Alappuzha

Alappuzha

Alappuzha known as ‘The Venice of the East’ is a landmark which lies between Arabian Sea and the rivers flowing in to it. In the early first decade of 20th Century, the then Viceroy Lord Curzon made a visit to Alleppey, now Alappuzha. Overwhelmed by the beauty Alappuzha, he said “Here nature has spent up on the land her richest bounties”. Also he addressed Alleppey as the Venice of the East which gave a significant place for Alleppey in the world tourism map. Alleppey is crafted with backwaters, crisscross roads, numerous bridges over them and wide sea with no breakage which might be the reason for him to give such a comparison for the district.

History of Alleppey had trade relations with Greece, Rome and Middle East. Kuttanad situated in Alleppey is known as the rice bowl of Kerala which has a great extent of paddy fields, streams and canals with lush green coconut trees. Alleppey also contributes a major share for the coir products available in markets of India and abroad. Coir products are produced from small scale industries run by people at their home or as a community under the governance of local bodies. Kerala government supports this industry by providing the required financial assistance and assuring the best price for products. Majority of the population in Alleppey is involved either in fishing, small scale production units, and houseboats for tourist or trade. You can also find mouthwatering food options in Alleppey and the people of Alleppey is open to welcome tourists and provide their best service.


Places to visit


Alleppey Backwaters and Houseboats

Backwaters of Alleppey is a channel used for transport in Kerala. This connects Alleppey to other districts like Ernakulam and Kollam. This also connects Alleppey to Arabian Sea which has played a key role for the trade of products cultivated and produced in Alleppey. Backwaters are used for transport by locals for their day to day travel needs and also used for cultivation of fishes like Karimeen, Prawns and many more. This also gives a great opportunity for travelers to catch fish and cook the same for their meal.
Houseboats are not new to Alleppey as in earlier days traders who carry goods through water ways used to design their boats to carry goods and shelter for their family. This concept transformed in to houseboats cruising through the backwaters of Alleppey currently. Nowadays house boats are designed up to the standards of a star rated resort. They have sitting area for sightseeing, dining area, air conditioned bedrooms with attached bathrooms. In houseboat they also serve delicious food for the travelers.

Alappuzha Beach

Alleppey Beach is located in the city near to the railway station and easy accessible via road. This beach is known for the event named Alappuzha Beach Festival which pulls a crowd more than a lakh. This festival is conducted during the New Year and also includes events like Sand Art Festival. Sand Artists across the globe participates in this event to showcase their Artistic skill. The sunset and sunrise view from this beach is really mind blowing and refreshing. Tourist come to this beach to view the scenic beauty of the beach and the light house nearby.

Arthunkal St. Andrew's Church

This church was built by Portugese missionaries in the 16th century. Church is officially known as Arthunkal St. Andrew's Forane Church. The church was rebuilt facing the white sand beach on the shore of Arabian Sea. Also the church is having statue of St. Sebastian struck with arrows over his bleeding body. The St. Sebastian's church feast at St Andrew's Basilica Church is celebrated from 10 to 27 Jan. More than two lakh pilgrims visit the church during the festival. The belief is that Lord Ayyappa and St. Sebastian are brothers.

Kuttanad

Kuttanad known as the Rice Bowl of Kerala, is filled with paddy fields and backwater which gives a very beautiful view. The cultivation is done below sea level about 4 to 10 feet. One of the mainly used route from Alappuzha to Changanassery gives great view of the area and also helps to understand the life style of the people staying in Kuttanad. Visitors during the harvest season will get a rare chance to see the beauty of wide stretch of paddy fields decorated by coconut trees. During this season almost all the fields will be filled workers using the traditional way of harvesting. You can also sight many birds in this area, especially parrots when the rice stalks bloom. Travelers interested in trying local dishes may do so by checking in to any traditionally build roadside eateries, which are specially known for backwater fish delicacies and tapioca. The naturally extracted beverage of Kerala known as toddy is available in plenty and enjoyed by many travelers for its specialty.

Vembanad Lake

Vembanad Lake is deep and vast green algae rich lake to which many rivers flow in. This is also the longest lake in India with a large source of surface water. The saltwater barrier divides the lake in to 2 halves, cruising over the lake will show you the difference between the brackish and fresh water. Cruising along the Vambanad Lake we can sight parts of 3 districts surrounding the lake. Kumarakom tourist village and the bird sanctuary can be seen closely as these spots are located in the banks of the lake. You can spend couple days in and around Vembanad Lake by hiring a houseboat to cruise along the lake and spend a day each on the 3 islands in the lake where you can dine and stay.
Punamada Kayal is also a part of the Vembanad Lake, where the snake shaped boat (Chundan Vallam) race known as the Nehru Trophy is hosted during the Onam Festival (August- September). In this race long snake shaped boats with arching heads with big number of rowers compete between each other to win the trophy. The rowers who participate in this race form a team and undergo tough practice for more than a month to take part in this competition. Tourist across the world come to Kerala to witness this race and if you hire a houseboat service, you can watch this energy packed competition floating in Punamada Lake live.

