This seventh largest city of Kerala is popular for its houseboat cruises along the Kerala backwaters. Alappuzha is bedecked with lagoons, beaches and canals and offers lots of water sports such as kayaking, canoeing, sailing and water skiing, to unwind during your vacation. The backwaters also happen to be the venue for the annually celebrated (January and August) Nehru Cup Snake Boat Race, where long serpentine boats being rowed with rhythmic furor by able-bodied Malayali men, is a spectacular site to behold. Some other famous attractions include Alleppey Beach, Andhakaranazhi Beach, Vemband Lake, Mannarasala Temple and the Alappuzha Light House, which offers a stunning panoramic view of the city and the coastline, especially during sunsets. One can also take a speed boat to Pathiramanal Island, a quiet and picturesque island on the backwaters where one can witness hundreds of rare migratory birds from around the world. South India is culturally rich and its abundance can be enjoyed through its music, dance and spirituality. Many resorts organise cultural shows in the evening where one can enjoy the traditional dance of Kerala and one of the oldest theatre forms of the world, Kathakali. Places such as Thaff Delicacy, Dreamers Cafe and Restaurant, Mushroom Restaurant and Kream Korner Art Cafe are famous for delicious local, vegetarian and non-vegetarian dishes. Alappuzha can be reached by air, the nearest airport being Cochin International Airport, which is 83 km from the city, while buses and trains are also available.
Best Time To Visit
How To Reach
Book a Package Tour
Upon reaching Alleppey early morning at 5 o'clock, we checked into a nearby lodge for freshening up and within 2 hours , we were ready for the breakfast which we had in the lobby. We checked out soon after the food and headed straight to the boarding point of the famour Alleppey Houseboats, located some 3-5 kms from the Alleppey bus stand. The autorickshaw charges was suprisingly (at least for us who hail from Bangalore where the auto fare sky rockets beyond control !) cheap and didn't need any bargaining. Although there were several agents along the streets of Alleppey trying to lure us with attaractive offers for a houseboat ride, we preferred to book it through the Office of State Govt. Toursim Dept., called as District Tourism Promotion Council Office. After analyzing different sizes of Houseboats (like 1BHK, 2BHK and even 3BHK types), considering the amenties required, the duration of the ride (which varied from few hours to a maximum of 20 hours) and ofcourse our overall budget, we booked a 1BHK based House Boat with A/C facility. TV anyways was not needed. The houseboat ride cost us about Rs.22,000/- i.e, Rs.5,500/- per head for roughly 20 hours starting at about 12 noon till 8 am of next day. Once the booking was confirmed, we were taken in a small boat some 2 kms into the back waters where our house boat was waiting for us. We four guys boarded into our floating house at about 12 noon, right on time. Fresh coconut water and pineapple juice were served as Welcome Drink and after loading the necessary food ingredients and other essential provisions needed for the 20 hours ride, the house boat set off on its voyage and soon we started crusing through the very scenic backwaters of Kerala both the banks of which were mostly covered with lush green paddy fields, coconut plantations, human settlements etc. The green landscapes were truly breathtaking and we really enjoyed the tranquil surroundings of the countryside. Localites were busy in their daily chores all along the back waters with the men engaged in their livelihood works and womenfolk managing their household activities. Based on our feedback, our on-board cook started cooking our lunch which included fried pamphlet salad. The houseboat stopped by a village where we handpicked fresh pamphlets and tiger prawns for lunch and dinner respectively. First few hours flew away very fast. We spent most of our time in personal photoshoots at different corners of the houseboat such as in the dining area, deck area, in the narrow alleys of the house boat, in the terrace area, rear side and even in the kitchen & the bedroom. I took hundreds of snaps of the surrounding landcapes which was nothing less than scenic, sublime and serene, dotted by several other house boats (simple ones to some of the most luxurious & expensive houseboats equipped with TVs, CD players, refrigerators, barbeque and even bars !). We realized that this land is truly God's Own Country where nature has remained untouched and is duly respected. Soon lunch was ready and we relished every bit of the variety of dishes prepared by our on-board cook. The fried pamphlet salad was exceptionally mouth watering. After a hefty lunch, some of us started dozzing off and started preparing for a short afternoon nap. But our hosts had some other plans in stock. Soon one of our hosts handed over a fishing rod to each of us with lots of fish baits, encouraging us to pass time fishing rather than sleep at that time. We bought the idea and soon found it to be more funfilled than doze off on a pleasant afternoon in those beautiful backwaters. Just before sun set, we were served ripe banana fries and tea, which had an interesting taste. As Sun was nearing the Western horizon the skies turned red. We captured a lot of sceneries such as silhouetted Church, schools, buildings, trees etc on the shores, with sun set at the backdrop. Just when it went dark, the house boat was anchored at a village and we went on a short walk through the paddy fields, narrow lanes and the village market with the promise of an unique type of local drink. But when we discovered it to be some kind of alcohlic in nature, we politely refused. However, the short walk was nevertheless in vain as we enjoyed the country side ambience a lot and this enriched our travel experience further. By the time we returned to our houseboat, our delicious dinner was ready which was served to us hot along with the fried tiger prawns. After hours of gossipping among us and with our hosts, we hit our beds at about 11 in the night. We woke up early morning next day. We didn't miss a single chance to capture the flawless beauty of the backwaters when the Sun was on the Eastern horizon and also, when the villages around us were waking up for the morning chores, like the school boats ferrying children to schools and people waiting for the boats to reach their workplace etc. After a hour or so, breakfast was served which consisted of hot puri, potato curry and boiled eggs, exactly as per our choice. Soon time came for the houseboad ride to end. It was about 8 am when the houseboat toched the banks and before dismebarking from it, we had some snaps taken with our hosts as a part of our travelogue.
