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Homestays on Munroe Island are a relatively new thing in the past few years.

It’s not as common on the Kerala backpacking trail as are the top destinations of the Alleppey backwaters and Varkala Beach.

But it does seem like it’s gaining popularity, and you’ll come across travelers now and then who have made the Munroe Island backwaters a part of their trip to Kerala.

If you have 10 days in Kerala, Munroe Island can be perfect to add as a part of your Kerala itinerary too, along with Cochin, Alleppey, Munnar, and Varkala!


Best things to do in Munroe island backwaters homestay. Backpacking Kerala backwaters, India


What’s a homestay on Munroe Island?

The term “homestay” is used loosely in most parts of India.

In other countries, a homestay might mean you are literally staying in someone’s home.

While surely it’s possible to find homestays in India in which you are staying in someone’s family home, this typically isn’t the case in Munroe Island (and other parts of Kerala).

But that’s okay!

It basically just means that you can expect a more homely atmosphere, and not just a formal hotel experience.

Typically you’ll have the chance for plenty of interaction with the owner of the homestay, as well as possibly the family and friends.


How to get to Munroe Island

Whether you’re coming from Alleppey or Varkala, it’s easy to get to Munroe Island by train.

Although, not being on the route of long distance trains, the frequency of trains is less.

You can take that as a sign that Munroe Island really is in a quieter part of Kerala!


Direct trains to Munroe Island:


The main big city near Munroe Island is Kollam.

If you arrive by train to Kollam or by ferry to Kollam (on the Alleppey to Kollam ferry!), the easiest would be to get a rickshaw to Munroe Island. That will probably be around 500 rupees (US$7).

The most convenient option would likely be to find a train direct to Munroe Island though.

If you don’t mind taking general class, it’ll be a cheap ride too!

Once you get to the Munroe Island train station, a rickshaw to your Munroe Island homestay of choice will probably be around 50 rupees (less than US$1).





5 things to do on Munroe Island that will make it so you have the BEST homestay experience


These are things to do in Munroe Island that you may want to look for when selecting your own homestay accommodation.


1. Eat Kerala FOOD!

Best things to do in Munroe island backwaters homestay: Kerala food for breakfast, lunch, dinner. Backpacking Kerala backwaters, India


To me, this really is the #1 reason that makes a Munroe Island homestay the best.

I LOVED pretty much all the homestay food that was served.

There was one meal that was a bit too spicy for me, so then after that they kept it mild. But besides that, it was so good.

I might go back just for the food.

And it was basically all you can eat too.

The meals were NOT included in the price of accommodation.

The price for food was around 100-150 rupees (US$2) per meal for vegetarian food. Seafood was around an extra 100 rupees.

The place I stayed was a short 30 second or so walk from the kitchen and dining area, so there’s no need to go in search of a restaurant during your stay. I ate all my meals here.

If you want beer, your homestay owner will likely be happy to go and buy you some as long as you ask for it ahead of time. You can expect a premium charge for this “service” though.



2. Stay in a cute place right on the backwaters

Best things to do in Munroe island backwaters homestay: Stay in perfect accommodation on Kerala backwaters. Backpacking Kerala backwaters, India


You make a trip to the Munroe Island backwaters for the atmosphere.

So it’s only fitting that you find a place that’s right along the water!

Not all homestays will be on the water, but if this sounds good to you, be sure to look for it!



3. Go cycling around the island

Best things to do in Munroe island backwaters homestay: Cycling in Munroe island with free bicycle rental. Backpacking Kerala backwaters, India


If you want to take a break from just sitting and enjoying the views of the waters from the front porch, you can also get in some cycling on Munroe Island!

This can be a bike ride of 1-2 hours on the quiet roads of the island.

The ride can include roads that are inland, as well as roads that run right along the Kerala backwaters.

The place I stayed offered free bicycle rental.



4. Go for a quiet sunrise canoe tour

Best things to do in Munroe island backwaters homestay: Best sunrise Munroe island canoe tours. Backpacking Kerala backwaters, India



If this is your first Kerala backwaters tour, you will probably love this canoe ride.

The canoe tour got started off early, around 6am, which meant most of the ride was through quiet canals and in a wide open channel that was also pretty empty.

There were some village people who were working on the waters bright and early, but other than that, it was pretty tranquil.

Being at sunrise and going through lots of trees in the canals though, there were mosquitoes around, so bug spray or mosquito repellent cream could be a good idea! (You can buy this in India for cheap.)

The Munroe Island canoe tour was another extra cost. Mine was 500 rupees (US$7) for the 2-hour canoe ride.

If you won’t be staying on Munroe Island but are interested in a canoe tour, you can try contacting a homestay and then ask if they offer canoe tours.

Chances are that if they offer it to guests, they will offer it to non-guests too!



5. Go for a village walk

Best things to do in Munroe island backwaters homestay: Village walk tour. Backpacking Kerala backwaters, India


So I was staying at an Alleppey Beach guesthouse, and a girl was talking about how much she loved her Munroe Island homestay.

She mentioned the village walk as one of her favorite activities on Munroe Island, and I got a little jealous. πŸ˜‰

My homestay didn’t come with the free village tour to learn more about local life like hers did.

So if a village walk sounds good to you, you may just want to look into seeing if it’s something that’s offered at the accommodation you’re looking at.



Where to find your perfect Munroe Island homestay

Best things to do in Munroe island backwaters homestay: Where to stay in Munroe island near Kerala backwaters. Backpacking Kerala backwaters, India


There are affiliate links below. You should totally check out the homestay reviews.


Okay, so now that you know that you want to go to Munroe Island, where to stay?!


Have a look at these top-rated Munroe Island homestays


More Munroe Island accommodation

Similar to homestays, lower your expectation about the definition of a “resort” on Munroe Island!


And even more places to stay

Put in your travel dates below and it will show you the prices of hotels in Munroe Island on the map!




Munroe Island homestays on airbnb

You can also find some homestays on airbnb.


Winging it

You can also always show up on Munroe Island and have a walk around to see what you like.

But this may not be the best option since accommodation options in general tend to be more spread out here.

Or taking a rickshaw around the island to explore your options may work too if you want to see before you stay.


And that’s a about a Munroe Island homestay in the Kerala backwaters!


Be sure to also get ideas for how to spend one month in South India!




Best things to do in Munroe island backwaters homestay. Backpacking Kerala backwaters, India

Nervous about taking public transportation in India?! Sometimes just knowing what to expect can ease the mind! While I have traveled in India with travel partners (people I've met while traveling in India), here are some of my public transport trips in India, most of which I did as a solo female traveler:

For examples of general class train travel, see:
For examples of AC train travel, see:
For examples of local bus travel, see:
For examples of overnight bus travel, see:
See more backpacking India travel tips!