This destination will help you escape to some of the most beautiful places in Kerala. The paradisaical town has some charming backwaters and lakes that host top adventure water sports in India. Moreover this is one reason why Kumarakom is one of the top tourist destination in India. Enjoy the cascading waterfalls, the nation – famous Nehru Boat race, a luxury houseboat along backwaters, splendid birds in the bird sanctuary besides abundant flora and fauna. There are a million things to do in Kerala as the list goes on... beaches, coffee plantations, aroma of the spice lands, ancient temples and of course gigantic elephants.
The region offers some of the best lakes and backwaters with serenity and nature surrounding it. The famous Vembanad Lake organizes the Nehru Boat race that is famous all over the country. It is also a great place to enjoy a houseboat ride over the quaint waters. On the way you get to see villagers far off and the life of locals.
There are budget type houseboat for a couple of hours to large luxury houseboats that are equipped with private suite with all amenities in a hotel or house such as dining area, mini – bar, etc. Choose as per your budget and suitability as the city Kumarakom offers astounding natural abundance to enjoy especially for nature – lovers.
Kumarakom slumbers on the banks of the very famous Vembanad Lake. This lake with its majestic canals, distributaries and streams along its banks entwine an elaborate and interestingly beautiful web. The complete state of Kerala is hallowed with a lot of rivers. It is an incredibly special experience to enjoy the cruise in the backwaters in the country boats, engrossing the beauty of the Kerala villages.
This otherwise quiet and calm lake comes alive during Onam with an extravagant water event which is the snake boat races. It is truly amazing to see the oarsmen, more than a hundred in one boat, going all the way through the waters with the tempo of their full throated singing.
The erstwhile Vadakancore empire by King Marthanda Varma of Travankore took over this region in 1750 merging it as Kingdom of Travankore. With his permission, the very first church got constructed here in the year 1769. Then in 1847 a famous English farmer made around 500 acres of this beautiful land and cultured it for paddy fields, and lovely greener gardens especially around the Vembanad Lake.
Then he constructed his family home known famously as Baker House after him, as he was Alfred George Baker. After that, in his memorial a school was built in Kottayam in 1825 known as Baker Memorial School. Over the years, this structure was in ruins and was taken over by Taj Groups. It is now run as a luxury heritage hotel managed by Taj Groups. This quaint village is now a top tourist destination for international tourists.
This is one of the greatest places that is abundant in flora and fauna. Such an example is definitely the Kumarakom Bird Sanctuary with many resident birds and a number of migratory bird species that come here from across nations. Earlier, this rubber estate developed by ancient English colonial business houses was well known as Baker House or Estate. The Vembanad lake has several aquatic underwater life such as freshwater fish, shrimp, prawns, and oyster pearl. Although they are very rare at times, they also make a great delicacy. Find tortoise in many numbers, and birds such as Siberian Crane, Heron, Ducks, Waterfowl, Egret, Kingfisher, Moorhends, etc.
The local food of Kerala tastes yummy and you can relish this food at the shores where they prepare the delicacy of seafood such as oyster, caviar and prawns. This lakeside town has many eateries and restaurants across all areas within the city. So, you have a wide choice when it comes to restaurants and local food in Kumarakom. There are also vegetarian cuisine dishes, Chinese, Indian and Pan Asian. Non vegetarian common foods include the duck and chicken. The top restaurants in Kumarakom include The Waterside, Lime tree, Dubai Hotel, Currymeen, and Tharavadu Restaurant.
The best time to visit Kumarakom is during the months of September to February. This is because the monsoon season ends mid-September and there can be moderate rains to heavy downpour during this season. So, it is not advisable to go on water lakes at this time. October to February is winter and it is best time to visit as the place is also warm. So, even light winter clothing will be good to pack. So, avoid to visit Kumarakom in summer because of humidity levels and temperature will rise as it is a hot place. Mid – September to March is a very nice time to visit Kumarakom.
