Alleppey is sometimes called the Venice of the East due to her perfect situation on the backwaters in Kerala. Resorts and hotels with breathtaking backwater views, cater for the tourists who flock here for the houseboat experience and to enjoy the peace of drifting past paddy fields, softly waving palms and watching local life. Houseboats are readily available for hire for a day trip, an overnight cruise or a longer break. The boats come with one to five bedrooms, a cook, a navigator and one more crewman.The western beach at Alleppey is wide, flat clean and popular with families a ruined pier still reaches out to sea, it was once an important landing place for trading ships. Picturesque Marari beach is north of town and less busy than town beach. Marari is a fishing village and the fishermen launch their boats from the beach each morning. The village and waving palms form the backdrop to the sweeping golden sands.Famous Snake-boat races take place at Alleppey in August, the racing boats carry around 100 people, the most prestigious race is the Nehru Trophy race, inaugurated in 1952.