GR Travels

Vembanad Lake

Lemon Tree Vembanad Lake Resort, Kerala, located in Muhamma, Alleppey, stands on the Western shore of Kumarakom, at the very edge of Vembanad Lake. This resort is just a short distance from both Cochin and Kumarakom. Lemon Tree Vembanad Lake Resort, Kerala welcomes you with cheery greetings, a friendly smile and a whiff of the signature lemon fragrance. Lemon Tree Hotels are the only midscale business and leisure hotels that uplift your spirits at the end of a long day. Lemon Trees close to home comfort helps you unwind with its smart inroom amenities, vibrant cafe, recreation bar, pool and fitness center. All this, at an unbeatable value. Unlike most hotels in the backwaters, we guarantee a close up view of the lake from all our rooms. Rejuvenate your spirit with time tested treatments at the Ayurveda spa or unwind in the infinity swimming pool while taking in spectacular close up views of the lake. The resort offers luxury rooms and suites; and a premium two bedroom air conditioned house boat with an upper deck Jacuzzi (The Cruising Villa) anchored at the resorts private jetty. The hotel offers 27 spacious rooms all facing the famed Vembanad Lake. Room categories include Superior Room; Superior Lake Front Room; Superior Pool Deck Lake Front Room; Junior Lake Front Suite; Superior Lake Front Suite and The Cruising Villa. Other facilities include a multicuisine coffee shop Citrus Cafe, a fully equipped business center, as well as an Ayurveda spa center and an outdoor swimming pool overlooking the lake to keep you feeling fresh as a lemon.      Book Now



Alleppey-Beach

Referred to as the Venice of the East, Alappuzha has always enjoyed an important place in the maritime history of Kerala. Today, it is famous for its boat races, backwater holidays, beaches, marine products and coir industry. Alappuzha beach is a popular picnic spot. The pier, which extends into the sea here, is over 137 years old. Entertainment facilities at the Vijaya Beach Park add to the attraction of the beach. There is also an old lighthouse nearby which is greatly fascinating to visitors. Another delightful experience while in Alappuzha is a houseboat cruise. The ones you find in the backwaters of Alappuzha are in fact reworked version of Kettuvallams of olden times. The original Kettuvallams or rice barges used to carry tons of rice and spices. The Kettuvallam or boat with knots was so called because the entire boat was held together with coir knots only. Of late, houseboats come with all creature comforts of a good hotel including furnished bedrooms, modern toilets, cozy living rooms, a kitchen and even a balcony for angling. And one can always enjoy uninterrupted views of backwater life while staying in a houseboat. DTPC House boat Prepaid Counter For booking houseboats, travelers can make use of the House Boat Pre paid Counter Trusted Service, Trusted Rates managed by the District Tourism Promotion Council (DTPC).      Book Now



Kalloorkkadu-Church

Champakulam Kalloorkadu St. Mary basilica (also called Champakulam Valia Palli) is one of the oldest Christian churches in India and the mother church of almost all Catholic Syrian churches in Alleppey District. It is the first one under the church at Niranam which is believed to have been founded by St.Thomas, the Apostle himself. Believed to be established in AD 427. Rebuilt many times and the many rock inscriptions found around the church tell us about the history of the church. The open air Rock Cross at Champakulam church is one of the most ancient ones with clear documentation of its antiquity up to AD 1151. There are many archaeological artifacts found around the church about its history. Champakulam church was once under Niranam Church, which was founded by the Apostle Saint Thomas himself. Champakulam Church had very friendly relations with the Jacobite Syrian group and had a pivotal role in many ecumenical efforts in the Eighteenth century. One of the martyrs of east syrian catholics (nasranis), Ikkako Kathanar was born to this parish. On 27Nov2016, the church was announced as a Basilica. This is the first basilica in the archdiocese of Changanasserry. So this is the 23rd basilica in India and 9th basilica in Kerala. Also, it is the 4th SyroMalabar basilica in India. Ikkako Kathanar was a priest from this parish who became martyr in the hand of Portuguese for protecting the east syrian tradition of the indigenous catholic church of India (Nasranis) mainly along the malabar coast. Till the arrival of Europeans Nasranis were belonging to the east syrian rites in the Catholic Church. The Europeans under the Padroado and Propaganda tried to forcefully convert the nasranis into western or latin rite. Ikkako Kathanar is one of the faithful of the church who tried to resist this illegal attempt which extended over more than five centuries. He attained martyrdom under the hands of propaganda carmelites during this.      Book Now



