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Old 26th January 2018, 23:17   #1
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Default Alleppey: The Venice of the East

One of the best things about Namma Bengaluru is it's favorable geographical location, which makes it almost equidistant from the Western, Eastern and Southern end-points in South India. As a result, most of the tourist spots are within affordable reach from here whether via road or rail. One doesn't need to cough up much for a descent trip anywhere in South, if planned from Bengaluru. And this time it was to Alleppey - The 'Venice of the East' !

Alleppey: The Venice of the East-sunset.png

Alappuzha also known as Alleppey is an eye soothing destination in Kerala with a mix of both backwaters and beach. It is situated on the shores of The Arabian Sea close to the banks of Vembanad Lake. It maybe a cliche to call Alleppey as 'Venice of the East', but there is definitely a reason behind it. Those interconnected network of canals, lakes and inlets are estimated to be about 900 kms of maze-like waterways! 'Shikara', the country boat is used to traverse on these water inlets. Till date, many locals commute to the interior most parts of Kerala via boats on these waterways. This land is undoubtedly God's Own Country where nature has remained untouched and is duly respected. It has to be acknowledged that Alleppey is truly the boating capital of Kerala.

We, a group of nine friends began the journey at Whitefield, Bengaluru, from where we boarded our train on a Friday evening at 530 PM. Upon reaching Alleppey at 5 o'clock in the morning, we checked into a nearby lodge to freshen up. We had more than 4 hours to our leisure before check-in on our pre-booked 3 bed room double-decker house boat. With enough time at our disposal we headed to a nearby beach for an early morning stroll.

Welcome to Alleppey!
Alleppey: The Venice of the East-welcome-alleppey.png

A fisherman's boat :
Alleppey: The Venice of the East-fishermans-boat.png

After having killed sometime at the beach, we then headed straight to 'The Finishing Point', a 15 minute auto ride from the Railway station. This is the place from where you start and end your houseboat ride as they are anchored here. The famous Nehru Trophy Boat Race takes place here on the second Saturday of every August.

The docking station :
Alleppey: The Venice of the East-docking-station.png

Our House boat on the left:
Alleppey: The Venice of the East-our-house-boat-left.png

Entrance :
Alleppey: The Venice of the East-entrance.png

The interiors look nothing less than a fully furnished 3-BHK flat. The only time you realize that you are in a boat is when you look out towards the vast open backwaters. On the lower deck, it had a plush seating area just behind the driver's seat, a kitchen and two bedrooms with one of them having an attached bathroom. The upper deck had an open area fitted with cushioned seats along its periphery and the center portion had a dining table. It also had a king sized room with an attached bathroom.

The upper deck :
Alleppey: The Venice of the East-upper_deck.png

One of the rooms :
Alleppey: The Venice of the East-room.png

After having spent sometime exploring both the upper and lower sections of the house boat, it was time for departure. The 3-member crew loaded all the necessary ingredients and other essentials for the 24 hour ride. There are several hundred boats in the region and not all of them get a place to anchor at the docking station. Hence, they all pile up one behind the other and it gets challenging to get the inner ones out and put them on course. Ours was anchored onto the docking station and it took a while for the ones behind to make way for us to depart.

Fresh juice was served as a welcome drink. Soon the house boat set of on a voyage through the very scenic backwaters of Kerala. The lush green paddy fields, coconut plantations, human settlements, simple dwellings, eateries, shops, stores etc is what you get to witness on both sides of the banks. The green landscapes were eye pleasing and we really enjoyed the tranquil surroundings of the countryside. Various shrubs, seaweeds and other leafy plants growing alongside these water bodies provide an enchanting greenish hue and the coconut trees lined up gives it the finishing touch!

Departure :
Alleppey: The Venice of the East-departure.png

The voyage begins :
Alleppey: The Venice of the East-voyage-begins.png

A fellow House boat :
Alleppey: The Venice of the East-fellow-house-boat.png

A big boy :
Alleppey: The Venice of the East-big-boy.png

A smaller sibling :
Alleppey: The Venice of the East-smaller-sibling.png

The only sound you hear is the gushing of water against the moving house boat and its mild motor roar. The cool breeze brushing your face as the boat passes along the green trees is very soothing. Time appears to have come to a standstill. No amount of repetition can dull the description of the swaying coconut trees, the lush green paddy fields, blue skies, cormorants, flock of ducks, fish-eating birds and those beautiful water lilies. You have to see it to believe it. The plant life near the backwaters is something that makes it truly breathtaking.

