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Champakulam Boat Race, Kerala - Fairs and Festivals in India

Champakkulam boat race is the first in the list of all boat races that are held in Kerala. The Champakkulam boat race of Kerala is held according to the Malayalam calendar. Usually, it is held on Moolam Vallamkali. Moolam signifies a Malayalam star or Nakshathram of the month Mithunam. In Kerala, Champakkulam boat race is held on the river Pampa. It is regarded as the oldest in all boat races. Since it is the most popular of all boat races, the turn over of people who come to witness the event is huge. The Champakkulam boat race has an interesting legend behind it.

The Champakulam boat race is held at Champakulam, about 26 km from Alappuzha. The Champakulam boat race is the first one of the season and has a tradition that goes back to centuries. The festivities include spectacular water floats, decorated boats, Vanchipattu, the song of the oarsmen and the most thrilling Chundanvallom race. Chundans are a type of boat, which are over 100 feet in length with raised prows.
This race is associated with a legend. On the advice of a royal priest, Maharaja Devanarayana of Chempakasseri built a temple at Ambalappuzha. But, just prior to the installation of the deity, the king came to know that the idol was inauspicious.

History of Champakulam Boat Race
Champakulam boat race is submerged with the age-old myths and reality. It is believed that the event first took place in 1545 AD, when the King of Chempakasseri, Pooradam Thirunal Devanarayanan was pleased with the love and affection shown to him by his Christian subjects. The story revolves around days of yore, when the King was instructed by a royal priest to build a temple at Ambalappuzha. In order to install a sacred idol of Lord Krishna, kept at the Karikulam temple in Kurichi, the King's minister went there and on their return journey, boats of the entire area accompanied the idol in colorful, ceremonial procession through the lake to the temple. It is also believed that the idol have been given to Arjuna by Lord Krishna.

Place of Champakulam Boat Race
As the name suggest, the great water carnival is organized on the river Pampa, situated about 26 km from Alappuzha in Kerala, South India.Entertainment during the Champakulam Boat RaceThe vibrancy of Champakulam Boat Race is not confined to the bordering area of the State or the Country. Tourist from across the world visit the place during the festival and leave no stone unturned to be a part of this traditional programme. The festivities includes the decorated boats which measures about 100 feet in length, the colorful riders, occupying their systematic position and holding the fluttering flags. The boat race continues with the song of the oarsmen, the Vanchipattu and the most most thrilling Chundanvallom race. Each boat connects the other with the festooned colorful parasols and spectators receives the delightful performing arts in its every stroke.

A total of 19 boats are set to take place in various categories of the race. The event also features exotic water floats, boats decorated with colorful parasols, and performing artists. Catch it along the Pampa River at Champakulam, not far from Alleppey.

On the way back to their destination they stopped at Champakulam, spend the night there and performed a pooja at the place. On the morning the next day boats of the whole region gathered to escort the idol through the lake and to the temple in a vibrant ceremonial procession. After it years later the same ceremony is performed with the same fervor.

 

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