Sandwiched between the pristine blue waters of the Arabian Sea and the emerald green Western Ghats, Kerala is arguably one of the most picturesque locations on the planet.
The land of coconuts is famous for its backwaters and beaches. So if you’re looking for a quick tropical getaway, but restricted by a small budget and are running out of leaves, here are some options in our very own backyard that you might want to consider.
Yes, we had to start with this one. Located at Thiruvananthapuram, our capital city, it is the most popular beach in Kerala. What makes Kovalam attractive is that the beach strip is shallow and so one can walk into the waves. You’d want to be careful though because the undercurrent is said to be nasty and is notorious for sweeping inexperienced swimmers into the sea.
Kovalam has three distinct beaches – Lighthouse, Hawa (Eve’s), and Samudra. The Lighthouse beach harbours the Vizhinjam lighthouse and attracts a major chunk of the tourists. Hawa beach is the popular sunbathing spot. It was the first topless beach in India, but before you get excited, topless bathing is no longer allowed. Samudra beach is the northern-most beach and is less crowded.
Varkala beach lies at the bottom of a long stretch of a cliff which makes the view absolutely stunning. You can stand on the cliff and soak in the beautiful view, and take a few pictures to spark envy in your friends’ hearts. Varkala is less crowded than Kovalam and is more romantic. While you are there, you might also want to check out the “black beach”, called so because of the black sand found there, which is a smaller beach towards the north of the main beach.
Located around 11kms away from Alapuzha, what makes this beach attractive is that it is not as crowded as the others in the list. So you could go there to spend your time idling, swimming, and sunbathing, enjoying the long beach bordered by the green shore.
Cherai is a narrow strip of land between the sea and backwaters; best of both worlds, eh? And this place is truly mesmerising as you pass through a strip where the road runs over the backwaters right before you hit the beach. The beach has become quite popular in recent times and the narrow strip can get quite crowded in the evenings. But why bother with a little crowd when the view is to die for!
Declared as a Special Tourism Area, Bekal is blessed with one of the best beaches in the country. The Government has been working hard to make Bekal a popular tourist location so you’ll find sculptures, murals, rock garden, and trees near the beach. The beach also has a well-paved walkway so you can take long strolls and rest on one of the eru madam (treehouse) that have been erected on the beach. Artificial lighting installed along the beach, so you can sit well into the evening after you watch the spectacular sunset.
And if that wasn’t enough, you have the Bekal Fort – the largest and best-preserved fort in Kerala.
Muzhappilangad beach is the only drive-in-beach in Kerala, so if you fancy driving through the waves, this is the place to go. This beach sports a 4km stretch where you can drive without the fear of getting stuck in the sand. And though most visitors come here for the drive, the black rock formations along the coastline take away the strength from the waves; making this a swimmer’s paradise. And if you’re not into swimming, you can just walk into the waves without the fear of getting pulled in.
That’s our top 6. We know that Kerala has many more beautiful beaches. So you have suggestions, please leave them in the comments section below.