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Varkala Beach, Trivandrum

Visitor Information

  • Famous For: Beauty, Scenery
  • Entrance Fee: No fee for this public spot
  • Visiting Time: Sunrise to Sunset
  • Visit Duration: 2 hours to 3 hours

Varkala is a dainty coastal town which is situated at about 50 kilometers from the capital of Kerala, which is Trivandrum. Widely famous as a holiday spot amongst international tourists as well as visitors from all over the country, this spot has created a niche for itself due to its calm and peaceful settings. The untouched beach which has got cliffs overlooking the sea is what makes this beach different from the others which are found in the country. This beach is also known as the Papanasam beach as some parts of the beach are used for dissolving ashes as per Hindu religious customs. The relaxing setting along with a wide range of facilities for the tourists visiting the place, make it a favorite amongst people looking to enjoy the proximity to nature and to swim around or sunbathe.

Varkala Beach
Photo (Cropped) by Joshua Singh, CC BY 2.0

Traveler Tips

  • Carry extra set of clothes while on the beach.
  • Keep yourself hydrated to prevent dehydration due to the heat of the location.

Things to Do

  • Sunbathe and swim around in the inviting waters at the relatively peaceful beach.
  • Photograph some great shots with the amazing backdrop.
  • Enjoy the sunrise and sunset which the beach is famous for as it creates a stunning aura with the colors playing over the water.
  • Try out the massage services which are provided by the ayurvedic centers which are set up around the area.
  • Look over the beach from the top of the cliff which offers a different perspective on the whole beach and the town.
  • Visit the famed Janardhanasvamy Temple which is present a little distance away and enjoy the architecture of the place.
  • Another place to visit would be the Sivagiri Mutt which was established by the great philosopher, Sree Narayana Guru.
  • Eat out at the umpteen number of eateries which are available to enjoy the local tastes.
  • Shop at the local markets which have been set up around the surrounding area.

Availability of Guides

The beach is a recreational spot where visitors just unwind and relax in its inviting ambience. So, there is no need for guides at this spot.

Best Time to Visit

The summers can be really humid while the monsoons are quite cloudy and sees heavy rains. The location experiences a tropical climate just like any other coastal town. The perfect time to visit would be during the winter months of November to February when the climate is mild and the temperatures average around 25 degrees.

How to Reach

Since this quaint town is just about 50 kilometers from Trivandrum, it is easily reachable by buses or cabs once we reach Trivandrum. The closest airport to Varkala is the Trivandrum International Airport while the nearest railway station is in Varkala itself, at a distance of about 5 kilometers from the beach. The town has got a good network of buses and auto rickshaws in addition to the cabs which are available.

Interesting Facts and Trivia about the Varkala Beach

  • The cliffs adjoining the Papanasam beach looking over the Arabian sea is a special attraction found only in Varkala.
  • The ancient Janardhanasvamy Temple is almost 2000 years old and was built in the beautiful Kerala style of architecture.
  • The Samadhi of Sree Narayana Guru, found near the Mutt that he had established, sees a lot of his followers visiting it during the Sivagiri Pilgrimage which occurs during the starting of the year.
  • It has got a natural spring which is believed to have medicinal properties while the waters of the beach are believed to wash away sins.
  • The Temple hosts a bell which was donated by the captain of a ship which sunk near the beach without harming any of its occupants.
  • Some parts of the beach sand are black, which is due to the presence of a radioactive substance called thorium oxide.
  • The Anjengo Fort which is present in Varkala has a blend of the architectural styles of the Portuguese and the Dutch designs.
Varkala Beach Kerala
Photo by Kerala Tourism, CC BY-SA 2.0

Nearby Restaurants

  • Trattorias
  • Oottupura Vegetarian Restaurant
  • Sreepadman
  • Hungry Eye Kitchen
  • Chill Out Lounge

Nearby Attractions

  • Varkala Tunnel
  • Coir Processing Centers
  • Thiruvambadi Beach
  • Kappil Lake
  • Sivagiri Mutt
  • Janardhanasvamy Temple

The aura of the calm setting is the main reason for people to flock towards this spot. With a plethora of amenities and recreational activities for visitors, the Varkala beach is the perfect place to spend the holiday in.

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