Kovalam Tourism
Beach

Kovalam Tourism

Kovalam Info

  • State: Kerala
  • Famous for/as: Beach
The town of Kovalam is situated along the Malabar Coast in the state of Kerala in South India. Kovalam is a famous beach destination visited by Indian and international tourists all round the year. It is 15 km from the capital city, Thiruvananthapuram.

History of Kovalam

The word ‘Kovalam’ in Malayalam stands for ‘a groove of coconut trees’. Kovalam was a cluster of small fishing villages during the pre-Independence era that belonged to the state of Travancore. The earlier history of Kovalam is very obscure. The town of Kovalam came to the lime light during the reign of the Maharaja of Travancore in the 1930s. The Maharaja of Travancore was so impressed by the beauty of the place that he spent a lot of his leisure time on the beaches of Kovalam. He also invited his European friends over to this place and they made the place popular.

People & Culture of Kovalam

Kovalam shot to fame during the 1970s, during the era of the hippies. The town witnessed a heavy influx of hippies taken in by the beauty of the place. Since then, Kovalam became famous among international tourists. Some small fishing villages still exist in Kovalam which are at a distance of 4 km from the beachfront. Kovalam enjoys a languid lifestyle. Characterised by beaches, it has a huge population of fishermen and locals whose culture is regarded as susegad. Also, tourists visiting the destination tend to relax on beaches, eat and make merry, which is why Kovalam attracts a large number of international tourists till date.

Things to do in Kovalam

Kovalam consists of crescent shaped sandy beaches. The three beaches of Kovalam – Lighthouse Beach, Samudra Beach, and Hawa Beach (Eve's beach) – are separated from each other by rocky shores. A shallow-water-stretch that extends to about 1 km from the land makes it ideal for swimming. All the beaches have steep coconut-palm fringed highlands and shining sandy beaches that contain a great amount of minerals like ilmenite and thoracite.

With the rise in tourism, there has been a great development in the infrastructure and hospitality industry at Kovalam. The healthcare industry has also greatly flourished in the region with special reference to a branch in natural therapy, Ayurveda. Visiting Ayurvedic clinics and hospitals for relaxation, rejuvenation and treatments has become a popular activity in Kovalam.

Tourists visiting Kovalam can opt for sunbathing, swimming and other marine activities or just sign up for Kovalam holiday packages that provide travellers a chance to explore the beach town in a more organised fashion. Also, visitors can also take excursions to nearby destinations like Ponmudi, Kanyakumari (Cape Comorin), Vizhinjam, etc.

Food & Shopping in Kovalam

Kovalam is a food lover’s delight, especially seafood lovers. Almost all restaurants have a generous offering of seafood. The beach front restaurants on Lighthouse Beach have displays of fresh fish, lobster, crab, mussels, tiger prawns and others. Depending upon the customer’s selection, the fish is weighed and then cooked according to the desired style. However, service can be slow and the food a bit pricey.

Since Kovalam sees a lot of international tourists, the food menu in the restaurants is also quite varied. From German bakeries to the traditional Kerala-style restaurants, there’s something for every palette. There are some good options for vegetarians as well.  There is not much to shop for in Kovalam. The main beaches in the town have street shops that sell hats, sarongs and other beachwear. Tourists can also buy souvenirs from local shops or jewellery made by locals. A few bookstores in the main town sell international editions of books in various languages.

Travelling to Kovalam

Kovalam is at a distance of about 14 km from Thiruvananthapuram. Buses, taxis and auto rickshaws are available from Thiruvananthapuram to Kovalam. Taxis can cost around INR 400-500 for the 20 minute journey while auto rickshaws may charge anywhere between INR 150-170. Buses, on the other hand, take nearly 30-40 minutes. If staying at Hawah Beach, passengers need to get down at the promontory, which separates Hawah and Kovalam beaches.

The nearest airport to Kovalam is Trivandrum International Airport which is connected to many cities in India as well abroad. Taxis and buses are available from the airport to reach Kovalam. The nearest rail station is Trivandrum Central railway station, which is about 15 km away from Kovalam. This railway station is well connected to major cities in India.

Travelling within Kovalam

Tourists visiting Kovalam can hire bikes or bicycles, either from Thiruvananthapuram or from Kovalam itself. These modes of transport make it easy for travellers to explore the town at their own pace. However, there is also the more expensive option of hiring a private taxi where the drivers, sometimes, also double up as guides and take tourists to visit all attractions of the town.

