20 Things To Do In Alappuzha

Things To Do In Alappuzha: A Traveler's Guide

Nestled in the heart of Kerala, Alappuzha, with its enchanting backwaters, lush landscapes, and rich cultural tapestry, beckons travelers from across the globe. Often hailed as the ‘Venice of the East,’ this idyllic town offers a perfect blend of traditional charm and natural beauty, making it a quintessential stop in the exploration of southern India. Alappuzha’s allure lies not just in its picturesque settings but in the myriad experiences it offers that allow visitors to immerse themselves in the tranquility of nature, the vibrancy of local festivals, and the warmth of its people. This blog post aims to unveil the top things to do in Alappuzha, guiding you through a journey of discovery, relaxation, and adventure in this captivating town. Whether you’re navigating the serene backwaters, soaking in the history and culture, or indulging in the culinary delights, Alappuzha promises an array of unforgettable experiences that cater to every traveler’s desires.

Things To Do In Alappuzha

  1. Houseboat Cruise in the Backwaters

Embarking on a houseboat cruise through the serene backwaters of Alappuzha is an experience of a lifetime. Glide through the palm-fringed waters as you witness the local life unfold on the banks. These floating abodes offer a unique stay, ranging from basic to luxury accommodations, allowing you to relax amidst nature. Indulge in freshly prepared local cuisine as you float by picturesque villages, lush paddy fields, and ancient temples. A houseboat cruise in Alappuzha is not just a journey on water; it’s an exploration of the vibrant culture and tranquility of Kerala.

  1. Visit to Alappuzha Beach

Alappuzha Beach is a marvel of nature where the sea meets the sand with grace. Known for its pristine beauty, ancient pier extending into the sea, and the 150-year-old lighthouse, it offers a perfect blend of history and natural splendor. Visitors can enjoy leisurely walks, sunbathing, or indulge in the occasional beach volleyball game. The remnants of the Alappuzha Sea Bridge, once a bustling port and a significant maritime link, adds a touch of historical intrigue to your beach experience.

  1. Exploring the Kuttanad Region

Often termed as the ‘Rice Bowl of Kerala’, the Kuttanad region is a testament to the rural beauty of Alappuzha. Characterized by its vast paddy fields, unique below-sea-level farming, and crisscrossing backwaters, Kuttanad offers a glimpse into the agrarian lifestyle of Kerala. A boat trip through this region allows visitors to see the innovative rice farming techniques and the day-to-day life of the local farmers. The area is also renowned for its delicious local cuisine, making it a must-visit for food enthusiasts.

  1. Bird Watching at Pathiramanal Island

Pathiramanal, meaning ‘Sands of Night’, is a small, enchanting island located in the backwaters of Alappuzha, accessible only by boat. This secluded haven is a paradise for bird watchers, as it is home to over 90 species of local and 50 species of migratory birds. The island offers a tranquil escape amidst nature, where one can enjoy the serene beauty of the backwaters while spotting rare birds like the Monarch Flycatcher, Indian Shag, and the White Ibis. Visiting Pathiramanal is an opportunity to immerse yourself in the untouched beauty of Kerala’s ecosystems.

  1. Experiencing the Snake Boat Races

The Nehru Trophy Boat Race, held on the Punnamada Lake near Alappuzha, is one of the most competitive and celebrated events in Kerala. Witnessing these races is a thrilling experience, as teams in long snake boats, or ‘Chundans’, compete with intense fervor. The event, usually held in August, draws spectators from around the world. The rhythmic movements of the oarsmen, the cheering crowds, and the festive atmosphere make it a spectacle not to be missed. It’s a showcase of team spirit, tradition, and the vibrant culture of Kerala.

  1. Relaxing at Marari Beach

Marari Beach is a serene and relatively untouched spot perfect for those looking to escape the hustle and bustle of city life. With its golden sands, swaying palm trees, and crystal clear waters, Marari offers a more relaxed and authentic beach experience. It is an ideal place for sunbathing, swimming, or just lounging with a book. The beach is also close to traditional fishing villages, where one can observe the local fishermen ply their trade using age-old techniques. Marari’s tranquility makes it a perfect spot for a rejuvenating retreat.

