Are You Sure We are In India? Trekking the Western Ghats in Gorgeous Kerala
So far, the southern state of Kerala has turned all my preconceived notions of India upside down. I expected harsh smells, hoards of people, people and animals in extremely trying conditions and little, if any, green “outdoor space”.
So far, I’ve seen little of any of that. Now GRANTED we are on a bloggers’ trip, a press tour, to see the best and finest that the state has to offer. And while we do stop at very nice places and some very very VERY nice places, we are on a bus. And we can watch it all go by even if we don’t stop. So far, Kerala seems to stand apart in every way from what I thought India would be.
So…now, when I hear people talking about travelling and they say “India just isn’t on my list”, I shall tell them about this pretty magical spot. Here’s an example of some of the natural beauty.
Photo by Matthias from Germany of TravelTelling.net.
Saturday we traveled UP…way up…into the Western Ghats, A GORGEOUS mountain range that runs along the south western side of India…
Around every twist and turn another amazing view.
We stopped at a hairpin turn to jump into some Jeeps to take us to an even more remote resort for lunch. Betty from Bulgaria, our trip VLogger, used the chance to video herself with some random Indian gentlemen.
The resort let us know where we were…
Dang. I felt like we had climbed higher than that!
An amazing 4 course meal.
And then back on the road…more of the same old views.
We saw our very first (and only) drops of rain in Kerala so far. The weather was becoming dryer and cooler as we climbed to my new favorite hotel on earth.
We have stayed at FAR MORE POSH than this but Silver Tips in Munnar was…something else. Kitschy and fun. I was half expecting a heart shaped hot tub too. You’ll see what I mean…
Our room was dedicated to the Bollywood classic “Sholay”. And why wouldn’t it be? Super fun.
Two of our fellow bloggers had a room dedicated to Charlie Chaplin’s “The Great Dictator” – probably not AS fun having Charlie as Adolf Hitler above your bed.
We woke early to head even higher and to what I will dramatically call “base camp”…to begin our trekking/glamping experience with Kalypso Adventures. (Check them out if you are thinking of visiting – they do some pretty amazing tours AND train the Indian army.)
How beautiful are these tents? And behind them you can see the first peak we would be trekking to. (Note: Trekking, as I believed, is not walking. It is much much more strenuous.)
And inside. With lights and power (custom made for bloggery), towels and soaps.
And the hiking began…it was at first estimated to be 12km and about 5 hours. We were a group of about 30.
A small group bowed out about 15 minutes in…but I continued to the first peak.
Plenty of selfies to be taken…
And my Wonder Woman picture that I will cherish forever.
There was a dip down and then the next peak…OR you could walk down hill a bit and catch a jeep to the lunch area. I choose option 2.
I eyeballed the food as the rest of the crew finished this part of the hike. Can you believe this tent and hot buffet set up in the middle of an old growth forest and cardamom plantation?
After returning back to camp, I unintentionally took a very long nap and then went down to dinner and a campfire.
What an absolutely amazing day. Something that I have never done before…and doing it in India. I’ll say it again…I feel incredibly lucky.
Beautiful beautiful Kerala.