Big Banana Island Retreat

Big Banana Island Retreat

Valiya Pazhampilly Thuruth, Chendamangalam 683512 India
Traveller (179)
Dining (21)
Room & Suite (14)

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About

5.0
#1 of 1 hotels in Chendamangalam
4.8 of 5 bubbles
Location
4.4 of 5 bubbles
Cleanliness
4.8 of 5 bubbles
Service
4.6 of 5 bubbles
Value
Big Banana Island Retreat is an eco-friendly retreat located on the water's edge on a small island in the backwaters of Kerala, South India. Following a retreat at Big Banana is to allow you to become Swasthan, a Sanskrit word that means to be physically, mentally and socially in perfect condition. During your stay, you will experience a lifestyle close to nature and authentic practices of Yoga and Ayurveda. As the days go by, the body is purified and strengthened, the mind calms down and gets more clarity and you will approach a new understanding of life. This will inspire you every day. Our 6 independent cottages are on the river bank of the Periyar River, which throughout your stay invites you to contemplation and meditation. For meals, we serve a sattvic food, respecting the principles of Yoga and Ayurveda, rich in fruits and vegetables, some come from our organic garden. Our vegetarian dishes, spicy but not hot, are freshly cooked, over a wood fire in terracotta pots according to Kerala tradition. Times of silence may be requested at certain times of the day. These are precious moments to observe nature and what drives it. The Big Banana is therefore a privileged place: a real ecosystem preserved from the use of any pesticide or chemical product since its creation 15 years ago. It is home to many varieties of trees, medicinal plants, flowers, fruit and vegetables, birds, insects, squirrels ... And if you want to experience local life, the Big Banana Island Retreat is also located in a rural area, rich culturally and historically, still preserved from tourism. You can easily visit the surroundings from the center. You can also take a boat ride on the river at sunrise or walk to the villages to meet people and their smiles. Looking forward to welcoming you, to share and to care. Namaste
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Property amenities
Free parking
Yoga classes
Free breakfast
Canoeing
Board games / puzzles
Airport transportation
Photo copier / fax In business centre
Facial treatments
Yoga room
Restaurant
Complimentary Instant Coffee
Complimentary tea
Complimentary welcome drink
Outdoor dining area
Special diet menus
Taxi service
Full body massage
Head massage
Massage
Neck massage
Chapel / shrine
Currency exchange
Mosquito net
Newspaper
Non-smoking hotel
Outdoor furniture
Laundry service
Room features
Desk
Housekeeping
Private balcony
Seating area
Wardrobe / wardrobe
Electric kettle
Walk-in shower
Bath / shower
Clothes rack
Iron
Private bathrooms
Wake-up service / alarm clock
Room types
Non-smoking rooms
Good to know
HOTEL CLASS
Star ratings are intended to indicate the general level of features, amenities, and services to expect. This property is classified according to Giata.
5.0 of 5 stars
HOTEL STYLE
Charming
Languages Spoken
English, French
174Reviews2Q+A5Room tips
Traveller rating
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Detailed Reviews
Anne wrote a review Feb 2020
2 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
I highly recommend this beautiful retreat grounded in a heavenly location, by a peaceful river. Both Deepan and Geraldine make sure each guest receives the full benefits from the well thought-out program : delicious, fresh and refined vegetarian meals, relaxing ayurvedic treatments, yoga classes and meditation sessions make this a well rounded cure for the body and mind.
The whole setting offers a unique opportunity to reconnect to nature and one's self.
Many thanks to the entire team for their unrelenting kindness and care.
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Date of stay: January 2020
5.0 of 5 bubblesLocation
5.0 of 5 bubblesService
5.0 of 5 bubblesSleep Quality
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
afh wrote a review Jan 2024
Lyon, France1 contribution
