The district of Kottayam is bordered by the lofty
Western Ghats on the east and the
Vembanad Lake and paddy fields of
Kuttanad on the west. Panoramic backwater stretches, lush paddy fields, extensive rubber plantations, places associated with many legends, and a totally literate people has given Kottayam the enviable title - 'the land of letters, legends, latex and lakes.' The district is famous for Vaikom
Satyagraha (1924-25), the historic struggle for the eradication of untouchability.
Kottayam has a tropical humid climate with an oppressive hot season in the plains and plenty of rainfall throughout. The hot season (March to May) is followed by the south-west monsoon June through September. The important rivers are the Meenachil, Muvattupuzha, and Manimala.
Kottayam occupies an important place in the fields of printing and journalism. The origin of journalistic activity district can be traced back to the middle of the 19th century. The first printing press in
Kerala (the CMS Press) was established here in 1821 by Rev Benjamin Baily.
There are many large, medium and small scale industrial units. Agriculture forms the livelihood of majority of the people. It is also the main factor influencing the economy. Kottayam is famous for its rubber plantations.
Situated on the Vembanad Lake,
Kumarakom is a small 'water-world' with plenty of traditional country boats, rafts and canoes which will take you into the heart of scenic Kerala. The serene lakes come alive during Onam with the spectacular water regatta - the snake boat races. The bird sanctuary here is also famous.
Kottayam is well connected with the major towns in and outside Kerala by road and rail. The nearest airport is at Cochin (Kochi), located 76 km from the town of