Kerala, the most beautiful state on the southern tip of India is a major tourist destination in the country. The National Geographic’s Traveller magazine names Kerala as one of the “10 paradises on the world” and “50 must-see destinations of a lifetime”. Kerala is better known as “The God’s own Country”. It is a slogan projected and advertised by the Kerala Tourism department for the promotion of Kerala’s highly tourism potentialities
One may ask why Kerala is called “the God’s own country”. The question is genuine. But no one can supply a single word answer for the same. A lot of reasons can be attributed for the adoption of the catchy title. But before answering that, I wish to brief you certain facts related with the title “God’s own country”.
“God’s own country“ is a phrase used by New Zealanders to describe their homeland. Some other countries, mainly Australia and some American regions also adopted it. But the phrase is largely associated with New Zealand. The text in this regard appeared in Wikipedia reads thus: The earliest recorded use of the phrase as applied to New Zealand was as the title of a poem about New Zealand written by Thomas Bracken. It was published in a book of his poems in 1890, and again in 1893 in a book entitled Lays and Lyrics: God’s own country and other poems. God’s own country as a phrase was often used and popularized by New Zealand’s longest serving Prime Minister, Richard John Seddon. He last quoted it on June 10, 1906, when he sent a telegram to the Victorian Premier, Thomas Bent, the day before leaving Sydney to return home to New Zealand. “Just leaving for God’s own country”, he wrote. He never made it, dying the next day on the Ship Oswestry Grange.
The literary meaning of Kerala is “the land of coconuts”. “Kera” in Malayalam (the language of Kerala) means coconut. As Kerala is abundant with coconut plants, it naturally got the name Kerala. In Kerala, you can find Coconut trees everywhere. Look at the photo above. In fact, one of the reasons for Kerala’s enchanting beauty is its rich presence of coconut trees. The scene of the thick concentration of Coconut trees is a real treat to eyes whether it be Kerala or elsewhere in the world.
Kerala is an exotic location. No extreme climate here to disturb you. The climatic conditions are so apt with neither too hot nor too cold. The case is not so in the rest of the regions of India, where extreme climate pricks you or gives you trouble as the season changes. Well educated and cultured people are Kerala’s real asset. The most disturbing factor while one travels to a region beyond his boundary is communication. Here no such worry stare at the visitor as a good number of people here follow English well. Also, they behave friendly and helpful too.
The Keralites are good masters of hospitality too. Naturally, the visitors feel very comfortable when they land on this soil. The Kerala society has a neat track on health and hygienic awareness. They do take a bath every day and most of them do it twice a day. Keralites’ love for the bath is, in fact, an interesting topic for discussion everywhere in India. The people also prefer to drink hot water thanks to their high health consciousness.
Still we have not covered our core point or the question: How Kerala got that magical tagline “The God’s own country”? In fact even many of the Malayalees, the son of the soil, don’t know how it got that attractive tag-God’s own country.
It was created by one Mr Walter Mendez, who was also the Creative Director of a reputed Ad agency in India. The creation took birth in the year 1989. Sadly, the man is no more now as he died some 10 years ago. Walter coined the tag on the request of Kerala Tourism Department when the Kerala government wished to market Kerala’s high tourism potentialities before the travel world.
The phrase “God’s own country” did wonders. Also, it had a magical impact. The tourists changed their travel plans and made Kerala their preferred destination when they noticed the ads in tourism magazines and other periodicals. They longed to experience and feel the luxury of “God’s own country”. As the tag was so catchy, the travel folks easily developed a love to see the land. And they were never disappointed while returning. The state has such wonderful and magnificent attractions beyond one’s imagination.