Explore the top 15 backwaters in Kerala

A part of a river not reached by the current, where the water is stagnant(confined space). That’s how backwaters in Kerala are formed, popular backwater destination

Top 15 backwaters in Kerala

1. Alleppey Backwaters

A popular backwater destination, Alleppey is the best backwaters in Kerala is visited by thousands of international and Indian travelers every year. The best destination for every kind of traveler, Alleppey backwaters are popular for its scenic beauty, which is why tourists come from all across the world to visit this place. It is the perfect destination for some time away from their long and hectic day-to-day life stress.

What are the best things to do in Alleppey?

Where to stay in Alleppey backwaters

Staying near Alleppey backwater can be expensive however, you can look for hotels and hostels in the range of 2-3 km for affordable accommodations in Alleppey. Also, it’ll be difficult to find food and other activities if you stay near Alappuzha Beach (Alleppey beach). Therefore, according to my experience, some of the best affordable accommodations near Alleppey backwaters and Alappuzha railway station.

How to reach Alleppey backwaters

Nearest Railway station to Alleppey backwaters:

Alappuzha railway station is the nearest to Alleppey backwaters, 200 meters from the Alleppey beach and I would suggest you get accommodation between Alleppey backwaters and Alappuzha railway station for comfortable transportation.

Nearest Airport station to Alleppey backwaters:

Cochin International Airport is 90km(55mi) and Trivandrum International Airport is 160km (100 mi) from this one of the best backwaters in Kerala(Alleppey). Cheap and easy way to reach from Cochin airport to Alleppey is by train, takes around 3hrs and cost you Rs 100-300(2-7 USD) per person, depends on the class(SL, 2S), however, you can book a private taxi or rent a car but that will be expensive.

How To Reach Alleppey Backwaters

2. Kuttanad Backwaters

This beautiful and amazing backwaters in Kerala that has held travelers in awe since time eternal. But no amount of reading, Googling or watching videos will ever prepare one for the experience of floating along the green waters in a boat.

Where to stay in Kuttanad Backwaters?

Cheap accommodation is not available near Kuttanad backwaters, therefore, I would suggest you stay in Alleppey if you are looking for an affordable hostel under Rs 400(5 USD) otherwise, near Kuttanad backwaters, you have to pay minimum Rs 1200 (15-18 USD) per day.

If you are just going for a day or two, you can stay Kuttanad backwaters otherwise, stay in Alleppey for cheaper accommodation.

How to reach Kuttanad Backwaters?

Nearest Railway station to Kuttanad Backwaters:

Ambalappuzha railway station(9km) & Karuvatta Halt railway station(22km). You can reach Kuttanad backwaters using any of these railways stations, though, I would suggest you go from Ambalappuzha railways station to Kuttanad backwaters because it’s only 8km and easier to get transport from here than Karuvatta halt station.

Nearest Airport station to Kuttanad Backwaters:

Cochin International Airport is 105km(65 mi) from Kuttanad Backwaters and Trivandrum International Airport is 148km (92.5 mi) from Kuttanad Backwaters. Cochin airport is nearest to Kuttanad backwaters, therefore it’ll easier to reach from Cochin airport.

3. Kumarakom Backwaters

This is the major backwater stretch lies in Kottayam district, where a large network of rivers and canals goes into the Vembanad Lake. It is located at Kumarakom 16 km from Kottayam town, the Vembanad Lake, a famous picnic spot and a fast growing backwater tourism destination, boating, fishing and sightseeing are some of the best activities.

Where to stay in Kumarakom Backwaters?

I would suggest you get accommodation between Kumarakom backwaters and Kottayam railway station for comfortable transportation and affordable room.

  1. Bennies Inn
  2. Indraprastham

How to reach Kumarakom Backwaters?

Nearest Railway station to Kumarakom Backwaters:

Kottayam railway station is the nearest to Kumarakom backwaters, 14 km from the Kumarakom backwaters and I would suggest you get accommodation between Kumarakom backwaters and Kottayam railway station for comfortable transportation and affordable room.

Nearest Airport station to Kumarakom Backwaters:

Cochin International Airport is 75km(46 mi) from Kottayam (Kumarakom Backwaters) and Trivandrum International Airport is 162km (100 mi) from Kottayam (Kumarakom Backwaters). Cochin airport is nearest to Kottayam, therefore it’ll easier to reach from Cochin airport.

