Kerala is bestowed with a long sea coast that virtually extends all along the State and a meandering network of backwaters, canals and rivers, which makes it a perfect destination for water tourism and leisure activities.
Kerala has asked The National Institute of Water Sports (NIWS) in Goa to chart out a detailed project report. Once the policy clearances are obtained , water sports and other leisure activities will be taken up in a phased manner. Kerala holds an enviable position for a range of water sporting options like windsurfing, kayaking and canoeing. The ethnic water activities of Kerala including house boat cruise and snake boat racing could also be included in the activity list to ensure a diverse fare. The main objective of this plan would be to promote new water sporting destinations apart from the popular spots like in Kerala like Punnamada, Ashtamudi, Kumarakom and Bakel.
Apart from enhancing the tourism potential of the State, weather sporting events would also ensure the protection of water bodies in the State, which are facing a high risk from the spiraling commercial and developmental activities in the State, which has taken a heavy toll over its natural resources.
There are countless ways to beat stress; you can curl up with your favourite book, plan a holiday to a beach resort or hit the bars. However, for something truly interesting and new, check out this fledgling outdoor activity of kayaking in the backwaters of Kochi. Yes, you heard it right the unexplored activity of kayaking in the backwaters of Kochi is finding many new takers including high profile professionals like doctors and techies among others. The delightfully quiet isles of Kothad, Pizhala and Kadamakudi near Ernakulam are all well cut for kayaking.
On popular demand, the organisers, Scuba Cochin, have decided to make their two-and-a-half hour kayaking trips into a weekly event, which is open to 20 people at a time. Though kayaking is a popular holiday activity in the backwaters of Aleppey, it is a new trend in Cochin, which is attracting not just water sports enthusiasts but also families and youth groups. The best thing about kayaking is that it brings you closer to nature, and it is something that can be done at your own pace.
Though kayaking is a popular event in overseas holiday itineraries, it is a relatively new trend in Kerala. By creating interest in Olympic events like sailing, rowing and kayaking, Kerala can go a long way in tapping the youth potential in these watersports, as well. So next time when you get stressed up with your workload, all you need to do is to plan an interesting spell of kayaking to get refreshed.
The tourist season for Kerala was far from impressive this year with a marked drop in the number of foreign and domestic tourists. Most of the tour operators in Fort Kochi are pinning their hopes on the Cochin Carnival for more tourist arrivals in the next two weeks. During the Christmas and New Year seasons, Fort Kochi draws a lot of foreign tourists with most of the hotels and homestays registering near full occupancy. But this year things were bleak and the regular tourist crowd was missing even from the main hot spots like Fort Kochi and surroundings.
Meanwhile the carnival committee is not leaving anything to chance and the efforts are on to make the carnival a big success. Both the sides of roads from Veli to Fort kochi are being decorated with lights and stars to welcome the tourists to the area. This year , a novel competition to select the best decorated and painted house has generated a lot of interest among the local community. A kayaking contest is also being introduced this year. The beach bike race at the Veli ground is expected to bring in scores of biking enthusiasts while the swimmers can vie for the prestigious title in the Fort Kochi-|Vypeen swimming contest. The other attraction of the Carnival include tableaux and the traditional art forms of Kerala.
Additional police forces have been deployed to prevent any untoward instances and street lighting along the beach and the walkways have already been completed. Will the Cochin Carnival bring back the tourist surge in Fort Kochi- the next few days will unravel the answer for this million dollar query!