My mode of transport. What is yours ?
Alleppey: The Venice of the East-my-mode-transport.png

Canal :
Alleppey: The Venice of the East-canal.png

A small boat ride :
Alleppey: The Venice of the East-small-boat-ride.png

The boat was anchored for 90 minutes during lunch and fresh puffed rice, curry and fish fry was served in true Kerala style. After the sumptuous meal we got down the boat onto the nearby paddy fields to admire the beauty of the surroundings.

Our House Boat :
Alleppey: The Venice of the East-our-house-boat.png

Celebrating Kerala in Kerala attire :
Alleppey: The Venice of the East-celebrating-kerala.png

Fresh delicious Fish :
Alleppey: The Venice of the East-fresh-delicious-fish.png

Gardens by the bay :
Alleppey: The Venice of the East-gardens-bay.png

Give way :
Alleppey: The Venice of the East-give-way.png

Row, row, row your boat :
Alleppey: The Venice of the East-row-row-row-your-boat.png

As you relax on the deck after a Kerala lunch, you may witness a sunset in vivid colors and enter the night with the vast power of your imagination.

The setting sun :
Alleppey: The Venice of the East-setting-sun.png

As Sun was nearing the Western horizon the skies turned red :
Click image for larger version

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The boat is anchored along the shore, the entire night. During the day, nature entertains you with its pristine beauty but at night you are back to worldly entertainment in the form of music, cards, stories and lots of laughter. Next morning, the house boat set of on its return journey at 7 AM to 'The Finishing Point' and by 9 AM we were out of it. The voyage had come to an end.

At night :
Alleppey: The Venice of the East-night.png

Alleppey and its backwaters are true gifts of Mother nature and is unique in its own way. The landscapes and the scenery all along the house boat ride are mostly country-side and free from any city based chaos, traffic and pollution. If you want to witness nature at its pristine best, then head over to Kerala Backwaters. Now!
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Old 27th January 2018, 15:14   #2
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Default re: Alleppey: The Venice of the East

Quote:
Originally Posted by Syed_Munazzir View Post
Alleppey and its backwaters are true gifts of Mother nature and is unique in its own way. The landscapes and the scenery all along the house boat ride are mostly country-side and free from any city based chaos, traffic and pollution. If you want to witness nature at its pristine best, then head over to Kerala Backwaters. Now![/left]
Nice pictures, thanks for sharing.

Well said buddy, despite the fast-paced world and technology around us, I feel many parts of Kerala still hold their charm and are still attached to the roots, where things work at their own pace. It is also an example of a state, where you get to see that life of people (especially in villages), sometimes revolves around one thing - Coconut.

Due to the recent stray dog menace in Kerala, the state is jokingly also called as "Dogs own country" . But that does not take away, plenty of things which the state has to offer.

Spike
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Old 29th January 2018, 06:18   #3
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Default re: Alleppey: The Venice of the East

Awesome travelogue mate. Short and crisp writing accompanied with great snaps.

A houseboat trip is on my bucket list for a long time. Unfortunately, I could not complete during my recent holidays. Hopefully, I will make it during my next holidays.
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Old 29th January 2018, 07:06   #4
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Default re: Alleppey: The Venice of the East

I had a very bad experience with our houseboat. I think the experience varies by owner and one must choose wisely. The lack of reliable information / reviews at houseboat level is the challenge. So request you to signoff on all the facilities that you will receive before making payment.
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Old 29th January 2018, 19:07   #5
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Default Re: Alleppey: The Venice of the East

Wow, one can feel the serene and calm nature of the back waters just by seeing the pictures. This is on my bucket list since many years but could not manage time to do so.

What was the booking process? Was it done through an agent or you had direct contacts.
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Old 30th January 2018, 13:55   #6
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Default Re: Alleppey: The Venice of the East

Amazing 'dreamscapes' ! Your landscape photography skills are amazing. Keep travelling and sharing the awesome clicks.

Will it be possible for you to share the amount paid for the house boat, the booking details and if any parking is available for those who take their car along.

I have been wanting to go to Kerela for a long time now. Every time a plan is made, it gets overriden with another destination more favourable to my kid. I hope it happens this year for me.
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Old 30th January 2018, 14:40   #7
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Default Re: Alleppey: The Venice of the East

Great pics !!