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Having already come in 2020, I returned in 2024 again for a 10-day treatment. The place is magical with the 5 bungalows by the water. The birds, the sounds of the temples, the sound of the river, everything is conducive to rest.
Yoga classes are given every morning in French and English and aim to relax us. No performance objective.
Ayurvedic treatments are given with great kindness by therapists.
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Date of stay: January 2024Trip type: Travelled solo
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
agnes b wrote a review Mar 2022
France3 contributions3 helpful votes
5.0 of 5 bubbles
What a wonderful place. Geraldine, her husband and the staf are most welcoming. Nice, caring, listening. A magnificent garden, nice rooms, a paradise in a wonderful nature. The ayurvedic treatments are great, the food excellent. Geraldine perfectly knows the insider tips, and will do her best to satisfy her clients. I can only recommend. GO!!
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Date of stay: March 2022Trip type: Travelled with friends
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Charlotte wrote a review Oct 2022
1 contribution
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Beautiful location, highly recommended to relax and take care of yourself. Excellent service, the owners are very kind and welcoming. The food is healthy, simple, and yummy.
Geraldine's yoga classes are great, slow and focused. I also recommend the massages, very unique steaming experience!
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Date of stay: October 2022
4.0 of 5 bubblesValue
5.0 of 5 bubblesLocation
5.0 of 5 bubblesService
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Quindeayllu wrote a review Jan 2013
Newark9 contributions17 helpful votes
5.0 of 5 bubbles
The hosts make the place. Having grown up in this beautiful island place, Deepan has realized his ten-year vision of a retreat that respects the thousands-year old traditions of ayurveda, yoga and respect for nature. Geraldine, his partner, joyfully helped us feel most at home with a glowing and sincere smile. After working in a Paris yoga studio and as a professional dancer, Geraldine now has joined Deepan in their vision of creating a retreat and artists commune that supports sustainable, eco-friendly development. Providing quality jobs for serious ayurvedic practitioners, supporting children's development with free yoga, art and theatre workshops, and endorsing young emerging Kerala artists by displaying their paintings, this retreat enables serious ayurvedic healing and yoga in the oldest traditions of south kerala. Located on an island and right next to a tranquil river, the quiet of this place helped us recuperate, regain balance and heal. I'm looking forward to the expansion of artist colony- with a gallery, collaboration from film-makers and people involved in theatre. Deepan's commitment to enriching the lives of children in Chendamangalam through free yoga and meditation classes embodies the hope that all beings may be free of suffering. We had an opportunity to offer a workshop with the children from the village. This offers a more respectful way to interact with Keralans outside of the usual tourist-native relations. My kids really enjoyed the chance to play with their peers. Great place to travel with kids or without kids. Minimal noise (no loudspeakers and motor boats), just the sounds of the forest, and lovely plants and flowers in well-kept grounds. Food was monotonous for a few days but when we made a request for more veggies and variety, we found the food became delicious. Extra virgin olive oil made the salad--first in Kerala-DELICIOUS. Also, the flavors of a picnic lunch for our departing journey lingers in my mind as one of the best meals in India. THANK YOU DEEPAN, GERALDINE, VISHNU, AMA, and everyone else at Big Banana Island Retreat.
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Date of stay: January 2013
4.0 of 5 bubblesValue
5.0 of 5 bubblesRooms
5.0 of 5 bubblesLocation
4.0 of 5 bubblesCleanliness
5.0 of 5 bubblesService
5.0 of 5 bubblesSleep Quality
