Ships, boats, kayaks, ferries: if it involves travel and water, here it is!
I’ve previously talked about the backwaters of Kerala in India, and how I’d love to take one of their houseboat cruises.
The contrast between the colourful, noisy, and chaotic Indian town of Alleppey, and the majesty and serenity of the lakes, rivers and canals beginning a few hundred metres away could not be greater. India is an acquired taste, to be sure, but I was enchanted by the waterways, with their jungled fringes, their tiny villages, their fields, fisherfolk, and birdlife.
Of all the places I’ve been in the world, the backwaters of Kerala in India impressed me most of all. There was an otherworldly feeling of tranquility and majesty as our tour boat glided through the lakes, along canals, past villages, fields, forests, and temples.
The locals lived simply but well, working in harmony with each other and their environment. The waterways served for transport, commerce, food source, and entertainment.
And inspiration. The calm waters reflecting the trees, the clouds, and the sun. The birds going about their business or rising like angels to seek higher things. I was charmed and delighted by the elegance of the land.
Soumya Nambiar of Travel, Books and Food (now there’s a happy combination) spent some time on one of these luxury houseboats, and in stumbling across her blog I am full of desire to immerse myself in the Kerala backwaters.
Sometimes, I think we miss the point of travel. We have the perfect meal, we want the perfect Instagram to show it off. We have a hotel room with a fantastic view, out comes the camera, out comes the laptop to record the moment.
Yeah, there’s nothing wrong with that, but what is it about travel and new experiences that we really crave?
It’s the people, I’m sure of it. People with different backgrounds, different life experiences, different likes and loves.
We see our own lives through different eyes, and we discover ourselves.
Paul and Carole of Paul and Carole Love to Travel – catchy name, that! – have solicited advice from a shipload of cruisers as to their notions of the best and worst cruise ports. I’ve only been to a couple of them, but the verdict(s) tally with my own views. There’s one port stirring a bit of controversy, and amusement.
Then again, I love cruising, and if a port isn’t highly rated, I’m happy to sit with a good book and a cool drink and watch everyone else wasting their time.
But some ports are absolute crackers, and posts like this get me itching to go cruising again.