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Kerala - Thiruvananthapuram Printer Friendly Page   Send this Article to a Friend

Plantations add spice to the fun

S. Anil Radhakrishnan



SPICE TOURISM: Pepper vines are common in Kerala.

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: The Kerala Institute of Tourism and Travel Studies (KITTS) has come up with a nine-night/10-day tour package to give the tourist the real experience of what is being promoted as `spice tourism.'

The tour starts from Kochi and covers Alappuzha, Thekkady, Vandiperiyar, Kochi, Mannuthi and Thalassery and ends in Kozhikode. The itinerary for `Life with Spices' has been developed with an eye on general tourists who would like to visit farms and villages and familiarise themselves with spices, says KITTS Director G. Chandramohan.

The cost of the package for 8-10 passengers is $ 1,800. On arrival in Kochi, the visitors would be transferred to the Marari Beach Resort. The resort has individual cottages spread over 30 acres of garden filled with coconut palms and tropical plants. On the second day, they would be taken to a spice plantation. Philip Kutty's Farm has been chosen for the purpose, as it has pepper, nutmeg, vanilla, ginger and turmeric. The visitors can interact with spice farmers and learn the various methods of cultivating spices, the local food habits and living style.

After breakfast, they can drive to Thekkady, which lies in the shade of Cardamom Hills. On the fourth day, they will be taken to Kanjirapalli Estate, which grows vanilla, black pepper, clove, cardamom, nutmeg, ginger and turmeric. A visit to the world's largest auction centre for cardamom at Vandanmedu is part of the tour. The visitors will also be taken to the old spice market at Mattancherry, Black Pepper Stock Exchange, Pepper Auction Centre and spice godowns. On the penultimate day, the tour will be to the Anjarakandy Cinnamon Estate, established by the erstwhile British East India Company.

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