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Your Frequently Asked Questions about Kerala Houseboats:

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01.Pick up and Drop Off Locations for Houseboats

We can usually arrange for pick and drop off locations to suit you depending on the houseboat chosen. Usual locations Alappuzha and Kumarakom. If not we can arrange local transfers for the purpose.

Houseboat Cruise start and end times

Starts at 12:00 noon. Ends at 09:00

Food on a Kerala Houseboat

All boats offer a traditional Kerala cuisine which all my colleagues swear is some of the best food to be enjoyed in Kerala. You will usually enjoy a range of dishes that vary from local fish such as pearlspot, fish curry, chicken and of course lots of vegetables.

Vegetarian & Vegan Food

We can cater for vegetarians and vegans if you can pre-warn us.

Spot booking

A lot of travellers plan pot-luck booking on the day which is part of the random travel experience. If you want a luxury boat, that is not possible as they are always booked out and do not leave from the crowded public jetties. You should bear in the mind that the boats that have not been pre-booked tend to be the crappy boats. They will happily haggle with you for best prices but they will make their money back by shortening the journey, cutting down on AC etc and providing poorer quality food as they have not pre-purchased food in case they receive no bookings. Of all the boats in the backwaters, we have only selected 6 as truly luxury!

Best Backwater cruise locations

Alappuzha - more interior canals, rivers, paddy fields, villages, monuments, duck farm

Kumarakom - more wide stretch canals and lake.

Air conditioning

Full time air conditioning is available. Air conditioning will be available to you 24 hours a day. Generally we open the windows during the day and allow the breezes in, but at night we can run AC instead. Please note that AC runs off the generator and so there is hum from it all night


The dreaded question always arises. This being the tropics and a watery landscape, you are going to have mozzies. For some people, they are just uinbearable wherever they go. During the evening we burn coils around the boat to discourage them but for travellers who especially susceptible to their bite, we recommend applying lotions or sprays. The boss also has a theory which is that Mosquitos hate white cloth so we recommend wearing light clothing. The theory is that mosquitos like to hide which is easier in dark spots. Mad dogs and englishmen!

Liquor & Alcohol

Kerala has strict licensing laws on the sale of alcohol and does not license houseboats. We tend to make arrangements with you informally beforehand so that if you want beer, etc we can get it all arranged. If you are using our drivers this is easily achieved. Foreign visitors are well advised to carry some duty free with them to Kerala. In our humble opinion, nothing beats Bacardi as a mixer, although our office is super partial to Pimms which we mix into substantial jugs with fresh fruit and then play increasingly raucous games!

Your Crew

The crew consists of three: the Captain who pilots the boat, a cook and a helper.

Your Privacy

All houseboats are exclusive and not shared.

Single Travellers

We do not offer shared boats except where single travellers would like to pair up for safety and peace of mind. Some of the team here love houseboats and have sometimes accompanied our single travellers. They speak wonderful English, are female and have a fund of Kerala stories. Tessa standup!


All houseboats come with ensuite facilities including a shower. All boats have cool water rather than hot water for the showers for energy reasons. However, with the temperature at 33 degrees, you wont mind as it is refreshing as they come. Please note that towels etc are provided.

Make a Quick Enquiry to Team Karma Kerala Houseboats

We are here to help you plan something special and memorable. If you want to ask us something, you go ahead and we will get back to you ASAP.