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About Kerala Houseboats

Kerala Houseboats (Riceboats) or kettuvallam are country boats that were used in the early days for the transport of goods from the isolated interior villages of Kerala Backwater area to the towns like Alleppey, Kollam, Cochin and Kottayam. With the advent of roads, bridges and ferry services, gradually the kettuvalloms went off the scene. Now these kettuvalloms are back again as a major tourist attraction as a modern moving boat house that is kerala houseboats . kerala houseboats size vary from, about to 95 feet feet in length and a width of around 13 feet to in the middle for one bedroom houseboat and , big houseboats with up 107 feet long and up to 19 feet wide. The materials that go into the making are all local and Eco friendly bamboo poles, coconut fiber ropes, bamboo mats, coir carpets etc. The main wood used is "Anjili".Kerala house boats have fully furnished single double triple and five bedrooms with sundeck, private balcony with comfortable chairs, kitchen and toilet with WC. In addition there is also separate rest room.

Houseboats in Kerala have a three member crew - a chef, driver & cabin assistants. The cuisine is traditional Kerala flavor with the local specialties; delicious local fish. There are single bedroom houseboats for two people and two bedroom houseboats for four people.and 3 bedroom houseboat for 6 , and 5 bedroom houseboat for 10 People.The spectacular beauty of Kerala's backwaters needs no introduction. A Kerala Houseboats cruise along the palm-fringed waterways of Kerala in luxury houseboats is the most enchanting holiday experience in India today. In this world of simple pleasures, you will skim past ancient Chinese fishing nets, water lilies, lush paddy fields, coir villages, rustic homes, temples and coconut groves. A guided tour down the backwaters would provide you with a complete and most enchanting experience on the back waters of Kerala and will also reveal to you some interesting facts about the life of local village people. This month's lens view takes you to the backwater stretch of the Vembanad, where one can go for a leisurely cruise on a multi deck boat, allowing you enjoy the scenic backwater life.

Houseboats In Kerala

House Boats Kerala - We offer Kerala House Boats to Backwater lovers. We can arrange House BoatsTours to Kerala, Kerala House Boats Backwater Tours, Kerala House Boats Tour Packages,Kerala House Boats Reservation,Kerala Houseboats and Backwater Tour Packages etc. Enjoy the scenic backwater life on the houseboats orkettuvallam. The houseboats are called Kettuvallam, which means a boat made by tying together pieces of wood ....

The spectacular beauty of Kerala's backwaters needs no introduction. This month's lens view takes you to the backwater stretch of the Vembanad, where one can go for a leisurely cruise on a multi deck boat, allowing you enjoy the scenic backwater life. Traditionally, the houseboat was called Kettuvallam, which means a boat made by tying together pieces of wood. Unbelievable as it may sound, not a single nail is used in the making of a Kettuvallam.

Houseboat Industry

Alappuzha, A decade after an innovative entrepreneur at Alumkadavu in Kollam district converted a traditional boat used for transporting goods ('kettu vallam') to a houseboat with facilities for the stay of tourists, the industry has come of age. From two boats in the early Nineties, the number of houseboats has now gone up to about 200.Meanwhile,the small single - room houseboat has been replaced by large houseboats with several rooms. Many of the present houseboats are air - conditioned . In no time, Alappuzha has emerged as a hub of the house boat industry with a majority of them operating from here.

Recounting the growth of the industry, the Houseboat Owners Association secretary, Tomy Pulikkattil, says it is only natural that Alappuzha has become the nerve center of the industry because of the potential of the Vembanad lake and canals of Kuttanad as venues for boating. "At first, traditional boats used to be converted into houseboats, but now very big ones are specially built as houseboats", Mr. Tomy says. While most of the houseboats of the initial days used to be poled, the present ones are fitted with engines. The earlier outboard engines have been replaced with inboard engines which use diesel as fuel.

Mr. Tomy says that the concept of rooms of houseboats has undergone a revolutionary change over the last few years. The small dingy rooms have been replaced by spacious air-conditioned rooms which could match the comforts of a hotel room. Some of the houseboats operating from Alappuzha have even five bedrooms. The latest innovation in the industry is a very big houseboat with a conference hall having a seating capacity of 150 and several bedrooms. The boat will be launched soon.

According to Mr. Tomy, the industry provides direct employment to around 500 persons now. "The number of persons being provided indirect employment is more than 2,000".He says that more than new 10 houseboats are launched every year. During the season, which extends from December to March , the number of tourists exceeds 500.The number is around 100 during off-season.Earlier a majority of the people who hired boats were foreign tourists, but now tourists from North India exceed them. The number of Keralites who hire houseboats has steeply increased of late.

The Tourism Department has introduced ratings for houseboats last year based on the facilities offered. According to the association, around 25 houseboats have been awarded 'golden star', the highest grading. And efforts are on to raise the standards of more houseboats.

Houseboats Basic Structure

The hull is a series of wooden planks, long cut and carved by the expert hands of the carpenter, tied together using coir with coconut fibers stuffed in between. Kettuvallam /Kettuvallom (Houseboats in Kerala) is steered by two persons in deep waters by means of oars. Long bamboo poles or 'punts' are used to propel in shadow areas. Bamboo beams sprouting off on the sides are used as foot holds for the same a senior oarsman and a helper control the houseboat by singing songs and chants for inspiration. A box of sand, a few bricks in interior facilitate cooking on lower racks, with storage on the upper ones. Food and necessary items are stored in shelves sleeping quarter is on the uppermost racks, which have the best ventilation and accessibility. The interior space can also be used for the same when there is no cargo. Fresh water is stored in earthenware pots.

Colour Of Houseboat


The colour of houseboats Valavara is yellowish brown, which is the colour of the natural materials like panambu, coir and bamboo. It is a warmer colour comparing to the colour of the surrounding atmosphere. This gives a nice feeling of being inside the Vallam. Bamboo is used for the framework of the roof and splits of Bamboo are used for weaving mat for roofing. Bamboo poles are used for punting the Vallams. It is strong fiber and absorbs more carbon. Latest houseboats have modern interiors.

Eco Friendly

Our houseboats Keeping bio-septic tank (eco friendly toilets), tested and certified by the Central Research Laboratory (CRL), fitted to collect the effluents thereby avoiding pollution to the backwaters.

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