Culture and Tradition of Kerala

Festivals, Dances,food etc


Onam is the most biggest festival in Kerala, Onam Festival falls during the Malayalam month of Chingam (Aug - Sep) and marks the homecoming of mythical King Mahabali who Malayalees consider as their King. Onam is a reminiscent of Kerala'sOnam festivities last for ten days and brings out the best of Kerala culture and tradition.The festival is celebrated in memory of the mythical King Mahabali and his reign, during which perfect harmony and prosperity prevailed.

The second most important festival in Kerala is Vishu. Vishu falls on Malayalam Month of Medam 1st (normally 14th or 15th or 16th day of April). Its considered as Astronomic New Year, as its the day when Sun enters into Tropic of Cancer. Its considered to be the most auspicious day to start anything new. Though it doesn't have as much as glitz that Onam has, still Vishu is an important day in Kerala, more famous for its Vishu Sadhya (Vishu Feast), Kainettam (First Gift by elders to young on start of New Year) and ofcourse shopping, due Vishu's legend of getting new on this day.

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Dances (katakali,koodiyattam)

Kathakali Dance of Kerala

Originated over 500 years ago, Kathakali is a spectacular classical dance form of Kerala. It is a combination of drama, dance, music and ritual. Kathakali is one of the oldest theatre forms in the world. The word 'Katha' in Malayalam means Story and 'kali' means Play. Thus Kathakali literally means 'Story-Play'.

Koodiyattam Dance Form

Koodiyattam is the earliest classical dramatic art form of Kerala. Evidence show that this dance form was in vogue in all major temples from ninth century, and it became a full-fledged dramatic presentation before the fifteenth century. Koodiyattam literally means "acting together". Koodiyattam is a temple art and probably the only surviving form of the traditional presentation of Sanskrit drama.

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Sadhya is traditionally a vegetarian meal served on a banana leaf. People are seated cross-legged on the floor on a mat. All the dishes are served on the leaf and eaten with the right hand without using any cutlery. The fingers are cupped to form a ladle. A Sadhya can have about 24-28 dishes served as a single course.

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