Central Kerala

St. Francis Ferona Church, Wadakkancherry
Kanimangalam Valiyalukkal Temple

Central Kerala covers 3 districts located middle of Kerala state. Central Kerala was part of erstwhile Kingdom of Kochi. Today its one of the most leading economic powerhouse of Kerala with several industries and trading firms located. The 3 districts that form Central Kerala are Ernakulam, Thrissur and Palakkad. The most important city in this region is Kochi (commercial capital of Kerala) which is a major gateway to Kerala.

Jackfruit tree
Aymuri Temple

Cities

Here are some of the most notable cities.

Other destinations

Understand

Central Kerala was once the cradle of Imperial Chera civilization, established in 300 BC with the capital at Muziris (today's Kodungallur- 40 km from Kochi). At height of Chera glory, they established an empire reaching to the Ganges in North India. Chera's capital city, Muziris, was one of the largest seaports in the Ancient world and had regular trade with Greeks, Roman, Mesopotamian and Chinese civilizations. With the decline of Chera powers by the mid-11th century and the choking of Muziris port due to the great floods of Periyar, Central Kerala turned into pressure pot of various social and political turmoils. The Chera Dynasty was replaced by Kochi Kingdom and its capital with the newly formed Kochi City. Trade relations with the West and Arab world enabled Europeans to come to Kochi and form a major political power in Kerala. By the 18th century, British dominated the political sphere. British influence over Kochi Kingdom brought several British institutions to this area. When Kochi Kingdom merged with India in 1949, this area came under new state of Thiru-Kochi (Travancore-Kochi). The area was renamed as a zone when Kerala State was formed in 1957.

Today its a major economic center with several industries located here. Along with this, Central Kerala is famous for its varied cultural potpourri, several famed festivals, tourists locations and agricultural areas.

Talk

As elsewhere in the state of Kerala, Malayalam is the native language. 3 dialects of Malayalam language are spoken here. In Kochi one can feel the strong influence of Portuguese and Dutch in local dialects. Sanskritic Malayalam is spoken in the Thrissur area with lot of poetic expressions, whereas in Palakkad, which borders on Tamil Nadu, the Malayalam spoken has lot of Tamil influence.

Tamil is widely understood and spoken in Palakkad, whereas English and Hindi are popular in Kochi and Thrissur. Arabic also understood in few pockets of Thrissur where Muslims are in majority like Chavakkad.

Get in

By air

By train

Most of the trains bound to Kerala have various stops in many places in Central Kerala. Major stations are

By road

National Highway 47, 17 passes through this stretch

See

Do

Makom Thozhal (worship on the Makom day) is the most important festival of the temple which is celebrated in the month of Kumbham. (Feb / March) It is believed that Bhagavathy, in her full attire, gave darsan to Vilwamangalam Swamiyar on the Makom day and appears on the same day every year to give darsan to the devotees. The Bhadrakaali at Kizhukkavu is believed to exorcise evil spirit from devotees, after conducting bhajanam.

Eat

Due to its strong trade relations, central Kerala's cuisine is a blend of many influences, particularly English, Portuguese, Chinese, and Japanese. Seafood is very popular, as well as freshwater fish from Kerala's rivers and backwaters. Prawn and squid are considered essential for most celebrations and festive occasions. Vegetarian entrees are also widely available, though the emphasis remains on seafood.

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This article is issued from Wikivoyage - version of the Wednesday, January 27, 2016. The text is available under the Creative Commons Attribution/Share Alike but additional terms may apply for the media files.