Onam Uthrattadi Vallamkali – The Aranmula Boat Race: Article on Must See India : 2062 | Mustseeindia.com
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Onam Uthrattadi Vallamkali – The Aranmula Boat Race

by Madhav Srinivasan 5 year, 8 months ago

During the time of Onam, festivities in Kerala erupt and the state takes on a colourful atmosphere that’s electric to say the least. The boat races held during this time, like the Aranmula Boat Race, add on to the appeal – here’s more...

The Aranmula Boat Race is a festive event that’s held every year during the August-September season in the southern Indian land of Kerala. This boat race is held annually at river Pampa in Aranmula near a temple dedicated to Lord Arjuna and Krishna and is best time to book Kerala tour packages.

Snippets About the Event

The celebration is conducted with great pomp and show with exquisite snake boats that are ridden by oarsmen, and these oarsmen are dressed in their traditional attire comprising of a white turban and dhoti.

All boats are decorated with golden laces, flags and umbrellas adding to the essence in colour against the backdrop of beautiful backwaters and the striking white outfit ensemble. The oarsmen sing traditional songs as they row down the river, and people cheer from the sides.

The boat race is a depiction of rivalry in friendship, and the seven day event is held with hundreds of participants and a grand crowd to encourage the players.

The snake boats, almost as many as 30 of them, are special slender boats that easily accommodate as many as 100 oarsmen with four helmsmen on each boat. They are accompanied by singers who sing traditional songs as they row the boats.

The boats head for the finish line with songs being sung, the decorative silks waving in the air and the cheering crowd, the whole picture of a rivalry fades into a friendly competition and tourists should plan their holiday in South India during this time of the year. a

A Peek Into Mythology

Almost 1700 years old, the Aranmula temple is situated on the banks of river Pampa and was built to honour Lord Krishna the charioteer and the great archer and fighter Arjuna.

Aranmula sits at a distance of 128 km from Trivandrum. The festival is celebrated to mark the most important festival in Kerala - Onam. This festival holds great mythological importance. A Brahmin who once pledged to serve food to a pilgrim everyday was visited by an incarnation of Lord Krishna.

Upon his arrival, the overwhelmed Brahmin promised to offer 51 portions of rice and also conduct an Onam feast at Lord Krishna’s temple. His actions were met with rivalry from the neighbouring village. The boats that were meant to carry the food to the temple were seized by the neighbouring rivals and following this, the Gods sent their snake boats to the rescue. The event went on to be celebrated each year and came to be known as Onam Uthrattadi Vallamkali. When in Kerala during this festival tourists should not miss to include a vacation in Alleppey

Post a grand carnival held on the river with a statue of Lord Krishna and great euphoria, the memorable boat race is conducted. Visiting Kerala during this time can be an experience of its own, as the spectacle in one that can fascinate and enthral you. 

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