Accommodation options in Kovalam

There are numerous hotel options in Kovalam for tourists, which range from budget to high-end, which even include staying options on the beach. The beach town also has a few resorts that offer traditional Ayurvedic massages.  

Summers in Kovalam are hot with temperatures going over 30⁰ Celsius. The rainy months of June, July and August see a lot of heavy downpours and thunderstorms. However, the festival of Onam is held during August and is a great time to witness the festivities and cultural events associated with it. The Snake Boat Race is also held during this time.

The best time to visit Kovalam is from September to March. The beaches of Kovalam also deck up for Christmas and New Year, which is another reason to visit Kovalam during this time of the year.

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Kovalam Traveller Reviews

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Read 164 destination reviews
with average rating of 5.9/7, 1
out of 4553 Kovalam reviews 164
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Shivam Doshi

  • Tourist
  • Shivam Doshi
  • 2 photos
  • 5 Reviews
  •  1 helpful vote
  •  201 readers

"Dont miss this place, a must go destination" new review

  • 5.0/7
  • Posted 5 days ago
Kovalam is going to be one of the most beautiful beaches you have ever been in your life. The clear water, the calm waves and the evening light make up for the perfect combination a beach lover could ask for.

Kovalam has a narrow street running parallel to the two beaches(Hawa beach and lighthouse beach). This street is lined up with expensive resorts, restaurants and artefact shops. If you are a budget traveller(like me) you will find it a little over the top.

The accommodation on this street overlooking the ocean is extremely overpriced and as the beach is highly commercialized you'll have a hard time bargaining. The hack here is to look for narrow streets going in between restaurants. The prices in hotels in these streets are 20-30% of the ones on the main street. Keep going into these streets and you'll find a labyrinth of streets behind the main street all filled with better cafes, better and peaceful accommodation, better shopping options and the best part is they are all cheaper than their counterparts on the main street.

A major attraction here is the lighthouse from where you can get an amazing panoramic view and if you have the patience you can even get an amazing photosphere. Apart from this, you can just keep walking in the labyrinth of narrow streets which is in itself an amazing adventure as you come across cafes with beautiful and different ambiences, colourful shops and friendly people. There are places around the corner of the beaches from where you'll get amazing lighting to click photographs and selfies (I don't recommend). It is fairly easy to reach here as it is just a half hour drive from Thiruvananthapuram. You can even take an auto up to there. Enjoy your stay at one of India's most famous beaches. Cheers :)
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Ajay

  • Tourist
  • Ajay
  • Lives in Kolkata
  • 1 Review
  •  196 readers

"A well-maintained city & best for families" new review

  • 6.0/7
  • Posted 2 weeks ago
The place is very suitable for relaxation and to spend with family. The beach is excellent and it's something which is very famous in the whole world. The restaurants were very impressive. The city is quite clean and it is complementing the swaach bharat movement. A well planned city.
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Si Va

  • Connoisseur
  • Si Va
  • Lives in Thiruvananthapuram
  • 23 photos
  • 23 Reviews
  •  67 helpful votes
  •  15546 readers

"Sublime shoreline, calm sea & a wonderful holiday"

  • 6.0/7
  • Posted 1 month ago
Beauty is how we view a particular thing. Calmness is what we felt inside our mind. Harmony is where nature shows its wonderful elegance with simplicity.

Kovalam boasts all these. Go there in the beach and have a walk. Walk slowly and embrace the sound of waves hitting the shore, of a thousand flying creatures above it and give a treat for your eyes of the clear water. Kovalam is one of the better maintained beaches in Kerala. It is easy to reach here from the Trivandrum either by taxis or through public transport systems.

Plan a family holiday here and you can trust mother nature, that the stay here will be an unforgiving one. Waves hardly lashes its fury here, so you can go out in the sea and enjoy the water. The light house beach, which is the most popular one, gives great views. This is one of the very few beaches in Kerala where you can walk bare leg.

The lone traveller might love Hawah Beach more, as it is not as crowded as The Light House Beach. There you can sit in rocks and enjoy the sight of waves hitting the rocks. If, you are serious reader, pick a book, go there, and read in the bed of nature. The hotels around the beach are affordable and offers good food.