There is a famous international airport connecting to this region that is within the distance of 100 km. The Cochin International Airport connects to major international cities directly to cities in the Emirates such as Dubai, Muscat, Abu Dhabi, and Bahrain and top Southeast Asian places such as Bangkok, Singapore, Kuala Lumpur.
Travel also by boat as the state of Kerala is located along the western Malabar coastline. There is a public ferrying service from various cities such as Muhama, close to Alappuzha to Kumarakom Jetty by SWTD, Kerala Government. This route is called the Kumarakom – Muhammad – Kumarakom route over the famous Vembanad lake to give splendid views and boat ride over the waters.
So, another boat can be taken from Cheepunkal Jetty which is only around 5 km distnace from here called route Cheepunkal – Maniaparambu – Cheepunkal giving a great view of topography, village life along the river, and farming and agriculture. These prices are very reasonable and takes 1.5 – 3 hours time to travel.
There are quite a few good places to visit in such a small place of Kumarakom in Kerala. There is verdant greenery, great plantations, backwaters, boat rides, village life, delectable seafood, etc. The Vembanad Lake is the place where you can watch the Nehru Boat race held annually. Other places for the tourists are Kumarakom Beach and Vaikom Mahadeva Temple.
There are surrounded off-beat locations that is very heavenly and offer various hues of nature and natural beauty. Enjoy a backwater cruise or a canoe within the amazing Kumarakom Bird Sanctuary. Another great activity to enjoy amidst nature is definitely the trekking up to Aruvikkuzhi Waterfalls. There are famous culture festivals for the culture enthusiasts such as the Kathakali dance performance.
There are many things that Kumarakom is famous for. The best thing is the unspoiled beauty gift of nature by God which is one of the reasons it is called as ‘God’s own Country.’ There are splendid green surroundings around the Vembanad Lake. In addition to the nature and splendid water activities on houseboat cruise, watching village life, etc., you can explore the culture side of the city of Kumarakom in Kerala. There is a famous temple called as Vaikom Mahadeva Temple where you can go and find the peace and offer prayers.
Moreover, Kerala is famous for the cultural dance performance that showcases the history and depicts scenes from the history of Kerala. It is called as Kathakali dance where the skilled professionals dress in masks and heavy paint, headgear, and extravagant costuming for the dance. Observe the eye movements and hands during this dance performance which is very difficult and takes years of practice to master. This dance is well known all over India.
In Kumarakom the local people residing in that area are very friendly and peace loving who have a healthy life and walk lengthy distances. This helps to keep their health up in the village atmosphere and they keep their surroundings neat and clean. Most of the people there dress in very traditional and ethnic wear such as cotton sari for females and mundus for male folk. Mostly, you cannot find any colors in their clothes but all are various shades of white. There are the three main religions there – Hindu, Muslim and Christianity and they celebrate festivals of their respective religion.
The professions there are mostly fishermen and farmers of paddy fields. The people near the waters also take up sailing smaller boats as their profession. Fishermen not only include the male folk but also the females are very skilled at the profession of fishing. One of the greatest hobbies and occupations of the people of Kumarakom is also the collection of exquisite sea shells from the seashores. The staple meals they eat is rice, avial, banana and they use a lot of coconut fiber after breaking and eating the coconut.
Once done exploring the entire region of Kumarakom then look for surrounding areas. These are also some of the top destinations in India to visit in 2020. there are hill stations such as Kodaikanal and Coimbatore close to Kumarakom and in a different state. However, in the same state of Kerala you can go to Alleppey and Kochi which are also very popular tourist destinations in South India.
The Kumarakom Bird Sanctuary, also referred to as an ornithologist's paradise, is home to a lot of migratory birds like the Siberian stork, darter, egret, teal and the heron. Most of these birds come here from the Himalayas and Siberia.
Pathiramanal also known as sands of midnight, another captivating island on the lake, can is also reachable by boat from here. This island is home to many more extraordinary and exotic variety of migratory birds. You can also get to see many more birds like owl, egret cuckoo, water ducks, wood beetle etc.
The best time for bird watching is between June and August and for migratory birds is between November to February.