One of the great accommodation experiences in the Indian state of Kerala is spending time on the Keralan backwaters aboard a traditional Kettuvallam houseboat. The word Kettuvallam is derived from the local word Kettu, which means to tie and vallam which means boat. Even today the houseboats are made using traditional methods and you may be surprised to learn that not one single nail is used in the construction.
The Kettuvallam has been a part of Kerala’s backwaters for many years. They have been used for various purposes from transporting goods to remote areas to making a comfortable home for the royal family. Some of the boats are as long as 100 feet and can carry the load of three large lorries.
Staying aboard the Kettuvallam houseboat you will be enchanted by the beauty of rural Kerala which is often described as God’s Own Country. Most of the houseboats are luxurious with comfortable rooms with excellent hospitality of the staff. The boats usually take a stop for the night at one of the several villages in the backwaters and you can step out of the boat to have a feel of the local culture.
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says “I had a super few days on the Backwaters in my own Kettuvallam – it was a one bedroomed sleek craft – we literally sped through the pack of huge lumbering 4 bedroomed monsters ambling along…..I had my own Captain, Naturalists, Cook and Crew…we fished for our supper, picked fruit from the trees whilst stopping for lunch….I had no plans….. just to relax and read – I did little reading as there was so much going on – watching the water taxis was real fun……beware…… they would mow any poor boat down who got in their way or swamped them with their wake….I went to a yard and saw restoration work on old boats lovingly giving them a new life…..the Backwaters are a maze of waterways and lakes – filled with birdlife – and people many fishing and farming for a living”
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