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Elephant Race Held at Guruvayoor Temple

Guruvayoor Temple celebrated the beginning of annual festival with the famed Aanayottam (elephant race). Hundreds of people including tourists turned up to cheer the 29 elephants who took part in the race from Manjulal to the temple. The racing distance added up to half a kilometer approximately.  Barricades were in place to control the public from venturing onto the track which had its finishing point in front of the deity Lord Sree Krishna inside the temple.

Guruvayoor Devaswom’s Kesavankutty won the race comfortably beating Junior Vishnu and Nandini who finished second and third. This is the third consecutive win for the 65-year-old tusker. As the reward, Kesavankutty will lead the processions in this year’s annual festival at the temple.

Elephant race is a yearly event at Guruvayoor Sree Krishna Temple in Trissur district of Kerala where the elephants owned by the temple administration (Devaswom) contest to decide which elephant  will carry the coveted ‘Thidambu’ (The replica of the deity) during the festivities celebrating annual Guruvayoor  Festival. Legend has it that one year the Kochi royal family refused to  lend elephants for the temple rituals but at the time of the event,  the elephants came running to the temple by themselves. It is to commemorate this unusual event, the elephant race (aanayottam) is conducted every year. It is a highly anticipated event among local people and tourists alike.

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Kerala Blog Express Second Edition Flagged off

Blog express 2.0, an initiative by Kerala tourism to get world-renowned travel writers to know more about Kerala by experiening it in person is into its second season. Kerala Minister V S Sivakumar flagged off the bus taking the chosen bunch of writers from around the world on a two-week trip around the state.
This year’s group includes names from United States , Britain, New Zealand, South Africa, Spain, Italy, Poland, Bulgaria , Brazil, Slovakia, Hungary, Finland, Uruguay, Mexico, Czech Republic, Greece, Israel, France, Indonesia and Philippines. There are also two Indian writers in the 30-member squad.
According to Kerala Tourism Additional Director (General), Anupama T V, The participants were shortlisted based on their profile, popularity and an online voting system. The selection period saw 702 entries this year.
Conducted in financial year 2013-14, the successful first edition of Blog received a big thumbs up from those who participated. Kerala is the first state in India to implement this unique concept in order to increase its popularity and reach as a tourist destination among worldwide audience. For details, check out keralablogexpress.com.