Alappuzha, Kerala - Pankaj Tours & Travels, India
Destinations - Alappuzha

Alappuzha is a Land Mark between the broad Arabian sea and a net work of rivers flowing into it. In the early first decade of the 20th Century the then Viceroy of the Indian Empire, Lord Curzon made a visit in the State to Alleppey, now Alappuzha. Fascinated by the Scenic beauty of the place, in joy and amazement, he said, Here nature has spent up on the land her richest bounties. In his exhilaration, it is said, he exclaimed, Alleppey, the Venice of the East. Thus the sobriquet found its place in the world Tourism Map. The presence of a port and a pier, criss -cross roads and numerous bridges across them, a long and unbroken sea coast might have motivated him to make this comparison.

Pathiramanal

Pathiramanal is an island located in the Vembanadu Lake. It is an eco friendly tourist center. It is accessable only by boat from Alappuzha. Kayippuram jetty is just about 2km east of the Kayippuram junction on the Alappuzha - Thannirmukkam road. This is an exquisite piece of land just a few kilometers off Alappuzha. A trip to the place would be your chance to observe several exotic species of birds that fly in from far and wide.

The island is a Birdwatcher's paradise. It is home to around 91 local species of birds and 50 migratory birds. One can see Pintail Ducks, Common Teal, Night Heron, Cormorant, Darter, Indian Shag, Purple Heron, gulls, terns, large egrets, Intermediate Egret, Cattle Egret, Indian Pond Heron, Little Egret, Pheasant-tailed and Bronze-winged Jacanas, Stork-billed Kingfisher, Watercock, Whistling Duck, Cotton Pygmy-Goose, Little Cormorant and Whiskered Tern. Some people have even reported seeing the Monarch flycatcher.

Thanneermukkom

Thanneermukkom is on the banks of Lake Vembanad. There is a salt water barrier at Thanneermukkom, built across the lake, which connects it to Vechoor in Kottayam district. During the monsoon seasons, the water from the mountains flow through the rivers to the sea, bringing potable water to Kuttanadu. But during summer, due to the low level of the region, seawater enters Kuttanadu and makes the salt content of the water high making it unpotable. This barrier essentially divides the lake into two parts - one with brackish water perennially and the other half with fresh water fed by the rivers draining in to the lake. It is the largest mud regulator in India.

R-Block

Situated in Kuttanad popularly known as the rice bowl of Kerala, QST & R Block Kayals (backwaters) remind the visitor of the famous dikes of Holland. Here cultivation and habitation are made possible at four to ten feet below the sea level.For this purpose extensive land has been reclaimed from the backwaters and is protected by dikes built around it.

Alappuzha Beach

Alappuzha beach in Kerala is located on a thin strip of land, sandwiched between the Arabian Sea and the Punnamada backwaters. Entertainment facilities at the Vijaya Beach Park add to the attraction of the beach. Alappuzha Lighthouse stands near the beach which is also a curiosity for tourists.

Mararikulam

If in your waking dream, when you are hushed and listening to your deeper self, your thoughts, like the waves of the sea, fall and flutter and garment all the sounds of your spaces with white silence, you will surely enjoy Mararikulam beach. Situated on the coast south of Alappuzha,12 Kms. from Alappuzha, it houses a quiet beach and has an adjoining fishing village. Water sports and Ayurvedic treatments are the enjoyable and refreshing activities one can avail of. Alappuzha Lighthouse stands near the beach which is also a curiosity for tourists.

Nehru Trophy Boat Race

The Nehru Trophy Boat Race on the Punnamda Lake, near Alappuzha, held on the second Saturday of August every year, is the most competitive and popular of the boat races. On the day of this fiercely fought boat race, the tranquil lake front is transformed into a sea of humanity with an estimated two lakh people, including tourists from abroad, coming to watch the event. For the people of each village in Kuttanad, a victory at this race for their village boat is something to be celebrated for months to come. The major attraction of the boat race is the competition of snake boats chundanvallams or snake boats.Chundans (snake boats) are an impressive sight, measuring over 100 feet in length, with a raised prow. They were called snake boats by the former colonial rulers, who based the name on a native boat found in Norway,although Kerala's Chundans bear little resemblance to their European namesakes.

Many of the race boats belong to the joint ownership of the people of the locality. The rowing of race boats demands a good amount of talent, training and team work. To row according to the rhythm of the song is not an easy job. It gives the appearance of a folk dance and the songs sung on board the race boats are especially composed for this purpose called Vanchipattu.


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