The backwaters of Kerela is a unique product of Kerala and is found nowhere else in the world. Backwaters are a network of lakes, canals and estuaries and deltas of forty-four rivers that drain into the Arabian sea. The backwaters of Kerela are a self supporting eco-system teeming with aquatic life. The canals connect the villages together and are still used for local transport. Over 900 km of this labyrinthine water world is navigable
The largest backwater stretch in Kerela is the Vembanad Lake which flows through three districts and opens out into the sea at the Kochi Port. The Astamudi lake, literarlly having eight arms, which covers a major portion of Kollam district in the south, is the second largest and is considered the gateway to the backwaters.
The most exciting thing on the backwaters of Kerela, however, is the kettuvallom ( traditional houseboat ) which has become the most popular tourism product in India today. In a land as waterbound as Kerala it wouldn't be an unusual sight, but for a visitor to God's Own Country a houseboat gliding along the vast green expanse of the backwaters is the most amazing spectacle in the world. Even more enchanting is a holiday in the houseboats of Kerela