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Tags : Forts & Palaces

Timings : 8:30 AM - 1:00 PM & 3:00 PM - 5:30 PM
Closed on Monday

Time Required : 1-2 hours

Entry Fee : Indians: Adult: INR 10
Child: INR 3
Foreign Nationals: Adult/Child: INR 20
Photography: INR 15

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Kuthiramalika Palace, Trivandrum Overview

Built in the 1840s by the great Maharaja Swathi Thirunal, the Kuthira Malika Palace stands as an iconic monument that gives you a curious insight into the glorious history of Kerala. 'Kuthira Malika' literally translates to 'Mansion of horses', and it has been named so because of the 122 horses that adorn the many pillars that support the southern roof of this majestic structure. The main idea behind building this palace was to preserve and promote the many traditional art forms of India, mainly the south.

Take a patient stroll along this palace with one of the local guides, and you will be enthralled by the mystical charm of this magnanimous palace. Right in the premises of this palace, you will also come across the infamous Kuthira Malika Museum which is indeed a haven for history buffs and those who appreciate the beauty of prehistoric antiquities. The museum houses artifacts like the ethnic jewelry that was once worn by the queens, wooden paintings and carvings, armory and idols made of the purest metal. Another fascinating reason for this palace's popularity is the Swathi Sangeethotsavam, an annual music festival that is conducted right in palace premises! Thousands of people throng here to watch the mesmerizing performances of the many leading classical musicians that are invited to this festival.

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Architecture of Kuthiramalika Palace

One of the most attractive characteristics of the architecture at Kuthira Malika Palace is that it is embellished by the traits of pure and unadulterated traditional Kerala-style design, especially typical to the Travancore era. You are welcomed into the palace by the 122 wooden horses that are carved into the brackets of the palace's grand pillars. You will surely be pleased to see the sloping roofs, pillared passages, outlined courtyards and overhanging eaves- all distinctive characteristics of ancient Kerala-style architecture.

The Kuthira Malika palace is essentially made of teakwood, rosewood, marble and granite and is said to have been built by a whopping 5000 Vishwabrahmins in 4 years. A noteworthy aspect of the architecture is that the palace houses 16 main rooms, and no two rooms are alike. In all, the Kuthira Malika Palace houses 60 rooms of which only 20 are open to visitors. The floor is constructed, believe it or not, by egg-whites, charcoal and limestone. This keeps it smooth and cool even in the hottest temperatures.

Kuthira Malika Palace Museum

A part of the Kuthira Malika Palace has been converted into a museum where people can find exquisite ancient antiquities of the Travancore Dynasty. Entering this museum, you will be teleported into the prehistoric days. The wide and elegant hallways, the immaculate wooden carvings and paintings and the awe-striking exhibits that exuberate unadulterated regality are sure to mesmerise you with their hypnotic charm.

The exhibits on display include 14 life-size Kathakali figurines, tall and elegant Belgian and Italian mirrors, glamorous and humungous crystal chandeliers, paintings, a giant harpoon specially brought in from Belgium, numerous armaments, antique musical instruments, impeccably designed traditional furniture, and marvellous Greek statues.

Two of the royal thrones of the Travancore kings is also on display here. One of these thrones has been built completely from ivory- 24 elephant tusks to be precise. The other one is made of Bohemian crystals and is decorated with the Travancore emblem- 'conch' on the head. Don't forget to see the famous illusion portrait of Sree Chithira Thirunal Balarama Varma painted by Svetoslav Roerich. The peculiarity of this portrait is that no matter what angle you look at the painting from, you will always find the eyes and the feet following you. However, the most interesting attraction here is the Musical Tree. This tree produces 8 different sounds when tapped in different locations!

Best Time To Visit Kuthiramalika Palace

The Kuthira Malinga Palace is an absolute delight throughout the year. However, if you wish to experience the infamous Swathi Sangeetothsvam Festival, you can visit the palace between 6th January and 12 January each year.

How To Reach Kuthiramalika Palace

The Kuthira Malika Palace lies right on the Bhajanapura Palace Road which is a very popular street in Pazhavangadi. You can hail a cab or an auto rickshaw from anywhere around the city to the palace with ease and at very affordable rates.

If you wish to get here by public transport, you can get a bus at the Thiruvananthapuram Central Bus Station up to East Fort Bus Stop. The East Fort Bus Stop is barely 2 mins by road and a 5-minute walk from the palace.

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