The land of backwaters and bays, of coconut and culture, of houseboats and history! It is the land of the holy and gorgeous meeting of the three most important water bodies of the country. A place where the majestic Indian Ocean, the wide Bay of Bengal and the far stretching Arabian Sea come together for a confluence as no other place in the world has. Kanyakumari definitely has tremendous appeal for tourists all over the world. Apart from its exquisite beaches and soul-quenching swathe of green, it also boasts of one of the richest cultures across the globe. And with no doubts on the matter, the inhabitants of this beautiful land have left no stone unturned to preserve this culture in its natural beauty and still make sure that no tourist leaves the town disappointed. Along with the awe inspiring and amazing scenic beauty, the star struck tourists are in for better times. The town of Kanyakumari has a cuisine that is sure to leave any tourist craving for more.
No tour is complete without enjoying local delicacies and cuisines of the place one is visiting. Whether it is a quick bite at a small shack before going out to explore, or a lavish five course dinner at the end of a beautiful day, Kanyakumari has plenty and more for you to try. From vegetarian to non-vegetarian, there is plenty of variety to choose from. Some dishes that deserve special mention are:
1. Coconut Rice – Rice, the staple food in Kerala, is given a startling coconut twist in Kanyakumari with this dish. The thinly grated strands of fresh coconut blend in the cooked rice and share the platter with the crunchy cashews and the spicy green chillies. Nutritious and colourful, the dish is usually served out as dollops on the green banana leaf and is a sight worth admiring for an eternity. But do not stop at the mere sight. Give in to the aroma of the cumin and coconut and enjoy the preparation fit for Gods.
2. Meen Kolumbu – this one is for the fish lovers. A blend of coconut and the famous south Indian tamarind, mixed with poppy seeds, and behold a tangy-aromatic fish curry. The smoothness of the spices and the rich flavour is sure to make a tourist call in for another helping.
3. Avial – coconuts again! But this time exclusively vegetarian. Packed with vegetables and banana, this is a full-nutrient dish. Have it with piping hot rice and let those taste buds have a feast of a lifetime!
Apart from these, the place is undoubtedly famous for south Indian delicacies like idli, dosa, appam among many others. The staple food is rice, and the people have developed innumerable ways to cook and enjoy it, not to mention the surmounting number of dishes made from it.
Being a major tourist hub, there are numerous areas available to savor on in Kanyakumari, as a number of restaurants are offering lip-smacking local dishes. Mostly hot and spicy, these cuisines will be loved by everyone; especially chilly food lovers. Some of the restaurants one can find near the tourist attractions are:
1. Hotel Triveni – located on the Focal Road, the place provides tasty and tangy meals at pocket-friendly rates.
2. Hotel Annapooma – this one is famous for Chinese cuisine, if one gets tired of the indigenous dishes and is looking for a change.
3. Family restaurant – this is the perfect stop for relishing delicacies from Southern India. It also serves Gujarati, Rajasthani Chinese, cuisines along with lip-smacking south Indian dishes.
4. Hotel Sea-view – Hotel Sea-view is one of the top restaurants in Kanyakumari. The multi-cuisine restaurant serves a variety of delicious dishes. The ambience is pleasant and the service is quite good.
5. International Cuisine Indian Restaurant
6. Sangam Restaurant – this chain of restaurants started as a humble one in Kashmir. But now, the Sangam Restaurants have carved a niche for themselves in Kanyakumari too. The restaurant here serves mouth-watering delicacies from all parts of the country. The service is excellent while the ambience is fabulous.
7. Archana Restaurant – located inside Hotel Maadhini, the restaurant also caters to none residents of the hotel and serves good Indian food. The south Indian dishes here are particularly savoury. The service is more than satisfactory and the ambience is pleasant.
8. Saravana – part of the hotel saravana, this is a pure vegetarian restaurant. It is an air-conditioned restaurant with a pleasing ambience and serves both North Indian as well as South Indian vegetarian dishes.
9. Hotel Seashore – this hotel has an interesting restaurant located on the sixth floor, which offers stunning view of the bountiful city, along with mouth-watering dishes on your platter. The service is top notch and the quality of food is absolutely amazing.
With dishes to delight every man’s taste, Kanyakumari is a foodie’s heaven as much as it is that of a pilgrim or a nature lover. Foods of Kanyakumari reflect the taste and food culture of the people of Kanyakumari. Coconut is everywhere, from the seaside grooves to the basket in the kitchen of Kanyakumari. The chief cause of food is rice or rice products which are utilized to prepare dosa, appam, idily, and puttu.
The distinct taste hidden in the kitchens of the local households is a feast to the tourists and more than luckily, the localities here always seem to welcome you with open arms. Embrace it and savour the aroma of Kanyakumari.