THE PROSPEROUS TOWN of Palai is surrounded by thick rubber plantations. The small but beautiful, 16th-century St Thomas Church, is its principal attraction. Constructed in the traditional style of early Christian churches in Kerala, It has a quaint wooden pulpit with a fish-like base, an elaborately carved main altar and two simpler side altars. A stone slab carries inscriptions in Syriac. Attractive glass candelabra are suspended from wall brackets, while a chandelier hangs from the ceiling. There is a wooden balcony at the rear. Services are still held in the church. Adjoining this building is a modern church, also dedicated to St Thomas.