Best MonthsDecember - February
Traveller TypesCouples, Friends, Families
Rank1 out of 19 attractions in Varkala
Places to stay near Varkala Beach
Reviews • 26
With beautiful cliffs behind your back and a never-ending expanse of blue water in front of you, Varkala as everyone would suppose would be nothing less than visiting a surreal location from a film. The truth is not very far from this as the sight from the cliffs really is breathtaking, but there is an increasing number of vendors that have been allowed to sell their items on the beach, which is almost like an intrusion for people who come here for its solitude. It isn't half as bad as Goan beaches, but if the inflow of tourists continues to grow at its current pace, there will be no looking back and no more would you be calling it a 'hidden gem' since it is so not hidden anymore.
A location like the ones you see in movies- exotic holidays, foreigners thronging and everyone just merry. It's only the cliff that's commercialised, and there is a striking difference between this part and the rest of the town. Flocked with different touristy shops and shacks on one side and the clear blue Arabian Sea view on the other.A relaxed brunch was just what we needed after all the travelling after which we decided to head to the beach. Walked on the Varkala-Papanasanam beach stretch along the endless blue waters. It's true, beach therapy is the only therapy anybody needs. Finding your calm amongst the waves and just aimlessly walking on the sands can be quite the happy pill. We headed back to the room to beat the afternoon heat and we back at a shack for a late lunch accompanied by an absolutely beautiful sunset. We walked till the end of the cliff, caught the last rays of the sun at the helipad then walked further down to the town and back. A nice cozy dinner and we retired for the night.
Day 5 - VarkalaDrive from Alleppey to Varkala will take around 4 hours so start early as this beach by far is the most beautiful calm and secluded place of all. The moment I saw the water I wanted to dive in, this place has a feel of its own, the sacks round they have given a Italian Tibetan western sort of feel, those handicraft shops music stores food and the sun will do it all. This is the place to unleash yourself eat good and just relax, by evening head towards Kovalam and plan to stay there for a day or two.
Overlooking the Arabian Sea, the dramatic cliffs at Varkala offer a splendid view and make it a paradise for swimmers and backpackers to witness the last sun of 2016 disappear into the horizon.
Next on the cards was Varkala, one of the best beaches in Kerala. The Varkala beach, which is also called "Papanasam", resembles old Goa. It has small fancy beach-side shacks selling amazing sea-food, and toddy.
From Vagamon, we made a move to the Varkala beach, by taking a direct morning train from Vagamon. Varkala beach is next to a cliff. You have the shops and restaurants on the cliff and need to go down the steps to reach the beach. Having a meal at a cliff restaurant with the beach view, watching the sun go down is an experience in itself. We tried the Ayurvedic massage again at Vagamon. We also shopped for Kerala coffee, spices, coconut shell handicrafts, and tea.There is one thing though that I would prefer changing if I have to re-live this experience. We booked return tickets from Kochi, however Vagamon is very close to Trivendrum, hence it would have made more sense to return via Trivendrum. Anyhow, on our way back, we took a train from Varkala to Kochi, which we almost missed and caught totally DDLJ style.. albeit with a slight modification. My SRK was running behind me and a nice helpful fellow helped me jump into the moving train. SRK followed shortly. Adventure is not my thing.
