|Kerala’s backwaters is the most popular tourist attraction of Kerala. The total expanse of backwater stretches over 1500kms, with a network of 44 rivers, lagoons and lakes from north to south. Alleppey which forms the main part of this network has the peculiar geographical feature of having the water in level with the land. This gives the advantage of getting a closer look at the village life on shore while on a backwater ride. The intricate network of canals through this town has earned it the sobriquet “The Venice of the East”.
The most interestingarea in the backwaters is the Kuttanad region, called the rice bowl of Kerala. The area is probably the only place in the continent where farming is done below sea level, using a system of dykes and bunds.
The largest backwater stretch is the Vembanad Lake, which opens out into the sea at the Kochi port and flows through three districts – Alappuzha, Kottayam and Kochi. The Ashtamudi Lake has eight ‘arms’ covering a major portion of Kollam district in the south, and is the second largest lake in the state.