Alappuzha / Alleppey
This beautiful oft-visited tourist spot is just 71km south of Cochin. And Trivandrum is only 147km away. The features that make this district stand apart from the rest are its sandy beaches and backwaters. Alleppey is also known as Alappuzha, both interchangeably used. The district was formed in 1957. It was carved out of the Kottayam and Kollam districts. The name ‘Alappuzha’ means the land between the sea and the rivers.
Alleppey is called the ‘Venice of the East’. And rightly so because of its huge network of canals. This makes it the backwater tourism capital of the state. It is a centre for coir, carpets and related products. A lot of coir products exporters, too, come from here. People come here to visit the coir and carpet industries to see how handicrafts and carpets are made.
Vembanad and Punnamada Lakes in Alleppey is where the houseboats ply mostly.a backwater tide to Cochin takes less than five hours. You can also travel to Kollam, Kumarakom and Kottayam by a houseboat. There are daily tours as well as overnight tours. The cruise through the district’s winding canals and backwaters is surely an unforgettable experience. The District Tourism Promotion Council, Quilon, and the Alleppey Tourism Development Co-operative Society, operate daily backwater cruises during September-March. And for those visiting during the off season ATDC arranges special backwater cruises on request. The Punnamada Lake is also the centre for boat races. The Nehru Trophy Boat Race in August is the main event. Tourists from all over the globe come here to watch the races.
Alleppey has a number of temples and churches with unique legends associated with them. One of the churches here is believed to be one of the seven established by St Thomas.the famous Arthungal Church near Chertala is pilgrim centre and is visited by many people.
The nearest railway station is at Alleppey. Other major railheads nearby are Changanassery, Chengannur, Kottayam and Cochin. The nearest airport is Cochin airport, 85kms away. There are private and government bus services from Cochin. Thiruvalla, Kottayam and Trivandrum.
- “Alleppey’s beach is charming. The backwater rides are even better. I’ve never felt so pampered before. I’m certainly coming back!”Elliott Yar
- “I’m savouring every moment I spent on that tremendously beautiful houseboat. The food, the sights, the people…all of them.”Marin Simon
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