Krishnapuram-Palace

Kerala is noted for many palaces that were an outcome of princely domains that once ruled different parts of Kerala. The Krishnapuram Palace is one such palace, which could be reached from the National Highway 47 going via Kayamkulam in Alappuzha district of Kerala. It is a historically important palace, located close to the Sree Krishnaswamy Temple at Krishnapuram. History reckons this doublestoreyed palace as the one where the kings of Kayamkulam dynasty last stayed. It is a typical example of a palace design that is akin to that of local rulers in ancient Kerala. Many ancillary units of Krishnapuram Palace got demolished and only the main palace structure remains intact. There are no authentic records stating the period of the palaces construction. According to old timers, the princess of Kayamkulam ruling family used to stay at a place north of Kayamkulam while the men stayed at the Krishnapuram Palace. Currently a protected monument under the Department of Archaeology, the palace situated near the Krishnaswamy Temple at Krishnapuram was built during the period of King Anizham Thirunal Marthanda Varma (17291758 AD) following the annexation of Kayamkulam to the erstwhile princely state of Travancore. The palace would easily catch the attention of its visitors, due to its traditional Kerala style of architecture. The architectural highlights of this palace include a courtyard, gabled roofs, thickframed doors, narrow corridors and stairways, dormer windows and low roofs. A highlight among the sights for visitors at the Krishnapuram Palace is without doubt the mural found here, depicting the story of Gajendramoksham (salvation of elephant). Dating back to the 18th century, this exquisite piece of art is one of the largest murals in Kerala and is a fantastic blend of colors and expression. This magnificent palace with sixteen blocks is also famous for its museum that houses antiques, sculptures, paintings, weapons, megalithic remains, stone inscriptions, coins and artifacts in bronze. Among the museum highlights include a Bible in Sanskrit language. The palace visiting hours are from 9.00 am to 5.00 pm on all days except Mondays.      Book Now



Nehru-Trophy-Boat-House

The Nehru trophy Alleppey snake boat race that falls annually on the second Saturday of August is a world famous boat race that still retains its amateur status. While other historic, traditional sports events similar to the Kerala boat race has turned wholly commercial over recent times, this unique Alappuzha boat race spectacle still retains its vibrant village festival spirit. Among the many boat races held through the Kerala boat race season, the Nehru trophy boat race is the most popular. Thousands of locals, domestic and International tourists flock to Alleppey, Kerala for this particular race. The Kerala snake boat race is reputed to be the largest team sport in the world. Over 100 rovers, drummers, cheer chanters are on board the only in Alappuzha built chundan valloms for the Kerala vallamkali. Johnson Gilbert, tourism entrepreneur, based in Alleppey, Kerala runs a successful homestay and houseboat business over the last fifteen years. 9 years ago, after listening to complaints from his in house guests of the inconveniences on attending the Nehru trophy boat races, Johnson decided to tailor his alternative hassle free package for the tourists who visit Alleppey to watch the Kerala boat race. To this end, he custom designed an exclusive event, in which his guests watch the race from the comfort and safety of a houseboat. As thousands of tourists visit Alappuzha for the race, Johnson decided to arrange accommodation for the tourists and combine it with his Kerala snake boat race package. Next, he included houseboat stays as a natural extension of his Nehru trophy boat race event. Every year, Johnson utilizes his experience to usher in key changes for the convenience of his guests. One such important facility is the opportunity for his guests to reach the race later than the specified time or to leave early. This is an important arrangement as in case of an emergency, his guests can leave any time they choose, at a nominal extra charge. His first such Alleppey snake boat race event was held in 2008 with about 40 guests. Now, the number of guests has risen to more than 200. The USP of his enterprise is that the guests are offered an exclusive, uninterrupted view in the safety and comfort of a houseboat. To and fro transportation is included, breakfast, lunch and hygienic drinking water is included. And this year, Johnson, for the first time offers an air conditioned houseboat for the discerning clientale. This is the only way a tourist can watch the race in air conditioned comfort.      Book Now



