The tourists visiting the God’s own country from any corner of the world will be amazed looking the pleasant contests of various Snake boats; it is one of the major attractions of Kerala which add more flavor and color to the never ending existing beauty of this heavenly state.
Tourism in Kerala has a long affair with it as it is an indispensable part of the state; thousands of domestic and international tourists pay visit making their presence felt.
The tourism in Kerala becomes more colorful during peak seasons like August to September. Travelers can give their attentions to the famous festival called “Onam” which is celebrated with greater pomp and show. The Snake boat races in Kerala are the major attraction of the ‘Onam’ festival. It is the biggest festival of all in which the beautiful backwater is taken as the venue for this famous event of races where hundreds of people out of thousands spectators usually participate in the races.
Tourists as spectators can enjoy the sight of beautifully designed boats that are normally built canoes made out of woods from the forest and given shape or design similar of the long neck symbolizing like the hood of the angry snake. The length of these boats is around 100 to 120 ft in which around 150 contestant people can be accommodated.
Each of the boats consists of number of crews comprising of four helmsmen, twenty five singers and one hundred twenty oarsmen. Each of these groups have their own responsibilities like the singers setting the rhythm that are matched by oarsmen following the beat of the songs sung, thus, propelling the boats speedily across the target region. It is the major attraction which gives glimpses to the spectators like the snakes swimming across the water.
There are many types of races of the snake boat in Kerala; the most famous one is the Jawaharlal Nehru Trophy boat race. Apart from it, there are many others significant pageants that have long historical associations. These races came into existence since the ancient periods as during those times certain kinds of competitive events were organized by various villagers in order to display the skilful prowess of their own oarsmen.
The travelers can experience the true flavor of the various types of snake boat races in the God’s own country. Some of the following are mentioned below as-
The Payippad Jayotsavam, which is a three days festival, is celebrated every year in Haripad on the occasion of commemorating the installing of Subramanya idol in the temple that was found by the local diver in the lake as believed by people and carried it to the temple with long processions of boats.
Another one is Aranmula Uthrattadi Vallamkali which signifies the ancient folk tale as believed by local that as per their history, a Brahmin, the devotee of Lord Krishna was granted the visibility of Lord. The Brahmin joyfully vowed to offer rice of 51 measures and various provisions needed for an Onam event of the Aranmula Parthasarathy Temple.
There are many more races that have different historical and cultural importance. However, among all the Snake boat races in Kerala are the most significant one which are evidently watched by thousands of people from around the world.