The scintillating backwaters of Kerala have always been a tourist attraction. Hills and beaches are regular features of so many places but the palm fringed restful backwaters describe the uniqueness of Kerala’s unrivalled beauty. These backwaters simply are inland lakes connected by an arrangement of canals. With the rivers flowing west, the backwaters stretch as long as 1900 km. Traditionally, these century old backwaters were used as means of transportation and trade ways. Nowadays it serves as a link between remote villages and the mainland.
Kuttanad region or the ‘rice bowl’ of India as it is called is the most intriguing among all. This is the one place in the whole continent where farmers have innovated below sea level farming with the usage of dykes and bunds.
In Kerala, ‘God’s own country on earth’ -one can feel the divinity amidst the soothing backwaters, the hills and the houseboats.
Alleppey or Alappuzha is the heart of Kerala backwaters and is fondly referred to as “Venice of the East”. The villages, the toddy shops, the flat bottomed canoes with square cut bow and the houseboats- the scenic diversity of the green fringed water world of Alleppey is breathtaking.
Water sports like swimming, surfing and parasailing offer you the desired respite all travelers long for. Beach volleyball or making sandcastles can call for the child within oneself. Boat races are held during Onam and are quite an enthralling experience. The Nehru Trophy Boat race which is held in the second Saturday of every August is one of its kind. A complete amalgamation of energy, spirit and competition alongside positive teamwork and coordination makes this sport an extravagant one.
Other tourist attractions of Alleppey are Krishnapuram Palace, Ambalappuzha (Pilgrim center),Pathiramanal- the island.
The natural harbor of the Arabian Sea Kochi or Cochin is also known as the Queen of the Arabian Sea. The cluster of islands range through the vast span of Vembanad Lake and owing to its commercial importance this place has a cultural mix of Portuguese, Jewish, English, French, Dutch and Chinese.
Nothing can be more alluring than a cruise ride through the serene lakes of Kochi with the backdrop of coconut tree contour. The panoramic sights of migratory birds, Chinese fishing nets and local villages leave one astonished. The stunning landscapes and the greenery append to the exquisiteness of this place.
You can also visit Bolghatty Island, Willington Island, Fort Kochi, Mattancherry Palace and the St. Francis Church.
Kollam situated 71 km north of Thiruvananthapuram is the oldest port of Malabar coast. History states that this place was the center of International spice trade especially sought after for its cashew and marine industries. One can avail the eight hour-long boat trip from Kollam to Allappuzha, which makes for the longest and ecstatic experience of the backwaters.
Kollam showcases architectural miscellany and a number of temples built in the customary metaphorical style can be witnessed to comprehend the town’s history. Travelers can visit Mata Amritanandamoyi Ashram, the Picnic village, the Tourist complex, the Sastha temple, Mayyanad and Oachira. The Aluruvi waterfalls and the Palaruvi woods is an impeccable picnic spot.
Located 15 km from Kottayam on National Highway (NH) 47 between Thiruvanathapuram and Kochi, Kumarakom is a huddle of islands that come together on the banks of the Vembanad Lake. The greenery of the palms and the azure of the waters make Kumarakom a great tourist attraction
The fascinating bird sanctuary, the boating and fishing facilities, the houseboat stay, traditional Kettuvalooms accompanied by the coconut palm contour on the sidelines, the rippling waters, wide-ranging birds and flowers, luscious fresh water fishes makes this place the nature’s apple pie offering to mankind.
Paradise unravels itself with the view of the backwaters of Trivandrum. The tropical flora of Trivandrum with the rim of lagoons, lakes, canals and rivers is your access to Nature’s splendor. Experience quietude in its purest forms masked by a web of waterways.
The tranquil backwater stretch on the way to Kovalam stands out for its canoe rides. This point marks the union of two rivers Killi and Karamana.
Tourists may visit the Padmanabhaswamy temple, Museum complex, Kanakakkunnu palace, Science and technology museum, Sanghumugham beach, Veli tourist village and Neyyar Dam.
Quintessentially Kerala is revered by many as heaven on earth. The backwaters of this place is divine and a must visit during Monsoons. A retiring yet riveting holiday assured.