Sunday, December 06, 2009

Escape to the Jungles

This weekend, our friends and family trip was of a different kind. An escape from Kochi to the jungles of Sethumadai and Parambikulam and participation in harvesting tomatoes at Kozhinjampara was indeed an unforgettable experience.

View Sethumadai Parambikulam Trip in a larger map

We started in a Tempo Traveller from Kochi at early morning. The first stop was at Mannuthy for breakfast and a short visit to Kerala Agricultural University. Then we headed to Pattikkad to visit another friend on our way.

It was already late in the afternoon when we arrived at a friend's farm in Kozhinjampara. We spent some good time walking through the bitter guard and tomato farms and finally participating in the tomato harvesting along with the farm labourers. The lunch was served there. Next was the visit to a vegetable distribution center at Kozhinjampara where the tomatoes we harvested and other vegetables were sorted and packed in crates to be sent to the super markets across Kerala.

Sethumadai Nature Trip

We also visited a sugarcane plantation nearby Kozhinjampara where jaggery was manufactured. The sap was extracted first from the sugarcanes and then boiled in a very big pan for making the jaggery cubes. The waste after extracting the sap was dried in the sun and used as a fuel for boiling.

When we reached Sethumadai, it was almost dark. The climate was very comfortable... cold but not too cold. We had booked three cottages in the Cots Villa Resorts ( They had arranged camp fire with BBQ; and a team of locals were there to entertain us with country music (typical dappaan kuthu). The cottages we stayed for the night were of unique construction having stone walls, palm thatched roof and bathrooms with a sky view option :).

The beauty of the locality was revealed more clearly in the next day morning. The resort was set in a spread of few acres under the scenic foothills of Western Ghats. We could see lots of peacocks roaming around within the resort compound. The Anamalai Tiger Reserve was just across the fence and we enjoyed a nature walk through the forest in the early morning.

After the breakfast, we headed to Parambikulam Wildlife Sanctuary after a brief stop at Topslip. The safari arranged by the forest department took us through the various scenic view-points like the reservoir, dam, Kannimara teak, etc. We could spot a lot of wild animals like bisons, deers, hogs, variety of monkeys, malabar giant squirrel etc. After the safari, we returned to Kochi and reached back home before midnight.

Poster by: Hari P, Trip Organization by: Subunu K, Photos by: Sameer C Thiruthikad

Sunday, October 18, 2009

Weekend Outing: Lake Vembanad, Vaikom

This weekend, our friends and family trip was to Vaikom for a house boat cruise in Vembanad Lake. The one hour drive from Kochi with seven families in a Tempo Traveler early in the morning took us to the shores of Kerala's largest lake. After few hours waiting, we boarded the mighty 90 feet long 'Shoreline Princess' equipped with all modern facilities. The cruise was nice but more interesting was the fun we had within the boat playing various group games. Here are some snaps:

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Weekend Outing: Andhakaranazhi Beach

This weekend our friends and family trip was to Andhakaranazhi, a serene beach around 30 kilometers from Kochi towards Alappey. We reached there by evening and enjoyed a great time playing volleyball and football on the beach and wrestingling with the big waves.



Sunday, March 08, 2009

Weekend Outing: Munambam Beach

This weekend I and my wife went to nearby Munambam Beach  with our friends and their family members.

View Larger Map

It was a fun filled evening and we thoroughly enjoyed building those sand castles and dipping ourselves in the salt water.

You can read a nice travelogue on this beach by a Sulekha member here at

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Goodbye again, it's time to go home

The hectic but exciting week in US is over now and it is time to go home. An early morning Alaskan Airlines flight on Feb 15, Sunday from Seattle took me to Los Angeles.





I waited there at the LAX airport for few hours to catch my Emirates flight to Dubai. I slept most of the time and the 16 hour flight seemed not that boring.

After two hours waiting at Dubai, I boarded another Emirates flight to Kochi and was home by early morning on Feb 17, Tuesday.