Alappuzha district of Kerala, India, is referred to as the Venice of the East by travelers from across the world. The backwaters here are home to diverse animal and birdlife. Due to its proximity to the sea, the town has always enjoyed a unique place in the maritime history of Kerala.
Another delightful experience while in Alappuzha is a houseboat cruise. The ones you find in the backwaters of Alappuzha are reworked versions of Kettuvallams or rice barges of olden times. The original Kettuvallams used to carry tons of rice and spices. The Kettuvallam or ‘boat with knots’ was so-called because the entire boat was held together with coir knots only.
Of late, houseboats come with all creature comforts of a good hotel including furnished bedrooms, modern toilets, cozy living rooms, a kitchen and even a balcony for angling, and one can always enjoy uninterrupted views of backwater life while staying in a houseboat.