Kollam is where the world famous network of waterways begins. It is from here that a 130 km long chain of interlinked canals and lakes wind along Kerala. Lauded by Marco Polo and Ibn Batuta as the trade capital of the old world, Kollam is home to flourishing cashew processing and fisheries industries. The district, one of the most industrialized of the state, produces and processes products as diverse as coir, chemicals, ceramics, minerals and sea food.
Kollam or Quilon, an old sea port town on the Arabian coast, stands on the Ashtamudi lake. The district of Kollam is a veritable Kerala in miniature, gifted with unique features such as sea, lakes, plains, mountains, rivers, streams, backwaters, forests, and vast green fields.
Thirty percent of this district is covered by the renowned Asthamudi Lake. The eight hour boat trip between Kollam and Allappuzha is the best way to explore the backwaters. The district also has some interesting historic remnants and a number of temples built in the traditional ornate architectural style.