Vaikom – The Backwater Land Living with Nature

Vaikom is, in fact, one of the oldest townships in Kerala and has many beautiful and must-visit spots which are still untouched by modernity. This attractive township on the western side of Kottayam district is bounded by the enchanting Vembanad Lake.

A group of islands that forms Vaikom is well connected mainly by 3 bridges across the 3 channels of Muvattupuzha river before it merges to mighty Vembanad Lake. And these lands separated into small pieces by crisscrossed estuaries, narrow canals, and backwater passages. The main attractions are connected with its backwater activities, cultivation, village life, and culture.

vaikom-backwaters

The center of attraction on Vaikom is the ancient Mahadeva Temple. This Shiva temple in Vaikom is one of the divine places in Kerala. The spellbound architecture of Vaikom Mahadeva Temple allures a lot of visitors with its divine charm. The present structure of the temple dates back to the 16th century. Vaikom Mahadeva Temple also has deluding epic architecture & murals of the 18th century.

The traditional economy has been based on coconut, rice crops, and fishing; more recently crops like nutmeg, black pepper, and latex have also been introduced. Tourism and traditional industries are also pursued as means to livelihood. Most of the villagers are earning their living by fishing, coir making etc. The backwater land is rich with thick vegetation and water bodies are teamed with fished enables the locale to live in harmony with nature.

Coir making and mat weaving are the traditional day to days activity of the locals here. Apart from toddy tapping, sand mining and fishing are the main earnings of living. The food delicacies of the Vaikom is very synonymous in Kerala. Especially the fish prepared in Syrian Christian style is very popular among visitors. And the Brahmin community here making use of the rich variety of vegetables and fruits to turn them into a healthy, delicious and nutritious living.

How to Reach Vaikom?

By Air: Cochin International Airport is about 60 Km away from Vaikom

By Rail: Ernakulam Junction and Town station are the nearest major railway stations, about 35 Km from the town. You can also reach Vaikom by getting down at Vaikom Road or Tripunithura Railway Stations.

By Road: Vaikom is well connected with all major cities in India by road. KSRTC runs direct bus services to all major destinations within and outside Kerala. You can visit the website Aanavandi for KSRTC bus timings to & from Vaikom. Private bus services are also abundant. Inter State bus services are available from Ernakulam to Bangalore, Coimbatore, Mangalore, Chennai & Pondicherry.

Things to see in Vaikom

1) Vaikom Shiva Temple

2) Vaikom Satyagraha Museum

3) Kshetra Kalapeetam

4) Thanneermukkom Bund

5) Kumarakom

Vaikom Mahadeva Temple
Vaikom Mahadeva Temple, Photo: Wikipedia

Backwaters of Vaikom

Vaikom is a vast network of rivers and canals which merge into the great expanse of Vembanad Lake.

  1. Ithupuzha, Murinjapuzha & Poothtta Backwaters
  2. Mundar and Kariyaar Backwaters
Backwaters of Vaikom
Backwaters of Vaikom

One Day Tour Activities at Vaikom

Vaikom is one of the famous destination for one day tours. People from Kochi come here to spend weekends and village life experience. There are plenty of packages available organized by many of the local travel agents.

One Day Tours from Vaikom

You can stay at Vaikom and go for one day tours to the places like Fort Kochi, Mattancherry, Dutch Palace, Jewish Synagogue, St Francis Church, Santa Cruz Basilica, Hill Palace Museum, Kodanadu Elephant Training Camp, Malayatoor Church, Kalady, Marari Beach, Cherai Beach etc.

Pilgrim Centres in and around Vaikom

  • Thirunakkara Mahadeva Temple, Kottayam
  • Mahadeva Temple at Ettumanoor
  • Malliyoor Mahaganapathy Temple
  • Saint Alphonsa’s Tomb at Bharananganam
  • Thazhathangady Juma Masjid
  • St Mary’s Church, Vechoor
  • Synod of Diamper of Udayamperoor Sunnahados
  • Infant Jesus Church, Vadayar
  • St Joseph Forane Church, Vaikom
  • Adithyapuram Temple
  • ST Marys Church, Pallipuram
  • Kanjiramattom Mosque
  • Ameda Temple
  • Chottanikkara Temple
  • Sree Poornathrayeesa Temple, Tripunithura

Best Time to Visit Vaikom

High Season: December to May

Monsoon Rejuvenation Programs: June – August

Ayurveda

Go only to those Ayurveda centers that are classified/approved by the department of tourism. Tech Travel Eat recommends  Soma Kerala Palace, offers a variety of therapeutic packages for all season including the monsoon, which, according to the ayurvedic system, is the most appropriate season for thorough medical care. The programs include Rejuvenation Therapy, Body Purification Therapy, Ayurvedic Massages, Various Clinical Treatments, Weigh Loss Treatments and other beauty care programs.