6 friends managed to make out time together for this trip. That in itself is a difficult feat to pull off. It was the long weekend of 2nd October and our trip was set to cover Alleppey, the house-boat experience there and this hidden gem of a hill station called Vagamon. We 6 girls met at Kochi Airport and booked ourselves a taxi which took us to this adorable home-stay in Alleppey called Regal Mansion that we had booked via Make My Trip. The bungalow looked like something out of a postcard. White washed with blue awnings, ahh for us girls it meant lot of photo opportunities in and around the house. The foyer area had this beautiful ornate swing. The rooms in comparison were pretty basic but very well maintained with A/c and hot water available in the bath 24/7. There was a small garden area as well and our morning was spent walking on the dew covered grass and taking in the sweet sun.
Coming to the hosts, the lady (hate myself that cannot recollect her name) was the perfect mix of a hospitable and amicable nature. The food served for dinner and breakfast was an authentic Keralite fare and lip smackingly delicious. The location of the home-stay was also perfect. We just had to walk some 750 meters to the dockyard for the houseboats. I would highly recommend this home stay if you are looking for affordable rooming in Alleppey.
Morning of 1st October, we were off for our houseboat. As I said it was a short 7-8 minute walk and very enjoyable as walking through the narrow streets of Alleppey with charming bungalows on one side and shrubbery on the other was quite soothing. We got to the houseboat and were blown away by how luxurious it looked. A beautiful open seating area with a huge dining table, 2 bedrooms each with adjoining bathrooms; well furnished and with air conditioner. An upper seating area with sofas and a window with a seating arrangement big enough to accommodate 4-5 ppl. Ahh we spent 24 hours in the boat and every second was filled with so much fun in exploring the boat and the views we got to enjoy in the open backwaters of Kerala.
We paid Rs. 17000 for the houseboat which included 4 meals in total. Lunch, evening snacks and dinner for the day we boarded and breakfast on the next day. 17k divided between 6 ppls comes to just around Rs. 2800/ person and that is damn reasonable for the experience we got out of this. The boat is allowed to move around in the backwaters for only till 6 pm, after which they dock the boat and you are free to explore the lands where they have stopped. The next morning it starts again and there are a few hours it roams on the waters post which the ride ends. I'll let the pics do the talking here...
2nd of October, we docked at around 9.30 am and boarded a taxi which would take us to Vagamon. It took us around 4 hours to get there, and again once we left the city and entered the hilly area, the ride was very scenic with sweeping views of the mountains and greenery all around us. Again a pat on the back for choosing the accommodation. Holiday Vagamon is a gorgeous resort in the midst of lush green mountains. Though we booked ourselves regular rooms, there were tree-houses available as well and that is what I would surely recommend. After having our lunch in the resort restaurant we headed out to explore Vagamon.
First stop being Vagamon Meadows. Endless mass of small hills covered with the softest grass, one leading to the other, with cows grazing in the green pastures. Ahh what a sight!! There is a short trek to get to the hills and once you are in the meadows, you can easily traverse from one hill to the other. Spent around 2 hours here, and could have easily spent a lot more.
Next place we hit was the pine forests. Pines as tall as the sky is how you would feel once you are deep inside the forest. Again there is a bit of trekking to be done here but the feel of being surrounded by those majestically stunning pines makes it all worth.
We made it back to the resort for dinner time and later played dumb charades near the swimming pool area. There were bicycles available in the resort and of course we took them out for a short ride.
The trip cost came to INR 14k, the return flight costed INR 7K (Mumbai - Kochi) and the food, taxi and accommodation came to about 7k for 3 days. The benefit of course was that all the costs were being divided between 6 ppl.
All in all the most relaxing 3 days of my year, spent in company of 5 vivacious ladies with invigorating conversations and gorgeous views wherever our eyes landed.