Kumbalangi - The first eco-friendly tourist village in India
Located at a distance of 12 km from Kochi, Kumbalangi is a small island village of just 16 square kilometers in area. The relatively unknown fishing hamlet was converted into a model village in 2003 by the government of Kerala under the Kumbalangi Integrated Tourism Village project. It gives you the perfect opportunity to enjoy the stress-free life of the village. Other attractions in Kumbalangi include canoeing, boating, fishing, learning the traditional occupations, relishing local delicacies, and so on.
The following are the top tourist activities in Kumbalangi :
Kumbalangi Village Tour
The most exciting part of the Kumbalangi tour may be the leisure walk around the simple village. You can take a hike through the calm countryside and enjoy the sights. The area is replete with clean air, coconut groves, lush greenery, and pristine backwaters. A stroll through Kumbalangi is both mesmerizing and rejuvenating. You also get to know the life of the villagers up close.
You can literally feel your stress draining away with each moment you spent in the neighborhood. Hence the village tour is one of the greatest attractions in Kumbalangi.
Boating through backwaters
Being an island, Kumbalangi is surrounded by water on all sides. There are also small canals which beckon tourists with their picturesque beauty. It is an amazing experience to row with the local fisherman through this network of canals. The thickly growing mangroves and coconut trees peaking at you by leaning into the water are beautiful sights. The Chinese fishing nets lining the shores and birds – both indigenous and migratory – gliding close to the water enhance the beauty of the lake.
A slow ride through the backwaters of Kumbalangi watching all these wonderful sights will surely rejuvenate your tired nerves and revitalize you.
Learning traditional Occupations
The tourism location is a small village where people still rely on traditional means to earn their living. The major occupations of the people on the island are fishing, coir making, toddy tapping, and so on. You have the opportunity to experience these ancient occupations first hand and learn them if you like. You can get training on how to throw the fishing net, weave coconut leaves and make coir, baskets, and pottery.
It indeed is a new experience that will remain fresh in your memory for many years. So don't forget to engage in these activities while on your tour to Kumbalangi.
Cooking and enjoying local delicacies
Kumbalangi has many tasty indigenous dishes that will make your mouth water. Karimeen Pollichathu – fried Pearl Spot Fish – is in much demand as it suits the palate of the locals and foreigners alike. Chemmeen Ularthiyathu (Prawns roast) is another local delicacy that everyone asks for. You can also get crabs and oysters prepared indigenously.
You can also get training on how to cook these tasty Kerala dishes. It is both exciting and fun to be involved in the indigenous culinary arts. It would be a refreshing change and will take your mind away from the hectic day to day activities.
Best Time To Visit Kumbalangi
Winter which starts by the end of October and lasts till mid-February will be the best time to visit Kumbalangi. The climate is pleasant without being too much hot or cold.
The summer in the region is humid and hot. But tourism activities are not stalled in any way during the time from March to May. In fact, the season receives many tourists because the place is cooler compared to other nearby regions. Make sure to carry a sunblock cream if you are planning your visit during this season.
June marks the onset of monsoon. The view of dark clouds brewing the sky and reflected in the placid water is a unique sight. Heavy rains in the area attract monsoon lovers.
Plodding through the water lodged moor is as adventurous as trekking. If you love to see a good storm, you can visit the place during this season which lasts till September.
How To Reach Kumbalangi
Though a small fishing hamlet, Kumbalangi is very close to the metro city of Kochi and hence is easy to reach.
- By Road: Kumbalangi is only a 15-minute drive from Kochi through Aroor-Thoppumpady road and Kumbalangi road. There are frequent private and state transport busses from Kochi which will get you to this tourist location within no time.
- By Rail: At a distance of just 12 kilometers is Ernakulam Junction railway station. Almost all trains have a halt here as it is one of the major stations in the Ernakulam district.
- By Air: The busy Cochin International Airport is closest to Kumbalangi. It is at a distance of 45 kilometers and is one of the prominent airports in Kerala with flights to all major cities in India and around the world.