4. Cherai Island Backwaters

The backwaters are a combination of lakes, lagoons, canals & estuaries. Here, you can have the unique experience of catching fish, prawns, lobsters, crabs, etc. using traditional fishing methods. Get into a Kerala country boat, through the gentle crystal clear cold water river, along the palm-fringed backwaters and paddy fields. Interestingly, you will never forget visiting fishermen village, boatyard, fishing harbor on your backwater tour in Kerala.

Where to stay in Cherai Island Backwaters?

I would suggest you get accommodation between Cherai Island backwaters and Idappally railway station, Ponekkara, Edappally, Ernakulam, for comfortable transportation and affordable room.

How to reach Cherai Island Backwaters?

Nearest Railway station to Cherai Island Backwaters:

Idappally railway station is the nearest to Cherai Island backwaters, 24 km from the Cherai Island backwaters and I would suggest you get accommodation between Cherai beach and Idappally railway station for comfortable transportation and affordable room.

Nearest Airport station to Cherai Island Backwaters:

Cochin International Airport is 26km(15 mi) from Cherai Island. Cochin airport is nearest to Cherai, therefore it’ll easier to reach from Cochin airport. You can take a taxi or rent a car from Cochin airport.

5. Cochin Backwaters

The ‘Queen of the Arabian Sea’, Kochi is considered one of the finest harbors in the world. The backwaters make one enjoy beautiful sights of the local and migratory birds, giant Chinese fishing nets, local villages, etc. A captivating view and lush greenery are the beauty of the backwaters of Kochi and make it one of the best backwaters in Kerala.

Where to stay in Cochin Backwaters?

You can stay in Fort Kochi which is near to Kochi backwaters, cheap and affordable accommodations are available here in Fort Kochi. Some of the high rated and best accommodation in Kochi backwaters.

  1. Blue bells home
  2. Sheebas Homestay

How to reach Cochin Backwaters?

Nearest Railway station to Cochin Backwaters:

No railway station is near to Cochin backwaters, however, if you are staying in Fort Kochi, you can reach fort Kochi by ferry and also for comfortable transportation and affordable room, Fort Kochi is quite suitable.

Nearest Airport station to Cochin Backwaters:

Cochin International Airport is 34km(20 mi) from Kochi backwaters. Cochin airport is nearest to Cochin backwaters, therefore it’ll easier to reach from Cochin airport. You can take a taxi or rent a car from Cochin airport. Also, you can reach Ernakulam from Cochin airport by train and from Ernakulam to Fort Kochi by ferry. It’s the easiest and cheapest way to reach Cochin backwaters from Cochin airport.

6. Kottayam Backwaters

Kottayam is a land of striking beauty with long stretches of serene backwaters. It is bounded by the Western Ghats on the east of the Vembanad Lake on the west. The famous Vembanad Lake marks Kottayam backwaters as a famous tourist destination. Boats of different sizes and shapes are available, you can see the big and small piers that are involved in the backwater tours.

Where to stay in Kottayam Backwaters?

I would suggest you get accommodation between Kottayam backwaters and Kottayam railway station for comfortable transportation and affordable room.

  1. Bennies Inn
  2. Indraprastham

How to reach Kottayam Backwaters?

Nearest Railway station to Cochin Backwaters:

Kottayam railway station is the nearest to Kottayam backwaters and I would suggest you get accommodation between Kottayam backwaters and Kottayam railway station for comfortable transportation and affordable room.

Nearest Airport station to Cochin Backwaters:

Cochin International Airport is 75km(46 mi) from Kottayam and Trivandrum International Airport is 162km (100 mi) from Kottayam. Cochin airport is nearest to Kottayam backwaters, therefore it’ll easier to reach from Cochin airport.

7. Kozhikode Backwaters

The Kozhikode backwaters is a stretch of transparent cool waterways in the Kozhikode district of Kerala. Kozhikode backwaters are easily accessible by road and Indian railways from the major cities in Kerala and in India as well.

Where to stay in Kozhikode Backwaters?

There are many accommodation options are available in Kozhikode backwaters. Like homestays and hostels.

