Published on : Saturday, January 23, 2021
Valanthakad, a peaceful island on the outskirts of Kochi, is lively with activity. All works for developing it into a tourism village has gone to its final stages. The opening of flyovers at Vyttila and Kundannoor has made the island more accessible for Kochiites along with tourists from other places for experiencing village tourism. Valanthakad Island is located at the northern end of the famed Vembanad Lake with residents using boats for daily commuting. The government identified it as suitable for promoting village tourism and allocated Rs. 99.9 lakh for improving basic facilities.
“The project has been included under the state government’s 100 days programme,” said Ernakulam District Promotion Council Secretary S Vijayakumar. “Valanthakad was found as an ideal place to experience village tourism. It is included under the Responsible Tourism project to include local residents in tourism activities. Work is in the final stage and we are optimistic of completing it by February or March this year,” he added.
As part of the project, a floating facilitation center, which will house a restaurant and a rest house, is under construction. There would also be a boat jetty and a walkway. The walkway will have solar lamps. “We have identified local residents who will be coordinating the village tourism activities at the island,” said Vijayakumar.
“Tourists can take a boat to the island and engage in village activities. There are souvenir-making cottage industries and tourists can witness the crafting of souvenirs. Fishing, visiting mangroves and tasting local cuisine are among the interesting activities on offer, he said.
Tourism officials are hopeful that visitors would come down to Valanthakad once the connectivity issues are solved. “A bridge connecting the island to Maradu is in the pipeline. Once international tourists start arriving, the place will gain popularity. In future, the local residents can start homestays too. The island is located just over 10 kilometres from Kaloor, and even the city residents can hang out there,” said an official.