I grew up by recognizing Kerala as “God’s own country.” and a paradise for houseboat vacationer. Being a curious child, I always wanted to know why Kerala is given this unique name. Why is it called “God’s own country“? What is so special about this place to own this title?
There was a change in my job location. I was relocating to Bangalore. This gave me an excellent chance to make use of the few holidays I had in hand. Wanting to make the most of my trip without wasting much time, I decided to book my vacation trip to Kerala, through Cox&Kings which proved to be an excellent decision.
ALAPPUZHA- HUB OF KERALA’S BACKWATERS NETWORK
Alappuzha, romantically known as Alleppey is the center of Kerala’s backwaters and a home to an extensive network of waterways, housing a large number of houseboats. This small village, with a grid of canals, left me amazed. Now I know why Alleppey has been given the title “Venice of the East.”True to the title given, this small traditional village is graceful and charming in its ways.
Surrounded by greenery that disappears into a watery world of villages, canoes, toddy shops and Houseboats, Alleppey left me mesmerized. This village is also known for its wellness therapies, which include Ayurvedic massages and spas.
Having heard a lot about their Ayurvedic massages, I went for one myself. The only thing that I can say is that that was great! It was one of the best stress-busters for me. It helped me get rid of my stress and feel so healthy and lively! If you’re in Kerala, you just cannot miss this.
HOUSEBOAT CRUISE: AN EXPERIENCE OF A LIFETIME
House-boating is another option for those who want to relax and unwind their stress. Most of the houseboats are comfortably furnished and give you a great experience. Touring on the backwaters of Kerala on these houseboats gives you the opportunity to have a glimpse of the picturesque landscapes. It not only gives you a relaxing time but an unforgettable sight that you would cherish for life.
I opted for a 1-day cruise on the houseboat. Once on the houseboat, I was offered a welcome drink, after which, my journey on the network of waterways through the inland of Kerala began. The first stretch of my journey began with the houseboat cruising on the backwaters to explore nature and its natural surroundings in the Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary.
This vast region is a home to plenty of wildlife, a few of which I saw are bison, sambar, wild boar, langur, elephants and a few tigers. This sanctuary has a beautiful scenic charm. It is rich in biodiversity and provides visitors a magnificent view.
After a long cruise through the Periyar Wildlife sanctuary, it was time for lunch. The food comprised of a delicious Kerala cuisine which included both, vegetarian and non-vegetarian dishes, with a staple accompaniment to rice.
After a scrumptious meal, I decided to rest during the day, overlooking the backwaters. The evening, however, had something excellent to offer. Standing on the outer deck and witnessing the sunset is magical! The whole sky turns from red to gold with multiple hues.
As the evening approached, the sky was covered with a blanket of stars. The surrounding was less noisy and the waters calmer. Never before had I seen such a stunning view of the night sky. It was breathtaking! The night ended with a delicious dinner and some soft music that was played to relax and have a good night’s sleep.
The morning welcomed me with a beautiful view of the sunrise and pleasant weather. After a good breakfast, the houseboat moved slowly towards the mainland of Kochi, where my houseboat cruise was to end.
OUR HOUSEBOAT OVERALL EXPERIENCE
On the whole, my trip to Kerala was fruitful. I got answers to the questions I always wondered about. Today, I know that Kerala is called ‘God’s own country’ because it is naturally blessed with abundant beauty.
The place owns this title because it deserves every bit of it. It is one place that is not only rich in biodiversity but also rich in its traditional culture. Kerala offered me a relaxing and enlightening experience, and I’m glad, I made the decision to explore this heavenly paradise, making the most of it!
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