  1. Discovering the Revi Karunakaran Museum

The Revi Karunakaran Museum, named after a prominent local businessman, showcases a vast collection of art and artifacts accumulated over three generations. The museum features everything from antique furniture and crystal to classic cars and ivory goods. It’s a tribute to the rich cultural heritage and craftsmanship of Kerala. A visit here offers insights into the luxurious lifestyle of the Karunakaran family and a glimpse into the artistic traditions of the region.

  1. Kayaking in the Backwaters

Experience the backwaters of Alappuzha in a more intimate and thrilling manner by kayaking through its narrow canals and hidden lagoons. Kayaking offers an up-close view of the backwater life, allowing you to navigate through the smaller waterways that are inaccessible to larger boats. Paddle at your own pace, witness the daily routines of the local communities, and explore the rich flora and fauna that make the backwaters their home. This eco-friendly activity not only gives you a workout but also offers serene moments of connection with nature.

  1. Visit the Ambalappuzha Sri Krishna Temple

The Ambalappuzha Sri Krishna Temple is renowned for its traditional Kerala architecture and the deity of Lord Krishna, worshipped here in the form of Parthasarathy. Famous for its ‘Palpayasam’ (a sweet milk porridge), offered as prasad, this temple has a serene and spiritual ambiance that draws devotees and tourists alike. The temple’s history is linked with the legendary chess game between Lord Krishna and a sage, which is depicted in the mural paintings within. Visiting this temple offers a spiritual insight into the rich cultural tapestry of Kerala.

  1. Enjoying a Traditional Kathakali Performance

Alappuzha offers the unique opportunity to witness Kathakali, an ancient and dramatic form of dance-drama that is native to Kerala. This art form combines elaborate costumes, detailed makeup, expressive gestures, and mesmerizing music to tell stories from Indian epics like the Mahabharata and Ramayana. Watching a Kathakali performance is a journey into the heart of Kerala’s artistic traditions, where emotion is conveyed through every movement, and stories come alive in vivid color.

  1. Exploring the Krishnapuram Palace

The Krishnapuram Palace is a testament to the architectural marvel of Kerala during the 18th century. Built by the rulers of Travancore, this palace is now a museum housing a rare collection of antiques, sculptures, and mural paintings, including the famous Gajendra Moksham. Its well-maintained gardens, traditional Kerala architecture, and historical significance make it a must-visit for history buffs and those interested in the architectural heritage of Kerala.

  1. Strolling Through the Alleppey Lighthouse

The Alappuzha Lighthouse stands as a historic landmark, guiding mariners since the 19th century. Climbing up the spiral staircase to the top provides a panoramic view of the Arabian Sea and the picturesque surroundings of Alappuzha. The adjacent Lighthouse Museum showcases the maritime history of the region, with displays of ancient navigational equipment and photographs. A visit to the lighthouse offers a glimpse into the maritime history and the chance to enjoy some breathtaking views.

  1. Culinary Tour of Alappuzha

No visit to Alappuzha is complete without indulging in its culinary delights. The town is famous for its seafood cuisine, featuring dishes like Karimeen Pollichathu (pearl spot fish marinated and wrapped in banana leaves) and Alleppey Fish Curry. A culinary tour can take you through the local markets to sample fresh produce, followed by a cooking class with a local chef to learn the secrets of Keralan cuisine. This gastronomic journey is a feast for the senses and offers an authentic taste of local life.

  1. Participate in the Alappuzha Beach Festival

The Alappuzha Beach Festival is a vibrant celebration of local culture, art, and music, held annually on the shores of the beautiful Alappuzha Beach. Visitors can enjoy live performances, traditional dance, music, and art installations that showcase the rich heritage of Kerala. The festival also features a variety of food stalls, offering a taste of local cuisine. Participating in this festival is a fantastic way to immerse yourself in the local culture and enjoy a festive atmosphere by the beach.

