Cherai : A Jewel of Kochi

Travelling means to get out to a new place, see what the world is like, meet new people, and hopefully come home with a broader mind, dozens of stories about the new experiences, and a thirst for travel that one just can’t wait to quench.  This makes it a habit for a lot of people including me to keep visiting places. Actually the best part about traveling is not what we know, but what we don’t know. In other words, the unknown, the new, the not yet personally experienced are all included in the best part of traveling.

It was after some long tiring days that we decided to have a relaxing journey to sooth our body and soul.  It was then that the right place struck me; one of the most beautiful stretches of splendid beaches of sand that faces the Arabian sea, the Cherai beach.  Anyone who has ever been to this place will realize why I call it the right place to chill out.

 How to Reach Cherai

Cherai Beach is located in Kochi, India. It is very near to Vypeen Island.  I, being a native of Alleppey, could reach Cherai beach in nearly one hour 45 minutes.  It was just a matter of 86 kms.

For those who are from faraway places, the nearest airport is Cochin International Airport at Nedumbassery; it is 23 km from Cherai.   If one would like to go by train, then the nearest railway station is at Aluva; it is just 23 km away from cherai.   If one wants to go by road, Cherai is just 15 minutes drive from North Paravur; that is nearly 5 kms.  It can be approached from   Ernakulam either by taking a ferry to Vypeen Island which is 22km away, which takes 45 minutes by bus from Cherai or taking the longer road route via Edappally to North Paravur and from there to Cherai, a distance of about 25km.  I would always prefer going by road enjoying the scenic beauty of the places on both the sides.

Cherai - A Jewel of Kochi

The View  & Activities

Once we reached the beach, the sights there were much fascinating than expected.  I was very much enthralled by the bliss and serenity of the beach.  It was like enjoying life to the fullest; yes!! It was really. Fishing and angling were the two main activities that I witnessed there.  Along with that, swimming, bird watching, cycling were all equally interesting.

For me, angling was totally a strange activity.  That definitely added to my excitement.   It is a method of fishing by means of an “angle”. Angle is nothing but like a fish hook.   Usually, it is attached to a fishing line and the line is often attached to a fishing rod. It is the best leisure sports that test both the sharpness and the patience of the sportsman.

Cherai is a genuine angler’s paradise. Fishing and angling tours on the magical Cherai waters, can be the most overwhelming experience.  There were people whom I met who were regular visitors and expert anglers by now.

Simply relaxing in the cool shades of coconut palms with the fishing rod all set to attract the unsuspecting fishes can be a mind-blowing holiday exposure.  It was my first time experience of using fishing rod and was eagerly lifting the rod each time to see whether the fishes come up with it.  It was an amazing activity and caught 5 or 6 karimeen fish.

Our next action item was playing throw ball on the beach.  Just can’t imagine the fun of playing with friends on a beach side, enjoying the evening breeze; for a moment I really went back to that lovely day.

After spending some time indulging in all these activities, we decided to explore the unique charm and beauty of the back waters of Cherai.  It was indeed a stunning experience.  It was a quiet trip through the winding scenic backwaters where the heart of Cherai leaves. The overhanging branches of coconut trees create an unforgettable symphony of green.  The fisherman expertly employing their traditional Chinese fishing nets was a nostalgic sight.

For those who are from long distance, advanced booking of economy beach resorts are also available there.  It will be a much more fabulous experience.  There are so many good restaurants available nearby for food and snacks.  I really enjoyed the ambience of the restaurant there along with tasty cutlets and samosas.

The Spiritual Side of Cherai

Now a bit on the spiritual side, an important attraction here is the cherai temple festival.  Cherai Gowreeswara temple is a renowned pilgrimage centre in Kerala.  It is otherwise known as South Pazhani and was built in 1912. Gowreeswara temple is dedicated to Lord Muruka. The idle was inaugurated by Sree Narayana Guru.

To see Cherai at its best, one should go with the festival.  The advertising of more than 30 elephants and the magical sound of “Panchavaadya” and the breathtaking view of celebratory fireworks are divine attractions. In a magnificent display of grandeur, 30 caparisoned elephants come together during this temple festival .The Thalapokkamalsaram  competition is the main attraction of this festival. Kadhakali, Ottan Thullal and other art forms are performed on the festival day’s eve.

There are many other attractions including Pallipuram church, Juma masjid, Portuguese fort, paddy field etc. After exploring all these, it was almost time for me to leave for the day.  That was the end of a beautiful day with lots of activities and memories.  I left the place with the promise in mind to visit the place again in a little while.

Prathiba Krishna who is one of the authors of the blog Kerala Backwaters, you can connect with her on Google+

Editorial Team
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