We were gently brought out of this reverie by the smell of frying coconut oil, chillies and garlic. The sounds of cooking were coming from our boat. Kuresh had prepared lunch for us and the boat was moored along the bank so we could enjoy the feast. Delicious thali complete with fish fry.
- Why was the G&T missing? In Kerala, alcohol sales are banned on Sunday's. We foolishly didn't think ahead and pre-purchase drinks for the trip. We mentioned this in passing to the houseboat operator, who said he would have been happy to organise it... Had we told him before Sunday.
- We booked through Coco Houseboats. At 7,500 Rs they were one of the more expensive options (the range was between 5000 and 8000 Rs), but we liked the look of their boats the most. The price included exclusive use of a one roomed houseboat, a driver and a cook/ guide, three meals, afternoon and morning tea and bottled water.
- We found Coco Houseboats by wandering along the road near the main canal in town and dropping into the hundreds of offices based there. The quality varied greatly, so take your time, ask lots of questions and try to see the boat before hand or, at the least, pictures.
- One night tours all leave at midday and return at 9 a.m. It is possible to do more than one night and the boat will obviously travel further afield. There is a bit of a discount for extra nights.
- This is not a unique idea. If you are hoping for watery isolation, then you will be disappointed. However, we didn't feel as though our experience was spoiled by the presence of so many other houseboats.