Place of Interest
BACKWATERS OF KERALA
Off the coast, set against the solitary and intimate backdrop of coconut palms and paddy fields, are the serene, tranquil backwaters of Kerala. A different Kerala awaits you, in the life along the banks of the backwaters that is loving & affectionate with its own culture – ‘An experience of a life’ to any visitor to this exotic land.
In Kerala, the total expanse of backwater stretches over 800sq .km - the nature’s bequest. Actually, the term backwater simply refers to the inland lakes but included with estuaries, canals and the curious water features that are formed by the unique action of the Sea off the coast. The backwaters act as the vital waterway for the transport of produce and people, are often the only link between the isolated villages and bustling towns.
A glide in a ”Kettuvallam” (Rice boat / Houseboat) through the nature’s bounty is sure to steal your heart. Palm fringed narrow canals, winding through the wast expanse of paddy fields and the neat tiny hamlet lined up along the sides of the canals where the common people live is a sight to watch. Occasionally, a variety of birds perform acrobatic maneuvers across the sky while in the blue yonder, flocks of ducks are either engaged in synchronized swimming or just lazily quack around on the banks. There is never a dull moment. The sparkling water and the caressing cool breeze is a temptation, too strong to resist. Country boats of various types criss - cross the path are a fascinating sight.
As the darkness descends you are transcended to yet another world…it is a unique experience as this is as close as you can get to feel the way of life, here in this tropical paradise on earth.
Kerala is the home of a wide variety of birds and animals. For the nature lovers, Kerala’s Wildlife sanctuaries offer some of the best sights ever. The Thattekkad Bird sanctuary in Ernakulam and Kumarakom Bird sanctuary in Kottayam, are home to migratory birds.
Kumarakom Bird Sanctuary, situated on the banks of the Vembanand Lake is known for its varied avian population. Local varieties such as waterfowls, cuckoos and owls, as well as the migratory Siberian Cranes can be viewed here.
Kettuvallom (Rice boat) is a country boat that was used in the past for the transport of the produce & the people from isolated interior villages to towns. Gradually the kettuvalloms went off the scene with the advent of roads and bridges. But today this pride of the past is back in the form of houseboat, majestically floating in the backwaters offering a luxurious delight.
Alappuzha beach is one of the most popular spots in the district of Alappuzha. The pier, which extends into the sea here, is around 140 years old.
With the Arabian Sea on the west and a vast network of lakes, lagoons and several freshwater rivers criss-crossing it, Alappuzha is a district of immense natural beauty.
Referred to as the Venice of the East by travellers from across the world, this BackwaterCountry is also home to diverse animal and bird life. By virtue of its proximity to the sea, the town has always enjoyed a unique place in the maritime history of Kerala.
Nehru Trophy Boat Race is the most famous of the boat races of Kerala. This annual regatta is held on the Punnamada Backwaters of Alappuzha district on the second Saturday of August.
The event is a commemoration of the visit to this place by the late Prime Minister of India, Jawaharlal Nehru, in 1952.
The spectacular races features magnificent snake boats or 'Chundans'. The boisterous and rhythmic boat songs or Vanchipattu work the spectators to a state of frenzy.