Varkala is small town in Kerala, South India. Located about 45 kms from Thiruvananthapuram, Varkala is an important Hindu pilgrimage center. Varkala is known for Papasnanam Beach and 2000 years old Sree Janardhana Swamy Temple. Varkala is the right place for the people searching a respite from the daily routine life. Varkala has been a Hindu pilgrimage site since the 12th Century for the Janardhana Temple was built during this period. The main beaches and tourist area are located at the cliff top, which is about 7 minutes walk from the Temple. Varkala is for the calm of the mind and the weary of the body. It is indeed far from the bustling crowd of the more predominant beaches, but none the less beautiful. It is the soothing breeze that lulls the mind and fans the soul, the mystic tune that half eludes and whose beauty enthralls.

Varkala Beach, a beatification of tranquillity and solitude, straddles unending against ruffling ocean, and is crowned with laterite red cliffs. Varkala, also known as the Dakshina Kashi, is a famous Hindu pilgrimage, where thousands of Hindus visit to wash their sins in the waters of Papanasham Beach and pay reverence to the Samadhi of Shri Narayan Guru, located on the cliff top. The beach-wet spirit of Varkala appeals pilgrims and ardent travellers, alike. Contrastingly, on one side where it is a venerated Hindu pilgrimage, on the other it is populated by hip hep hippies lazing on the sea-shore, showcasing the verisimilitude that Varkala is.

Varkala Beach the town has excellent telecommunication facilities, round-the-clock power, an average-rated water supply system, fire station, several post offices and police station. The town boasts a government-run hospital in addition to nearly 10 private hospitals and some dental clinics. Several elementary and senior-secondary schools, both government-run and private are also functioning. In addition to an Arts and Science college named after Sree Narayana Guru, there are several private professional institutions offering courses like nursing and teaching. A dental college, Sri Sankara Dental College, has recently started functioning in Akathumuri with an intake permission of 50 students. People of Varkala are generally employed in service sector. A very good portion of them are working outside India mainly in the Middle East region. Varkala also has a very sizeable number of expatriates in the United Kingdom.

Varkala, a new destination in Kerala, is for those who prefer to do absolutely nothing while holidaying. Due to a spillover resulting from the over saturation of Kovalam, foreigners started coming to the town about six years ago. The trend that started as a trickle became a steady flow within two years. Today, there is a constant stream of visitors. However, because of the area's comparative inaccessibility, a large influx of "outsiders" has not happened here.

Location info:

In the south Indian State of Kerala, on the high ranges of the western ghats.


November to April is the best time to visti the place sine the climate is sober at these time of the year.

History of Varkala City:

Legends say, that a king of the Pandyan dynasty was instructed by the Lord Brahma to construct the Janardhana Temple to relieve the king of his sins. The idol's location was prophesied to the king in his dream, it is believed. Thus for ages Varkala has been a pilgrimage destination and is in recent years a favored tourist getaway.

Very sacred place among Hindu's in south India, it is also called as 'Dakchhin Kashi' ( Varanasi of south India) as the 3500 years old temple of 'Lord Janardanswami' is here, devoted to Vishnu and Hanuman, an important Hindu shrine of Vaishnav clan.

This temple is very closely located to "PAPNASHNAM BEACH". Beach, where according to Hindu rituals, you can wash away or get rid of your sins by taking holy dip in its water and purify yourself. After the death of some near and dear, Hindu's bring there ashes here and after performing a custom famous in south India called 'Vavu Beli', the ashes are dipped permanently into the sea of this Papnashnam beach so that his or her sins should be washed away and he or she shall go to heaven permanently.

Educational Institutions Varkala City:


The local language spoken here is Malayalam the mother tongue of the people of Kerala known as keralites or Malayalees


How to reach Varkala City?

Nearest Railway Station:The railway station is 3 kms from the beach.
Nearest Airport:Varkala though does not have an airport of its own, the most convenient airport is Trivandrum is nearly an hour's drive from here. Trivandrum, being the capital city of Kerala, has a very good air network and is connected to Delhi, Mumbai, Goa, Chennai, Kochin and Kolkata.
Road Transport:Varkala is 54 km from Thiruvananthapuram and 37 km from Kollam. Varkala is 90 minutes away on the bus and a pleasant convenient place to stop for a night or more or an afternoon when travelling between Alappuzha or Kollam and Thiruvananthapuram.

Tourist Attraction of Varkala City

The Papanasam Beach
The Papanasam Beach is a beautiful tourist haunt. It is the perfect setting to spend a leisurely, mellow holiday, drinking in the beauty of the golden sunset, the tame waves and the towering cliffs of red – laterite. Out of these majestic sentinels standing to the north of the 3km stretch of beaches, gush out mineral fresh water springs. The other beaches such as Thiruvambady Beach and Kappil Beach are also known for their pristine beauty and natural grace.

