Kerala has 900 km of tranquil backwaters, which adds to the scenic beauty of the state. Besides facilitating inland water navigation, the backwaters provide an ideal venue for nature tourism and eco tourism. The charming backwater resources are accompanied by more than 500 km of coastline, with beach tourism facilities at several places. The network of interconnected lakes, lagoons, river estuaries and canals in the coastal plains provide an extensive tropical terrain for sightseeing and cruising amidst green and blue surroundings.
From Southern Kerala up to northern border of the state, there are several lakes. Besides regular boat services, special boats and houseboats offer rides and cruises. There are several popular destinations along the backwaters-especially in southern Kerala, in and around the port cities of Kochi, Alappuzha, Kollam and Kottayam. These coastal cities are linked by the lakes and canals forming the west coast waterway.
The backwater tourism industry with houseboats and motorboats developed in southern and central Kerala region, because there are more and bigger lakes in those areas, compared to northern Kerala (Malabar).