Best Towns in Kerala (to live in?)

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#1 Aug 20th, 2007, 07:52
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#1
Hi all,

The past week I've been feverishly looking at property and rental ads sent my way by friends in Kerala. I plan to move there in January - or at least make my final move plans while there at that time. But where, exactly, to move to...that is the question.

I prefer a small town or village not more than an hour from a larger city. I own a small preschool center in Kunnamkulam (in Thrissur District) and need to be able to visit there frequently as well--but I'm not so sure I want to move to Kunnamkulam. I do want to consider Thrissur though. As well as Calicut, Kottayam, Wayanad, Trivandrum, Allepy, etc.

Any thoughts? What are some of those nice Kerala towns that you have thought (or know) to be "a nice place to live" for an ex-pat?

Diana
#2 Aug 20th, 2007, 13:42
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Diana... it seems you already know Kerala a great deal better than I do. I will be very interested to see answers to this post, and your comments, as I have similar requirements.

I have one further requirement... and that is that I want to live in a backwater area, with access to water. Probably the places that tourism has made famous, like Kumarakom, would be unaffordable, but then, I don't have a need to be surrounded by tourists anyway!

I haven't ruled out Alleppey, but I do find the town a bit shabby. I think Kochi, like Chennai, has suffered a price explosion. I like Trivandrum.
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#3 Aug 20th, 2007, 14:00
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How is Trivandrum for medical facilities?
#4 Aug 21st, 2007, 00:52
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Originally Posted by capt_mahajan View Post How is Trivandrum for medical facilities?
I was at the S.A.T. hospital there in June visiting the Child Development Center run by Drs Nail and George. It's one of the few centers of it's kind for young kids with disabilities and I was very impressed by the work these two men have done/are doing.

The overall facility looked quite nice but I didn't look closely at anything other than the CDC.
#5 Aug 21st, 2007, 01:40
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diana, you didn't mention varkala. admittedly, it is touristy but not on par with kovalam or fort cochin. it has the best location imho - dramatic cliffs and beaches, pasta in the supermarkets! depends on what you are looking for ultimately.
#6 Aug 22nd, 2007, 03:43
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Originally Posted by capt_mahajan View Post How is Trivandrum for medical facilities?
I don't know whether you are looking for sth. special!? There are plenty of hospitals and doctors, allopathic, ayurveda and homeopathic. And a medical college and an ayurvedic college...

Trivandrum is nice, but for frequent trips to Thrissur district I feel it is too far away. Unfortunately I have never visited Thrissur, but as far as I know it is one of the "culture capitals" of Kerala.

For a backwater town, I would maybe choose Kottayam. For me it would be too far from the sea
#7 Aug 22nd, 2007, 03:53
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#7
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Originally Posted by anar View Post diana, you didn't mention varkala. admittedly, it is touristy but not on par with kovalam or fort cochin. it has the best location imho - dramatic cliffs and beaches, pasta in the supermarkets! depends on what you are looking for ultimately.
This is the type of thing I need to know! (Especially the bit about the pasta! ) ...when I look at real estate ads EVERY place sounds nice and, even as much as I love Kerala, I just know that can't be true.

And yes, I know so much depends on finding what fits for me. Being from out West in the U.S. though, where towns are tiny and few and far between, the number of options in Kerala is a bit daunting. So, any thing to help thin things out a bit or give some place a nudge helps.

And yes, Kottayam is definitely on the list as well!
#8 Aug 22nd, 2007, 04:09
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I only spent two days in Kottayam, but got a really good vibe from it. Friendly enough without being ott about me being a westerner, and very good day-to-day shopping (with the veg market a very short walk from the hub) which I guess is going to be a major consideration for a resident.
Can't tell you much more than that I'm afraid!
#9 Aug 22nd, 2007, 04:12
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Originally Posted by Diana View Post And yes, I know so much depends on finding what fits for me. Being from out West in the U.S. though, where towns are tiny and few and far between, the number of options in Kerala is a bit daunting.
Kerala is somehow a very big village more or less connected together, at least along the coastline... even the cities are mostly only small buildings.

Pasta was available in some shops in Trivandrum, but for European prizes, so no option for me. I changed my favourite fast dish to Chinese noodles

Varkala is nice, as it's still a town, not only a tourist place...

I would consider the cultural (and that means also religious background) of the cities. I've only lived in Trivandrum, so can't tell much about how it is to live in other cities.... visiting a place is one thing, living there something else....
#10 Aug 22nd, 2007, 10:10
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federica, thanks.

I asked coz (and since Nick was talking about retiring there) in quite a few non-major cities, you have to go elsewhere sometimes for decent medical care eg 'routine' surgery.

That can be annoying.
#11 Aug 22nd, 2007, 10:31
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Sorry for the side-thread but didnt know where to begin.

Flying into Kochi airport one in the morning. If I taxi to Fort Kochin without accomodation will that be OK?

I hear the taxi service at the airport is pretty mercenary? Any information?

Brisso
#12 Aug 22nd, 2007, 12:58
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I have been to Trichur for a few days but unfortunately can't tell you much about it, haven't been around much. It's a regular small town, it didn't look cosmopolitan in any way so I wouldn't count on the pasta part! I can't call it "nice" or "bad", it looked just like any other town. Nice houses in the residential areas. I can tell you though that its residents tend to run to Kochi for any serious medical treament.
#13 Aug 22nd, 2007, 13:42
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#13
Thanks for the good point, Capt.

Brisso... yes, a little too offtopic, do please find a thread more to do with tourist arrivals --- or start your own!

But, hey! Seeing as how you're here... So far I have not arrived at the 'new' (it is ten years since I flew there) airport, but it is some way out of town. I have no idea of the costs, but I'd go for the pre-paid booths and take a car.

Just a quick answer, and I'm sure others know better, but lets take that to a different thread.
#14 Aug 22nd, 2007, 14:55
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#14
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Originally Posted by Nick-H View Post Thanks for the good point, Capt.
Offtopic, but this is a major minus for me when looking for retirement places.

Most of us are going to need medical treatment of varying kinds and intensities one day
#15 Aug 22nd, 2007, 14:58
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#15
Diana is more-than-a-bit younger than me, but I think it is a very valid point for all of us, at whatever age.

We can all get ill, have accidents, etc.
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