Kottayam is located about 30km (18 miles) east of Alappuzha (Alleppey), across Vembanad Lake, which is part of the Backwaters - a labyrinth of interconnected canals, rivers and lakes. I came here for a day trip on a public ferry from Alleppey in order to visit a couple of nice 16th century Syrian Orthodox churches, one which features some beautiful wall paintings around the main altar. There are also a few other, newer churches in the town plus a nice temple. More can be found on my Kottayam page below:
For that don’t want to get the 8 hour trip from Alleppey to Kollam, to get the passenger boat from Kottayam to Allepey is a lovely trip (Rs. 10) and a way to understand the landscape and social life around canals.
Classic trip around Rs. 6000 daily for boat.
For that don’t want a classic trip, first get a map of backwaters.
Then free your curiosity, wandering around the villages by passenger boats and walking inside.
I can give you just a first stop close to Alleppey: Punchery jetty.
Ask to the villagers for a canoe trip (Rs. 100/hour) and if you are brave you can even experience a trip in the narrow canoe between small canals. If you are not confident don’t do like me and leave all your values at home !!