So when you’re in Kerala and travel to Alleppey, you may see both Alleppey and Alappuzha listed on signs.
Are Alleppey and Alappuzha the same thing?!
Alleppey and Alappuzha are referring to the exact same thing.
Prior to India gaining its independence in 1947, India spent some time being colonized by Europeans.
Alleppey is the English name, and Alappuzha is the local Malayalam name. (Malayalam is the native language of people living in Kerala.)
So which should you call it?
If you’re a foreigner, I say it’s best that you stick with the British version of Alleppey.
This is because I nearly guarantee that if you are a native English speaker, you will not be saying Alappuzha correctly. 😉
How do you say Alappuzha?
The biggest thing is that the ZH in Alappuzha is not actually a Z sound as we know it in English. To me, it sounds like more of a rolling R sound that you say in Spanish. (This is for any ZH you come across in Malayalam.)
If you say it more with a rolling R, then maybe you’ll be fine saying Alappuzha!
I have found that the majority of locals in Kerala will refer to it as Alappuzha. (I’m told that Alappuzha is easier for native Malayalam speakers to say.)
But pretty much any Indian working in the tourism industry will refer to it as Alleppey to a foreigner… likely because it’s recognized that Alleppey is easier for native English speakers to say! 😉
Be sure to see a perfect way to spend one day in Alleppey!
HAPPY ALLEPPEY (OR ALAPPUZHA) VISIT!
The need-to-know India travel tips!If it's your first trip to India, be sure to see these tips for getting around India on a budget, and more! Also be sure to see how to spend one month in South India and 2 weeks in North India, as well as tips for the Golden Triangle. And, overnight sleeper bus travel isn't so bad, and neither is traveling in general class on the train! Also see the easy way to get an e-visa.
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Where to stay on the tourist trail in KeralaThese places basically go down the coast from north to south!
- Cochin: Try a homestay in the cute heritage area of Fort Kochi.
- Marari Beach: This is an "off-beat" location as Marari is mostly unknown to backpackers, but it can be a convenient stop to make between Cochin and Alleppey with chill laid back vibes. For an idea of what type of beach can be nearby, see my beach walk from Alleppey to Marari.
- Alleppey Beach:
- Funky Art Beach House again for chill vibes with a location among locals in a residential neighborhood
- And there's Zostel Alleppey too for another beach location to stay several days
- OR if Alleppey is a quick visit, try Dream Nest to be closer to town
- And see how to spend one day in Alleppey (short version: go for the backwaters village canoe tour instead of a houseboat!)
- Alleppey backwaters:
- Munroe Island: This is another generally kind of more off-beat location, and you can see a different part of the Kerala backwaters on a quiet island
- Varkala cliff:
Retreats in KeralaFor relaxation and rejuvenation for health and wellness, also see:
- Yoga retreats in Kerala
- Ayurveda retreats in Kerala - ayurveda is basically healthy living through natural herbs and remedies, and Kerala is the birthplace of ayurveda!
How to book India train tickets online as a foreignerIf you don't want to go through the complicated process of setting up an IRCTC Indian railways account as a foreigner...
Then the most convenient way to buy train tickets online is through this booking website. I've used it, and it's super simple! You buy the ticket, and then show the electronic version on your phone once you're on the train. Compared to buying directly through an Indian ticket booking website (IRCTC account required) or directly at the train station in India, there is a small convenience fee, as well as a less flexible cancellation policy, though!