the majestic Bengal Tiger, along with herds of elephants, Nilgai, Sambar, Barking Deer, Common Langur, Wild Pigs, and Nilgiri Tahr, among many others.

One of the top tourist places in Kerala, the national park owes its name to the Periyar River that flows through it. Surrounded by the high hills and dense forests of Kerala’s Idukki district, Periyar National Park is one of the best places to see in the state, not just for its beauty, but also due to its numerous ecotourism activities that can be explored together as a family.

Ecotourism activities offered at Periyar National Park include guided nature walks through its forests, tiger trail treks and adventure camping, where if you’re lucky enough you just might spot a tiger, border hiking where you trek along the periphery of the tiger reserve, bamboo rafting over the park’s lake, jungle patrolling through the reserve at night, and staying overnight at the forest cottage. At Periyar, you can also choose to explore the nearby villages on a bullock cart, an especially fun thing to do with kids, who can use the opportunity to learn about the culture, lifestyle, and many different aspects of the local people of this region in Kerala.

Best thing to do at Periyar National Park: Explore the vast forests of the national park by utilizing the many ecotourism activities offered with your family.

Best time to visit Periyar National Park: October to February

Also Read: Best Places to Visit in Thekkady Kerala

Kochi- Explore Its Eccentric Streets!

Kochi Kerala

A mix of the old and the new, Kochi is among the popular places to visit in Kerala with family. An important city for Kerala, Kochi is known for its multicultural inhabitants as well as a colorful and vibrant lifestyle. Standing out from the rest of the state, Kochi welcomes visitors with a wonderful landscape of heritage sites, backwaters, beaches, and modern establishments.

A land once loved by the Portuguese, Dutch, and the Jews, remnants of their existence can still be seen in Kochi’s heritage sites, making it one of the best places to visit when exploring Kerala. Jew Town is among those heritage sites that, even today, strive to preserve the Jewish essence of the city, with places such as the Paradesi synagogue, known for being the oldest synagogue in the country and Jew Street.

Another fun thing to do when exploring the city of Kochi with your family is to watch a Kathakali performance, for which you can either go to the Kerala Folklore Museum, or the Kerala Kathakali Centre, witnessing one will surely be something that will be enjoyable for both kids and adults alike, making your family vacation to Kerala, truly memorable.

A popular city of Kerala, Kochi has numerous attractions for you to explore as a family, all of them promising a good time and memories that will last a lifetime.

Best thing to do at Kochi: Visi the Jew Town and explore its streets, shops, and cafes that glimpse into the lives and culture of the Malabari Jews, watch a Kathakali performance, and explore the artsy areas, and markets of the city.

Best time to visit: October to February

Also Read: Top Things to Do in and around Kochi

Wayanad- A Silent Getaway Tucked Among the Hills!

Wayanad Kerala

Another hill station beloved by Kerala, Wayanad is a breathtaking landscape of green hills, dense forests, and misty surroundings, a stark contrast to the state’s sunny beaches. Perfect for spending your holidays, Wayanad has some enchanting tourist places for you to explore. Presenting a scenery of terraced plantations of coffee, tea, and spices, waterfalls, green valleys, and caves, the district is a paradise for nature lovers.

While at Wayanad, explore the three-tiered waterfall of Meenmutty Waterfalls, cascading ever so beautifully amidst a setting of misty forests, and green hills, a beauty hidden by nature, it can only be accessed through a trek of a couple kilometers, allowing you to create fun memories together as a family. Also popular at Wayanad is the Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary, housing animals like elephants, tigers, Spotted deer, Barking deer, Sambar, Wild boar, Sloth bear, and Common langurs, among others and forms an important part of the Nilgiri Biosphere Reserve.

Although Wayanad is a magical beauty with more than just a relaxing and serene landscape to offer, it also has some important heritage sites such as the Edakkal Caves as well. These caves, formed out of a single rock split into two are a popular tourist attraction of Wayanad.

Providing the perfect escapade from the loud city life, Wayanad makes up a beloved destination for you and your family to spend your vacations.

Best thing to do at Wayanad: Go trekking to the Meenmutty Waterfalls, visit the Wayanad Wildlife Sanctuary, explore the ancient carvings at the Edakkal Caves, and spend some time taking in the calm scenery of Wayanad.

Best time to visit Wayanad: October to May

Also Read: Top Places to Visit in Wayanad

A true paradise with a rich geography of hills, valleys, mountains, seas, and beaches, Kerala has something for every kind of traveler, making it a top tourist destination in southern India. Offering a range of activities, from adventure, leisure, and heritage, the state is an ideal place to spend a family vacation. From sunny beaches, and misty hills, to ancient caves, and vibrant cities, Kerala is a magical place, perfect for the next holiday with your family.

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Published: 06 Jun, 2024

About the author

Sharon William

Sharon is a curious human who is always eager to learn about the history and mysteries of places, which she then brings to life with her words. A travel writer at Tour My India, her bucket list keeps expanding every day in search of places to explore.