For our weekend trip we shortlisted Kappad in Kerala for three reasons. One, there is a beautiful beach in Kappad. Two, Kappad has a significant place in the history of Indian Sub-continent. Three, drive to Kappad is through historical & cultural district of Mysore and scenic Wayanad.
We started early in the morning from Bengaluru and took Mysore-Mananthavady-Kalpetta route instead of the more popular Mysore-Sultan Bathery-Kalpetta national highway. We crossed Mysore, Kabini and part of Nagarhole Tiger reserve.
We then entered the northern part of Wayanad, the heartland of Pazhassi Raja’s Kingdom. It was here the daring prince of Kottayam had fought the invaders till his last breath.
At Pazhassi’s Tomb
Standing next to Pazhassi’s Tomb at Mananthavady, I felt sorry. I felt sorry that I could not help Pazhassi in his fight to save the land. I would have joined his army and fought along with him. But I am late by 200 years.
It would have been easy for him to make a deal with British and live a happy life in his palace. Instead, he went to the jungle and waged the Guerrilla war to save his land and people from foreign traders who had started dictating terms.
Cannot leave the Tomb without feeling proud of him and a bunch of ordinary people who fought alongside him.
On the banks of River Panamaram 13, Kms away from Mananthavady, there is a Museum dedicated to Thalakkal Chandu (one of the right hand men of Pazhassi). There is a Koli tree near the museum. Chandu was captured and executed by British near this tree.
It’s raining in Wayanad
If you want to see Wayanad, probably this is not the right time to visit as some of the tourist places are closed or inaccessible. But if you want to experience Wayanad, this is the right time to visit as it rains non-stop in June and July.
Wayanad is wet, green and most beautiful when it rains.
There was rain and then heavy rain. We saw water-logged roads, coffee and tea plantations drenched in rain, overflowing rivers and lakes, waterfalls, school students running for cover and happy farmers.
Food and Accommodation
Kerala is a paradise for foodies who are Non-vegetarians. Pure vegetarians like us do not have many choices (especially in south and north of Kerala). But we could get Pathiri (a Malabar dish) and vegetable curry for our dinner at Century Grand Hotel at Mananthavady, where we stayed for a day.
Kappad Beach in the morning
I had known Kappad from my school days — not for its beautiful beach, but for Vasco Da Gama — the very first European to reach India by sea. The Portuguese explorer came in search of famous spices of Malabar and landed here in 1498 AD. History aside, Kappad Beach is rocky and quite busy in the morning with local fishermen starting their work as early as 7am on a Monday — No Monday blues here!
Food and Accommodation
Instead of staying in a beach side resort at Kappad, we stayed at Park Residency, Koyilandy, which is just 6 kilometres away from Kappad beach. There was buffet for the dinner and the highlights were Appam with Kadala (Chana) curry and Kappa (Tapioca).
It was an unforgettable and magical journey from Bangalore to Kappad with rain. I thought it was fitting to pay our respects to Pazhassi Raja before touching the sand of Kappad, where the first European came and opened the doors for trade and colonialism. It has been a week after we came back to the buzz of Bangalore city, but the sound of rain and that of overworked wiper blades are still ringing in my ears. Sumangala is a software engineer working in Bangalore. Travelling and documenting the travel experiences is her passion and blogs.