Marari Beach

The little known Marari beach is located very near to Alleppey railway station and easy accessible via road. This beach is not a well-known tourist attraction but a perfect place to relax and unwind. We have many options around Marari beach to stay and dine without the disturbance of busy city life. You can also visit few nearby coir based production units. You can also find many options for Yoga classes and Ayurveda Treatment Centre’s in around the beach. Also once checked in to any resort or homestay of the many available, you can capture the heart and soul of the sea which will give you the best refreshment ever.

Alappuzha Lighthouse

A 150 year old light house located in the south west coast of the country. The lighthouse, for which the first stone was laid by Ms. Hugh Crawford, wife of the then Port Officer Hugh Crawford, on April 26, 1860, during the reign of Travancore ruler Marthanda Varma, was completed during the reign of his successor Rama Varma. The lamps of the lighthouse were first lighted by Ms. Francis Newcombe Maltby, the wife of the Resident Francis Newcombe Maltby on March 28, 1862. This light is open for travelers daily between 3 PM – 5 PM. The view from the light house is worth watching because of the locality where this light house is located. You can get the best view of the Alleppey Beach, backwaters and cruising houseboats.

Krishnapuram Palace Museum

Kishnapuram Palace was the residence of the rulers of Kayamkulam Kingdom. This palace is maintained and protected as a monument by Archaeology Department of Kerala. This monument is a perfect example of traditional Kerala architecture with gabled roofs, narrow corridors and dormer windows. The largest single band mural painting discovered in Kerala – Gajendra Moksham is exhibited in Krishnapuram Palace museum. This palace also consists of a beautifully landscaped garden, Buddha mandapam which is recently constructed and many rare antique bronze sculptures and paintings.

Andhakaranazhi Beach

Andhakaranazhi, the lagoon of darkness is situated 30 km from Kochi in Kochi – Alleppey National Highway. The Kerala State Government is started initiatives to setup a fishing harbor in the Andhakaranazhi beach. Travelers can view the Manakodam light house from the beach. The beach is a collaboration of backwaters and the Arabian Sea. This beach is well known for the sunset and sunrise view. The tourism department of Kerala has set up place to sit and watch the sunset and sunrise from Andhakaranazhi Beach. Andhakaranazhi Beach is a break point to have a very soothing coffee and relax to watch the sunset or sunrise during your travel from Cochin to Alappuzha.

Pathiramanal

Pathiramanal known as the heaven for different rare varieties of birds which migrate from different parts. Pathiramanal is a small island situated in the backwaters of Alleppey surrounded by the Vembanad Lake. Pathiramanal is only accessible by boat and is a perfect break point during the houseboat cruise across the Vembanad Lake. Pathiramanal is located 15 km away from Alappuzha Railway Station.

Ambalappuzha Sri Krishna Temple

The Dwaraka of South India, Ambalappuzha Sri Krishna Temple was built by the ruler Chembakasheri. The temple is located 13 KM away from Alappuzha and besides National Highway 47. This temple also has a well maintained large pond which is rich with fishes. Travellers who visit this temple can feed the fishes in the pond. The famous sweet porridge known as the Ambalappuzha Paal Payasam is one of the well-known traditional dessert available from the temple. We have to book for the same in advance before the visit as this is prepared in a limited quantity as this is served as prasadam from the temple.

Mannarasala Sree Nagaraja Temple

Mannarasala Nagaraja Temple situated near Harippad, is headed by priestess of a Brahmin family and serpent god- Nagaraja is worshipped here. There is a belief that the first priestess gave birth to a five headed snake which is believed to stay in ancestral house to safe guard the family. Barren ladies visit Mannarasala Nagaraja Temple to pray and to get blessed with children. Also, they provide medicinal value turmeric which is said to be capable to cure leprosy.
The temple has a wide forest area of 16 acres which includes dense forest. Most of them who visits this temple can site a snake in this dense forest. This temple has two main idols – Nagaraja or serpent god and his consort, Sarpayakshini. The well known and most believed offering of this temple is ‘Uruli Kamazhthal’, the placing of a bell metal vessel upside down in front of the deity, which is believed to restore fertility to childless couples. The temple is located near to National Highway 47 which connects to Trivandrum. This temple can be visited who ever prefers during any of your tour package which connects Cochin, Alleppey or Trivandrum.

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