Kerala Backwater Tours
Backwater Holiday Packages, Kerala Backwaters
What makes Kerala Backwater Tours so enchanting?
Majestic emerald green lakes, criss-crossing canals, innumerable lagoons, estuaries, a delta fed by forty four rivers...... This 900 km long water constitutes the expansive Kerala backwaters that take you inland, right into the heart of beautiful, green Kerala.
Kerala backwater tours along these palm-fringed waterways allow you to savour glimpses of a unique life that flows by at ten kilometres per hour. Your home in Kerala backwater holiday packages will be the comfortably furnished houseboat. They are known as kettuvallom in Malayalam which means boat made by tying together pieces of wood.
They were once the primary means of transporting cargo, mainly Kerala's staple crops of rice and coconut and even the mail and morning newspapers. Today, these sturdy vessels have been converted into Kerala luxury houseboats equipped with all modern amenities. Crafted purely out of wood, these boats are made without using a single nail. Come, set out on a Kerala backwaters travel and cherish the most unforgettable moments in life.
Things to see and do in your Kerala backwater tours
Sip tender coconut
Refresh yourself with a sip of nature's rejuvenating nectar-the cool tender coconut and a scoop of its soft white flesh. Nutrition at its natural best, it is abundantly found along the banks of the backwaters.
Watch toddy tapping
An exotic brew made from fermented coconut water, toddy is collected from the tress by experienced tappers either at dawn or dusk. It is an amazing sight to see them expertly climb one tree after the other.
Picnic on an island
The backwaters are interspersed with delightful nature- rich islands. Some have resorts on it while others are ideal for a perfect day out
Witness a snake boat race
Cheer the fastest side as teams of 100 oarsmen row their snake boats, their bodies swaying in unison to the fast rhythm of full-throated singing, in one of the world's most exhilarating water sports. Snake boat races are usually held during festival of Onam.
Behold a Kathakali performance
Kathakali, the classical dance drama of Kerala is a favourite with tourists and local alike. Cultural evenings arranged by resorts and houseboat operators at various venues along the backwaters will provide you with an opportunity to watch a performance.
Learn duck farming
Duck farming is a way of life for the people living by the backwaters. Befriend a local to know more about these water birds that are an integral part of the rural landscape.
Observe the Chinese way of fishing
Take a trip along the Kochi or Kayamkulam backwaters and watch fishermen tug at huge cantilevered nets with its rich haul. The Chinese fishing nets that billow from massive bamboo poles were brought here by traders from the court of Kublai Khan, the Mongolian King.
Check in to a resort
The delightful resorts on the banks of the backwaters have much in store for you including theme evenings. Drop in to enjoy centuries-old art forms like Kathakali and Mohiniyattam and savour delicious cuisine as well.
Visit a coir village
Watch nimble fingers spin water-treated coconut fibre into long ropes with a traditional hand spindle at the backwater villages. You can also shop at any of the numerous roadside stalls for brightly coloured coir mats, wall hangings and carpets.
Discover the secrets of boat building
Find out all about the making of snake boats, which are 100ft long, seats over 90 oarsmen and is built without using a single nail. The villages at Alumkadavu in Kollam and Champakulam in Alappuzha specialize in making these boats.
Explore a fort
The spice-rich land of Kerala has enticed traders including the Portuguese, Dutch and the British from across seven seas. Several forts built by them form part of Kerala backwater tours.
Rejuvenate with Ayurveda
The ancient regimens of Ayurveda, the 5000-year-old system of holistic healing, are practiced to perfection in Kerala. Many of the backwater resorts have certified Ayurveda centres, while some of the houseboats offer treatment procedures onboard.
Savour fresh catch
Enjoy steamed tapioca along with a special preparation of karimeen or pearl spot that is fleshly caught and cooked with masala wrapped in plantain leaf, right before you. Wash it down with a swig of toddy, the fermented sweet drink of Kerala.
Step back in time
Kerala has churches dating from the time of St. Thomas-the apostle who arrived here in 70AD, temples that spot the Dravidian gopuram and Kerala style of architecture as well as the oldest mosque and synagogue in the country. You can see many of these in you Kerala backwater tours.
Spot a variety of birds
The backwaters are alive with a variety of birds. Watch egrets, herons and kingfishers sunning themselves or swooping in to catch a fish. Kumarakom and kadalundi are favourite haunts of migratory birds like the Siberian stock, teal, darters etc.