Journeying on the Best Luxury Houseboat in Kerala

In the genre of immersive tourism a trip to Kerala’s backwaters scores higher than any other experience. This form of slow travel implies the art of not rushing around when traveling, in an attempt to tick off as many tourist attractions as possible in a short time. Secondly, allowing the world to move just a little slower so that we actually notice it.

Kerala, in South India, better known as God’s Own Country is dotted with a host of beautiful tourist spots — rolling, misty mountains, verdant forests, pristine beaches, and backwaters and is endowed with lush greenery.

Having heard so much about the famous `backwaters’ in Kumarakom, this trip was planned much in anticipation. I wasn’t sure whether it was a hype or not, but the stage was being set for something amazing.

Indulging in a slow travel experience, relaxation, and leisure were the key ingredients of this trip. To immerse fully in the experience at our own unhurried pace, truly absorbing the essence of the place!

The train is the best way to travel on this route till Kottayam in Kerala. Moreover, the convenience of sleeping your way through this night-long journey makes it ideal. We reached Kottayam at 11.30 am which is the nearest station, 10 km away from Kumarakom.

A half-hour cab ride later, bearing the sultry weather, we reached our resort in Kumarakom, nestled on the periphery of the famous Vembanad lake. The lake-facing abode had picturesque views — a massive expanse of water peppered with tiny boats, the shores fringed with swaying palm trees.

Kerala Houseboat

Experiencing the Backwaters Aboard a Houseboat

This is something that tourists especially travel for….. a rendezvous in a traditional houseboat, drifting along the tranquil backwaters. You have a choice of opting from 5-hour excursions, to more indulgent overnight stays. Our chosen slot was from 12 noon to evening 5 pm, ensuring a unique daytime experience.

The sheer sight of the majestic vessel docked at the lake was enough to elevate your spirits, a testament to its eco-friendly construction from materials like jute, bamboo, and wood. Its design closely resembling a traditional row boat, lending an air of rustic charm. The interiors too had elegance and comfort interwoven seamlessly, featuring two bedrooms with attached washrooms. Offering a touch of luxury in the lap of nature, on the deck a thoughtfully arranged dining table and chairs provided a scenic setting for serving meals.

Treasured Moments All the Way

Present on board are a chef and the boatman, who accompany guests. The latter know the directions and geography of the area on the tips of their fingers and tourists are reassured that they are in safe hands for the next few hours. The chef’s role is to ensure that everyone is well fed and happy….. providing warm, delicious, freshly cooked local cuisines.

After all the welcome formalities were complete on boarding, the boat navigated through the Vembanad lake, leading into the intricate network of backwaters and canals.

As the boat made its way on the sparkling lake, sometimes through lush greenery, an archway of palm trees or through the endless stretch of verdant paddy fields. We relaxed on the cane chairs on the deck with music and eatables. The pleasant breeze was a balm to the soul, as we savored the beauty of the  surroundings, absorbing the soothing sights.

This was an epitome of immersive travel that I’ve ever experienced. Far from the madding crowds, free of any agendas, or rushing from one destination to the next. Merely being, doing nothing and just appreciating the journey itself!

Within an hour of the commencement of the journey, the houseboat had crossed the lake and entered the backwaters. On both sides of the canal there are narrow pieces of land on which local people build houses and live in them. The main entrance of these houses face the canals and there are no roads or pathways as such. People here use long and narrow boats to travel — which is easier, and faster.

An important component of slow travel is connecting with the culture and environment of the place, and tasting the local cuisine. This is exactly what we did –   and it turned out to be one of the most meaningful travel experiences!

The post Immersive Tourism : Best Luxury Houseboat, Kumarakom appeared first on Travel Simply Go.

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