Kerala is perhaps one of the most beautiful tourist destinations in the world. The state that is located in South India along the Arabian Sea is world renowned for its backwaters. Even though Kerala has its share of beautiful beaches and amazing forest getaways, the backwaters are something that you will not be able to find anywhere in the world. Any tourism brochure that features Kerala will have the breathtaking picture of a majestic boat cruising along the backwaters. If the photos took your breath away, the experience is even more amazing. We had a wonderful experience on a weeklong houseboat cruise. We were initially apprehensive about the boat trip but it was perhaps one of the best vacation decisions that we have made in a very long time.
Houseboats are large boats that were initially used to transport large bags of paddy from the Kuttanad area that is also known as the rice bowl of Kerala. The Kuttanad region is spread across Alapuzha, Pathanamthitta and Kottayam districts. The distinct feature of this region is the network of waterways that are both natural and manmade. The backwater canals have about 900 kilo meters of canals. These canals flow through paddy fields, canals, mangroves, lagoons and human settlements. We started our cruise from Alappuzha, a region that is also known as the Venice of the Orient. The houseboat was surprisingly well appointed and had all modern facilities. In fact the bathroom in our houseboat was even bigger and better than the bathroom that we had on a cruise ship that we went on a few years earlier.
We had two people on board to help us. One was the cook and the other person was the captain. Both these gentlemen did not understand English but they were ever smiling and went out of their way to make our stay comfortable. It is amazing how they were able to anticipate our every need. The cook was a culinary genius. The fare that we got onboard was cooked by the chef and it consisted of traditional Kerala cuisine. It was absolutely wholesome and scrumptious. Most importantly we did not have any tummy upsets which is something that is worth mentioning. We even stopped on the way to purchase fresh prawns and Pomfret fish from a fish vendor and cooked it onboard. It was an amazing experience.
The most unique part of our houseboat experience was that we were left in peace. No guides, no pestering and no disturbances. Of course if we had any questions the driver in his animated way did try to explain to us in his broken English, which was quite amusing. We saw amazing scenes of village life, a large group of dusks, mangroves and amazing stretches of paddy fields and so on. For the first couple of days we went berserk trying to capture photos and videos. By the third day we realized that it would be futile because none of the photos did justice to the experience. As I type this on my laptop, my mind flashes to the vista of sunlight skimming over the blue waters through the water hyacinth. The Kerala houseboat experience is a complete holiday. It will relax you to the core and leave you yearning for more.
Author Bio: Ronald Smith is a freelance writer and is currently working for Clazwork.com, an established platform to hire professional writers. He writes about most of the topics which differs from entertainment, travel to education and technology.