Trip type: Travelled with family
Room Tip: Best ayurveda in Kerala.
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Lola P wrote a review Feb 2016
Paris, France3 contributions4 helpful votes
5.0 of 5 bubbles
My Friend Sophie and I have just left Big Banana island after a 17 day Ayurvedic retreat and we are already missing what came to feel like home.
As soon as we arrived we felt the powerful energy of the place with it's magnificent lush coconut groves, an orchestra of insects and birds and Beautiful flying Tropical butterflies. There is a feeling of calm as soon as you step through the gates. Looking out onto a beautiful, wide and free-flowing river where you can take dips in the heat of the day, it is an ideal location. We were shown to our bungalow which was very comfortable and tastefully furnished with high ceilings made from matting and a lovely verandah with hammocks and chairs for stargazing or taking an afternoon snooze. Meals were absolutely delicous and served in a large out-door dining room beside the river by extremely friendly staff. Everyone who works at Big Banana is kind and friendly and the service was excellent. It is a reflection of the extraordinary energy which Deepan and Geraldine ( and their charming son Nanu ) have put into every element of Big Banana. There is an organic vegetable garden and the water is freshly filtered and delicious. The Ayurvedic treatments are handled with great care and there are a variety of different massages available as well as a consultation with a kind Doctor every other day to monitor your progress. Geraldine gives a lovely yoga class in the Meditation hut each morning which is the perfect way to start a day and she harnesses breath and mind body consciousness in a very gentle yet powerful way. Deepan maintains a strong Spiritual practice which enhances the overall spirit of the place. He holds a meditation-stretch session most evenings and on Sundays there is a fire ceremony. Without being imposing it offers a deeper meaning to the stay at Big Banana. There is a strong spirit of community and family and it is rare to find peaople of such Joy and Integrity. Deepan and Geraldine are wonderful hosts who spread Joy.
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Date of stay: February 2016
5.0 of 5 bubblesValue
5.0 of 5 bubblesService
3.0 of 5 bubblesSleep Quality
Trip type: Travelled with friends
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Gomaty wrote a review Jul 2014
Kochi (Cochin), India2 contributions5 helpful votes
5.0 of 5 bubbles
I came to this retreat by sheer chance to spend a day and a night ...and ended up putting off all my schedules for the next three days. I could've perhaps forgotten my way back altogether.Blissfully quiet ,peaceful,still old world Kerala as best as it could come,Deepan's retreat is a simply wonderful place to be in a very quiet,simple,homely,unfussy,safe,clean way.
The food is fresh,simple and unpretentiously rural., Vegetarian dishes made of Banana stem,Banana flower etc that are usually cooked and served only in homes is freely served here ...Not surprising cooked as they are by a group of homemakers in the neighbourhood within the large cozy rambling kitchen.Fish ,freshly caught arrives by tiny country row boats.Deepan,the owner of this litle six cottage affair. is after all,the neighbourhood's very own flesh and blood and family to the whole village.That makes a lot of difference to place's feeling...
The Chalakudy river that breathes in and out with the tides of the sea just 8 kms away at Cherai.No swimmer can resist a dip even if the water is quite salty except during the monsoons.Lovely for a day visit too but stay at least a night sitting by the river under the moon...Its magic!
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Date of stay: June 2014
4.0 of 5 bubblesRooms
5.0 of 5 bubblesService
5.0 of 5 bubblesSleep Quality
Trip type: Travelled with family
Room Tip: My favorites are the two cottages at the extreme west end.
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Threeminttea wrote a review Apr 2013
Swansea UK6 contributions9 helpful votes
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Big Banana Resort

