The Ashtamudi Lake (in native language - Ashtamudi Kayal) is the second largest wetland ecosystem in Kerala. The term Ashtamudi, deriving from two Sanskrit words - 'Ashta' and 'Mudi' with meaning 'eight' and 'cone' respectively, gets the literal meaning "Eight Coned."
For its name, the palm-shaped Ashtamudi Lake, however, owes a lot to its topography blessed with the Kallada river and its three tributaries viz. Chenthurnipuzha, Kalthuruthipuzha and Kulathupuzha. The lake being a confluence of these three tributaries is rightly called the gateway to the Kerala backwaters.
Coconut palms that borders the banks of the Lake are really an attraction and a feast for any tourist's eyes. Tourists can travel from Alappuzha to Kollam on boats to explore the lake's beauty further. Being very large, a tourist can fully view the Ashtamudi Lake only if he or she travels on boat.
Boat trips are always enjoyable. But they become more pleasure-generating when the boating is done along the backwaters of Ashtamudi Lake as they remain the most important means to behold and enjoy the beauty of the backwaters lined with coconut palms.
Fishermen casting chinese fishing nets for a catch, lined coconut palms that sway in wind, red-sun setting in the other end of the lake, etc. are a few among the most charming scenes the tourists can come along while travelling on boats along the backwaters of Ashtamudi Lake.
Ever since the times of the Romans and the Phoenicians, the lake had always been in the lime-light. The port at Ashtamudi Lake was one of the five most prominent ports in the state and was used by the Chinese traders.