  1. Visit the Mannarasala Sree Nagaraja Temple

Dedicated to the serpent god, Nagaraja, the Mannarasala Sree Nagaraja Temple is a unique and sacred site nestled in a forested area. It is one of the most important centers of serpent worship in Kerala. The temple is surrounded by over 30,000 images of snakes along the paths and among the trees, creating a mystical atmosphere. The temple’s tranquil setting and its rituals offer a unique spiritual experience, making it a must-visit for those interested in exploring the diverse religious practices of India.

  1. Explore the Punnamada Lake

Punnamada Lake is famous for hosting the Nehru Trophy Boat Race but it also offers tranquil backwater experiences throughout the year. Visitors can enjoy leisurely boat rides, witness stunning sunsets, and observe the diverse birdlife that thrives in this ecosystem. The lake’s serene beauty and the lifestyle of the communities living on its shores provide a peaceful retreat from the bustling world. Exploring Punnamada Lake is about embracing the quietude and the simple joys of nature.

  1. Cycling Through the Village Roads

One of the best ways to explore the true essence of Alappuzha is by cycling through its picturesque villages. Pedaling along narrow roads, bordered by paddy fields, coconut groves, and backwaters, offers an intimate glimpse into rural Kerala. This eco-friendly mode of exploration allows for spontaneous interactions with local villagers, opportunities to stop at local eateries for snacks, and the chance to discover hidden gems off the beaten path. Cycling tours can range from a few hours to a full day, depending on how much of the countryside you wish to explore.

  1. Visit the Alappuzha Coir Museum

The Alappuzha Coir Museum is dedicated to the traditional industry of coir making in Kerala. It offers insights into the history, evolution, and techniques of coir processing, from the extraction of coconut fiber to the creation of various coir products. The museum showcases live demonstrations, exhibits, and educational programs, making it an enlightening visit for those interested in the socio-economic development of Kerala and the sustainable practices of its industries.

  1. Sunset View at Thumpoly Beach

Thumpoly Beach, known for its serene ambiance and breathtaking sunsets, is a quieter alternative to the more popular Alappuzha Beach. The beach is flanked by natural sand dunes and is a habitat for a variety of migratory birds, making it a perfect spot for nature lovers and photographers. A walk along this pristine beach during sunset offers a tranquil experience, with the changing colors of the sky reflecting on the Arabian Sea, creating a mesmerizing spectacle.

  1. Enjoy a Spa Retreat

After exploring the sights and sounds of Alappuzha, treating yourself to a traditional Ayurvedic spa retreat can be the perfect way to relax and rejuvenate. Kerala is known for its Ayurvedic treatments, and Alappuzha has several wellness centers that offer a range of therapies, massages, and holistic treatments designed to harmonize the body, mind, and spirit. A spa retreat in this tranquil setting is not just a luxury experience but a deep dive into the ancient wellness practices of Kerala.


Alappuzha, with its myriad attractions and activities, stands as a testament to Kerala’s enduring charm and the rich tapestry of experiences it offers to those who wander its paths. From the tranquil waters of its backwaters to the sacred ambiance of its temples, the exhilarating races on its lakes to the quiet beauty of its beaches, Alappuzha encapsulates the essence of a land where nature and culture intertwine seamlessly.

Each activity highlighted in this guide offers a unique lens through which to view and appreciate the beauty, heritage, and lifestyle of this enchanting town. As you plan your journey through Alappuzha, let the rhythm of the backwaters guide you, the flavors of the local cuisine enchant you, and the spirit of the land fill you with peace and joy. Whether you seek solitude, adventure, or a deeper understanding of Kerala’s cultural fabric, Alappuzha welcomes you with open arms and a promise of memories that will linger long after you depart its shores.

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