The Janardhana Temple
This 2000 year old temple is famed to have been built on divine bidding. It is an esteemed shrine of the Hindus attracting hundreds of devotees in July-August

Sivagiri Mutt
The Sivagiri Mutt - a religious site was founded by Sree Narayana Guru (1856 - 1928) the renowned philosopher and social reformer of modern Kerala. The Sivagiri Mutt is also the headquarters of the Sree Narayana Dharma Paripalana Sangham, a religious organization established by the Guru to propagate his concept of 'One Caste, One Religion, One God'. The 'Sivagiri Pilgrimage' is usually conducted between 30th December and 1st January every year.

Anjengo Fort
The Dutch East India Company built a strategic garrison called Anjengo Fort near varkala. This fort seemed to have played a very important role in their military stratagy during the 17th and 18th centuries.

Yoga, Ayurveda, & Massage Centres
To relax the mind, the spirit and the body, to adopt ancient and herbal healing methods do avail of the ayurveda programs and services offered by most resorts in Varkala.

Hotels/Lodge/Accommodation in Varkala City:

The Gateway Hotel Janardhanapuram Varkala
Near Government Guest House, Varkala, 695 141 - 0470 2603000

Stavyah Lifecare , Varkala
Stavyah Lifecare Services Pvt. Ltd., Near Varkala Court, Varkala, Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala 695141 - 0470 2607766

Hindustan Beach Retreat
Papanasam Beach, Janardhanapuram, Varkala, Trivandrum, Kerala 695141 - 0470 2604254

Mascot Hotel
Mascot Square, Pmg Junction, Palayam, Trivandrum, Kerala 695 033 - 0471 2318990

Hotel Taj Residency
Ernakulam, Ernakulam, Kerala - 0(91-484) 2371471

Taj Garden Retreat
Janardhanapuram, Near Government Guest House, Varkala, Kerala - 0470 2603000

Residency Tower The
South Gate Of Govt. Secretariat, Press Road, Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala - 0471 2331661

Pankaj Hotel Rated
Opposite Old Secretariat, M.G.Road, Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala - 0471 2464645

Tc/25/1490.S.S.Kovil Rd,, Thampanoor, Trivandrum, Kerala 695001 - 09447970371

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Happy Land
The city Trivandrum enriched with the royal heritage, is built over the undulating terrain of seven coastal hills and encapsulates beautifully the charm of Kerala. Clean and well-planned it has an abundance of red-tiled roofs, never-ending stretches of palm trees, mazes of narrow, winding streets and above all an endless shoreline. It is an ancient city with a tradition dating back to 1000 BC when it was the capital of the Raja of Travancore in 1750. In recent years the city has grown as a tourist and commercial destination, with its international airport becoming the main gateway to Kerala.....more
Kovalam Beach
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Poovar Beach
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Shanghumugham Beach
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Somatheeram Beach
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Akkulam Boat Club Backwater
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Thiruvallam Backwater
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Cvn Kalari Sangham
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Rock cut cave at Vizhinjam
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Thiruvananthapuram City

