The Ernakulam District Tourism Promotion Council (DTPC) is revving up to operate boats from its upcoming boat terminal near High Court of Kerala.

The terminal is located near the Kettuvallam Bridge on GCDA’s new walkway and is expected to be operational before Onam. It is being readied in keeping with DTPC’s plans to begin tourist boat services in select routes, the first being a Tripunithura Hill Palace-Marine Drive cruise.

Owned by the Irrigation Department, the terminal was in a run-down condition till the DTPC began renovating it a couple of months back. “A restaurant, snack counter and information counter will soon be ready on the premises,” said T.N. Jayasankar, DTPC secretary.

Hibi Eden, MLA, played key role in sourcing Rs.15 lakh from Kerala Tourism for renovation works. Though the DTPC has done some good work to restore the jetty and give a fresh coat of paint, some thought should have gone into the maintenance of many pillars that are in a dilapidated state.

However, the renovated premises are in stark contrast with the adjacent ill-maintained jetty from where boats operate to Mulavukad island.

Mr. Jayasankar said the DTPC has planned a heritage cruise in small tourist boats from the water body adjacent to the Hill Palace, the residence of erstwhile Kochi maharajas. “The two-hour cruise will provide a waterway link from the palace to Chottanikkara temple and Enakulam temple. The cruise can begin once a tributary of Chitrapuzha river is cleaned up. The tour up to Marine Drive will be through Champakkara canal, Vyttila Mobility Hub and Thevara.”

The DTPC has sought the cooperation of Tripunithura Municipality for clearing encroachers and other impediments from water bodies. Municipal chairman R. Venugopal has assured all help to the proposed heritage cruise.

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