What’s a backwater vacation without a Cruise in a Houseboat! Kerala’s tourism skyrocketed with these houseboats, a brilliant idea by someone in the state to upmarket these floating houses in the longest lake in the country.
One such lunch cruise was taken by yours truly, and to choose a ‘kettuvellam’ I didn’t look any further than the very own CGH Earth’s Spice Coast Cruise – after being amazed by the concepts of Coconut Lagoon, I was intrigued to experience more of CGH!
Made completely from natural materials, the boats are powered by solar energy and vegetable oil. Canopies of cane and rattan blend into coir-matted decks creating a warm, natural ambience that’s almost entirely hand-crafted.
Once you set sail, all you see is the vast expanse of the calm Vembanad lake often juxtaposed with green barrier islands.
Chefs accompany you in the boat and are constantly whipping up dishes after dishes the entire journey, needless to say, the food is fresh, prawns and fishes are caught from the lake, merely minutes before the cruise.
We sampled a full course meal starting from Prawns ularthiyathu, Karimeen fry, yam fritters and followed by the regular lunch staples and sweet plantain fritters.
Scenic villages and colorful houses dot the shores and the entire cruise is a quiet peaceful ride. Also, lookout for the Thannermukkom Salt Water Barrier, the largest mud regulator in India that divides the lake into two parts – one with brackish water perennially and the other half with fresh water fed by the rivers draining into the lake.
The boat has two bedrooms that are air-conditioned – easy to snatch a two-minute nap to take a break from the heat. But just so you know – you would be doing injustice to the all beauty outside.
Sail, sail away…
A still life, a moment that is seized with a serene-blank-canvas infront of you… and the rest is upto you.