As Kerala unfolded in front of us as days passed by we encountered beauty in its different forms. Varkala is one of the most beautiful beech of this country. Firstly if you visit the Varkala south beach it has what is really sea green water. Different shades of water can be seen up to the horizon. Secondly it has which is quiet rare called the cliff beech. Most of the hotels are located on the top of the cliff and have a private stair way down up to the beach. The varkala main beach is very crowded as it is considered as the main beach and has all the eating joints. However if you love privacy and serenity south cliff is the place. The distance from south beach to main beech via the beech is just a kilometer and via road it’s around 2.5 kms. During the day when the tide is low we walked along the beach. However during the night we preferred road as between the two beeches there comes a rocky patch and is risky during high tide in the night. The last 3 days of the year also coincides with the Shivagiri festival which attracts a huge crowd to Varkala.Day 6 :- Varkala to Trivandrum to Kovalam
i had nothing on my mind when i left for this place but for finding peace in the nature and Varkala just offered me that. i little bumpy and not so comfortable ride from Kochi but it all goes away once you reach this beautiful place. i stayed at a nice secluded place called asin momo homestay at the black beach. (around 2km from varkala beach). warm hospitality and good home made food. i have deliberately skipped the photos of the main beach cause its quite crowded commercial and not i wanted to portray the other side of varkala. you can just lay with a nice cocktail at any of the shacks and you'll not get bored of the stunning view this place has to offer. day wise iternary for laid back travellers:day 1: just let the place sink in. you have come from a very busy life and you dont want to be hurrying into exploring this beautiful place. sit back and watch the sun go down.day 2: take long walks on either side of the beaches. they stretch for as long as you can see with no one to bother you. you can also visit the varkala beach with all the fancy resturants and bars at the cliff offering cold beers and a beatiful sunset. the days are very warm so you might just wanna take a swin at the beach and relax.day3: there is a beautiful lake nearby (around half hour scooter ride. ask for ambedkar colony, the lake entrance is right there) serene and calm, you can just keep walking along the track around the lake or you could just sit at any of the places and be lost in the wilderness. dont forget to do the boat jetty at the lake.day 4: take some time off to sit and chat with your fellow travellers. get to know different cultures topped with cold beer of nice homemade filter coffee :)
Varkala is a coastal town and municipality in Thiruvananthapuram district situated in the Indian state of Kerala. It is the suburban town of Thiruvananthapuram (Trivandrum city). It is located 50 kilometers (approx. 32 miles) north-west of Thiruvananthapuram (Trivandrum) and 37 km south-west of Kollam city.Varkala is the only place in southern Kerala where cliffs are found adjacent to the Arabian Sea[
If you're fed up of crowded beaches and overpriced itineraries around other parts of Southern India, Varkala is the place to be! Picture yourself spread out on the endless stretch of golden sand as you watch big blue waves crash gently on the shores; with an icy cold drink in one hand and your favorite novel in the other, this holiday haven will make all your worries wash away with the tide.
Varkala Tales is my new travel series based on my latest travel to Varkala in Kerala. This series will cover sunsets, teas, people, solo travelling and ofcourse places. Brace up for some poetry too. This is part three of Varkala Tales, Feedback welcome and highly appreciated.
The Varkala beachside is actually a series of small bays where the seemingly calm Arabian blue sea meets reddish black ferricrete rocks of the western ghats that date back to the Cenozoic age, giving rise to some dramatic landscapes.
