Home on the ripples

The history of houseboats in Kerala is about three decades old. What started off as just a couple of basic ‘Kettuvallams’ (thatched roof covers over wooden hulls) have now become luxury houseboat cruises that occupy backwater routes across Kerala.

Alappuzha and Kumarakom are most well known for houseboats and it is said that Vembanad Lake has over 500 of these beauties! Lately, Northern Kerala, especially Kannur and Kasargod districts are also attracting plenty of attention with their houseboat trends. A unique blessing of the Kerala mainland, a night spent on a houseboat is definitely unforgettable.

When people hear ‘houseboat’, they would assume wooden boats with makeshift rooms. But the experience that God’s own country offers now is far from it. You are entering a fully air-conditioned piece of paradise, with comfortable beds, running hot water and much more. Houseboats have inbuilt kitchens and each meal is cooked fresh on board and served with a lot of care. Traditional Kerala meals, with pearlspot (Karimeen) wrapped in banana leaf, is provided for lunch. Other dishes include Prawns, Crabs, Mussels, Mutton, Chicken, Fish, and Duck.

You can enjoy sipping Toddy – A mildly alcoholic natural Kerala beverage made from the sap of Coconut trees.

Travellers can definitely suggest any other cuisine they are comfortable with. Most houseboats have a deck where you can sit and relax and watch the village life along the banks of the backwater. Houseboats dock overnight in quiet village sides, where tasty dinner is served and if you are keen, you could even explore the native life a little.

Houseboat stays are available for one night, where you dock back at the place you boarded around 9 am the next day, after a healthy breakfast and soaking in a beautiful sunrise. But if you really need to spend some time with the ripples, we recommend you go with a two nights package. You won’t be disappointed!!

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