Embracing the backwaters in a houseboat

Kerala is a compact state that runs along the Arabian coast of India. This God’s own country is famous for its enthralling pristine backwaters and lush greenery. The lure backwaters are spread over a huge area comprising the Vembanad Lake and also forms an archipelago in the area it surrounds. Β The handcrafted houseboatsΒ gliding and floating through the enchanted backwaters is the unique identity of Kerala. As attractive as the houseboats can get, I always had a ‘visit to houseboat’ pinned on my bucket list. So, I will be taking you on my wonderful memories of living a day in the houseboat.

Alleppey or Alappuzha known as Venice of the east is a small town in Kerala and is known for its extravagant houseboats adorning the backwaters. My story on exploring the labyrinthine canals, the brackish lagoons, as the alluring houseboats glide through the serene backwaters begins here.

We had booked a room in a three bedroom houseboat. I stepped into the houseboat around 12:00pm. The houseboat consists of a living hall as well as dining, bedrooms with attached bathrooms/washrooms, a kitchen and a bay to walk through. As soon as we entered the houseboat and got into our rooms, we were served with welcome drink. Later, I guess around 1pm the boat revved on and drifted through the waters.

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As the wheel steered, the rustic boat glided through the labyrinthine canals covered by lush tropical coconut tress on either sides. The scenes were getting breathtaking as there was a lot to catch every second. Be it the other beautiful wooden houseboats floating in the vicinity, the islands at a distance, the tall coconut trees or the blackish-green colored waters filling the area; everything in a sight was flamboyant. After floating through the meandering backwaters for a while, the boat anchored for lunch. The lunch served inside the boat was scrumptious and the food had great flavours of Indian spices. After having delicious food, the boat drifted back into the waters. To immerse completely in the serenity of the backwaters, I stretched my legs out and sat down at the bow. As the boat floated through the infinite space, I relaxed watching the lush water plants floating in the waters, the ripples,coconut tress dancing to the winds at a distance and the enthralled backwaters as far as my eyes could see.

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Floating Houseboats in Alleppey
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An authentic houseboat that was passing by
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Sitting at the bow and watching the backwaters

After embracing the beauty of the poised backwaters, our boat stopped by for Tea/coffee and snacks. Meanwhile, we stepped out of the boat and visited the paddy fields in an island. The day was spent completely in the lap of nature. Later, sipping on my cup of coffee, I relaxed in the couch of my boat, listening to the waves of the waters and the winds. The boat halted around 5:30pm signing off for the day. Having ample amount of time with the night arriving, we chilled out in the boat, made friends with the fellow boat mates. We were served with delicious dinner and then watching the silence of the calm waters I let sleep overtake me.

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Evening ride

Mornings were absolutely mesmerizing. As the sun appeared with the rays lighting up the earth, life began. The local fishermen started launching their nets into the waters in their tiny boats with the public transport boats and ferries moving around. Slurping my cup of morning coffee I watched the misty backwaters. The breakfast was served and the boat started moving for a ride. Since I opted for one day stay, it was my time to leave the boat post breakfast. I stepped out of the boat packing my memories of royal indulgence in the lush coconut lagoons, floating through the enchanted backwaters in a beautiful houseboat. The time spent on houseboat is to be cherished forever and I would love to go back again when I need a tranquil break away from hustle of city life.

Additional details:

  • Houseboats are available all over the backwaters of Kerala. Yet, I would suggest you to visit either Alleppey or Kumarakom.
  • You can stay for as many days in the houseboat but I feel one day of stay is sufficient for absorbing the beauty of backwaters.
  • Houseboats beyond three bedrooms lose their charm as they look too huge and vast as a building and I feel the antiquity is lost.
  • Book a single bedroom houseboat for a private date or a romantic getaway.
  • Alcohol can be carried over but it is not provided in the houseboat.
  • You can ask for Vegetarian food in prior in case if you are vegetarian. For Non-vegetarians, local fresh sea-food delicacies will be served.
  • Nearest City: Ernakulam/ Kochi
  • Nearest Airport: Kochi
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