Varkala has a sizeable number of people from all over the world visiting during New Years.If you do plan to join them on 31 Dec, it is advisable to head in early (7pm) to the Cliff and leave real late. The local crowd may increase in number and getting out of the cliff gates would get tough and suffocating. Having been to Varkala more than twice now, I do have a favourite restaurant there- Clafoutti. Goes without saying that you must try the sea food here. Also, try them local – find a toddy shop and try Kerala’s famous knocker – there has to be a reason why Kerala has the country’s highest alcohol consumption.The ideal time to visit would be around October end to March. However, if you are looking for a much cheaper deal, you could choose to travel much before the peak season starts. A trip only to Varkala can last you 4-5 days, however others differ. For instance, Biji Ratheesh, who lets out her house, has a family from Russia come in every 6 months in a year. “They love it here. They’ve even adopted a stray who we take care of when they leave”, she says. Well, looks like Varkala is not going to be a secret for long.Featured image -Flickr
You might be a regular at Britto’s, but next time you want a beach holiday, head to Varkala. You won’t miss Goa. Promise.Geographically located in Thiruvananthapuram, and about 30 kilometres from the city of Kollam, Varkala is Kerala’s best kept secret. Home to various temples, shrines and a breathtaking beach, Varkala’s highlight is the long laterrite Cliff overlooking the beach, the only one in Kerala. The walk along the cliff is an approximate 600 meters with the beach view on one side and numerous spas, restaurants, hotels and souvenir shops on the other. To get down to the beach, one could trek down through a pathway on the extreme end of the cliff or head down a steep flight of stairs directly into the beach. If you are with someone who has knee issues, don’t choose option 2.An ideal holiday to Varkala is to be busy doing nothing – waking up to the sound of the waves, swimming in the beach, a heavy lunch, the afternoon siesta, shopping and dinner with trans music playing in the back. A natural spring, the purest form of water on the side of the cliff, will serve as your pre and post beach shower and quench your thirst. It will be easy to spot this, trust me.However, since you have anyway travelled to his beauty, you might as well explore other tourist destinations and other little gems I found in and around. Rent a bike though:
Flickering candle light. Sipping Mojito. Listening to the roars of the unseen sea. I am waiting for my dinner and thinking where do I start? Few minutes back I bought myself a leather-bound notebook & a pen. I felt this strange urge of blogging on handmade paper. Timing is perfect as I am not carrying my Mac.It all started few weeks back when I got this wonderful news of back to back extended weekends and mind started racing fast. Varkala has been in my bucket list for sometime now. So it was an easy choice. I started looking up for the resorts on the cliff and confirmed my booking with Clafouti Beach resort. Leaving the ticket booking till the last minute was a stupidity but that I will keep it to myself. By Thursday evening I was all set for my trip.If I think of sea I think sand in clothes, salty tongue, seafood, walk on the beach, sunrise or sunset. Sea touching my feet not myself looking down at it. That's exactly where lies the beauty. It's a lazy man's paradise. A walker's delight. A photographer's dream come true with so many vantage points. It lets you walk on the beach as well as gives you a chance to peep down at the sea too. Green tree tops & red soil mixed with the blue sky & sea. Its a colorful world.Welcome to Varkala! My weekend gateway ! Making best out of the extended weekend !As I sit here gazing at the dark sea water glistening with moonlight I am wondering. What is it that I did for last 2 days ? I didn't travel in bus or bike. I didn't see any temple or fort. I didn't even get any water sports. Then why Varkala? Instead I wanna come back for more. Question should be why not?Varkala is different. It's God's gift in this otherwise busy world of running around at the very movement of the ticking clock. It gives you time. Most important thing. To spend with yourself, with strangers or with whomever you choose to spend it with. My day started with a morning walk followed by sumptuous breakfast at Café Del Mar. Return & relax at my cottage. Later headed for my rendezvous with Kerala Ayurvedic Massage & Shirodhara. I braved the threat of oil dripping from my head for next few days no matter how many wash I endure. It was all worth it. Head down to the beach to turn red & taste salt. Few hours later as the clothes dry on my skin I sit down for my lunch. Calamari & Mahi Mahi I am served with rice & chips. I am having lunch at 4 happily chatting with the person from Pokhran running the restaurant. These conversations make my