Whilst there are many highlights to the State’s attractions there are few must do’s when you inevitably visit Kerala With more water bodies than any other state in India, one of the most unique experiences and the highlight for any tourist will be a cruise along the palm-fringed backwaters on a luxury kettuvallom house boat. “Kettuvalloms” (Malayalam for houseboats) were traditionally used as grain barges, to transport the rice harvested in the fertile fields alongside the Kerala Backwaters. They have now been spectacularly converted into cosy house boats to accommodate tourists.

Just imagine it…there you are sitting out on your private sun deck sauntering along the placid waterways, a cool drink in one hand and a book in the other. Look up and you may catch the glare off the bright new banana leaves, listen to the children laughing and see them wave you by, and discover some interesting facts about the lives of local villagers which continue in a timeless flow along the network of waterways. When evening approaches, settle in to watch the splendid sunset, the waxing moonlight on the water or lie back and count the stars in the velvet sky of the tropical night as you listen to the pulsating palms and the murmur of rippling water lapping against the hull. It can only be described as being one of the most rejuvenating, enchanting and unforgettable experiences that one could have, in Kerala. One of the most favored backwater districts is Alappuzha (Allepey), which people refer to as ‘The Venice of the East’, approximately an hours drive from the city of Cochin.

It is advisable for tourists to book their houseboat through a reputable tour operator as standards do vary. All the boats are fitted out with the creature comforts of a good hotel including air-conditioning, well furnished bedrooms with ensuite bathrooms, a separate dining area, sit out and sun deck. An English speaking crew, including a personal chef are at your service round-the-clock and strict safety measures are in place and adhered to.”