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Kumarkom Overview

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Summarise the city :
Backwater heaven

Best time to visit (High & peak months) :
October to February

Experiences :
Backwaters, bird life, culinary, ayurveda

City calling code :
+91-481

Recommended no. of days for a tourist :
A day will suffice

Best buys :
Kerala Saris

Essentials to be carried along :
Cotton outfits, sun glasses and sun blocks, binoculars to use in bird sanctuary

All about the city :
A desire that ripples in you to experience the bounty of nature will certainly propose you to visit Kumarkom - a cluster of islands just 14 km from Kottayam. Jutting out in the Vembanad lake, it is a sleepy town where the passing of time has little meaning. The place bears a strong resemblance to Alappuzha in its milieu. To put it straight it is also essentially a backwater destination - a perfect place for a lazy and a laid back holiday. The cornucopia of green color, whether of the slender coconut trees, of swaying paddy fields, of mangroves or the backwaters, seems to swathe the whole area.

While Kumarakom is a part of Kuttanad, the 'granary or the rice bowl of Kerala', lake Vembanad is world famous for its aquatic treasure of Karimeen (pearl spotted fish), shrimps and prawn. The cooks here have capitalized over this treasure. Their fish preparations are a tempatation to one and all. Kumarkom's marshy mangroves are a resort for medley of migratory birds such as Siberian stork, egret and others. Bird watching cruises woo the tourists to get a closer glimpse of them while floating through the rivulets.

Its beauty and serenity magnetized Mr. George Alfred Baker to choose this quaint hamlet of, 'The God's Own Country', Kerala for his stay during his missionary work in the State. When he left India, his grand home was readily taken over by Taj Hotels to transform it into a fancy resort. Many other renowned hotel groups soon followed the trail. Today Kumarkom, crisscrossed with canals all over, is strewn with plethora of lake side cottages and top notch luxury resorts - all testifying the popularity of this destination. The place has become even better known to the world after Arundhati Roy, who was raised in a nearby village Ayemanam, won booker prize for her internationally acclaimed novel 'The God of Small Things'.
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Kumarkom Tourist attractions

Name (suggested time required to see the place)DescriptionEntrance charges (if any) for Foreigner Close Day (if any) Open / Close time
Bird SanctuaryThis 14 acres bird sanctuary, along with the very famous Vembanad lake (one of largest freshwater lake in Asia) on whose eastern bank it is situated, is the hall mark of Kumarakom. To make the most of your trip get up early in the morning and go on foot 1.5 km track inside the jungle, where you get to spot heron, darters, storks, teals and common egrets. Taking a boat ride can be another option, but then you are more likely to encounter waders like water fowls and ducks. INR 45none6 am - 5:30 pm
Bay Island Driftwood MuseumTo see the height of the flight of human imagination, pay a visit to Bay Island Driftwood museum at the market junction. It houses the chiseled driftwood gathered from the beaches of the Adman and Nicobar Islands in the Bay of Bengal. A retired teacher Raji Punnoose, who is also the curator of this museum, has carved out excellent images from these driftwood pieces - needless to say 'best out of waste'. Monday10 am - 5 pm ; Sundays 11:30 am - 5 pm
PathiramanalThis 10-acre Island on the backwaters of Vembanad lake (border of Kottayam - Alapuzzha dist.) is a stop over for hundreds of rare migratory birds from different parts of the world. The island lies between Thaneermukkom and Kumarakom, and is accessible only by boat. A 1 hr sailing on a motorboat (only 0.5 hr by speed boat) through awe-inspiring sceneries is all what is required to reach this haven.No entrance chargeNoneSunrise to sunset
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Getting there

AirRailRoad
Nearest airport is Kochi (Nedumbassery International Airport) at a distance of 106 km.Kottayam Junction at just 15 km is the closest rail head.Kumarakom is 62 km from Alappuzha, 82 from Ernakulum, 160 km from Thiruvanthapuram,176 km from Kovalam, 262 km from Madurai, 142 from Munnar, 385 from Sultan Bathery,122 km from Thekkady.
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Kumarkom Festivals

Name of festivalDates / MonthsFestival details with link for more information
Thirunakkara festival15 -24 MarchDuring this festival all night Kathakali performance is held in the Thirunkkara Mahadev temple.
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Kumarkom Excursions

Excursion (distance in kms / time taken)Write up on the excursion
Sree Vallabha temple (50 km/ 1 hr)The temple is famous for its all night Kathakali performances that are staged here almost every night. Unlike many other temples of Kerala, non Hindus are allowed to watch the performances in this temple.
Ettumanur (25 km/ 30 min) Timings: 4 am - 12:30 pm & 5 - 8 pm A large temple dedicated to Lord Shiva here has inscriptions dating back to 1542 and some parts of it are said to be even older than this.
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Suggested tour program with Kumarkom

Tour NameNo. Of days Other places covered Detail's link (if applicable)
Best of Kerala9 nights/10 daysKochi -Munnar -Thekkady(Periyar) -Kumarkom -Alappuzha -Kovalam (Trivandrum) 
A Learning Experience in Kerala 8 nights/9 daysKochi-Munnar-Thekkady(Periyar)-Kumarkom -Kovalam (Trivandrum) 
Kerala Wildlife Tour9 nights/10 daysKochi-Munnar-Thekkady(Periyar)-Kumarkom -Kochi-Wayanad  
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