So, when we learnt that we still have 4 more hours of travel by road, we had to put on our adventurous caps on. By the time we reached our hotel, it was about 3 am. What took me by surprise is the presence of the local MLA who was still up, waiting to welcome us. Such gestures melt me! And the 3-day literature fest? It was beyond my expectations. I have never enjoyed anything more. In between, we were given the liberty to explore. Alleppey Beach was a conscious choice and it was totally worth every second. Sumptuous food, freshly brewed coffee, and then, a walk in the beach- a halt in between, just listening to the waves- our thoughts transported to another world; it’s really just the perfect place for writers!And if you ask me, what have I learnt from these trips, then the answer carries more than one valuable lesson. Travelling opens your mind to things you never considered before. It teaches you to appreciate even the most ordinary gestures that we otherwise take for granted; it reminds you that this world is made up of beautiful people with different cultures, food habits, and way of life but we are all just human beings, seeking the same goals in life- a little more love, a little more peace, a little more sunshine, a little more of the finer things in life that are not necessarily defined by wealth.
The houseboats get you close to nature, but in a different manner altogether. A mix feel of solitude, backwaters and the nearby village... Inner peace at its zenith :) Additionally, the food and courtesy of the hosts is highly appreciable... Its a must stay place in Kerala.
Allepey Houseboat Cruise
This is a must experience if you happen to travel in Kerala. We took a day cruise option . You can even opt for full day cruise which includes night stay as well. Our houseboat was well equipped with bedrooms,washrooms,upperdeck,kitchen etc. We enjoyed a wholesome meal onboard which was prepared the cruise crew. The crew bought all the groceries before we started . They prepared the meals while we were lazing around. We witnessed beautiful views of paddy fields, other houseboats on the backwaters, the villages on the banks and how the local people lead their lives. Their lives are so different from ours. I saw many boats parked outside the houses of the villagers. I came across many boats with children as they were returning from school. The local women and the children were rowing their boats so effortlessly. Apart from the local life, you get to witness nature's best views . You might also be lucky to spot various birds flying over the lakes. Overall, this is a must experience which everyone must try atleast once in their lives. Few tips before you take a houseboat:- 1) Check out at least 3-4 boats before you agree to one. There is lots of variety present in Allepey 2) The rates are highly negotiable. So look out for the best deal 3) Choose a houseboat with an upper deck option. It is amazing to lounge around on the upper deck and watch the picturesque views. 4) If you dont have much time for a half day/full day cruise you can opt houseboats on hourly basis. The rates vary between 1000-1500/- per hour.
Haveli Backwater Resorts
Thekkady to Alleppey - BackWaters140 km away from Thekkady is Alleppy which is one of the most famous & beautiful place- The Backwaters. We were staying here at the Haveli Backwaters resort which is a boutique hotel. Its infrastructure was not good as peppervine resort but food was very yummy.Alleppey is the important point for trips into Kerala's backwaters but the town has many lakes and canals. The backwaters of Aleppey connects Kumarakom and Kochi in the north and is the main centre for the Nehru Trophy Boat Race which most of you must have seen on television.Boat Ride at BackwatersThe Venice of the East, the boat takes you through the narrow canals where you find small villages situated on the banks of the lake. Initially near the bank it was stinky near the bank but got better towards the centre. It was beautiful experience for us, we could see villagers washing clothes, and enjoying a living in the small houses near the banks.We also got see little baby coconuts that were yellow in colour and in size as small as an orange. I bought a few pieces to bring them back home :D Once back from your backwater run, we tried the coffee or at Cafe Paradiso.Our local boatman told us that the place is called backwaters because the lake water is fresh river water that comes down from the river. If you really like the monsoons, the backwaters is the place to be.
Punnamada Backwater Resort
Nehru Trophy Boat Race The annual Nehru Trophy Boat Race takes place on the backwaters of Punnamada in Alappuzha of Kerala. The race is a rowing competition, which takes place between numerous teams who participate in this event to contend for the Nehru Trophy. The history behind the event is that, a snake boat race was conducted when Pt. Jawahar Lal Nehru visited this place. He was so impressed by the enthusiasm of the rowers that he awarded the Nehru Trophy to the winners. Since then the Nehru Trophy bears a silver model of a snake boat and is awarded to the winning team of the boat race.
Nova Holidays Homestay
Our fifth stop. Reached there on 13th April. Almost 12 hours travel. On the way in the village restaurants you have standard menu of parattha, chappathi, appam, patri along with chicken/ fish/ kondakadalai/ tomato curry. As the target was to reach Trivandrum by new year, we just rested that night. lot of jack fruit trees in the campus.
Allepey Lake Home
They are a tour agency who can fix up a perfect holiday for you in a beautiful house on the Vembanada Lake. This is a 2 room apartment with a beautiful living area, kitchen and washrooms and bathroom. There is also a caretaker cum cook who specializes in Keralite cuisine and especially if you would love to taste a fresh catch of the day. The view of the lake and the places beyond are awesome. This is like a perfect getaway from the hustle of the city and spend a peaceful vacation amidst the beauties of nature. The nearest places are the temples and the Lake Munnar.
Alleppey is graceful and greenery-fringed, disappearing into a watery world of villages, punted canoes, toddy shops and, of course, houseboats. Float along and gaze over paddy fields of succulent green, curvaceous rice barges and village life along the banks. This is one of Kerala’s most mesmerisingly beautiful and relaxing experiences.
The next morning, we woke up early as we planned fr some boat ride along backwaters of alleppey.We went to the stop from where we can get into the boat. We got a boat, and travelled in that for two and half hours...The way along the ride was so awesome..Aftet that we returned back to alleppey... We checked out of the room and left fr Aranmula.