Thithi thara..Thithi thai…Thithai thaka tai tai toh…….Dance to the rhythm of the snake boats…
Men rowing the boat in sync with their energized hurray tones, hundreds of people watching the ‘water act’ with unclinched enthusiasm, the waters of the Punnamada lake splashing in anxiety making way for the contenders….All this and much more in the Nehru Trophy Boat Race at Allapuzha, Kerala.
The Nehru Trophy Boat Race is held annually on the second Saturday of August every year. The prestigious will held at the Punnamada Lake, Alappuzha on 13th of August this year. Jawaharlal Nehru, the first Prime Minister of India had visited Kerala in 1952. During his visit, the Alappuzha community gave him a warm welcome organizing a boat race for his entertainment. Mr. Nehru was so impressed that he gave away a rolling trophy to the local community and asked them to conduct this event every year. The trophy is in the shape of a snake boat in silver.
Winning the trophy has now come to be a prestige issue for all the contenders of the race. Churulan vallam, chundan vallam, Odi vallam, vadakanodi vallam and Kochu vallam are the famous boats of the race, out of which the Chundan vallam race is the most famous. Measuring more than 100 feet in length and having more than 100 rowers in it, the Chundan vallams are an impressive sight. It has become one of the most anticipated programs of the year, with each village sponsoring a chundan or a snake boat. The basic boat would have 95 oarsmen, 5 ‘amarakkar’ or controllers and ‘nilakkar’ or cheerleaders. Vanchipattu is the traditional song sung by the boatmen to keep their spirits high.
The 4,850 feet long boat race is a sure treat to watch. It is a natural sport that can give you the adrenaline rush like anything else. The calm and refreshing waters of Alapuzha has much more to offer like the houseboats that will take you through the journey of rejuvenation. The neighbouring areas of Alapuzha like the Kumarakom resorts and the Cochin navy base have lots to offer you for refreshment, entertainment and infotainment. You could catch a live fish from the river and cook by yourself on the boat. You could go near the elephants and get a safari. Yummy and finger-licking Kappabiriyani and many other Kerala savories will give a new experience to your tastebuds.
Be part of the Nehru Trophy Boat Race this year and have fun. Enjoy the natural beauty of Kerala with excellent accommodation offered by The Other Home.