The placid charms of the Alleppey backwaters are frequently highlighted in advertisements urging tourists to visit God's Own Country. But heavy rains in recent days have left some streets so waterlogged, travellers could be forgiven for believing that the canals were right outside their hotels.

Among those who seemed confused was a tourist named Noam Offray.  On Tuesday morning, according to reports in the the Malayalam Manorama, he unbuttoned his shirt and dived in. As passersby stopped to take photos, Offray swam alongside cars and a Kerala State Transport Corporation bus.