Use public transport systems, as it is less costly. Plan for at-least 2/3 days holiday here, as it will give you time to visit Shangumugham beach and Vizhinjam Beach as they are in close proximity.
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Pratik Gore

  • Explorer
  • Pratik Gore
  • 5 photos
  • 6 Reviews
  •  1154 readers

"Fantastic beach to enjoy"

  • 7.0/7
  • Posted 1 month ago
When we go to Kovalam beach, we think that we are in foreign. Clean beach, awesome Arabian sea. By enjoying speed boating, we can see 7 other beaches near to Kovalam including Hawa beach, Samudra beach etc. Great place to visit. Both veg & Non-veg food available. Hotels available in large number.
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Shijo Thomas

  • Connoisseur
  • Shijo Thomas
  • Beachbum
  • Lives in Bangalore
  • 41 photos
  • 20 Reviews
  •  1 helpful vote
  •  12442 readers

"Best beach in South India"

  • 6.0/7
  • Posted 1 month ago
Kovalam is definitely next best to Goa. No other beaches in South India can match it. Be it the yummy sea food at the Shacks facing the lighthouse beach, adventure sports, accommodation options or the view of sunset. Beautiful place to spend few days of your life.
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Basab Ray chaudhuri

  • Guru
  • Basab Ray chaudhuri
  • Lives in Kolkata
  • 110 photos
  • 102 Reviews
  •  37 helpful votes
  •  32387 readers

"An international standard beach"

  • 6.5/7
  • Posted 1 month ago
Although situated very close to the capital of Kerala, only 16 kms, I will suggest tourists to stay at Kovalam for a night. There are three crescent shaped beaches, of which the southernmost beach, Light House Beach, is most popular. There are earmarked areas for safe bathing. Please try. This would be a life time experience to bath in crystal clear sea water. Viewing of sunset at Kovalam is also suggested. There are very good hotels in Kovalam. So, spending a night is not an issue.
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  • 1 vote

Jithu  K

  • Scout
  • Jithu K
  • Lives in Thiruvananthapuram
  • 1 Review
  •  459 readers

"Wonderful beach to go"

  • 7.0/7
  • Posted 1 month ago
Kovalam is a wonderful beach in Kerala. Light house beach and Samudra beach are excellent. Nice hotels are available with or without sea view having delicious spicy and non spicy foods. These beaches are good for swimming since its not have much depth.
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Nivin Pauly

  • Scout
  • Nivin Pauly
  • Lives in Thrissur
  • 1 Review
  •  448 readers

"Kovalam awesome place at Kerala"

  • 5.5/7
  • Posted 1 month ago
A beach town on the Arabian Sea in southern India, Kovalam features three spectacular crescent beaches. The most popular and largest beach is Lighthouse Beach, aptly named for its 30-meter lighthouse, which features a stunning site - the Vizhinjam mosque. For a less crowded beach, visit Samudra Beach, with ample coconut trees and great views of the local fishermen at work.
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Gopal

  • Scout
  • Gopal
  • Lives in Surat
  • 3 Reviews
  •  689 readers

"Fantastic place with its own charm"

  • 5.0/7
  • Posted 2 months ago
Seashore of Kovalam is beautiful. It was clean. Resort is at sea shore so it was beautiful experience. If you are going to Kerala, must visit Kovalam. Stay there for two to three nights for best experience. Nothing to say more about Kovalam because it has own beauty.
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Amar kumar Garg

  • Scout
  • Amar kumar Garg
  • Lives in Mathura
  • 5 photos
  • 2 Reviews
  •  1 helpful vote
  •  1008 readers

"Spectacular clean beach in God's own country"

  • 6.0/7
  • Posted 2 months ago
I visited kovalam in February, 2015.

Kovalam is a beach town on the Arabian sea located around 16 km from thiruvananthapuram, kerala. Kovalam means a grove of coconut trees and true to its name the village offers an endless sight of coconut trees. Kovalam has three beaches separated by rocky outcroppings in its 17 km coastline, these 3 together form the crescent of the kovalam beach.

It is one of the very rare clean beaches in Kerala. Clean water and sky view along with beautiful lighthouse are sure to put you at peace. While strolling down the beach, be sure to visit the lighthouse and enjoy the spectacular view it can deliver(especially during the sun rise or sun set) and avoid afternoons as there is a break time at the lighthouse and the flooring gets too hot as well.

There are plenty of restaurants, shopping markets all along the way. But be sure to choose wisely and not settle for the first one you see. All sorts of world cuisines are also available(but expensive as well). Unlike Goa, the beach shacks closes at around 9 and all the street lights are switched off too. Always be alert of souvenir vendors as they may outcast you if you're not a foreigner.
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Shamulailatpam Priyanka kriti narayan Sanjay Anil kumar Shamulailatpam, Priyanka kriti narayan, Sanjay and 7674 other people have been to Kovalam.
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