Kumarakom Backwaters – Canoe Ride To Bliss…

So after settling down in Kumarakom, I decided to make sure that I didn’t lose out on it’s true beauty… the backwaters especially in the bid to chill out and relax at homestay that I was in.. I could do that after I had taken the tour of a few places in Kerala.. Especially now, since Kodaikanal was out of the picture… I also found out that Thekady, Munnar will have to wait for an exclusive trip to Kerala next time around as they required a full 2-3 days stay in those places… So all I had to do now was chill out in the nearby places…







So as I explored a few places on my way to the Kumarakom Bird Sanctuary, I got some really nice shots inside the Kumarakom village… Some really great surroundings and some really nice places that I enjoyed exploring… It was early in the morning at 7:30 AM… Very quiet, peaceful and serene… You could feel the fresh air, breathe it.. rather, hear the melodious sound of birds chirping in the background and a real feeling that time stood still… That is exactly what it felt like ๐Ÿ™‚

When I reached the Bird Sanctuary, I asked the person incharge, the guy who gives the tickets there if I could also get to do a country boat / canoe ride across the backwaters… I was also told that there aren’t many birds inside the sanctuary.. Pollution via Houseboats being the main reason and a lot of them prefer staying in the backwaters for obvious reasons… access to their food… So I chose to take the backwater ride instead of walking all the way inside the sanctuary…

The bird sanctuary guy, set me up with a local boat rider ‘Raju’ and that is where my journey inside the blissful backwaters began… This is far more better than sitting inside a houseboat and enjoying the beauty around you… This is really real and much more up-close and personal to nature… What’s more, you are not contributing in any form of ecological disturbance, plus you are helping these boatmen, rowers with their daily bread and butter… Since it was season time, their rate was 250 bucks for a ride for say an hour or so… But it is truly worth it as the guy will give you details on the birds you see as well as make sure that you get enough time to take great snaps of your surroundings… So here is the journey that I took…


My Boat & Raju, the boatman

My Boat & Raju, the boatman










So this is my boatman, Raju… He worked with Taj, yes, the Vivant, by Taj in Kumarakom for 18 years and just a few years ago, he retired from there and started boating… That’s what he does now…


Here I go...

Here I go...











So here we set sail to reach the Vembannad lake from this river that we were in… He was gently rowing the boat to make sure that he also keeps an eye on any birds that come our way and that I could get some snaps of them…



Spotted a Houseboat

Spotted a Houseboat



Raju tells me that there are 200 houseboats alone in Kumarakom… This is the season time and most of the houseboats get great tourists and visitors to visit them. You can find a lot of info here : http://www.welcome2kumarakom.com















I think that was the first bird I spotted… Sadly my basic kit-lens of the Canon 1000D allowed me only this much focus/zoom… If you guys do come here with a DSLR, it would really best to have a better lens with you… especially since, by the time you reach close to them and try clicking a snap, they fly away….









As we head further into the river, approaching Vembannad lake, we find a local fisherman set out to his daily job… Yes, imagine, that is his routine and his life.. to earn his bread and butter everyday… Such is life…


That is the lakeside resort and hotel, Coconut Lagoon… fancy name, fancy cottages and really exquisite hotel ๐Ÿ™‚ Must cost a bomb though I’m guessing…



Egress Bird

Egress Bird










Raju tells me that is the Egress bird… And Once I come back and google it.. he is absolutely right… Not that I was testing him or anything, I just forgot the spelling / name of the bird… so did a little R&D when I came back… He sure knows his birds, in fact is honest when he doesn’t and says that this bird came here last year…









That’s the Cromaran bird.. Very common one found in the Backwaters of Kumarakom and elsewhere in Kerala. One thing about this bird that really looks beautiful, is when it spreads it’s wings and sits!!! It’s a spectacle to watch… ๐Ÿ™‚









All these floating plantations, I’m told by Raju, will be clean when monsoon hits Kerala.. They will just vanish… Kaput!!!


After an hour long boat ride in the backwaters, I truly felt relaxed… This is the closest you get to Nature and trust me guys, is a very beautiful and relaxing feeling especially when you have to think of nothing… and I mean the Jerry Seinfeld Nothing… ๐Ÿ˜›


What do you think about this journey??




18 thoughts on “Kumarakom Backwaters – Canoe Ride To Bliss…

  1. meenakshi

    I think the last photo shows a variety of cormorant; in Florida, they’re called anhinga, the snake bird, because it looks like a snake when swimming in water. There are lots of them in the Everglades and when they sit together or separately with wings spread out, as you’ve mentioned, it’s quite a sight.

  2. Prasanna Sankar P.G.


    I really appreciate your effort in coming out with your experience.. I visit Kumarakom with my family (3 members, including myself) next week. No plans to stay at house boats. Just a few hours in and around the sanctuary – please give me the details to hire a small 1-2 hour ferry around the sanctuary.. PLEASE!!!!!!!!!!!

    1. srinistuff Post author

      Hi what’s your budget to stay there… As I mentioned in my post, you can contact Anil Kumarar…in Chakrampady, Kumarakom. He has a lake view cottage where you can stay… he will charge around Rs. 1000-1500 but its truly worth it… Houseboats are expensive… If you want to do a 1/2 hrs ferry, go from Kottayam (Kotimatta Jetty) – Alaphuzza (govt Boat) costs around 20 bucks to-fro… On your way back you can eat great food (tiger prawn esp) at Rblock Island.. Read that blog post of mine… Also, near the bird sanctuary, you can find a boatman, he has a canoe.. ask for Raju or anyone for that matter…(dont go inside sanctuary..its a waste of time) that would be around 250 bucks

      1. Prasanna Sankar P.G.

        Hey Srini! Thanks for the additional info ๐Ÿ™‚ I have a plan to stay at Kottayam and leave for Kumarakom by dawn and return back by dusk.. But the Lake view cottage seems an exciting prospect and will check it out!!

        Read your other posts as well, got the contact details. Thanks again..

        Final Question – How much time does it take to travel from Kottayam to Kumarakom (by road)?

  3. srinistuff Post author

    Ok… I’d suggest that you stay in Kumarakom, especially since it’ll give you the backwater feel.. there’s a relaxed feeling being there… There are many buses from Kottayam KSRTC Bus stand to Kumarakom. It’s around 16 kms… so doesn’t take anywhere more than 45 minutes….by road…

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  8. pooja

    Hello…..i am planning a trip to Kerala and considering Munnar, Thekkady to visit. I am confused between Alleppey and Kumarakom. Ive done a lot of research and i feel both the places are lovely. Which one in your opinion is better.


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