Saturday, 12 September 2009

Surprise....a holiday over water

Kottayam is located on the edge of the Vembanad lake, a large waterbody which connects with the Arabian Sea and is therefore in some ways a backwater. The South Indian state of Kerala has many such waterbodies, most of them connected to one another. There are also very many manmade canals. All these are used extensively to transport people and goods.

After resting at the club for a few hours we got ourselves dropped at a boat jetty. My wife was relieved to learn that we would not be holidaying at the club, and quite excited that we would be travelling over water to our holiday destination (wherever that was :-)).

On the way to the jetty we saw that while many of the houses that have direct access to the water have their own private piers and boats or canoes, some of the ones that were not located next to the waterbody had cut canals and brought the water right up to their doorsteps.
My wife expected that we would be catching a ferry or some such means of transport. Imagine her surprise when she saw a houseboat pulling up at the jetty. I had arranged for us to spend the first 24 hours of our actual holiday on this houseboat.

Until the early 90s these boats or barges were used primarily for transportation, and that too mainly to move goods. They were powered by wind (sails) and manpower (oars or poles). About 15 to 20 years ago Kerala realised that it had tremendous potential as a tourist destination and that is when a large number of hotels and holiday resorts sprang up. Somebody came up with the very enterprising idea of converting these barges into houseboats and the idea has really caught on since then.


  1. Hi Balaji
    These are beautiful sketches! Liked them a lot. They remind me of some boat sketches I ahd done some time back. Lovely work!!!

  2. Hiiiii balaji, ur skeath work is really superb!lines are so attractive.nise veiw!

  3. Sandeep, Rupesh...thank you very much. I am sorry I took so long to acknowledge. I saw your comments only today.

  4. Lovely work.. and ur description is pretty good too..

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  5. Thank you workhard...I love to sketch and I had plenty of time on this trip to indulge myself.