Travel Guide for the lake village Kumarakom (Kerala)
Destination Type :
What to expect :
The western side or the coastal side of Kerala is a complex web of backwaters flowing from the sea towards inland. These backwaters lead into a few rivers and then a few lakes. Kumarakom is a small village located at the eastern bank of one such lake.
Despite being close to the city of Cochin, this place has preserved its serene and peaceful atmosphere which attracts many peace-loving travellers throughout the year. There is no sightseeing point in Kumarakom like many popular destinations. Instead each hotel in this place is uniquely designed to give you a great view of the lake with an added flavour of Kerala.
Reaching there :
Cochin is the closest airport, which is around 80 km away from Kumarakom. Prepaid taxis are available from airport for around 2,200 bucks. Once outside the airport, you can also find buses and auto rickshaws. Despite the long distance, some of the autos are willing to go up to Kumarakom for around 1,000 Rs. Buses from Cochin to Kottayam often runs via Kumarakom, same can be taken from Aluva or Vytilla bus stop.
Cochin (Ernakulam) can be reached by train as well, which is connected with all major cities in India. If feasible, one should take a train to Kottayam instead which is only 15 km away and better connected to Kumarakom via bus.
If Kumarakom is part of your longer Kerala trip, you may want to keep it right after Alleppey from where house boats travel to Kumarakom. These house boats can be taken for the whole 24 hours, which usually spends the day in Alleppey and travels till Kumarakom overnight or next morning.
Move around :
There aren’t many viable modes of transportation available in Kumarakom. Cars or auto rickshaws can be arranged through hotels. Boats also can be hired for traveling through backwaters. Being a relatively small village with only a few activities to offer, one can easily cover it on foot as well.
Major Attractions :
- Vembanad Lake: It is the main attraction of Kumarakom. Most hotels are built around it giving a perfect view of this rippling water throughout the day. The place looks especially beautiful during sunset.
- Kumarakom Bird Sanctuary: The bird sanctuary is located adjacent to KTDC resort. It spreads across 14 acres and houses varieties of bird. While one is free to walk on their own to explore the sanctuary, guided tours are available during early mornings. Most birds are visible in the morning and visiting this place in afternoon might be disappointing.
- : Branches of backwater runs from the lake towards further inside the villages. These backwaters can be enjoyed by taking a boat ride which is available at the boat jetty near KTDC resort. There are travel agencies available across the main road and any of them can be contacted for the same as well. Most hotels have their own contact and will be willing to arrange the same if requested.
- House Boat: House boats are major part of attraction for any Kerala trip. One should definitely experience the luxuries of a hotel room on a boat while traveling through different water bodies. These are available in Kumarakom for both traveling in the lake or in the backwaters. However these rides are cost efficient only when taken for a full day. The charge is very similar for full day, half day or even for few hours.
- Local Food: While in Kerala one must enjoy the local food such as puttu, appam with stew, fish Malabar curry, chicken 65 etc. Being close to the sea this place also serves variety of sea foods. Freshly caught fish are served at smaller places, which is a must try (best enjoyed during a boat ride).
Best time to visit :
Kumarakom is most beautiful during and after monsoon. However peak monsoon might be not suitable for a peaceful vacation. Perfect time to visit this place would be September to November. But winter months are also very pleasant and good for enjoying the lake view. Summer is relatively hot, as expected in that region. The temperature during summer goes up to 37 degree Celsius. One can still visit Kumarakom during this time since the place is full of greenery making the summer more bearable than any cities nearby.
Places to stay :
There are many resorts available in Kumarakom for various budgets and the choice of stay is important for this place since most of the time in Kumarakom will be spent in relaxing in the resort.
Some of the good places are as follows (although there are many more options):
High Budget (> 7k per night)
- Kumarakom Lake Resort – Beautifully decorated cottages at the bank of artificial backwater; this place truly gives a unique experience.
- Coconut Lagoon – Located in a corner facing the lake and keeping a branch of backwater on its right, this place provides comfort and peace along with the luxury it promises
- Vivanta by Taj – Designed with a theme of a village this place has its own charm apart from the lake itself; it makes you feel like living in a kerala village while meeting the standard of Taj.
Mid Budget (4k-7k per night)
- KTDC Waterscapes – Stay in perfect tree-houses in a vast property full of greeneries, man-made canals and various birds; Premium rooms are just on the bank of the lake, while other rooms are a bit on the inside.
- Cocobay Resort – A typical kerala bungalow with coconut trees, hammocks and open view of the lake from everywhere.
Low Budget (<4k per night)
- Illikalam Lakeside Cottages – rooms with basic amenities, but great view of the lake.
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