How to reach Kozhikode Backwaters?

Nearest Railway station to Kozhikode Backwaters:

Kozhikode railway station(2km) and Vellayil railway station(1.7km), nearest to the Kozhikode backwaters.

Nearest Airport station to Kozhikode Backwaters:

Kozhikode has an airport named Kozhikode International Airport in Karipur which is 27km away from Kozhikode. Also, there are other international airports you can come from, Cochin International airport(199km-124mi), Kannur airport(104km-65mi), and Coimbatore International airport(187km-117mi).

8. Thiruvananthapuram Backwaters

The boundless backwaters of ThiruvananthapuramKerala present a beautiful view of the blue sky as the backdrop is no less than paradise on earth. One of the best ways is to go on the Thiruvananthapuram backwater tours to enjoy your trip. You will get a traditional and affordable houseboat called “Kettuvallam” for a tour on the scenic backwaters of Thiruvananthapuram.

Where to stay in Thiruvananthapuram Backwaters?

There are many affordable accommodation options are available in Thiruvananthapuram Backwaters. Here are two of the best and cheap accommodations in Thiruvananthapuram.

How to reach Thiruvananthapuram Backwaters?

Nearest Railway station to Thiruvananthapuram Backwaters:

Parassala railway station is the nearest to Thiruvananthapuram Backwaters, only 15km away. I would suggest you get accommodation near Parassala railway station for comfortable transportation and affordable room.

Nearest Airport to Thiruvananthapuram Backwaters:

Trivandrum International Airport is the nearest to the Thiruvananthpuram backwaters, only 33km away. Other airports near to Thiruvananthapuram Backwaters are Cochin International airport(259km-161mi) and Madurai airport(286km-179mi)

9. Valiyaparamba Backwaters

Valiyaparamba is the third-largest backwaters in Kerala which provides a view of the local flora and fauna. This beautiful scenic backwater is near the Bekal Fort. Just lay back and enjoy the mesmerizing view from a kettuvallam (houseboat).

Where to stay in Valiyaparamba Backwaters?

There are many affordable accommodation options are available in Valiyaparamba Backwaters. Here are some of the best and cheap accommodations in Valiyaparamba.

How to reach Valiyaparamba Backwaters?

Nearest Railway station to Valiyaparamba Backwaters:

Trikarpur railway station is the nearest to Valiyaparamba Backwaters, only 5.6km(3.5mi) away from Valiyaparamba backwaters.

Nearest Airport to Valiyaparamba Backwaters:

Kannur International airport is 73km(45mi) away and Mangalore International airport 104km(65mi) away from Valiyaparamba backwaters. Other airports near to Valiyaparamba backwaters are Mysore airport (223km-140mi) and Goa International Airport (445km-280mi).

10. Ashtamudi Backwaters, Kollam

Ashtamudi backwaters, Kollam, is one of the most popular and also the biggest freshwater lake in Kerala. Just admire the lush surroundings, coconut palm trees and treat your eyes to the picturesque beauty of the place on your Ashtamudi backwater tour.

Where to stay in Ashtamudi Backwaters?

There are many affordable accommodation options are available in Kollam for Ashtamudi backwaters. Here are two of the best and cheap accommodations in Kollam.

How to reach Ashtamudi Backwaters?

Nearest Railway station to Ashtamudi Backwaters:

Kollam Junction is 15km(10mi) away from Ashtamudi backwaters and Munroturuttu railway station is 14km(9mi) away.

Nearest Airport station to Ashtamudi Backwaters:

Trivandrum International Airport is 88km(55mi) and Cochin International Airport is 156km (97.5mi) away from Ashtamudi Lake.

11. Chettuwa Backwaters, Thrissur

Alappuzha has made its mark on the international tourism circuit with its backwaters cruise in the famed houseboats, Chettuva in Thrissur is a tourist paradise.

Where to stay in Chettuwa Backwaters?

There are not many accommodations available near Chettuwa Backwaters, however, you can get affordable accommodations in Thrissur, 26 km away from Chettuwa lake. Here are the best and cheap accommodations in Thrissur.

How to reach Chettuwa Backwaters?

Nearest Railway station to Chettuwa Backwaters:

Guruvayur railway station 11km(7mi) and Thrissur railway station are 25km(16mi), the nearest to Chettuwa backwaters.

