Cruising through the backwaters is one of the most peaceful ways to experience the “Gods Own Country”, the Kerala.
Booking the cruise through websites or travel agents is very common, however that doesn’t guarantee the best price. If you are a budget traveler, I have some tips for you.
Take the public transportation to Allapey. We took the train from Cochin for 30Rs and it took an 1.5hrs to get to the destination.
From the train/bus station ask any auto-rikshaw driver to take you to the houseboat dock for a 50 Rs.
There will be plenty of houseboat owners at your disposal to negotiate the price based on the number of bedrooms and no of days.
If you happen to be a strict vegetarian like we are, do tell them ahead of time. Because before leaving the docking station they buy the grocery, mostly fish, for the duration of the cruise.
From the information we gathered there are about 1000 boats in this area alone. There are other places such as Kumarakoam from where the boats can be hired. So, there is no shortage of boats to meet one’s needs.
Getting out of the channel into the lake, there can be some traffic jam with a lot of boats leaving around 11-12 in the morning. But, be patient, once you hit the wide lake the view gets spectacular.
After all, what more can you ask for than a spectacular sunset on a peaceful family or romantic getaway ?!
As you float along the lake and the river for a over-night docking, witnessing the life around these water ways, just let your mind loose in the direction of the wind … And then write to me about your experience !!!