Alappuzha has situated at a distance 28 km from Changanssery, 46 km from Kottayam and 53 from Kochi and 155 kilometres (96 mi) north of Trivandrum.A town with picturesque canals, backwaters, beaches, and lagoons, it was described as one of the places known as the "Venice of the East" by Lord Curzon. Hence, it is known as the "Venetian Capital" of Kerala. Malayalam is the most spoken language. It is an important tourist destination in India. The Backwaters of Alappuzha are the most popular tourist attraction in Kerala. A houseboat cruise in these backwaters can be booked. It connects Kumarakom and Cochin to the North and Quilon to the South. it is the access point for the annual Nehru Trophy Boat Race, held on the Punnamada Lake, near Alappuzha, on the second Saturday of August every year. This is the most competitive and popular of the boat races in India.The mullackal chirap is also one of the attractions of Allapuzha which is the festive season held for ten days every year in December. Other attractions in Alappuzha are Alappuzha Beach, offering a views of the Laccadive Sea, Pathiramanal , Ambalappuzha Sri Krishna Temple, St. Andrew's Basilica, Arthunkal, Mannarasala Temple, Chettikulangara Devi Temple, Haripad Sree Subrahmanya Swamy temple, Krishnapuram Palace, Thakazhy Sree Dharma Sastha Temple, Mullakkal Temple, Padanilam Parabrahma Temple, Edathua Church, Alappuzha CSI Christ Church (oldest Anglican church in Central Kerala) and Champakulam Valia Palli.