Planning a trip to South India was not easy. Primarily because there were so many places that were on the ‘must visit’ list and we had little time to explore the entire state of Kerala and Tamil Nadu. I had to attend a wedding in Tamil Nadu after which I was headed to Kerala for four nights for a family vacation and then took the flight back to New Delhi from Kochi. In Kerala, during our stay in Kovalam we thought of going to Poovar Island backwaters which was just half hour away from our hotel.
One can easily get cabs from the Lighthouse Beach (the place where we were staying at). I was in Kerala in mid May which is when the off season begins in the state so you can easily negotiate with the cab driver. During the season the cab would cost you around INR 1000 but we negotiated and paid INR 600 for an air conditioned cab that took us to the island and dropped us back.
Upon reaching the backwaters, the first thing I noticed was the price for the motor boat which was written on a sign board. For a one hour ride for two people the charges were INR 3000 and the charges for additional one person was mentioned as INR 500. But getting the benefit of travelling during off season, I negotiated the price for three people for two hours and had to pay INR 3000 only!
Beginning our journey through the backwaters of Poovar Island in our motor boat, the first thing we saw were the floating restaurants and resorts. Beautifully tucked in one corner of the backwaters, the floating restaurants were buzzing with families relishing South Indian cuisine. As we crossed the floating resorts, I couldn’t help but envy those who were staying in these resorts. With such breathtaking views surrounded by nature from all four sides, every day must be such a treat to the eyes and soul.
Since none of us were hungry, we did not stop at the floating restaurants to grab lunch and instead went to the next spot which was known as the Estuary Point. This point is where the Neyymar River meets the Arabian Sea through a semi-enclosed place. We sat on the Golden Sand Beach admiring the beauty of this point while sipping on coconut water. Here at the beach you can also go for horse riding or simply wait for the sun to set for a stunning view of the sky.
Next on the island was a meditation place and an Elephant rock. In the middle of the river, there is a rock that looks like an Elephant and hence it is called Elephant rock. The rock can be seen from the boat itself but if you want, you can get off at the meditation place and spend some time praying to the almighty.
Sitting back in our motor boat, we admired the backwaters for another couple of minutes before we reached a dense forest and saw some exotic birds. This island is a paradise for bird watching as everywhere you turn your eyes, you would see new species of birds.
The Poovar Island Backwaters or the Poovar Golden Sand Beach also promises you to bathe Elephants during your visit but unfortunately the time we were there, there were only two untrained elephants on the island who we could just gaze from a distance.
The day spent at the Poovar Island Backwaters was a memorable experience for me and my family and this is something I would recommend everyone to experience during your trip to Kerala.