Crafting India’s 120-Foot-Long Snake Boats

Crafting India’s 120-Foot-Long Snake Boats


– [Narrator] The monsoon
season means one big thing in India’s southern state of Kerala, it’s snake boat season and
that means building and racing. This great big story is
inspired by, Genesis. With a history dating
back nearly 400 years, the snake boat is a
traditional war boat in Kerala. Measuring up to 120 feet in length, these are intricate and not surprisingly, complicated to construct. (upbeat music) – [Narrator] Today, snake
boats aren’t used for warfare, their used for racing and in the Aranmula festival,
the boats are extremely ornate and can take months to complete. (hammering) – [Narrator] Because of the boat’s shape, they have a peculiar
method of construction. – [Narrator] With knowledge
passed down from generation to generation, these artisans
are not here for the pay. They are instead here for
the privilege of crafting these works of art. As the boats are thrust into the water, they are boarded by four
helmsmen, up to 100 oarsmen and a few singers who are
there to help maintain the rhythm orf rowing. (singing) – [Narrator] It is only at
this point that Santhosh and his men can rest easy. – [Santhosh] (foreign language)

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