Tucked away on Valiyapazhampillythuruth island just outside the village of Chendamangalam, a little way off the beaten track but ideal for a riverside retreat to rejuvenate from a long flight.

The owner Deepan and his wife Geraldine are friendly but not intrusive hosts and keen to make your stay comfortable, as do all the retreats staff.

The accommodation is well presented and clean with a little rustic charm. Yoga and ayeudadic treatments are available on request situated in the traditional treatment room and meditation space.

My only grumble is the choice of food which could benefit from some closer attention (and a little more spice), although the salads and indian breakfasts were great. Food options are mainly eating at the resort or you can take a 10 min rickshaw drive to Chendamangalam where there are a couple of places. Vishnu (Deepan's nephew) is happy to organise transportation as the retreat is not near the main road, so its blissfully quiet ! A rickshaw to the temple in the village of Chendamangalam will cost you about 24 -35 Rs.

The riverside setting is idyllic but remember to bring some mosquito repellant and plugins.

This is a good base for me as I will be visiting Chendamangalam again.
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Date of stay: March 2013
5.0 of 5 bubblesValue
5.0 of 5 bubblesRooms
5.0 of 5 bubblesLocation
5.0 of 5 bubblesCleanliness
5.0 of 5 bubblesService
5.0 of 5 bubblesSleep Quality
Trip type: Travelled as a couple
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Beath D wrote a review Feb 2012
Thalang District, Thailand3 contributions6 helpful votes
5.0 of 5 bubbles
this will be ideal place if you want to spend a vacation amidst lush coconut trees watching a serene river. to relax with your family away from crowded life
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Date of stay: December 2011
4.0 of 5 bubblesValue
5.0 of 5 bubblesRooms
5.0 of 5 bubblesLocation
4.0 of 5 bubblesCleanliness
4.0 of 5 bubblesService
4.0 of 5 bubblesSleep Quality
Trip type: Travelled with family
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Ainatte wrote a review Jan 2012
Tel Aviv, Israel3 contributions8 helpful votes
5.0 of 5 bubbles
The beauty of the place is just a backdrop to the amazing care from staff and owner. The immaculate kitchen served the best Indian food I've ever tasted. The yoga and massages made my body feel 10 years younger. But most of all, we were in safe hands that took care of me and my kid - recommending and organizing our whole Indian adventure. Wish I was there now :)
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Date of stay: December 2011
5.0 of 5 bubblesValue
5.0 of 5 bubblesRooms
5.0 of 5 bubblesLocation
5.0 of 5 bubblesCleanliness
5.0 of 5 bubblesService
5.0 of 5 bubblesSleep Quality
Trip type: Travelled with family
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.
Answer from Eberthi1
Asnieres-sur-Seine, France7 contributions
Info@ bbiretreat. com
Danielle K wrote a tip Sept 2016
1 contribution
5.0 of 5 bubbles
"All rooms were the same, there are only 6 to choose from."
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Fabienne C wrote a tip Sept 2016
Bordeaux, France1 contribution
4.0 of 5 bubbles
"Rooms were nice and clean!!!"
Read full review
Cecile R wrote a tip Sept 2016
Annecy5 contributions5 helpful votes
5.0 of 5 bubbles
"Bungalows on the backwater, with a double bed and private bathroom. Lovely!"
Read full review
Gomaty wrote a tip Jul 2014
Kochi (Cochin), India2 contributions5 helpful votes
5.0 of 5 bubbles
"My favorites are the two cottages at the extreme west end."
Read full review
Quindeayllu wrote a tip Jan 2013
Newark9 contributions17 helpful votes
5.0 of 5 bubbles
"Best ayurveda in Kerala."
Read full review
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LOCATION
IndiaKeralaErnakulam DistrictChendamangalam
NUMBER OF ROOMS
6
Prices are provided by our partners, and reflect average nightly room rates, including taxes and fees that are fixed, known to our partners, and due at time of booking. Please see our partners for more details.
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BIG BANANA ISLAND RETREAT (Chendamangalam, Kerala) - Hotel Reviews & Photos - Tripadvisor

Frequently Asked Questions about Big Banana Island Retreat
Which popular attractions are close to Big Banana Island Retreat?
Nearby attractions include Kodungallur Bhagavathi Temple (7.8 km), Paliam Dutch Palace (1.6 km), and Chalakudy River (2.5 km).
What are some of the property amenities at Big Banana Island Retreat?
Some of the more popular amenities offered include free breakfast, an on-site restaurant, and free parking.
Which room amenities are available at Big Banana Island Retreat?
Top room amenities include a desk, a mosquito net, and a seating area.
What food & drink options are available at Big Banana Island Retreat?
Guests can enjoy free breakfast, an on-site restaurant, and complimentary tea during their stay.
Is parking available at Big Banana Island Retreat?
Yes, free parking is available to guests.
What are some restaurants close to Big Banana Island Retreat?
Conveniently located restaurants include Palaaram, Sukh Sagar Restaurant, and Vrindhavan Pure Vegetarian Restaurant.
Are there opportunities to exercise at Big Banana Island Retreat?
Yes, guests have access to yoga classes during their stay.
Does Big Banana Island Retreat have airport transportation?
Yes, Big Banana Island Retreat offers airport transportation for guests. We recommend calling ahead to confirm details.
Which languages are spoken by the staff at Big Banana Island Retreat?
The staff speaks multiple languages, including English and French.
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