Kollam Backwaters : 71 km from Thiruvananthapuram, Kollam has a rich history and was once one of the oldest ports on the Malabar coast and a major international trade and commercial centre. Known for its marine and cashew industries, there are number of architectural remnants and traditional ornate temples built in Dravidian architectural style around the region. The renowned Ashtamudi Lake is the chief highlight of Kollam and is also a magnificent gateway to Backwaters of Kerala. The long 8-hs boat trip from Kollam to Alleppey is one of the best and most comprehensive one to explore the wonders of Kerala’s backwaters as one passes through lakes, canals and water-bound villages.
Ashtamudi Lake covers a major portion of Kollam district in the south and offers a wide range of backwater tours and cruises. Alumkadavu, halfway on the route to Alappuzha from Kollam, is a small tiny and quiet backwater village in Karunagappally town famous for its boat-building yard where the gigantic ‘Kettuvallams’ the cargo boats now been turned into houseboats were originally built. Situated along the vast expanse of the Kayamkulam Lake, it is still known as the home of the skilled artisans who crafted the Kettuvallams. One can also see the Chinese fishing nets along the way while cruising through backwaters.