Nehru Trophy Boat Race 2024 August 10 in Alappuzha Kerala

Nehru Trophy Vallamkali or Nehru Trophy Boat Race is the most famous and competitive of the boat races held annually at the Punnamada Kayal (Lake), near Alappuzha (Alleppey) in Kerala. This aquatic festival, called as Nehru Trophy Vallamkali (also spelled Nehru Trophy Vallam Kali) in Malayalam, is organized on the second Saturday of August every year. Vallamkali or Vallam Kali means boat play or boat game, and the boat races, particularly the competition of Chundan Vallams (Snake Boats) is the main attraction for the tourists. This year, Nehru Trophy Boat Race 2024 is on 10th August 2024. 

However, Nehru Trophy Boat Race ranks top among the list. Viewed by a large number of spectators from all over the world, this long-awaited Kerala boat race has become an international sports event. It is awesome to note that each village in the Kuttanad region participates in the competition. Nehru Trophy Boat Race is only one of its kinds in the world, conducted in Kerala.

Nehru Trophy Boat Race Alappuzha Kerala
Features of the Chundan Vallams

The Chundan Vallams (Snake Boats) are considered as the most magnificent among the other boats. Raised about 15 feet from the water level, these Kerala snake boats are set with beautiful ornamental designs in polished brass and wood. The forest wood with which it is made of is locally called as 'Aanjili Thadi'. The length of the Chundan Vallam is more than a hundred feet and accommodates more than hundred people. Resembling the raised hood of a snake, the boat requires about 100 persons for rowing, ten to fifteen to give the rhythm and four to steer the vessel. Chundan boats are regarded as the largest water vessel which is used for water sports.

About the Nehru Trophy Vallamkali

The history of Nehru Trophy Vallamkali is linked with the visit of late Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru (the then Prime Minister of India) to Alappuzha, Kerala. Nehru Trophy Boat Race was first conducted in 1952 to honor his visit. Hence the trophy of the boat race is called as “Nehru Trophy” which is shaped like a snake-boat in silver and is positioned on wooden abacus. The racecourse measures about 1370 m, divided into various tracks for the competition. You can experience a splendid atmosphere by the fast movement of the boats on the serene backwaters, accompanied by the drumbeats of musicians and the cheering of the crowd. In addition from the races, the tourists can also enjoy some enthralling sights such as ceremonial water processions, stunning floats and decorated boats.

Some of the other well known boat races in Kerala are Kallada Boat Race, Indira Gandhi Boat Race, Champakulam Moolam Boat Race, Aranmula Uthrattadi Vallamkali, Payippad Jalotsavam and Kumarakom Boat Race.

How to reach Alappuzha or Alleppey

By Air

Nedumbassery Airport or the Cochin International Airport is the nearest airport situated around 64 km north of Alappuzha. While Trivandrum International Airport at Thiruvananthapuram is 159 km to the south.

Railway Station

The venue of Nehru Trophy Boat Race is about 5 km from Alappuzha Railway Station. The next major railway station going north is at Ernakulam (Ernakulam Junction Railway Station and Ernakulam Town Railway Station) around 60 km to the north.

By rail Alappuzha is linked to other major cities such as Trivandrum, Kollam, Kochi, Chennai, Howrah, Bangalore, Mumbai, New Delhi, Mangalore, and Bokaro.

Contact your nearest railway station to check the trains running through Alappuzha Railway Station.

By Bus

Alappuzha (Alleppey) is well connected to all important towns and cities in south India by National Highway 47. Alappuzha Bus Station, run by Kerala State Road Transport Corporation (KSRTC), operates frequent bus services which connect Alappuzha with other major towns in Kerala including Thiruvananthapuram (3.5 hours), Kollam (2 hours), Kochi (1.5 hours), Kottayam, Thrissur, Palakkad, and Kozhikode.

Inter State bus services are also operated to Bangalore, Karnataka and Coimbatore, Tamil Nadu.


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