We recently drove down to Alleppey during the first week of December from Whitefield. The main motive was to relax apart from celebrating the significant other's birthday. Since neither of us are fans of houseboats, we booked our stay at the Deshadan Backwater Resort. It was a great stay for 3 nights. We booked a Shikara from the resort itself and went for a pleasant ride on the backwaters. There was a speed boat available as well at the dock, and a short ride in that was the best part for me at least.

A few pics below of the resort and from the boat ride. No pics from the speed boat since I was holding on to dear life All the pics were taken on the phone, so please pardon the quality.

Pics taken at the resort

Alleppey: The Venice of the East-img_20171203_105714min.jpg

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Alleppey: The Venice of the East-img_20171205_064832.jpg

Pics taken during the boat ride

Alleppey: The Venice of the East-img_20171204_172959.jpg

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Alleppey: The Venice of the East-img_20171204_175431.jpg
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Old 30th January 2018, 21:14   #8
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Default Re: Alleppey: The Venice of the East

Quote:
Originally Posted by Syed_Munazzir View Post
... And this time it was to Alleppey - The 'Venice of the East' !
Beautiful captures there mate. Thanks for sharing.

Deja-Vu moment for me. Reminded me of my trip back in 2016 august. We had a smaller 1bedroom boat(were just 2 of us) booked for 24 hours. The food cooked on board is amazing. But evenings mosquito menace is bothersome.

Alleppey: The Venice of the East-14900445_1139323366102932_543207419820414758_n.jpg

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Post allepey booked a resort somewhere on the way to Kochi which is surrounded by Backwaters from all sides. Kondai Lip. Perfect serene get-away with calm atmosphere, excellent cottages and great food. You reach there in a boat

Alleppey: The Venice of the East-14639806_1139318326103436_7864263757448806215_n.jpg

All the rooms/cottages face backwater.

Alleppey: The Venice of the East-14595567_1139317459436856_6766906270719839119_n.jpg

Quote:
Originally Posted by Maddy3008 View Post
Will it be possible for you to share the amount paid for the house boat, the booking details and if any parking is available for those who take their car along.
.
The boats are a bit expensive. I had to shell out 10k for a single bedroom one(bit of bargain can get you the same for 7.5-8K). Ideal way is to book a bigger boat with more people, that way you get to enjoy more with family/friends plus end up shelling less per head. Although I took the volvo but as far as I remember parking facility is available close to the docking station.

Last edited by SoumenD : 30th January 2018 at 21:18.
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Old 30th January 2018, 23:00   #9
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Default Re: Alleppey: The Venice of the East

Quote:
Originally Posted by Syed_Munazzir View Post


Alappuzha also known as Alleppey is an eye soothing destination in Kerala with a mix of both backwaters and beach. It is situated on the shores of The Arabian Sea close to the banks of Vembanad Lake. It maybe a cliche to call Alleppey as 'Venice of the East', but there is definitely a reason behind it.

Alleppey and its backwaters are true gifts of Mother nature and is unique in its own way. The landscapes and the scenery all along the house boat ride are mostly country-side and free from any city based chaos, traffic and pollution. If you want to witness nature at its pristine best, then head over to Kerala Backwaters. Now!
Short and Crispy travelogue, Syed. I liked the sunset photo as well as “the man with a hat riding the small boat”.

It is indeed a good travel to experience, especially with a group of people. Reminded me of the trip we, family of 15 did few years before. We took a four bedroom boat that cost us Rs.22000/- including food. The food included

1. Welcome Drink

2. Sumptuous lunch (Kerala Style) – Kerala Rice, Sambar, Aviyal (mixed vegetable dish), subji, rasam, pulisseri (buttermilk preparation), pickle, fish curry and fish fry. (It is easy to get “Pearl Spot” fish, known in Malayalam as “Karimeen” special fish of backwaters. A special dish called “Karimeen Pollichathu” which is made with special masalas and made with banana leaf wrapped around. It tastes totally different than the Fish fry)

3. Evening snacks – Kerala banana (Nenthran) fry, Vada and tea.

4. Night dinner – Kerala rice, fish curry and fish fry. (they did check with us if we wanted a different dinner (option was chicken with chappathi). We decided to have rice and fish curry.

5. Night halt was nearby paddy field where we had fun walking around.

6. Early morning tea/ black tea.

7. Morning breakfast – Idli, Vegetable stew, sambar, vada, tea.

On the route, we made stoppings at multiple places to buy more fish (at extra cost from our side) and also to buy local “pure toddy”.

