A Brief History of Venice of the East – Alleppey!
You must surely have heard about the renowned water canals of Venice that come straight out of the earthly charm. Since travelling to Venice can be extremely expensive, you might have second thoughts about planning a trip there. But do you know that you can still enjoy a better place than Venice in India?
It is also equipped with picturesque canals, lagoons, beaches, etc. Alappuzha is regarded as a landmark between the enormous Arabian sea and the network of other rivers flowing into it.
Today, in this article, we will take a quick rundown on the history of Alleppey. While you dig further, you will also get to know why Alappuzha is known as the Venice of the East.
Come, let’s sail across the backwaters of Kerala and explore the history of Alleppey!
During the early 20th century, Lord Curzon, the then British Viceroy of India, visited Alappuzha for the first time. And at once, he was completely mesmerised at the sight of the exotic beauty of the Alleppey. The name Allapuzha is technically derived from the town’s geographical location, meaning land between the sea and river.
Initially, Alappuzha was solely built for the purpose of trading during the latter half of the 18th century. Dewan Raja Kesava Das of Travancore built Alappuzha since he had enormous trade relations with Rome and Greece. There have been several mentions regarding the place in the works of renowned authors and travellers.
Above all, the mention of Alappuzha has also been made in the works of Pliny and Ptolemy. The best part about their work is that they did not shy away from describing the exotic beauty of the place in detail.
The backwaters of Alappuzha seamlessly connect Kumarakom and Cochin to the north. Further, it connects Quilon to the south. Alleppey is extensively popular for its backwaters and beautiful and serene beaches. Some of Alappuzha’s famous beaches include Andhakaranazhi Beach, Alappuzha beach, and Marari Beach.
Lastly, you’ll be surprised to know that Alappuzha has been carved out of the erstwhile Kollam and Kottayam districts. And this is how the district of Alappuzha was formed on 17th August 1957.
The Venice of the East - Why is Alappuzha Called So?
If you hear it for the first time, you might wonder why Alappuzha has been given such a name. Well, there is a simple yet sweet story behind the name “Venice of the East.”
In the early 20th century, Lord Curzon made his first visit to Alleppey. No sooner did he set his foot on the lands of Alappuzha than he was completely overwhelmed by the scenic beauty. He was actually mesmerised at the sight of the tranquil backwaters of the state.
He mentioned, “Here nature has spent up on the land her richest bounties. Alleppey, the Venice of the East.” Surprisingly, almost every foreigner visiting the state gracefully agreed with the statement of Lord Curzon. And at present, Alleppey is popularly known as the Venice of the East.
What Can You Do in Alappuzha?
There are a plethora of things that you can do while exploring the Venice of the East. So irrespective of the people with whom you are visiting, there are plenty of things that can make your trip memorable. Here are a few activities which you can consider engaging in. Also, you can choose your pick according to your likes.
The hotels in Alleppey are undoubtedly great, but the houseboats are the highlights of Alappuzha. You can rent an Alleppey boathouse for 12 hours or more per your requirements. These boats are well furnished and contain everything that any posh 5-star hotel has. So boarding a houseboat will let you enjoy the beauty of backwaters while engaging in fish and birdwatching.
Now that you have ridden a Kerala boat house, it is time for you to sail on a boat. This boat ride typically lasts for at least 3 to 4 hours, where you get to sail across the exotic backwaters of Alappuzha. This is undoubtedly a great activity rather than lazing around in the lagoon.
This is another calming place where you can consider hanging out with your loved ones or your friends. Taking a stroll along the promenade is not a bad idea. And the cherry on top is that you can try out a few drinks and some local cuisine. You can even sit by the beach and enjoy the calming sea waves if you wish. And there is nothing as satisfying as sitting under a sky full of twinkling stars and enjoying the cool breeze.
Alleppey weather remains the best during the end of monsoons and throughout the winters. So, the best time to visit the Venice of the East is from September to March. During these months, the weather remains pleasant, and you get to see nature in its best form. Also, the lagoons and backwaters are surrounded by lush greenery, making Alappuzha all the more charming and splendid.
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Alleppey is undoubtedly a beautiful place that lets you enjoy almost everything present within the state. Also, you will learn more about the history of “Venice of the East” from the museums in this exotic destination.
So, what are you waiting for? Get in touch with Kerala Tourism today and start planning for your next trip. We’re sure you will love exploring the serene location embedded with tranquil backwaters.