Kovalam is one of the most popular natural tourist destinations in the world. It is a coastal town on the Arabian Sea. Kovalam is about 13 km from the center of Trivandrum (Thiruvananthapuram), the capital of the state of Kerala.
Kovalam is one of the many tourist attractions in Kerala. Situated in the picturesque background of South India, Kovalam is home to several beaches that draw millions of tourists round the year. In Malayalam language, Kovalam stands for an orchard of coconut plants.
History of Kovalam
Kovalam was brought into limelight by the erstwhile Maharaja of Travancore. The erstwhile visitors from Europe who came to Travancore found the possibility of Kovalam Beach to become a popular tourist spot in the 1930s. Nevertheless, Kovalam came into spotlight in the former part of the 1970s, when hippies came to the town en masse. This migration of hippies began the conversion of an occasional fishing town of Kerala into one of the most significant tourist spots across India.
Tourist Attractions in Kovalam
Kovalam houses a wide variety of tourist attractions and the beaches are the most popular among them. There are three crescent-shaped beaches in Kovalam that are segregated by stony formations. Low waters extending for hundreds of meters are perfect areas for swimming. The seashores feature high promontories or capes that are covered by palm trees. A number of shops queue up that come with different types of commodities and services. Given below are the three popular beaches in Kovalam:
The Light House Beach
The Light House Beach is the biggest beach in the town. It is named so because of its lighthouse, which is 35 meter tall. This lighthouse overlooks the beach on top of Kurumkal hill.
The Hawah Beach is the second biggest beach in the town of Kovalam. It is called so because of the topless ladies coming from Europe who crowded the place. The Hawah Beach is the oldest topless beach in the country. Nevertheless, topless swimming is prohibited now other than in private inlets held by the resorts. The Light House Beach and Hawah Beach are the most visited beaches.
The northern end of the Hawah Beach is named as Samudra Beach in tourism jargon. A big cape severs this portion from the southern part. Samudra Beach is not known to have big business or doesn't witness many footfalls. The regional anglers carry out their commercial activities in this area. The color of the sands on the shores in this area is moderately black because of the existence of thorazite and ilmenite. Usually, the peak tourist season is from September to May. An important portion of the Kovalam Beach is Ashoka Beach, which is also a tourist spot.
There is a host of beach resorts in and around Kovalam. The marina of Vijhingam is around 3 km from the town and is popular for its prehistoric Hindu temples, wide ranges of fishes, a mosque, and big cathedrals.
During the hippy period, Kovalam was one of the major tourist destinations in India. It is still one of the most popular tourist destinations in the Indian subcontinent. The place mostly experiences tourist arrivals from Israel and different countries of Europe. A number of Ayurvedic resorts have also been set up in the town, which have enhanced the importance of Kovalam as a tourist destination. All these resorts offer a broad range of ayurvedic treatment for travelers. Other tourist attractions include Muringa Villa on the Samudra Beach and Kovalam Jama Masjid (Samudra Beach).