10 Top-Rated Attraction in Kovalam (2022)
Kerala, God’s Own Country, is famous for its abundant natural beauty, golden sandy beaches, ancient temples, pre-historic caves, and the serene backwaters. Kerala is renowned for the generations of practices and traditions that have been passed on, along with the many natural wonders that have attracted visitors from all over the world. This land of coconut trees is a magical destination that has something for every traveler. Whether you want to relax and float down the serene backwaters in the traditional houseboats, or you want to revel in adventurous sports like parasailing, trekking, rappelling, and many more, Kerala is the place for you.
The state of Kerala has many beautiful towns and cities that you must explore when you plan your trip. One such idyllic coastal town that should be included in every itinerary is Kovalam.
Kovalam, the beautiful little coastal town, is located 13 kilometers from Thiruvananthapuram in Kerala and is well-known for its three low tidal and crescent-shaped shallow water beaches. Kovalam is also renowned for the world-famous Kovalam Beach, its Ayurvedic massage centers, and many luxury and budget resorts that dot the shores.
Kovalam was initially a small fishing village, and tourism only started here in the 1930s. The town shot to fame in the 1970s due to the hippie epoch. Kovalam still remains a popular destination for tourists from Europe and Israel.
Rich spices, handicrafts, Ayurvedic massages and treatments, and wooden statues are just some of the things that Kovalam is famous for today.
10 Top-Rated Attraction in Kovalam
Here are some of the best places to check out in Kovalam.
1. Vellayani Lake
Vellayani Lake is one of the most famous freshwater lakes in Kerala. It is located just seven kilometers south of Kovalam. Sometimes also known as Velliyani Kayal in the regional language of Malayalam.
Sprawled over an expansive area of 7.5 acres, the Vellayani Lake is a major water source for drinking and irrigation purposes. The lake is situated on the premises of the Vellayani Agricultural University. The surrounding university area is also a must-see.
What Can You Do At The Vellayani Lake?
The lake is an ideal spot for taking an evening walk as the cool breeze blows, and there are beautiful lotus flowers in bloom on the lake.
You will be mesmerized by the entire atmosphere of the Vellayani Lake. It is surrounded by the backwaters and coconut groves, making it one of the most sought-after picnic spots amongst the locals as well as tourists.
During Onam, which is one of the biggest festivals of Kerala, there is a traditional boat race that takes place at the Vellayani Lake, and it draws a massive crowd.
2. Lighthouse Beach
The Lighthouse Beach is famous for the 35 meters tall Vizinjam Lighthouse. The lighthouse is located on top of the Kurumkal Hill and is built entirely from stones. The lighthouse is colored in white and red bands. The lighthouse is a trendy tourist attraction, and tourists like to climb up to the top of the lighthouse by using the spiral staircase. The spiral staircase takes a total of 142 steps to reach the top. The view from the top is breathtaking and the perfect spot for clicking some photos. You can enjoy the panoramic views of the entire coastline of Kovalam from here. You can also enjoy the view of the famous Beemapalli Mosque on one side and Poovar on the other end. Image Source
What Is There To Do At The Lighthouse Beach?
There are many water sports like parasailing, paragliding, swimming, sea diving, surfing, and lots more at the Lighthouse Beach. You will also find many visitors playing volleyball on the beach. The beach is also known for the lush green palm plantations and trees that dot the entire nearby area.
What Is The Best Time To Visit Lighthouse Beach?
The Lighthouse Beach can be enjoyed throughout the year due to the pleasant breeze that keeps blowing here. However, the beautiful experience of visiting this beach gets heightened during the winter months, making October to February the best months to visit this beautiful beach in Kovalam.
3. Halcyon Castle
The Halcyon Castle was built as a family retreat by the royal family of Maharani Sethu Lakshmi Bai. Located in Travancore, the castle is a true example of the traditional architecture of Travancore. This beautiful castle is perched on top of an outcrop on the Kovalam Beach and offers some of the most stunning views of the beach and the sunsets.
The castle was built in 1934 by M. R. Ry Sri Rama Varma Valiya Koil Thampuran, who was the consort of Maharani Sethu Lakshmi Bai. The royal family continued to use this castle as their private residence and a holiday retreat.
In 1964, the government of Kerala bought the castle. A hotelier purchased the castle from the government and opened up the property to the public as a 5-star hotel in cooperation with the Leela Group of Luxury Hotels.
When Is The Best Time To Visit The Halcyon Castle?
The best time to visit the Halcyon Castle is between October and March, when the weather remains pleasant throughout the day.
4. Hawah Beach
Hawah Beach is famous for giving some of the most enchanting sunset views. This stretch, if an isolated beach, is the second biggest beach in Kovalam. This was also India’s first topless beach, though topless bathing has been banned since then. The beach is also known as Eve’s Beach.
5. Samudra Beach
Kovalam is known for having some of the most beautiful beaches in Kerala. One of them is the Samudra Beach. This isolated beach is one of the cleanest beaches in Kerala. There is a huge promontory that divides the northern part of this beach from the southern side.
You can enjoy seeing people indulging in shoreline fishing and watching local fishermen enjoying their trade. There is also a mosque located on the beach, along with a couple of small food shacks.
If you want to visit beaches that remain untouched by crowds, the Samudra Beach will be perfect for you.