Nearest Airport station to Chettuwa Backwaters:

Cochin International Airport is 75km (47mi) away from Chettuwa Lake. You can easily reach to Thrissur by train, taxi or rented car.

12. Kavvayi Backwater, Payyanur

Kavvayi Kayal is among the most captivating backwater in Kerala and considered among the most exotic locations in North Kerala. Kavvayi (collection of small islands) connected to Payyannur in Kannur by a bridge.

Where to stay in Kavvayi Backwater, Payyanur?

Accommodations are expensive as compare to other Kerala backwaters. Below are some of the best and affordable accommodations in Kavvayi backwaters

How to reach Kavvayi Backwater, Payyanur?

Nearest Railway station to Kavvayi backwater:

Payyanur railway station is 4km away from Kavvayi backwater. I would suggest you get accommodation near Payyanur railway station for comfortable transportation and affordable room.

Nearest Airport station to Kavvayi Backwater:

Kannur International Airport is 65km (42mi) away from Kavvayi. You can easily reach to Kavvayi by train, taxi or rented car.

13. Padanna Backwaters, Kasaragod

In Kannada language salt fields are referred to as padanna. Though there are no salt fields today, thanks to kallumakai (mussels) and community farming, the place holds a unique position in the tourism map.

Where to stay in Padanna Backwaters, Kasaragod?

Accommodations are expensive as compare to other Padanna Backwaters. Below are some of the best and affordable accommodations in Kasaragod

How to reach Padanna Backwaters, Kasaragod?

Nearest Railway station to Padanna Backwaters:

Kasaragod railway station is the nearest to Padanna Backwaters. I would suggest you get accommodation near Payyanur railway station for comfortable transportation and affordable room.

Nearest Airport station to Padanna Backwaters:

Mangalore International Airport is 60km (38mi) and Kannur International airport 116km (72.5mi) from Padanna backwaters, Kasaragod.

14. Alumkadavu, Kollam

Alumkadavu welcomes you with the fragrance of wood and coir. A village famous for the construction of houseboats will surprise you with its laid back and relaxed charm.

Where to stay in Alumkadavu, Kollam?

Accommodations are expensive as compare to other Alumkadavu Backwaters. Below are some of the best and affordable accommodations in Alumkadavu.

How to reach Alumkadavu, Kollam?

Nearest Railway station to Alumkadavu, Kollam:

Karunagappalli railway station is the nearest to Alumkadavu, Kollam, only 5.2km(3.25mi) away from Alimkadavu.

Nearest Airport station to Alumkadavu, Kollam:

Trivandrum International Airport is 101km (63mi) from Alumkadavu. You can easily reach to Alumkadavu by train, taxi or rented car.

15. Sasthamkotta Backwaters, Kollam

The largest freshwater lake in Kerala, it has always been a hotbed for tourist activity. Being called the ‘Queen of Lakes’ is no small distinction, but a visit to Sasthamkotta in Kollam district helps you understand the name.

Where to stay in Sasthamkotta Backwaters, Kollam?

Accommodations are inexpensive in Sasthamkotta Backwaters as compare to the previous backwater. Below are some of the best and affordable accommodations in Sasthamkotta, Kollam.

How to reach Sasthamkotta Backwaters, Kollam?

Nearest Railway station to Sasthamkotta Backwaters:

Sasthankotta railway station is the nearest to Sasthamkotta backwaters, only 4km away. I would suggest you get accommodation near Payyanur railway station.

Nearest Airport station to Sasthamkotta Backwaters:

Trivandrum International Airport is the nearest airport to Sasthamkotta backwaters, only 93km(60mi) away. You can easily reach to Sasthamkotta by train, taxi or rented car.


FAQ

Are there crocodiles in Kerala backwaters?

No, there are no crocodiles in Kerala Backwaters. The backwaters in Kerala are composed of lagoons, lakes, rivers, rivulets, canals, streams and salty seawater.

How are backwaters formed?

According to Wikipidia, the backwaters were formed by the action of waves and shore currents creating low barrier islands across the mouths of the many rivers flowing down from the Western Ghats range.

Backwaters meaning?

A part of a river not reached by the current, where the water is stagnant(confined space).

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