The best way to travel around Kerala is by Taxi or Train, Taxi is quite cheap, you can expect to pay 900 Rs for a 90 km trip, but its very slow and the driver honks all the time(it could drive you crazy, listening to the horn for 2 hours), the trafficsituation in India is very busy and I was amazed that I never saw an accident during my stay....to be continued
Backwaters... It's an amazing experience. We took backwaters boat from Kolam to Alleppey It took us around 24 hours. We stopped for a night in the middle of the river. And made short stops at some villages. It was interesting to see how they make threads out coconut tree (I think it's called coconut husks): apparently, they soak coconut in water for 3 month and then take it out and dry and on special machine they braid the threads. They use them for building houses and the houseboats.
On our way we passed through the lake of Ashtamudi - second biggest lake in Kerala. The scenary is amazing. Small rivers and other lakes. Took a look at the chinese fishing nets, traditional coir making, fishing in general... It felt to be good there.
A private trip for 4 people cost us including taxi from Kovalam to Kolam around 9,500Rs. Meals and drinks included
There are cheaper tours on a motor boat with a lot of people would cost 300Rs per person and they are much faster but meals and drinks are not included.
We organized trip from Samudra Tara Inn which I described before.
This destroyed ferry is really scary, is so old, and obviously, they fill it with millions of people, cars, trucks, motorcycles and animals.
Probably I took on of the last trips of that old ferry, but if you go there, do it, is nice !!
traditionally the transport in kerala has centred around its backwaters.
for this a vast array of water transport media are used from modern motorised ones to the ancient traditional ones.
road network has developed recently in the past century.
the most famous are the long snakeboats used in the famous boatraces of kerala also known as the chandan vallom models.these long boats are made of anjili wood.
annually there is a boat race held at alleppey with snakeboats which are long enough to accomodate 100 people for a trophy presented to the winner.
this snakeboat race festival is a big draw with the tourists.
the trophy is named after the former prime minister of india and statesman jawaharlal nehru and is called the nehru trophy.
other boats are Iruttukuthy, Veppu, and Churulan.
pictured here is the boat made out of multiple wood logs. the oars are made out of the trunk of a single tree.alternatively a bamboo is used as a pivot. the oars here serve the purpose of a fulcrum. they are dipped down into the backwaters bed till they sink in the bottom and then a push is given to propel the boat further.
a smaller version is made out of a single piece of woodf( carved out) and looks like a kayak.
this beauty was being used to ship mud which forms an essential part of home building in traditional kerala houses.
seen just besides the boat is the ambassador car ubiquitous to india. abandoned in britain in 40s the oxford morris model survives in india and is converted into taxis which bear the yellow and black license plate.it also serves as the official government car.
i loved the waterway and went along its length coooooooooool man
I'd booked my flight as part of a package, through Manos Holidays.
Boarding the plane at Gatwick, I was shocked to realise that this was a single aisle plane. The seats didn't give too much leg room either (and I'm only a shorty!).
In flight entertainment was a bit lacking too, the films were ok, but the music channels were very repetative.
I've since learned that these are common complaints with this flight!
I was very glad to get out at Bahrain to stretch my legs. (Theres a break of 45 - 60 mins).
A chance to browse and shop in the Duty Free.
My first sighting of Kerala , as we descended over the coast and green carpet of coconut trees, soon made me forget my discomfort!
One could either travel by car (depending upon your purse strings) or travel by bus - the services of the latter being widely available, both charter and public. Regular bus routes betwixt tourist destinations and otherwise are common. The roads are moderately well conditioned. It is advisable to start at a particular focal point, move onward and trace back to the starting point. Cochin seems practical for it is easily connected both by road and plane from outside.
It took us the better part of a day to get from Cochin to Alleppey to Chennamkari Village, the base for our Kerala Backwaters homestay. But, the lengthy journey was a chance to watch the landscape change and grow more and more idyllic.
Travel was on a combination of private taxi-boats, local doubledeckers and eventually canoe.
By Rail - Kerala has direct rail connections to all major Indian cities and towns.
By Road - Kerala has an excellent network of roads to all major Indian cities and towns.
by Sea - The Kochi International Seaport has domestic passenger connections.
Thiruvananthapuram International Airport has domestic flights (direct) from / to Delhi, Mumbai (Bombay), Bangalore, Chennai. Kaipur International Airport, Kozhikode has domestic flights (direct) from / to Mumbai, Chennai, Coimbatore.
Kochi International Airport, Nedumbassery has domestic flights (direct) from / to Mumbai, Chennai, Goa, Agathi, Bangalore.
For moving around within the city, take an auto. They are everywhere and in Trivandrum, they have meters to show how much you have to pay. Currently, the autos have starting fare of either Rs. 6 or 7. Don't bargain for extra Rs. 1 or 2 tip, the petrol price goes up and the meter rarely changes its starting fare.
BACKWATERS TOURS (Allepey-Kollam)
If you wanna explore these water channels around the coast between Cochin and Kollam, there are basically 2 cheap ways:
The cheapest is to take local ferries from Allepey to Kottayam. Cheap, colourful and noisy. 25 Rs.
The most used is to take a tourist ferry Allepey-Kollam at 10:30 (250 Rs). Boats leave from the channel just in front of the bus station of Allepey. You can do it the other way too.
the best way to see all the attractions and places of intrest in kerela is the local rickshaw or better known as a tuk tuk it is very cheap and and great for getting through the traffic
Take a local bus, not a tour bus.
THe indians are so friendly and you can feel the real culture at the bus. I was there the only expat in the middle of 40 indians; is great !
These little "taxis" are the perfect transportation, small, relaxing, original, cheap, nature A/C, just fantastic.
To get around from town to town along the coastal areas of Kerala these type boats are a great way to enjoy the scenery and get to the next town! Very inexpensive too!
Kumarakom North Post, Kumarakom, Kerala, 686 566, India
Good for: Business
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If you can afford the five star tariffs,just come here.The rooms have a view of the sea.there are...more