Kerala - God's Own Country

The name "Kerala" comes from two words: "Kera" + "Alam". ("Kera" means coconut (tree) and "Alam" means land or location). The State of Kerala was formed by the amalgamation of three regions: the Kingdom of Thiruvithamcoore (Travancore), the Kingdom of Kochi (Cochin), and the Province of Malabar. A must see tourist spot in Kerala is Kumarakom.

Traditional Keralite legend proclaims that Parasurama, an avatar of Mahavishnu, threw his battle axe into the sea as penance and unction for his part in his sanguinary conflict with and annihilation of the Kshatriyas. As the ocean took in his axes, a new crescent-shaped land bounded by what is now Gokarnam in the north and Kanyakumari in the south foamed and arose from the waters. "God's own country", Kerala's sobriquet since ancient times, derives from this legend.

Kerala is bounded by the Arabian Sea on the west and the Western Ghats on the east. The states of Karnataka in the north and Tamil Nadu in the east are Kerala's immediate neighbours. Mahe, a part of the union territory of Pondicherry, is an enclave within Kerala.

Geographically Kerala is divided into three regions:

    * Highland or Mountain region
    * Midland or the rolling hills
    * Lowland or the coastal plain land

There are 44 rivers flowing through Kerala, most of them are small and entirely fed by the Monsoons. The Kerala Backwaters, an interconnected system of brackish water lakes and river estuaries, lies behind the coast and runs virtually the length of the state.

Check out the stunning pictures of Kerala here - http://www.funonthenet.in/index.php?set_albumName=Kerala&option=com_gallery&Itemid=51&include=view_album.php

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