Online booking of Thekkady boating on Periyar Sanctuary website is yet to be activated by KTDC over the web. Book by calling KTDC
Online booking is just a name that helps KTDC induge in official black marketing. In peak seasons, you can either stand in the queue for Rs.150 ticket( tickets are issued launch by launch at the counter) or book thru' KTDC hotels located in the forest reserve by paying Rs,500/- (Call:04869 222014). The Rs.500 tickets are called online tickets,not actually delivered online.
Standing in the long queue is cumbersome, you have to stand for hours in a cage near the counter to book Rs. 150 ticket. In off season though the queue is empty, but in season it is better to pay the premium and buy from KTDC.
I would suggest you to stay at KTDC Periyar House, a budget property located within the forest reserve. If you stay with them, they offer you assured boat tickets on extra payment. Opt for early morning or afternoon boat ride to maximize chances of sighting the animal
The hotel is a basic lodge - do not expect any luxury. In fact, amenities and service levels are sub par for the tariff. However, if you want to stay within forest reserve and go for boat ride without much hassle, then Periyar Lodge is the best economical option.
As the hotel is located within the forest reserve, you have to pay entry fee every time you venture out of the forest. You will not be allowed to enter the lodge post 5PM which means you will have to have dinner at the lodge itself.