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Aruvikkara reservoir
Aruvikkara dam is situated 16 km from the city of Thiruvananthapuram, kerala.Aruvikkara Dam in Trivandrum is a favorite destination for a tourist which is dotted with lavish scenic beauty. Indulge in an expedition to the nearby sightseeing destinations in Trivandrum.Travel to Aruvikkara Dam while taking an excursion around Trivandrum, which is a striking picnic spot situated along the banks of the Karamana River. The temple of the goddess Durga which is located quite close to the Aruvikkara dam surely merits a visit. Another highlight of Aruvikkara is the stream located very close to the dam.This stream is full of fish and people regularly feed the fish which come very close and feeding the fish is indeed a very enjoyable activity.....more
Neyyar Dams & Reservoirs
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Peppara Reservoir
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Anjengo Fort
Fort Anjengo is Situated 40 kms north of Thiruvananthapuram, along the sea coast, Anchuthengu is a place of historic importance. It was here that the firstanchuthengu light house settlement of the English East India Company was established in 1864 A.D. Historically, the limits of area where five coconut palms stood was given on lease to the Company by the King of Travancore for trade purposes......more
Trivandrum Golf Club
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Ponmudi Hill Station
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Koyikkal Palace
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Padmanabhapuram Palace
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The Kanakakunnu Palace
Kanakakunnu Palace is loacted in Vellayambalam, Thiruvananthapuram district, Kerala.The Kanakakunnu Palace, situated near the Napier Museum, It was constructed during the reign of Kmore
Vellayani Lake
Vellayani Lake is located at Vellayani, Thiruvananthapuram District, kerala.Located 7-km from Kovalam via Poonkulam junction. Vellayani or Vellayani kayal as known in local language is one of the three rain-fed freshwater lakes in Kerala, the other two being Sasthamcotta lake in Kollam and Pookkode lake in Wayanad. This lake is abourt 50 hectare huge freshwater lake. The most unique feature is that a road passes through the lake. The locals call the banks of this crystal clear lake as Tiny Kovalam. On Onam, there is a huge boat race on the lake which is attended by thousands of people each year.The lake water is extensively used for drinking and irrigational purposes.....more
Beemapalli Mosque
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Kuthiramalika Palace Museum
Kuthiramalika Palace Museum is situated in Kuthiramalika, Thiruvananthapuram Ditrict, Kerala.he name The name Kuthiramalika means 'palaceof horses' and is derived from the frieze of 122 wooden horses on the exterior walls. The roof beams are designed in the shape of horse faces and its unique architectural design truly reflects the meaning of Kuthiramalika, the horse bungalow. Besides the paintings, the exhibits also include jewellery items, metal idols and weapons used by the members of the royal family.The Kuthiramalika Palace Museum displays King Swathi Thirunal’s paintings and collection of musical instruments and an assortment of war arms belonging to the royal family of Travancore.....more
Napier Museum
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Natural History Museum
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Karamana River
Karamana river is a river flowing through the Thiruvananthapuram city, Kerala, India and its 10 km from the city. The river starts from the southern tip of the Western Ghats at "Agastyar Koodam". The river flows 68 km westward and merges into the Arabian Sea at Thiruvallom-Karumam area near Kovalam.The land of Karamana is made fertile by the river.The famous karamana jumamasjid is in karamana. You can see this river on the Kanyakumari-Thiruvananthapuram Highway ( National Highway 47), the place is dotted with numerous temples. Major point of attraction here is the Karamana Boat Club, Karamana Mandapam, Mata Amritanandamayi Math (1.5 km), Madan Thampuran Temple, Sastha Temple and Shiva Temple.....more
Neyyar River
Neyyar River is situated at 30km east of Thiruvananthapuram, at the foot of western ghats.Neyyar River originates from Agastyakoodam Hills. The river passes through Neyyattinkara taluk into the Arabian Sea near Poovar. It has a length of 56 km Kallar, Mullayar, and Karavaliyar are the tributaries of this river. The small canals of Vandichirathode, Kulathoorvaliathode, Maruthurthode, Athiyanurthode, Thalayilthode, Kottukalthode and Venganurthode pass through this river. Neyyar Irrigation Project is situated in this river. Boating facilities are available for tourists. Neyyar dam is built across this river. Neyyar is one of the best visiting place, You can see Neyyar Dam and wildlife while visiting this river.....more
Janardhan Swamy Temple
The Janardhana Swamy Temple is located on a hill, on Beach Road, half way between Varkala town and Varkala beach The presiding deity is Vishnu, and the idol including the lotus shaped platform is six feet in height. As per epic the idol was found from the southern sea coast. The sanctum sanctorum is round in shape and is facing east.. It's reached via a long climb of stairs to the top. However, only Hindus are allowed to enter the temple's inner sanctum.The temple is has been an important Hindu pilgrimage site since the 12th Century. All around the temple, there are strikingly crafted and painted images of Lord Hanuman in various poses.....more
Padmabhaswamy Temple
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Siva temple at Peruvanam
The Peruvanam temple is at Peruvanam, Cherpu,Thrissur District. It is located about 10km south of Thrissur town on the Thrprayar route, near Thayamkulangara bus stop, at a distance of 100 meters south.The temple stands on a sprawling 7 acre ground surrounded by a tall and hefty compound wall. The mathilakam (the bounding enclosure) is very extensive and has two dvarasalas, at west and east, the latter in ruins. Some 10-15 Aswatha trees punctuate the temple grounds with their wide spreading canopies.Lord Shiva plays a significant role in Hindu Mythology and thus thousands of temples and shines had erected to show respect and esteem to him. Peruvanam Shiva Temple in Cherpu is prominent among them.....more
Sivagiri Temple
The 'Sivagiri Mutt' is a 'Ashram' founded by the great Hindu reformer and philosopher, Sree Naravana Guru.Even decades after the Guru breathed his last here in 1928 AD, his 'Samadhi' continues to be thronged by thousands every year. The Mutt is also the headquarter of the 'Sree Narayana Dharma Sangham', a religious organisation established by the Guru to propagate his concept of 'One Caste, One Religion, One God'. The Sarada Temple and Sivagiri Mutt set in picturesque hill of Sivagiri near Varkala have now become a place of pilgrimage with great fanfare.Colourful processions, debates and seminars, public meetings, cultural shows, community feasts, group wedding, rituals all mark the celebrations in Sivagiri hills.....more
Temples of Parasurama
The Thiruvallam Parasurama temple is situated 10 km from Trivandrum on the Kovalam route. The Parasurama temple located on the banks of the river Karamana, is the only one temple dedicated to Sri Parasurama.Many Pilgrims visit this temple for 'Balitharpanam'. People make offerings to their ancestors, after taking a dip in the holy river. There is wide belief that the great monk Adi Shakara made the Bali for his mother at this place.Very famous for Pithru Karyiam (Oblations for the departed souls) where three rivers joins and flowing to Sea. It is believe that, the great Monk Sri Adi Shankara done his mother’s Pithur Karyiam at this place.....more
Vizhinjam Rock Cut Cave Temple
It is about 17kms from the city. It is a historic spot which was left unnoticed for long time. There are rock cut sculptures of the 18th century in the cave temple. The granite cave here encloses a one cell shrine with a loose sculpture of Vinandhara Dakshnimurthi.he outer wall of the cave depicts half complete reliefs of the Hindu God Shiva with Goddess Parvathi. Rock Cut City in Vizhinjam, Kerala Rock Cut Sculptors are basically found in the cave temple and serves as an evidence for ancient glory and wonder of Kerala.The areas in and around Vizhinjam are known for its world class Ayurvedic treatment centers and Internationally acclaimed Beach Resorts.....more
Aruvi Waterfalls