Revi-Karunakaran-Memorial-Museum

It is a rarity in India that collections of artistic and also of antique value become objects of appreciation and wonder for the public. In Alappuzha District of Kerala, also known as the Venice of the East, a remarkable personality dedicated a great deal of time, money and energy for the growth and development of the coir industry. Mr. Revi Karuna Karan till his passing away, played a pivotal role towards the betterment of the coir industry. While Mr. Revi carried on with his passionate and dedicated efforts for the development of the coir industry and for the welfare of those making a living out of it, he also found time to scan the world of fine arts. An avid collector of wonderful works of art; with and without utility, Mr. Revi eventually became the custodian of many fabulous works of art from around the world. A true connoisseur of art, after his passing away, Mr. Revis family opened a museum in his name to house some of the selected items from his impressive collection. The Revi Karuna Karan Memorial Museum in Alappuzha town is a befitting memorial to a man who besides his first passion coir, also possessed a special interest in collecting classic works of art; old and rare; varied and inspiring. Located on the National Highway47 passing through the town of Alappuzha, near the powerhouse bridge, the museum has literally enhanced the interests of visitors to the ancient trade town of Alappuzha, also famous for its backwaters and beaches. Among the displayed items in the museum, one would without doubt get amazed at the range of crystal wares, especially those from the world renowned Swarovski. The world of ivory always has a tag of royalty and grandeur attached to it. The collection of works in ivory at the Revi Karuna Karan Memorial Museum is indeed an impressive one. The ivory and crystal collections at the museum are one of the largest of its kind. And for those, who admire paintings, the museum houses a good collection of them, especially that of renowned Tanjore paintings. Among the displayed items, a 200 sq. ft. mural is bound to catch the attention of one and all. This mural, depicting the social and cultural heritage of India was created by using only vegetable dyes, and took about 4160 manhours for its completion. The museum also has a space dedicated for dcor and architectural marvels called Kerala Room. With about 3,800 pieces on display, the museum also has for its visitors an array of other artistic objects, especially those in porcelain, antique furniture etc. A 1946 model Buick Super owned by Mr. Revi Karuna Karans father is another major attraction. The museum with an exhibition area of 10,000 sq. ft. houses a variety of objects of high artistic excellence and heritage value, originating from different parts of the world, and is the first of its kind in Kerala.      Book Now



Thiruvambadi-Sri-Krishna-Temple

Built in the typical Kerala architectural style, Ambalappuzha Sree Krishna Temple is famous all over India for the Palpayasam, a daily offering of deliciously sweet milk porridge. It is also in this temple that Pallipana is performed by Velans (sorcerers), once in every twelve years. Paintings of the Dasavatharam (the ten incarnations of Lord Vishnu) are on display on the inner walls of the Chuttambalam. Ottanthullal, a satiric art form created by the poet Kunchan Nambiar, was first performed on the premises of this temple. The temple is situated in Alappuzha district. Built in the typical Kerala architectural style, Ambalappuzha Sree Krishna Temple is famous all over India for the Palpayasam, a daily offering of deliciously sweet milk porridge. It is also in this temple that Pallipana is performed by Velans (sorcerers), once in every twelve years. Paintings of the Dasavatharam (the ten incarnations of Lord Vishnu) are on display on the inner walls of the Chuttambalam. Ottanthullal, a satiric art form created by the poet Kunchan Nambiar, was first performed on the premises of this temple. The temple is situated in Alappuzha district. Ambalappuzha Sri Krishna Temple is an ancient Hindu temple in built during the 15th 17th century, by the local ruler. It is associated with the Guruvayur Krishna Temple. It is said that during the raid of Tipu Sultan, the Krishna idol of the Guruvayur Temple was shifted here. The Ambalappuzha Temple is especially known of its Payasam prasad a sweet pudding made from rice and milk. It is said Lord Krishna visits the temple every evening to taste the payasam.      Book Now


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