India

Your Essential Packing and First-Aid Guide for Kerala

Houseboats in Kerala

Packing is a fundamental aspect of travel that sometimes people overlook. It doesn’t matter whether your destination is a few hours drive away or an overseas flight, taking out time to pack all the necessities can result in a hassle-free and pleasant holiday.

When it comes to exploring Kerala and its fascinating offerings, packing correctly is all the more important. Situated in the south-west of India, Kerala has a remarkably diverse topography, weather, and cultural outlook, that allows travellers, who want to book Kerala sightseeing, the option to indulge in everything from hilly retreats to luxurious beachside excursions.

To help you prepare for the perfect vacation, here is a checklist of essential packing items that you must carry during your Kerala tours.

Mobile with Sim

Irrespective of where you plan to travel in Kerala, it’s most beneficial to have a local Indian sim in your phone for emergencies and easy communication. Reliance and Airtel are two networks with extensive coverage in the state. Foreign travellers can pick up a sim upon arrival at any Indian airport or buy one from several mobile shops found in Kerala’s cities.

Important Numbers

Travelling through Kerala, you are bound to come across uninhabited stretches of road. Moreover, there is so much scenic beauty all around that at times, you’ll find yourself deep inside nature, places where few people venture out.

If you want to enjoy Kerala experiential tours without a worry on your mind, remember to keep local emergency numbers handy, both on paper and in your phone.

Shoes, Kerala

Shoes

You will need two types of shoes to cover most destinations in Kerala. Firstly, comfortable and sturdy walking shoes are a must. To enjoy the exquisiteness of the districts, you need to go offbeat. Walking shoes with a good grip are useful if you like hiking or even when cycling through the tea gardens of Munnar.

The other option is to have sandals or slippers. It does get hot and humid in Kerala, or you might be near the beach, in which case sandals are the best option to keep your feet rested.

Clothes

Packing clothes for Kerala can be a little challenging, and a lot depends on the cities you want to visit, as well as the time of year you travel. As a rule, it’s best to pack clothes in neutral shades and avoid black or dark colours as they attract more mosquitoes.

During the day, throughout the year, most places in Kerala, except for the hills, are either warm or hot. To counter the heat that can be irritating, pack light, sleeveless tops, shorts, and breathable pants or jeans.

Kerala is one of the most prominent beach holiday spots in India, and thus beachwear is a must. Even if you are not staying near the beach, carry your swimming costume. With plentiful waterfalls, swimming pools in Kerala resorts, and lakes, there’s an opportunity to jump into the water around every corner.

Traditional Dance, Kerala

A point to note is that many towns of Kerala are very religious, and it’s best to dress appropriately, covering your body, when visiting temples, mosques or churches.

However, do remember that it does get remarkably humid in this region during the summer months. Carrying clothes that are comfortable and loose allow you to enjoy sightseeing in Kerala even in the daytime.

During the winter months, evenings are particularly chilly, and while you don’t need bulky sweaters, light woollens are required. You can also layer up, especially in the hilly regions which can get cold around this time.

Accessories

Along with clothes, it is equally vital to carry a few accessories during your Kerala tours.

With rain being an integral part of life here, no matter the month, keep an umbrella or raincoat with you when going out.

If visiting in the summer, the sun can be especially harsh around noon, and it’s impossible to go sightseeing without the proper application of sunscreen, a hat, and sunglasses.

Kerala, India, Electronics

Electronics

Kerala is a beautiful region packed with amazing sights, the likes of which you’ve never seen before. So, it would help if you had an excellent camera to capture all the fantastic landscapes that make Kerala a much-desired tourist destination in India.

Those with interest in plants and animals should carry binoculars. You’ll find exotic birds in many regions of Kerala, and the state is famous for its national parks that feature animals like the tigers, elephants, and deer in abundance.

Some of the other electronic items to carry on your Kerala experiential tours include power banks, as some of the remote locations might have limited charging options, and an iPad to keep the kids busy during the long drives between cities.

Munroe Island, Kerala

First Aid

So many travellers around the world miss out on carrying a handy first-aid kit when them. In reality, it is the most crucial part of packing, one that can even save your life.

When getting ready for your Indian vacation, take these items in your first aid kit while planning a tour to Kerala.

Personal Medication – It’s always good practice to make a list of all the personal medicines you take and keep a copy of it in your backpack. If you are arriving in Kerala from overseas, make sure none of the medications is banned in India. If they are, either bring a doctor’s note, take special permission, or research for alternatives that you can bring.

Pain Killers – There’s a lot of adventure to be had in Kerala, and with all the running around, there is a possibility you might have a headache or sprain an ankle while hiking. Having over-the-counter pain medication can be helpful in such situations. While paracetamol is available in most cities, pain medication might be hard to find in some of the more isolated areas.

Motion Sickness Medicine – Depending on where you travel in Kerala, it’s good to have something for motion sickness handy, if you suffer from it. Some of the winding roads in the hilly area can result in dizziness, and taking a pill beforehand will let you forget about your sickness, allowing you to enjoy the stunning scenery instead.

Bananas in Kerala

Hand Sanitizer – As a general rule of travel, it has now become vital to carry a hand sanitiser no matter where you go in the world. In Kerala, it is best to use a hand sanitizer when eating out on the streets or before and after using public bathrooms.

Stomach Medication – Although most places in Kerala serve only the freshest of ingredients, people not used to eating Indian food can sometimes find it hard to digest. In addition to that, Kerala is famous for its seafood, which is one of the trickier cuisines to cook and eat. Thus, remember to pack stomach medication that typically suits you.

Antiseptic Ointment and Band-aid – If you enjoy adventurous activities, want to hike, or feel the freshness of a waterfall up-close-and-personal, come prepared with some antiseptic cream and band-aid to battle minor cuts and scratches.

Mosquito Repellent – An essential thing to have in your first-aid kit, one that you will undoubtedly use in Kerala, is a mosquito repellent. There are a lot of mosquitoes in every part of the state, and while repellents are readily available, it’s best to carry some in your backpack.

Munnar, Kerala

The above packing list might seem a little extensive; it is best to be prepared rather than face any problems at odd times when travelling. Nevertheless, the people of Kerala are incredibly welcoming and helpful and will make sure you have a memorable holiday.

Photos – Unsplash

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