Aluva is a major transportation hub in Kerala. It has an easy access to all major forms of transportation. Aluva acts as a corridor which links the highland districts to the rest of the state.
Aluva is the home to the summer residency of the Travancore royal family - the Alwaye Palace. Alwaye Palace is also famous for the Sivarathri festival, which is celebrated annually at the sandbanks of Periyar River.
The Advaita Ashrams in Aluva was founded in the year 1913 by Sree Narayana Guru, one of India's greatest social reformers that add to the cultural significance of the town. Today, whilst part of the Kochi urban agglomeration, Aluva is an autonomous municipality, its civic administration conducted by Aluva Municipal Council.
The town of Aluva also serves as the administrative centre of the Aluva taluk. The headquarters of the District Police Chief of Ernakulam Rural Police District, Superintending engineer, PWD (Roads) and of the District Educational Officer, Aluva are also located here. It is the starting point of Kochi metro rail under construction.
The archaeologists of Aluva have found evidence of settlements in Aluva as far back as 250 BC. The place used to be a continuous area of land spread across Kakkanad and Alangad; historians have recorded that it was so up to 1341 AD.
The town of Aluva then thickly populated, became a holiday resort and a centre of commerce. Mangalappuzha, a branch of Periyar which bifurcates at Aluva was known to be the nerve centre of trade and commerce in this part of South India. Before Indian independence, Aluva was part of the Kingdom of Travancore and was the official summer residence of the royal family.
The etymology of the name of the town of Aluva has been the subject of speculation for centuries. The Shivaratri festival for which the town of Aluva is famous for it is celebrated in the honour of Lord Shiva or Mahadeva. In the twentieth century, when there was a community of Jews in Cochin, some used to have holiday homes in Aluva on the banks of the River Periyar. It also has a name "gate way to east".
Aluva is a constituency in the Kerala Legislative Assembly. The Aluva assembly constituency is part of the Chalakudy (Lok Sabha constituency). Administratively, Aluva is a municipality.