a range of migratory birds from Siberia make it their winter home.
Some of the species include the Snake bird, Little Cormorant,
Crow Pheasant, White-branded water Hen and Tree pie. Occasionally
you can catch the native kingfishers setting the waters ablaze
in a psychedelic flash of colours. The night herons, the Golden-backed
woodpeckers are added delights.
At the fourteen-acre bird sanctuary one can glimpse many a rare
bird – some of which, sadly, may not be around forever Kettuvallams
: Kettuvallams are huge, tapering barges which were traditionally
used to cargo rice and other goods across Kerala. It has a portion
covered with bamboo and coir serving as kitchen and rest rooms
for the crew. These boats are entirely built without the use of
nails. Planks of jack wood are woven together with coir ropes
and coated with a black resin made from boiled cashew kernels.
About 70 km from Kumarakom, Kottayam district, central Kerala.
Spread over a thousand acres, this beautiful land locked by green
hillocks skirts the Kottayam district. The place gets its name
from the fact that there's not a single tree in the vicinity and
hence no leaf falls there (literally ila - leaf; veezhuka - fall;
chira - height). The verdant landscape, punctuated by four gigantic
hills named Mankunnu, Kadayathoormala, Thanippara etc., each rising
to around 3200 feet, is ideal for trekking. During the monsoon
when the valley gets filled up to form a scenic lake, Ilaveezhapoonchira
unveils yet another beautiful slice of God's Own Country. This
is also one of the best places in Kerala to enjoy both the sunrise
Q S T and R Block Kayal:
Situated in Kuttanad popularly known as the rice bowl of Kerala,
QST & R Block Kayals (backwaters) remind the visitor of the
famous dikes of Holland.A striking example of the indigenous agricultural
engineering know-how, here cultivation and habitation are made
possible at four to ten feet below the sea level. For this purpose
extensive land has been reclaimed from the backwaters and is protected
by dikes built around it.A leisurely cruise along the canals here
is a memorable experience.
Kuttanad is the most beautiful backwaters region of Kerala. It
is here that most of the snake boat races are conducted and a
majority of the rice boat & houseboat cruises are scheduled.
Keralas network of navigable backwaters stretches to over 900km.
These serene waterways are fringed by palm grove and paddy fields
and offer a striking spectacle of the rustic life.
Getting there: QST
& R Block Kayals are accessible by boat from Alappuzha ( 1.30
hrs by motor boat and 30 minutes by speedboat.)
(Backwater): This little island on the backwaters
is a favourite haunt of hundreds of rare migratory birds from
different parts of the world. The island is accessible only by