travel more special. At sunset I come out for coffee at Bohemian Masala Cafe or Darjeeling Cafe. I walk more. To the slowly disappearing Black Beach or the rocky Varkala Beach.And of course there is shopping. With dozens of shops selling lovely things. Imagine a desi woman telling me that the jumpsuit I am holding is a copy of brand "Desigual". God bless Internet. There are few leather shops with beautiful collection. I stopped at Babu's leather shop. And that's where it all started. Sanjay, the lively shopkeeper explains why his name changes with customers from different countries. With no formal education or customer service skills training he has found his way to making his customers smile at the first go. It all begins from "which country are you coming from ?" He becomes Stephan or Simon. The guy with 5 brothers & 4 sisters originally from Dharamshala running a family business reiterates the very fact "if there is way, there is a will". I walk out with my new trendy sling bag and it starts drizzling and then pouring. So I decided to sit down for a drink & dinner and scribble after decades.5 things one can do in Varkala -1)Take a Morning Walk to the Varkala beach & an evening walk to the Black Beach. Enjoy the water. Play with the sea.2)Eat, Sleep & Repeat. There are endless restaurants on the Cliff serving different cuisines along with fresh catch of the day displaced outside in the evening. You can select and wait for it to be served at your plate. Meanwhile choose your poison.3)Shop. Colorful, vibrant, varied collections of clothes, shoes, junk jewelry to expensive artifacts & stones. You ask for it & you got it. Carry less clothes shop more.4) Pamper yourself. If you are in Kerala you can't miss Ayurveda. Full Body Massage to Shirodhara they got it all. Take a pick and surrender yourself. Come out relaxed & rejuvenated.5) Learn Surfing & Practice Yoga here Soul & SurfBest Season to visit Varkala - Oct to Mar. April-June is hot & humid. July it starts starting. Sep is still an off season but quite pleasant.How to reach Varkala - Bus from Bangalore/Chennai to Trivandrum. Train from major stations. Trivandrum-50kms/Kollam - 34kms/ Alleppey - 117kms. Regular bus & train available from these places to Varkala.Places to stay - Varkala has lots to offer in terms of stay depending on the depth of your pocket. Rooms starting at 500 to 10000. You will find them all here. In season rates will be steeper.I am done with my drink & can smell the Pomfret & Snapper approaching me. Its a sin to keep food waiting. Time to say Goodnight to my scribbling.Right on the North Cliff. Beautiful View. Aesthetically done cottages. Helpful & friendly staff. Clean & nice stay.
Have you ever wished that you could freeze a moment and keep it forever? I caught the perfect moment, just before it flew away on outstretched wings, and locked it in my heart, a heart full of rich colors-red, yellow, orange, blue, purple, and another color that I can't give a name... The color of miracle, perhaps? I don't know. All I know is that the moment I chose to keep and treasure forever was the memory of walking along the beach...The sun was warm on my face, evaporating all my bad feelings, lifting my sorrows, lightening my heart and emptying my soul of all I knew...The sand stretched alongside me-golden and pure. Only the forgotten footprints left behind remained, except for the debris and a few shells that were scattered among the footprints, as if they had been sprinkled, just for the sake of decoration...I could taste the salt-ground up sorrows: fear not yet forgotten. I could taste the bitterness oof all bad thoughts, blowing in the dusk...The waves sparkled and glittered playfully, splashing over my feet. They were happy then: calm and gentle, leaving behind their endless potential to destruct, unfulfilled.I picked up the curved and twisted shell at my feet. I placed the shell upon my waiting ear. I heard the voices of a thousand years, old songs with promises to come back, unspoken thoughts, memories of joy and sorrow, stories of broken hearts. A miracle was preserved in intricate beauty, protected by the sea-forever...My eyes followed the sea, resting on the sunset, sleeping peacefully on the horizon. For once, good and evil were equal and serene. There are no words how I melted into that sunset: that perfect moment of failures and achievements, of hatred and love...I walked, just walked...till it turned dark...This little beach side restaurant serves delicious prawn cutlets, baked fish, and watermelon juice.
