Wednesday, August 5, 2015

Kerala- God's Own Country Is A Truth

Kerala's performing art forms on display in unison
Kerala's reputation and monicker as being 'God's own country' is indeed a reality, especially after what one saw at the 'Kerala 360' presentation at the Leela Ambience Gurgaon Hotel & Residences. The folks at Kerala Tourism have started this campaign called 'Visit Kerala Year' which will be continuing to April 2016, that originally began April 2015. From Ayurveda to art & culture, Kerala is actually the break one needs, for visiting the south-Indian state, especially if living in concrete jungles is taking a toll on a daily basis.  



The Kerala 360-degree setup

 Amongst various industries across India, tourism is one thing which is stated to be a potential for much prosperity, economic strength, and general well-being through experiences. From the popular ones in the list, Kerala pops up as one of the main, because there are some things which that place can really boast of: Ayurveda, seriously tranquil backwaters, visually enticing art forms, and not so forget, a good place to do business as well (until obviously you deal in liquor).

 One of the main tourism exports from Kerala- Ayurveda

Life in the concrete jungles seriously becomes anti-human often. One needs to correct/balance the 'doshas', purify oneself from deep within, and not really suffer from over-medication later on. That is what makes Ayurveda so very useful. Not only does it hit the pocket a lot less, it tunes the body exactly at places it needs to, and restores the natural balance. And its all a connection to dear nature!

 Mohiniyattam on display

Visual art is something that is always eye appealing from the state of Kerala. Mohiniyattam is certainly one of them. The one thing about this dance form is, the play of facial expressions by each of the danseuse involved in it. To put it the other way, their facial expressions are all a part of the storytelling, which again, is integral to classical dance forms. 

Kalaripayattu martial arts

Martial art. Just when it was all about dance, calm backwaters in the lap of nature, and the likes, emerges this really athletic traditional martial art- Kalaripayattu. Fought by these absolutely slim, strong-as-ironbars fighters, this traditional martial art would need one to be extremely agile, extremely alert (one second of attention deficit and the swords do their nasty job), and have the tenacity to fight through quick movements. Talk of high-flying, and these guys do it like a real dance. 

  Kathakali dancer with multiple expressions and forms (mudras)

Where would one find Kerala as a cultural hub, and not have Kathakali roving somewhere around? Almost impossible! The Kerala 360 story was the same, and was also informative about each of the 'mudras' involved, which in turn, have emotions wrapped into them. Thats when it strikes; despite all the makeup, each Kathakali dancer, has very visible facial expressions. 

  Taking in nature through Ayurveda

Kerala Tourism has some bold numbers too; 2014 had 923,366 tourists arrive at its endless shores, and absorb the cultural wealth of the state. That's a 7.60% y-o-y increment. The domestic tourist arrival is seriously higher at 116,95,411 in year 2014. That is the kind of tourist volume the state has managed to garner in recent, and the numbers are on a steady rise! The tourism revenue yearly, amounts to Rs 24,885.44 crores. (Source: Department of Tourism, Government of Kerala)

 Another ceremonial dance
Some of the recent developments and those coming up soon

- The Seaplane and Muziris Projects are underway. The Seaplane is aimed at connecting some of the more remote backwater areas to that of mainland, by air travel. On the other hand, Muziris project is for reviving the historical port, which is a part of Central Kerala, and has been a major trading point in earlier times. 

- Kerala's backwaters have been focused upon previously, but the tourism to these areas are being backed up big time. The Hop-On Hop-Off Boats are aimed increasing the presence of water taxis and boats, whereby tourists can explore the secluded areas of the scenic waterways, and also for increasing footfall in Muzuris, a known spice route previously. 

- NATVENTURE as it is being called, will focus on all major tourism based products. From hill stations and backwaters, to Wildlife and beaches, there will be adventure activities undertaken at several of these places; trekking, rock climbing, camping, wildlife safaris, bird watching, cycling, kayaking, canoeing, even paragliding is on the list. 

  A worthy presentation

Season of celebrations

- From 25th to the 31st August, Onam is celebrated in the state. One of main festivals of the state, it is a harvest festival, which is met much fanfare and celebration. A lot of religious worship is seen during this time, is a sight to be seen for the pure extravaganza. 

- Nishangandhi Festival is a January 2016 event, which will have different performing arts on display. Bharatanatyam, Mohiniyattam, Kathak, Odissi, Modern Ballet, and some more of varied dance forms will be a part of the celebrations too. 

   The 'tranquillity' selling point

The 'Visit Kerala' theme for the campaign, is certainly hitting the right points when it comes to selling the state's capabilities, in the tourism sector. Its tangible and worth the shot, especially if bothered and made sick from everyday life in the concrete jungles of the metropolis. It certainly looks like the numbers are to climb in the future, and most definitely, a great revenue earner for the government, and also raise employment figures alongside. Though recent concerns about the treatment of street animals have raised concerns, but the image of the state remains in tact. 



  
   

4 comments:

Archana Kapoor said...

I've seen live performances and it's awesome :-)

Wrik Sen said...

+Arachana Kapoor I am glad you took pleasure.. I thank my good luck for being able to attend this event on the fateful day..

Param said...

Apart from all the dance forms, IU think its the breath taking natural landscape that makes it God's Own Country!

Wrik Sen said...

Totally, Param.. Its such a welcome break from the concrete laden environment we have in cities..