The Kerala Backwaters is a network of interconnected canals, lagoons, rivers, lakes and inlets. The system is formed by more than 900 kilometers of waterways that run inland from the coast of Kerala, from Cochin to Kollam. The network includes five large lakes linked by canals, both manmade and natural, and is fed by 38 rivers. The picturesque Kerala Backwaters is a well-renowned tourist attraction in southern India.
The Kerala Backwaters that extends virtually half the length of the state of Kerala is used traditionally by local people for transport, fishing, and agriculture. Snake boat races are held along the backwaters every year. These boat races provide a great source of entertainment for the locals and tourists alike. A journey along the lush green palm-fringed landscape, diverse wildlife, and houses and villages that line the backwaters make it seems like a journey through another world.
The backwaters was formed by the action of waves and shore currents creating low barrier islands across the mouths of the many rivers flowing down from the Western Ghats range. The Kerala Backwaters is almost free of salty seawater as it is fed by the rivers. Even, artificial barrage has been built in certain areas to prevent salt water from the sea from entering the deep inside, keeping the fresh water intact.