Kovalam Tourism

Kovalam Tourism

Kovalam Info

  • State: Kerala
  • Famous for/as: Beach
  • District: Thiruvananthapuram
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.

Kovalam is one of the weekend getaway options for travelers living in Trivandrum(Thiruvananthapuram)  and Kochi (Cochin).

Explore Kovalam through video reviews

The Lighthouse, Kovalam

Light house view point
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Hawa Beach, Kovalam

Hawa Beach and lovely sunset
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Samudra Beach, Kovalam

Awesome beach to take sun bath
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View More Video Reviews

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Travellers from Bangalore, Kolkata

Best time to visit Kovalam in the next six months

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Kovalam Traveller Reviews

Read 187 destination reviews
with average rating of 5.9/7,
out of 7554 Kovalam reviews
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Saba Rehan

  • Tourist
  • Saba Rehan
  • 2 photos
  • 3 Reviews
  •  40 readers

"Eye candy"

  • 6.0/7
  • Posted 2 months ago
I visited Kovalam in month of January of 2017 with friends. November to February is the best time to visit. Had an ultimate beach experience. Place is clean and quiet. Offers you all types of luxury.
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  • Tourist
  • Sarvesh
  • 2 Reviews
  •  316 readers

"Ultimate beach experience .. Probably best in india"

  • 6.0/7
  • Posted Apr 7, 2017
I visited Kovalam in month of January of 2017 with frinds. November to February is the best time to visit.
Had an ultimate beach experience.
Place is clean quit.
Offers you all types of luxury too.
The beach and waters is probably best in india what I have seen.
Strickt police & coast gurd surveillance with shallow waters gives extrem feeling of safety.
The lighthouse beach is the main attraction.
Especially in morning & evening time the crowd is most.
All good hotels are at tbis beach.
No vehicles allowed on beach ... Hotel cart will welcome you in oarkings nearby.
Lit rally so much of cleainess and foreign clutre with a lot a lot(more than indian) visiters there make you confuse whether you in india or not.
The place is 1day by road feom cochine
And just 1/2hrs by road from trivendrum the nearest airport and city of famous swami padmanabham and a lot more attractions
Its 4hrs by road from Kanyakumari.
The town is peaceful ... People are friendly ... Sea food and south indian food awesome
Just don't do shoo ping here I found it costlier.
And food at beach places is much costly but have typicall western outlook thing to bbe experienced once.
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Harvinder singh

  • Tourist
  • Harvinder singh
  • 8 photos
  • 9 Reviews
  •  740 readers

"Holiday beach"

  • 4.0/7
  • Posted Mar 9, 2017
Went there in march with family and mostly that time foreign tourists are there and few newly married couples. Maximum two days are sufficient to enjoy. Hotels at light house beach are very poor of standard and very costly for food and shopping. Also ola and uber not plying there from Trivandrum.
You can stay at Trivandrum for best economical hotel which is 14 km away but have good hotels.
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N singhal

  • Tourist
  • N singhal
  • 4 Reviews
  •  742 readers

"Kovalam Beach"

  • 6.0/7
  • Posted Mar 9, 2017
After seeing so many beaches in Kerala, tousit appears that Kovalam beach is the smoothest, and familybeach. Though it is small in length and might get over crowded in peak season but it is very smooth particularly new people will start loving beaches.
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Swati Chakraborty

  • Explorer
  • Swati Chakraborty
  • Lives in Howrah
  • 163 photos
  • 15 Reviews
  •  30 helpful votes
  •  21025 readers

"Kovalam Beach"

  • 7.0/7
  • Posted Jan 22, 2017
Kovalam sea beach is one of the finest beach in India as well as it is also an internationally famous Kovalam beach is a finest beach in India as well as it is also an internationally famous beach ... It is an ideal place to spend your leisure time peacefully ... Situated in the southern side of the capital of Kerala, Trivandrum, just 16km away from Trivandrum .. I have visited there in the month of December'16 during my journey from Kanyakumari to Trivandrum.
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  • 1 vote

Namrata Sharma

  • Tourist
  • Namrata Sharma
  • Lives in Mumbai
  • 2 Reviews
  •  837 readers

"Sea sand and much more"

  • 7.0/7
  • Posted Jan 15, 2017
Omg heaven on earth. Sea paradise with blue sky blue water and golden sand. Visit with your family. Explore the beauty of sea and shores. Less options for vegetarians. Not much activities for kids but nor unmanageable. Hindi is very less spoken. Much popular among foreigners.
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Spoorthi bhat

  • Tourist
  • Spoorthi bhat
  • 5 Reviews
  •  906 readers

"Too commercial, not the best place to go if you want to relax"

  • 4.0/7
  • Posted Dec 23, 2016
Is it too much to ask for an experience of having a beer by the beach? Well, it is if you're at Kovalam! We paid 250 bucks for it, that too in average settings. Such a disappointment. December evening, it's too crowded and the places have formed a cartel and do not accept cards, which is a pain in the **** after the recent demonetisation. One place told us they'd accept it only if the bill was over ₹1000, I mean, seriously ?!
The lighthouse looks good, we didn't get into the water since it was very crowded. If you haven't been to many beaches you might find this good, but otherwise, go to Varkala north Cliff instead for a better experience.
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Ashish Shukla

  • Explorer
  • Ashish Shukla
  • Cityslicker
  • Lives in Delhi
  • 280 photos
  • 67 Reviews
  •  116 helpful votes
  •  38255 readers

"Best beach ever seen"

  • 7.0/7
  • Posted Nov 29, 2016
Kovalam beach in Trivandrum is the best beach ever I saw in my entire life. It's neat, clean, beautiful and has 3 way beautiful views. The water is very neat and clean and the whole ambience is just too good. This place is highly popular among foreigners. There are many beautiful resorts and hotels near this beach providing stay.

Don't miss the fish curry and banana chips if you are a non-veg person.
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Pravin Kamat

  • Tourist
  • Pravin Kamat
  • Lives in Mumbai
  • 1 photo
  • 3 Reviews
  •  1351 readers

"Overrated Beach Destination"

  • 4.0/7
  • Posted Nov 27, 2016
I feel Kovalam as a beach destination is overrated. The beaches are rocky and not safe for a swim. The beaches tend to be overcrowded as they are small in length and area. The beaches in Goa or Alibag are much better. I would not go out of the way to visit this destination again.
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Jeetendra jain

  • Tourist
  • Jeetendra jain
  • 5 Reviews
  •  1491 readers

"Overall satisfactory stay"

  • 6.0/7
  • Posted Oct 15, 2016
Nice location. Beach side is clean and easily accessible. 3 pools add to the experience. Room service has to improve. Even hygiene in the room has to improve. Over priced. But overall it is satisfactory. We were given a upgraded rooom. Breakfast was excellent.
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Sandip Sujith s nair Ganeshan Sumit kumar Sandip, Sujith s nair, Ganeshan and 10208 other people have been to Kovalam.
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