Varakala's quite beach and
towering cliffs just might
rescue South India's reputation
for over-commercialized coatal
resort-towns. Though the
beach-side bussinesses and
hotels have developed more of an
affinity for tourist dollars of
late, the distance between town
and seashore still ensures a
measure of the beauty and
tranquility for which Kovalum
was once famed.
How To Reach
To reach Varkala, the nearest
airport is Thiruvananthapuram
International Airport (57 km).
The nearest railway station at
Varkala town (3 km) directly
connects Varkala to major towns
in the state as well as
neighboring states. By road,
Varkala is 51 km away from
Thiruvananthapuram, 37 km away
from Kollam, and just 47 km from
National Highway 47.
Seeing In Verkala:
The town real beach, Papanashsam,
lies at the base of a cliff that
shoulders the burden of most of
infrastructure. From the cliff,
steep narrow paths pick their
way down to the sand. There are
dangerous riptides; always swim
near the life gaurd and ask
about conditions. The cliff-top
path winds north for quite a
distance, with superb views of
the rocky coastline. Beach Rd.
leads west from the Sree
Janardana Swami Temple, a Hindu
pilgrimage site-one of the seven
most important Vaishnavite
shrines in India.
temple was built around what is
now a massive ficus tree, and
although non-Hindus are
prihibited from entering, it's
still worth hiking up the short
staircase for the external view.
From the beach, rickety bridges
lead up the cliff to the Kerala
Kathakali Centre, which stages
Kathakali dance performances.