One of the most popular questions you have in mind is the option between Alleppey and Kumarakom and a question about the best backwaters in Kerala when you book one of those famous Alleppey houseboat packages in Kerala.
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Two corners of Vembanad’s backwaters are Kumarakom and Alleppey and Kumarakom is a laying back village, while Alleppey is a town, with a different flavor.
Alleppey or Kumarakom are both points of departure for boat cruises through the waterways. If you’re choosing Alleppey or Kumarakom, the scenes will be the same in the backwaters, but Alleppey is more crowded than Kumarakom. Sailing in a houseboat through Alappuzha or Kumarakom’s delightful backwaters would definitely take your heart away. Palm’s narrow channels winding through the vast spectrum of paddy fields and the sleek small hamlets along either side of the channels are places to be recalled. You can see green paddy fields, the swimming flocks of ducks, and the small birds that float over the sky. It’s as close as you can feel the vibrant life in God’s own landscape.
There are more houseboats in Alleppey, while luxury resorts in Kumarakom like Kumarakom Lake Resort, Coconut Lagoon, Zuri Resort, etc., are clustered around Kumarakom.
The geographical attribute of Alappuzha Tourism is its water level with the soil. This offers a closer look at the life on the shore of the village when taking a backwater trip.
Kumarakom’s lagoon is beautiful and coconut trees have become the tourist industry’s icon. There are bird sanctuaries on the banks and life in the town has an easy and old-age attraction. Bungalows have now been converted into heritage hotels. For any visitor to Kerala there is a ride by local houses named ‘Ketuvallams.’
The Houseboat will leave Alleppey, pass the Backwater and Boat Building Yards, follow the SNDP Thodu cruise and you can visit paddocks, homes, churches, temples, watermills in paddy fields, and so on and get back to Kuppapuram. Enjoy sailing through the village of Kuppuram and a lunch break to the Kuttithode.
After lunch, cruise via Nedumudi to Chennamkary and stay in Kainkari for your night. Starting the morning cruise from Kainkary village, cross a mother tongue and go via pallathruthi thode, go to chunam Kayal or vilakumaram thode.
Kumarakom is much more rural than Alleppey and offers more luxurious resorts. Alleppey offers you the possibility of a community, while your resort along the lakeside is a short trip away. If you want to get rid of the cacophony of the town of Kumarakom, Alleppey will be the best option. Alleppey is much busier than Kumarakom and has a wider variety of lodgings in particular at the budget. Many of the accommodations in Kumarakom are top-end and spread from the city.
If you are looking from Kumarakom, you will mostly be sailing along the lake of Vembanad. After you cover the area of Chitra, you will continue to visit Venattukadu to cover the remaining spots of the Alleppey round. However, you can enjoy the sunset when the boat is moored on the route from Kumarakom to the east of the lake.
It might be a good idea to hire a houseboat elsewhere than Alleppey, depending on your itinerary and the time of year, to avoid the growing overcrowdedness of boats there. Otherwise, you will probably meet rowdy domestic tourers who are happy to play loud music, drunken, and will be surrounded by hundreds of regular ships during peak seasons. Kottayam, Kollam, Kasargod in north Kerala, and Kozhikode are recommended as alternative starting points (Calicut).
As a backwater destination, Kollam has become increasingly popular but still remains a tourism destination. Ashtamudi Lake, with its mangroves and migration birds, is the focal point of houseboat trips in the Kollam district. Monroe Island is one of the 15 lake islands and draws visitors away from crowds who want an authentic view of local life. Itineraries surround the islands and traverse largely unexplored riverways. You will visit farms, Chinese fishing nets, rustic villages, heritage buildings and numerous worship sites.
The large backwater of Kozhikode are situated about five hours north of Kotchi, close to the beach of Kappad and Kadalundi Bird Sanctory. The Portuguese explorer Vasco Da Gama arrived in the XV century in this historically significant area. Houseboat tour routes are Conolly Canal, the river Kallai and the village of Ellathur.
Houseboat tourism in the north Keral district of Karasagod, which means idyllic and unspoilt rivers, remains in its infancy.