Fujiyama, Japan

Saturday, 27 December 2014

Kovalam

Google Maps: Kovalam, Kerala, India
  • Best time to visit Kovalam is Dec-Jan. Christmas and New Yr celebration here is grand and looks exotic given the number of foreigner tourists.
  • Beach is shallow and among the most playful in India. Hotels are numerous so a deal is possible on last minute booking.
  • Dont miss top view from lighthouse. It closes down early. Dont miss the Poovar Island trip. It adds to the charm of Kovalam.

Last time I came to Kovalam was with college friends on the eve of new year of 2008. It was a short and not so sweet stay at this lovely beach town. The way foreigners, specially white people, are preferred by restaurants here will give you a pretty good feeling of how apartheid felt like in South Africa. This time around the plan was to stay longer and experience a little more. Kovalam is more of a landmark in the 5000 miles long sea shore that belongs to India.

Sea View from Lighthouse @ Kovalam

We reached Kovalam from Kanyakumari via train and instantly hit disaster. Our travel portal changed our hotel at the last moment and we found the new one distasteful and stinking. We had to look for an alternative and fortunately found one close by at reasonable price.

Room View @ Kovalam

The hotel turned out to be the centre of our pleasant stay. Our hotel, Varma Beach Resort, was next to the lighthouse and almost a stone throw from the beach. Sea was visible from our room and we were happy. The incessant sound of waves throughout the night was somehow very pleasing.

Kovalam Beach

We hit the beach at three which is preferable over noon because of heat. A more preferred time is around 10 AM. The long beach line ensures that even a larger crowd is spread out which means if you are averse to it, you can still find seclusion among the waves. Salty sea drains you of water quickly and makes you tired so beware of that.

Night @ Kovalam

After a few dips we came back, had bath and took a walk. Our hotel was at Lighhouse Road. Crossing the entire stretch, we came to the Beach Road which is more commercial and we found stores to buy miscellaneous items. Because of steep climb near shore, the walk was tiring and we quickly settled for a dinner and then sleep.

Kairali Backwaters

Next morning we again hit the beach and post lunch decided to go for Kairali Backwaters. It is ten miles from here. The boat takes you into narrow backwaters towards Poovar Island. Here the highlight is a golden sand beach which looks makeshift but is amazingly beautiful. The sea seems overflowing and the waves are huge. We came back by six and settled at the the beach restaurant.

Golden Beach @ Poovar Islands

Next day we were lucky to find the lighthouse open. Its timings are 3-5PM but I guess because of Sunday it was open at 10 that day. View of Kovalam beach is breathtaking from top of here. We then moved to Hotel Leela for lunch. It is one of the five star resorts on a cliff near Kovalam beach.

View of Kovalam Beach from Lighthouse

After a sumptuous and costly lunch we came back, checked out of hotel and reach Trivandrum. We had a late evening train to Nagercoil from where a connecting train was to take us to Rameswaram.