6. Karamana River
The Karamana River River is an important tourist attraction in the Trivandrum District. The river is named after a small suburb called Karamana, which it flows through. Tourists come here to take part in a variety of activities. The natural beauty of the river and the surrounding area draw many visitors from far and wide. There are extensive topical plantations spread out around the riverside. The Thiruvalam Boating Camp is located on the banks of this river, and there are many types of water sports that are offered here, including kayaking and canoeing. You can also indulge in houseboat cruises while you are here.
7. Vizhinjam Rock Cut Cave Temple
Vizhinjam is a small seaside hamlet that is home to one of the earliest known rock-cut caves in Kerala. It is located very close to the world. It is located just 17 kilometers from Trivandrum.
The Vizhinjam Caves are known for the beautiful rock-cut sculptures that date all the way back to the 8th century. The caves are also home to the one-celled shrine of Vinandhara Dakshinamurthi and an unfinished statue of Lord Shiva on the outer wall. The unfinished statue of Lord Shiva is shown holding a bow and having Goddess Parvathi sitting on each side.
There is an icon of Tripurantaka holding a bow and arrow in two of his four hands, while his left foot rests on Apasmara. You will be surprised to see the exquisite carvings on the crown of his head.
8. Veli Tourist Village
The Veli tourist village is a renowned picnic spot located at the mouth of the Veli River. It is situated only 12 kilometers from Thiruvananthapuram. There are many exciting activities to indulge in here, one of the most popular ones being pedal boating and speedboating. You can rent these boats to explore the lagoon located on the southern bank of the river. There is also a swimming pool, horse riding facilities, and a children’s park as well.
There are also various shopping complexes and cafeterias located at the Veli tourist village. There is a popular floating cafe run by the Kerala Tourism Department Corporation (KTDC) and a walkway that is decorated by many stone and grass sculptures. This beautiful picnic spot is also home to a floating bridge that connects the Veli tourist village to the Veli Beach.
The best time to visit the Veli tourist village is during sunset to catch a sight of the stunning view. This is the perfect spot for taking pictures.
9. Kovalam Art Gallery
The Kovalam Art Gallery is home to many historically important artifacts, intricate paintings, and majestic sculptures. This is a very popular tourist spot in Kovalam. It is located very close to Hawah Beach, on the Samudra Beach road.
The paintings housed at this art gallery showcase the rich knowledge and culture. The intricately made artworks are a feast for your eyes and for art lovers around the world, the perfect opportunity to see traditional Indian art like never before.
The gallery has many paintings by famous artists like Raja Ravi Varma, Svetlova, and Nicolas Roerich. There are many rare and ancient Indian fresco artworks also on display here. This gallery is frequented by many international tourists who come here to see this ancient art form that represents the traditions of India.
10. Valiyathura Pier
The Valiyathura Pier is a famous tourist destination in Kovalam that shot to fame in 1950. It was during this time that the pier was being used extensively for the transport of cargo. Today the pier is mainly used by fishermen to launch their traditional catamarans during rough weather. The pier remains a major sightseeing spot for tourists for the stunning view you get to see from here.
The pier is located close to the Shanmugham Beach, and there are many resorts nearby. The Valiyathura Pier is a 60-year-old pier that is an awe-inspiring 703 foot, supported by 127 concrete piles. It is built with 250 tons of steel and 571 tons of cement.
The favorite part of visiting the Valiyathura Pier is to watch the sky change color as evening falls and the sun sets on the horizon.
What Are The Things To Do In Kovalam?
There is no dearth of fascinating things to do in Kovalam. From visiting the Veli tourist village to exploring the offshore coral reef to watching the sun setting on the horizon as you stroll along the golden beaches of Kovalam, there is plenty to do for everyone when you are in Kovalam.
Here are some of the top things to do in Kovalam after you have finished sightseeing the major attractions of this pretty little coastal town.
- Indulge in water sports: Kovalam has numerous beaches where many thrilling water sports take place. Trying out these various water adventure sports is one of the most exciting things to do in Kovalam. You can take part in activities like snorkeling, parasailing, backwater cruise, and windsurfing.
- Watch the mesmerizing sunset at Hawah Beach: The Hawah Beach offers some of the most enchanting sunset views.
- Go surfing at the Kovalam Surf Club: The beautiful beaches of Kovalam are spread across some of the most mesmerizing coastlines in Kerala, and there are many exciting surfing spots for surfing enthusiasts who want to try their luck on the stunning waters here.
- Explore the artificial offshore coral reef in Kovalam: The Artificial Offshore Coral Reef in Kovalam is one of India’s first offshore coral reefs. This major project has been designed to protect and enhance the marine environment here. This artificial coral reef has become a major tourist attraction after the government of Kerala allowed surfing in this area. All visitors are provided with a diving outfit, and proper safety arrangements are in place when you go underwater.
- Check out the marine animals at the Vizhinjam Marine Aquarium: Situated just two kilometers from Kovalam, the Vizhinjam Marine Aquarium is also known as the Sagarika Marine Research Aquarium. This aquarium is home to a huge variety of rare aquatic species like clownfish, moon wrasse, squirrelfish, and a school of ornamental fishes and invertebrates. You can see a treasure trove of many colorful corals, lionfish, giant turtles, sharks, piranhas, triggerfish, surgeonfish, and many more.
Kovalam is a beautiful coastal town in Kerala, and you will have the trip of a lifetime if you include this quaint little town in your itinerary when visiting Kerala.