Altogether it was really great trip. Enjoyed, every bit of it. Even though, we are from Kerala, it took also most 10 years to realise the dream of a house boat experience.
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Old 30th January 2018, 23:19   #10
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Default Re: Alleppey: The Venice of the East

Quote:
Originally Posted by MaxTorque View Post
Awesome travelogue mate. Short and crisp writing accompanied with great snaps.

A houseboat trip is on my bucket list for a long time. Unfortunately, I could not complete during my recent holidays. Hopefully, I will make it during my next holidays.
Thank you very much! Yes, it is a good weekend getaway from city traffic and pollution.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 2000rpm View Post
I had a very bad experience with our houseboat. I think the experience varies by owner and one must choose wisely. The lack of reliable information / reviews at houseboat level is the challenge. So request you to signoff on all the facilities that you will receive before making payment.
Yes, you are absolutely right. Getting a good boat with handsome hospitality can be termed as luck.

Quote:
Originally Posted by snaseer View Post

What was the booking process? Was it done through an agent or you had direct contacts.
We got ours booked through a colleague's friend who happens to own few boats.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Maddy3008 View Post
Amazing 'dreamscapes' ! Your landscape photography skills are amazing. Keep travelling and sharing the awesome clicks.

Will it be possible for you to share the amount paid for the house boat, the booking details and if any parking is available for those who take their car along.
Thank you very much for the compliments!

It costed 18.5k for 9 people(inclusive of a welcome drink, evening snacks, tea/coffee and 3 times meal i.e Lunch, Dinner and next morning breakfast). It was worth shelling out that much money as it was a spacious 3 bed room double decker boat.It was nice and clean with a friendly crew.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Altocumulus View Post
Great pics !!

A few pics below of the resort and from the boat ride. No pics from the speed boat since I was holding on to dear life All the pics were taken on the phone, so please pardon the quality.
Beautiful pictures there

Quote:
Originally Posted by SoumenD View Post

But evenings mosquito menace is bothersome.
You are right ! But, we had gone prepared! Full sleeves for the night with odomos
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Old 31st January 2018, 11:41   #11
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Default Alleppey: The Venice of the East

Great I just completed my Kerala trip and here are some pics!

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Last edited by ajmat : 31st January 2018 at 13:46. Reason: Please do not use SMS lingo
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Old 31st January 2018, 19:10   #12
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Default Re: Alleppey: The Venice of the East

Wonderful pictures and a nice travelogue . Brought back the memories of my trip to Alleppey exactly 10 years ago, Feb 2008, when I was working in Trivandrum.

We, a group of 10 friends, stayed in a 3 Bedroom House Boat, for the cost of INR 10,000 during that time. Kerala was green everywhere you go and good to see that it is still the same.

Sharing few pictures clicked during our trip, way back in Feb 2008 -

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Old 31st January 2018, 23:32   #13
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Default Re: Alleppey: The Venice of the East

Quote:
Originally Posted by pradeepnair View Post
Short and Crispy travelogue, Syed. I liked the sunset photo as well as “the man with a hat riding the small boat”.
Thank you. Yes, that picture is my favorite from this trip. He happened to move past our house boat and we were there at the right-place-at-the-right-time to 'shoot' him

Quote:
Originally Posted by Johnnny View Post
Great I just completed my Kerala trip and here are some pics!
Nice pictures !

Quote:
Originally Posted by jpcoolguy View Post
Wonderful pictures and a nice travelogue . Brought back the memories of my trip to Alleppey exactly 10 years ago, Feb 2008, when I was working in Trivandrum.

We, a group of 10 friends, stayed in a 3 Bedroom House Boat, for the cost of INR 10,000 during that time. Kerala was green everywhere you go and good to see that it is still the same.
Nice pictures! The prices have nearly doubled in ten years
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Old 22nd April 2019, 17:39   #14
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Default Re: Alleppey: The Venice of the East

Planning a trip to Kerala during Dussehra/Christmas holiday season. A 7-10 days trip self-driving, with spouse & 2 kids, prefer to make a day journey.
Aim is to cover Bangalore ->Thrissur -> Aithrapally waterfall -> Kochin -> Allepy -> Kumarakoam -> vegamon -> Dindigul -> Bangalore.

a) Kindly advise better route.
b) Any places to Add/Delete from the list.
c) Resort/Hotels to stay.
d) Places WORTH VISITING.

Last edited by GTO : 9th May 2019 at 07:30. Reason: Poor language & grammar
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