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Kerala Boat House – The Best Way to Explore God’s Own Country

Kerala, the land of unending coastline and layered landscape, is a popular destination of tired souls - looking for a relaxing sojourn after a hectic India tour. And what better way to explore this magnificent coastal land, other than Kerala Boat House? The state is blessed with an intricate inland network of lagoons, canals, rivers, and ponds – with a rather unappealing name ‘the Kerala backwater’.

However, this network of water bodies was used for agriculture, transport, and fishing. It is still an important part of the community. But, it also serves as a mode of entertainment to tourists coming to experience the beauty of God’s Own Country.

The serpentine network of narrow and wide canals and lagoons, forming the backwaters of Kerala, are a dreamy destination for a travel hungry soul. This guide is meant to help you in planning the perfect trip to Kerala Boat House, so that you do not miss anything.

Boat House
Boat House

An Introduction of Backwater and Kerala Boat House

The backwaters are essential for the existence of the nearby coastal villages. The lakes and brackish lagoons, running parallel to Arabian, forma a network of close to 300km (186mi) long inland waterway network that connects Kochi to Kollam. However, the gateway to backwaters lies at Alappuzha (Alleppey).

At Alleppey, visitors can hire Kerala Boat House for a day or two to explore the stunning Kerala landscape or enjoy the traditional Malyali hospitality. The houseboat cruise in the backwaters of Kerala is one of the preferred activities among tourists.

Reaching Alleppey and Planning a Trip

Alleppey is well-connected with the rest of the country through flight and trains. The Trivandrum International Airport and Cochin International Airport are two main airports to the city. From the airports one can book an app-based or prepaid taxi for the remaining leg of the trip. A cheaper alternative could be boarding the state-run buses from the respective airport. Although, it would take longer time to reach Alleppey – visitors on a shoe-string budget can save some money.

Another method to reaching Alleppey is through trains. The city has train connectivity to major South Indian cities like Kochi, Trivandrum, Chennai, and Bangalore. Train tickets can be booked from the Indian Railway ticket booking portal.   

For traveling within the city, visitors can take auto-rickshaws, taxi, or water taxis to move within the city.

How to Book a Kerala Boat House Cruise in the Backwaters of Kerala?

Alleppey is one of the major hubs of Kerala Boat House cruises in Kerala. Although, visitors can board Kerala Boat House at Kumarakom, Kollam (Quilon), and Kochi – but the experience can never match Alleppey. The quintessential kettuvallam or Kerala Boat House can be booked in advance or in the runtime. Apart from Kerala Boat House, one can book hand-punted canoes or kayaks to explore the narrow canals of the region.

Mostly, tourists prefer taking a round trip around Alleppey, as it covers most important portions of the backwater. However, travelers heading towards Munnar or other nearby tourists sites can opt for a one-way trip to Kottayam. It is more practical way of travelling and could save some money on transit.

Houseboat in Alleppey
Houseboat in Alleppey

Here are some of the popular routes: 

•    Alleppey-Kuttanad

Visitors on the route can observe the lush paddy fields, colored in every shade of green, and the quintessential village life. Incidentally, the farming here is done below the sea level, which could be surprising to many.        

•    Alleppey-Alumkadavu

Close to Kollam, this route is mostly preferred by tourists looking for some peaceful sojourn among nature. Probably, that is the reason why most choose this route for their overnight trips. Visitors can explore the Kerala Boat House workshops and observe the craftsmen working on these handmade wonders.

•    Alleppey-Kumarakom

A beautiful route, surrounded by stunning resorts, close to the Vembanad Lake is well-known for Kumarakom Bird Sanctuary. Here the canals are wider, giving the tourists to explore a huge portion of the lake.

Ideal Time for Kerala Boat House Cruise in the Backwaters of Kerala

One of the prime tourists season starts from December to January. During this period, the weather is at its finest and one can explore the beauty of the region sweat-free. However, it means the areas are swamped with tourists and Kerala Boat House congested tourists.

But, fret not. Tourists who want to avoid crowd could fly in during the off-seasons especially during the monsoons. Exploring the backwaters in a beautiful rainy weather is nothing less than romantic. However, during summers and monsoons the weather might get little humid. So travelers are recommended to book air-conditioned Kerala Boat House for a comfortable stay.     

Booking Houseboats and for How Long?

India Houseboat
The Interior of the Boat House
Usually, there are several private operators (close to 500) who run boat house services in Alleppey. Apart from that many homestay or luxury resorts on the bank of the backwaters have their private boat houses. Visitors staying in these places can combine boat house cruise with the stay. Ideally, some resorts offer sunset or overnight cruises for their guests.  

Usually, these day trips include lunch or dinner with drinks. Overnight guests are offered a bedroom on sharing or single occupancy based on the ticket.  

Visitors can book the boat house for a day, two, or even for a week. Most tourists prefer taking the one day or overnight trip. Staying at a boat house for an extended period might become bit overwhelming at times.  

Offbeat Options for Touring   

Apart from boat house cruise in the backwaters of Kerala, many travelers are opting for stunning country-boat rides to explore the villages located on the narrower canals of the backwaters. Some of the tour operators offer kayaking or cycling tours through the villages. Tourists are accompanied with local guides, so that communication is never a problem.         
Apart from that, visitors can board the government run ferries to explore the beauty of Alleppey and nearby regions. The trip might take close to eight hours, but the scenery is worth a while.

Kerala is a fabulous state in India, blessed with golden beaches and stunning backwaters. Travelers coming to India, should experience the Kerala boat house for an out of the world experience.