One of the most scenic and panoramic backwaters in Kerala is that of the Chettuva Lake, and you might have come across pictures of it. The Chettuva Lake is about km before Chavakkad and is fed by the Keecheri River, which is 51 km in length and empties into the Arabian Sea. There is a resort by the name Rajah Island Resort right in the middle of this lake and is known for its breathtaking location.
Traveling further north for about 2 km, a city by the name Guruvayoor welcomes you with all its heart as it is a major pilgrim centre in Kerala, with temples are scattered all over. Kerala’s most important Krishna shrine, the high-walled temple of Guruvayoor, attracts a constant flow of devotees, second only to Ayappa’s pilgrimage at Sabarimala. It is also known as “Dwarka of South India”. There is a board outside the temple which says that the entry of non-Hindus in the temple is strictly prohibited. Guruvayoor is one of the richest temples in Kerala and is visited by pilgrims constantly.
The market outside is noisy and intense, with stalls full of glitter and trinkets. Of the temple’s 24 annual festivals, the most important ones are Utsavan, Janmashtmi and Ekadashi. Here, animals are considered the personal possessions of Lord Guruvayoor. The town is crammed with strictly vegetarian restaurants and lodges/hotels but you’re unlikely to find single-occupancy rooms because of security reasons, as ordered by the police.
Lord Krishna in Guruvayoor is popularly known as Sri Guruvayoorappan. According to legend, the deity has been established here for more than 5,000 years but there are no records to support the claim. However, there are records which indicate the Guruvayoor Temple to be at least 1,000 years old. I loved the atmosphere here and could have spent some more time here but being a solo traveler, I had to leave because of non-availability of single occupancy rooms.