Kerala Souvenirs: More Than Just Trinkets, A Piece of Your
Kerala Taxi Tour

aaranmula kannadi

As you journey through the enchanting landscapes of Kerala with us, don’t miss the chance to bring home a piece of this vibrant land. Kerala’s souvenirs are more than just trinkets; they’re tangible reminders of the rich culture, heritage, and craftsmanship that make this state so special. Whether you’re exploring bustling cities or serene backwaters, your Kerala taxi tour is incomplete without these authentic keepsakes.

Aranmula Mirrors: Reflections of Heritage

Imagine a mirror that doesn’t just reflect your image but also a glimpse into Kerala’s rich history. The Aranmula Kannadi, unique to the village of Aranmula, is not your ordinary mirror. Crafted from a special metal alloy, it offers a warm, almost magical reflection, unlike the cold glare of glass.

Once a prized possession of royalty, this mirror is now considered a symbol of prosperity and is often included in the Astamagalya set, a collection of eight auspicious items used in weddings and special ceremonies.

To ensure you’re getting the real deal, look for the Geographical Indication (GI) tag, a mark of authenticity. To be extra sure, head to the Aranmula Kannadi (Aranmula Metal Mirror) – Sree Parthasarathy Handicrafts, where you can witness the intricate craftsmanship firsthand and choose from a wide range of mirrors.

Kerala Kasavu Sarees and Mundu: Threads of Tradition

Photo Credits: Kerala Tourism

The Kasavu Mundu (for men) and Kasavu Saree (for women) are synonymous with Kerala’s cultural identity, to put it differently, it’s a unisexual clothing way before being unisexual was a thing. The simple yet elegant white garments adorned with a golden border, known as kasavu, are a sight to behold during festivals and special occasions. The kasavu, woven with real gold thread, symbolizes purity and prosperity.

Choosing an authentic Kasavu garment requires a discerning eye. To ensure you’re getting the best, head to government-certified handloom centers like those in Balaramapuram (near Trivandrum), known for its exquisite craftsmanship and the use of fine zari. Chendamangalam, near Kochi, is another hub for Kasavu textiles, where artisans weave intricate designs with half-fine zari. If you’re looking for patterned or jacquard borders with unique motifs, Kuthampully in Thrissur is the place to be. Here, the Devanga community continues the tradition of weaving Kasavu sarees with intricate details.

Kerala Lamps (Nilavilakku): Illuminating Tradition

Nilavilakku

Step into any Keralan home or temple, and you’re likely to see the warm glow of a Nilavilakku. This traditional lamp, often made of brass or bronze, is more than just a source of light; it’s a symbol of auspiciousness and purity, often lit during prayers and ceremonies.

You can find Nilavilakku in various shapes and sizes, from small, single-wicked lamps to elaborate ones with multiple wicks. To ensure you’re getting a genuine piece, look for reputable handicraft stores or government emporiums that are usually a safe bet.

Coconut Shell Craft from Kerala: Artistry in Every Curve

coconut jewellery

Kerala’s artisans have a knack for transforming the humblest of materials into works of art. Take coconut shells, for instance. These discarded shells are reborn as intricate handicrafts – spoons, bowls, jewelry, and decorative pieces, each bearing the mark of the artisan’s skill and creativity.

For an authentic experience, head to the source. Wayanad, a district in Kerala, is renowned for its coconut shell crafts. You can visit local markets or artisan workshops to find unique pieces directly from the creators.

Kerala Nettipattom: Miniature Splendor

Wall hanging Nettipattom and kathakali masks

If you’ve witnessed the grandeur of Kerala’s temple festivals, you’ll be familiar with the Nettipattom – the elaborate headdress worn by elephants. While the full-sized Nettipattom is a sight to behold, you can find miniature versions as souvenirs. These intricately crafted replicas, often made of gold and copper, make for a unique reminder of Kerala’s vibrant cultural traditions.

Look for them in craft emporiums or jewelry stores, and be sure to inquire about the materials and craftsmanship to ensure authenticity.

Kerala Boat Models (Uru): Miniature Vessels of History

For a souvenir that carries the essence of Kerala’s maritime heritage, consider a Uru model. These miniature replicas of traditional wooden boats, known as Urus, are a testament to the state’s shipbuilding legacy. Urus were once used for trade and transportation along the Malabar Coast.

Today, you can find beautifully crafted Uru models in various sizes, often made of wood and adorned with intricate details. Look for them in handicraft stores or shops specializing in nautical souvenirs.

As your Kerala taxi tour comes to an end, these souvenirs will serve as cherished reminders of your time in God’s Own Country. Each piece tells a story of tradition, artistry, and the warmth of Kerala’s people. So, go ahead, bring home a piece of Kerala’s soul, and let it transport you back to this magical land whenever you glance at your treasured keepsake.

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