Aruvi waterfalls are located at a distance of 60 km from Trivandrum. The weather of Aruvi region is as pleasant as the place itself, and a part from the scenic beauty, Aruvi is an ideal destination for trekking enthusiasts as well. Sage Agasthiar’s temple located nearby acts as added attraction which especially during the months of April to May attracts large number of devotees.Aruvi waterfall is another pleasant addition to the long list of picturesque waterfalls that dots the majestic landscape of Kerala. The scenic view of crystal clear water cascading down and creating a sound that is music to the ears of nature lovers is what makes the visit fruitful.....more

Kombaikani and Meenmutti Waterfall
Kombaikani Waterfalls is magnificent waterfalls Located near Kallar, on the way to Ponmudi from Thiruvananthapuram, on the upper reaches of the Neyyar Reservoir. A trek of 2 kms through dense forests, would take one to Kombaikani waterfalls. The waterfalls and forecasts around them are worth experiencing.nd further on, another couple of kms down the track through dense forests you will come face to face to Kombaikani waterfalls.The waterfalls and the dense and calm forests around them are worth a look. It is a popular site for picnickers and attracts many trekkers, hikers, bird lovers and wild life enthusiasts......more
Mankayam Waterfall
Mankayam Waterfall is situated in Mankayam, near Palode in Nedumangad Taluk, Thiruvananthapuram district.Mankayam was recently launched as a zone for ecotourism, managed by the State Forest Department. The Mankayam River in its course further down, produces two spectacular waterfalls.From Mankayam, visitors can go to nearby picturesque spots and can also go for trekking. Rising from the hill ranges of Chemunchi, the River Chittar, flowing down through the forests of Brymore creates a tributary in the form of Mankayam River. The Mankayam River in its course further down, produces two spectacular waterfalls.At the Mankayam ecotourism zone, visitors can seek the assistance of guides with the entire activities coordinated by the Vanasamrakshna Samithi (Forest Protection Group), working under the forest department of the State.....more
Neyyar Wildlife Sanctuary
Neyyar Wildlife Sanctuary is established in 1958.It is located 30 kilometers away from Thiruvanathapuram, the capital city. The Neyyar sanctuary is the drainage basin of the Neyyar river and its tributaries-Mullayar and Kallar. The Neyyar river and its tributaries flow along the entire stretch of the preserve. The irrigation dam at Neyyar receives water from the Neyyar river which originates from Agasthyakoodam hill . Tourists can visit the Lion Safari Park, Crocodile Farm and take a ride in the lake.. The Kerala Tourism Development Corporation arranges conducted tours to the Neyyar sanctuary.....more
Peppara Wildlife Sanctuary
Peppara Wild Sanctuary is Located at about 50 km northeast of Thiruvananthapuram in Nedumangad taluk , the capital city of Kerala, the Peppara Wildlife Sanctuary is one of the most beautiful wildlife sanctuaries of Kerala. Covering an area of over 53 sq km, the sanctuary is known for its verdant tropical forests and a wide variety of wildlife including birds. Known for its unique eco-diversity, the Peppara Wildlife Sanctuary was declared a sanctuary in 1983, in order to protect and preserve its rich and diverse flora and fauna. The catchment area of Peppara dam built across Karamana River to supply drinking water to Thiruvananthapuram city and suburban areas forms the forests of Peppara National Park.....more