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Varkala boasts one of the most beautiful and sought after stretches of coastline in southern Kerala. As a result, it has become a must for sun lovers and travellers who are searching for a lively high season scene, but who also enjoy a quiet and relaxed atmosphere. As an international resort, Varkala boasts all the amenities and facilities that most international travellers have come to expect.With expansive beaches famous for their red ochre cliffs fringed with swaying palms, it is hard to resist the lure of Varkala... .From Varkala you are also ideally placed to explore the Western Ghats,which is of international natural and ecological importance, and the famous Keralan backwaters. The Arabian Sea is as blue as the sky above and the waves gently roll in. Lifeguards patrol the main beaches and the swimming is generally excellent.


The Beaches

Varkala boasts a 2km long cliff with expansive beaches. These include the South Cliff, the North Cliff (the hub of the beach scene where most of the cafe's and bars are situated) and the black beach at the far end. Further afield is Kappil beach, perfect for a quiet walk along the cliffs. The sacred Papanasham beach attracts pilgrims, who take a holy dip in the sea on the new moon. There is a natural spring pouring out of North Cliff beach making a pleasant fresh water shower! The red ochre cliffs provide a natural barrier to the commercial beachside development that has occurred in Kovalam. As a result, Varkala attracts travellers looking for the intimacy and relaxing atmosphere of a small resort with excellent facilities and amenities. The main beaches are patrolled by lifeguards who will order people out of the water if they do not swim away from the red flags and care must be taken on certain days. Beach umbrellas, surfboards and deck chairs are all available on the beach.


Varkala Town and History

Varkala town is one Kerala's major pilgrim centre. The Janardhana Temple is over 2,000 years old and is dedicated to Vishnu who blessed the spot with a perennial spring and pond where those who had mocked him had done penance. The spring now feeds the temple tank where devotee's come to perform their last rites for the dead. The mineral waters are also said to have healing and restorative effects, indeed one 17th century Dutch captain was so delighted with his bath that he gave them the ships bell! The name of Varkala and the sacred Papanasham beach both derive their names from the mythology that surrounds the temple; Varkala originated from the valkanam, a bark garment thrown down on the spot where those who had offended the gods were to do their penance, and papanashini,the holy water drunk for penance, has given its name to the sacred beach. There are many smaller temples dotted around the town and cliffside. You will also find the famous Sivagiri Mutt -, 200 acres of sanctified land and final resting place of Sree Narayana Guru, one of India's most important historic philosophers and social reformers. Today an ashram exists with organic farming and rare tree species that attracts many pilgrims and visitors. The commercial centre is lively and affords reasonable shopping in a pleasant small Indian town.


Communication Links

Varkala is well served by air, rail, road and bus communications:

BY AIR : Trivandrum International Airport is 50km to the south.

A Taxi from the airport can be arranged by us.

BY RAIL : Varkala is well connected to the main coastal towns of Kerala by a number of daily express trains. The netravati express leaves daily via Goa for Bombay (Mumbai) and the Kerala Express links Varkala directly with Delhi. Chennai and Bangalore are easily accesible via Trivandrum

BY ROAD : Varkala lies 11km off the NH47 route from Salem to Kanyakumari.

BY BUS : Local buses connect to Kallaballam Junction (9km away) from where long-distance buses go to many destinations.

Around Varkala

There are many destinations within easy reach of Varkala

  • The city of Trivandrum affords the visitor with the best of shopping, a wide range of cultural and religious activities.
  • The famous Kerala backwaters are within easy access since Varkala lies at the heart of the longest stretch of inland waterways in India.
  • Visit Amma's Ashram in Kayamkulam
  • The lively port town of Kollam
  • A day visit to Kovalam Beach further south of Trivandrum
  • A day visit to Ponmudi, a beautiful hill station at an elevation of over 1000m

Varkala beach is expansive, and there are others either side! A paradise for beach lovers. Soak up the sun, have a swim, and its good for surfing too! At the end of the day the cliff top has an excellent selection of restaurants to suite all pockets. The local Keralan dishes are sublime and the fish is superb!

Relax, unwind and let time slip away

with a starlit view over the Arabian Ocean........enjoy


Being situated very close to the sea, Varkala has a moderate climate, with heavy Rains during June-August due to the south-west monsoon. Winter starts from December and continues till February. In summer, the temperature rises to a maximum of 35°C and 25°C in the winters. Annual average rainfall is 310 cm.

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