I went to Varkala from Trivandrum. Easily one can get local bus to Varkala from Trivandrum bus Terminal. It takes around 2 hrs to reach there. Then after reaching Varkala town, I took an auto-rickshaw to the North Cliff Helipad. I had my stay booked at Vedanta Wake-Up that too a very comfy bamboo room .After reaching...I checked-in to the Vedanta wake-Up and then freshened up and left for the beach. The beach is walkable distance from the stay. You will find Helipad on reaching there. From there if you go towards the left, you will see Papanasam beach where priests and people use to go for holy bath and yagya. You will even find ATM there and good affordable South Indian restaurant. ATMs are very rare there, especially in North Cliff( No ATM at all ). Mostly purchasing is made on cash.Then I headed towards the North Cliff. A line of rooftop restaurants is there. Each one has there own ambiance . Apart from restaurants, many shops you will see and ayurvedic spa-various spas( even I had ayurvedic spa of one kind ) and ofcourse it is a vacation place for large crowd of foreigners. I strolled around the cliff and then went down to the beach. The beach has two kind of crowds- Indian and foreign. Indian crowd beach is dirty but the other one is quiet clean . The waves get higher in the night and the only sound you listen sitting on the rooftop of any restaurant with a glass of beer in hand is of Waves. This is so effective that you will get lost somewhere for sure. That day I met a group of Keralites and then a Swedish man at my accomodation. He was talking about how dirty India is, street dogs roam around and bark leading to irritation and guys walk together, girls walk with girls ..kinda gay or lesbian thing here. But I convinced him its kinda brotherhood and sisterhood in India. Still he found it weird as compared to his country.This is how my Day 1 ended. Then the next day I had very less time as I had to return back to Chennai. So I went to the beach early morning and then the South Cliff. I also had Spa appointment( Spa in just 500 bucks ). So I rushed to do all the things . The day was very sunny as I went there in March but the night was supercool. I was also out of cash , then I had to get some cash from a forex shop where they charged me Rs 50 extra. Then I shopped a scarf, hat , miniature cards etc. from the cliff shops( Bargaining skills needed :P).Somehow I was left with some time as my train timing for Varkala was 3 pm. So I went to the Black beach, a little ahead of This beach. It's good but water depth is more here.Now it was time to say Good Bye to Varkala ...!!I went to the town and caught my train which took 17 hrs to reach Chennai. As the plan was sudden, so I did not get the tickets , so had to go in General coach. I did not feel any discomfort in General as on a whole my trip was amazing and the spa worked..:)
Varkala BeachLocated at a distance of 54 km from Thiruvananthapuram, varkala Beach is also a popular beach destination. It is frequented by foreigners and provides one with a much needed break and escape from hectic city life which drains one of all energy. Varkala Beach is also known as 'papanashini' ,which roughly means that a dip in the holy waters of the beach cleanses one's bodily and soul of all sins. Other attractions near the beach include the Janardana Swamy Temple, which is a shrine dedicated to Lord Vishnu and a staggering 2000 years old.Alleppey Beach is one of the most well known and popular beaches among all the beaches in kerala. The primary attraction of this beach lies in the facilities that Vijaya Beach Park provides. One can also indulge in picnics and get togethers here, which are popular activities among the local population. The shoreline is stunning and will leave you asking for more.
The cliff is a long stretch of about a kilometer and a half with the sea on one side and the shops & restaurants on the other. The beach below the cliff is most popular with travelers. It's good for a swim, sunbathing and also surfing with really strong currents. Varkala has some of the biggest, curliest waves in the whole of India, which makes it just perfect for surfing and body boarding.
top beach in india.
3) Varkala, KeralaOne hour north of Kerala’s capital Trivandrum lies the Varkala beach, which provides a relatively peaceful alternative to the now commercialized Kovalam. With a long paved stretch of cliff bordered by shacks, this beach is a good place to rest and rejuvenate.
Varkala Beach or the Papasnanam beach, it is very near to the place i was staying at. Overlooking the Varkala Cliff, it was quite close to Vedanta Wake-up, where i was put up. The mornings are lively with the locals having their early morning stroll and kids playing football. I dug up a spot in the sand and just soaked up the happenings.
Varkala Beach is located 50 km from Thiruvananthapuram, and is not as crowded as some of the other beaches in Kerala. It is also the only beach in Southern Kerala where one can see cliffs that run adjacent to the sea. For those looking for a relief from city life and beautiful sights, there are also many natural streams that are mineral-rich. It is often said that the sunset here is the most beautiful anywhere in Kerala. For the religious ones, there is also a Vishnu Temple, which is 2000 years old.