Kovalam, literally translating to ‘Grove of coconut trees’ in Malayalam, is a town so much more than what it seems from afar. Adorned by the Arabian Sea as its shore, Kovalam is a celebrated town in Kerala and all over India for the magnificence of its beaches. I, for one, couldn’t get enough it!
The town is indeed synonymous to what its name means. The myriad of the coconut trees and the splendid beaches make Kovalam the ‘Paradise of the South’. But let me tell you, the beaches and coconut trees are only the beginning! The glory of the town lies in the outstandingly amazing list of sightseeing places in Kovalam. I remember how often I stood bewitched during my Kovalam sightseeing tour.
With that said, here are the places I believe you must not miss while touring and sightseeing in Kovalam:
1. Lighthouse Beach
The Lighthouse Beach, characterized by the iconic 35-metre-tall lighthouse, is a prolific beach and one of Kovalam’s best. The extremely popular lighthouse adorns the beach’s idyllic appeal and attracts a massive crowd of tourists; no wonder the Lighthouse beach is so prominent in the entire region. This beach also receives the most attention from foreigners since it the most developed and largest of Kovalam’s three main beaches. The blue aquamarine waters, shiny golden sand, swaying palm fringes, and rocking waves make the Lighthouse Beach nothing less than a beach paradise. Besides that, you can taste the delectable seafood being prepared at the many food stalls on the beach. I still remember how good the prawns were. Oh, and there’s sunbathing, swimming, beach volleyball and surfing as well for you to enjoy.
During your sightseeing tour in Kovalam, one thing that you should certainly do is a long walk along the alluring and blissfully charming shoreline of the Lighthouse Beach. Sightseeing in Kovalam with an old friend? An evening walk here will surely spark memories!
2. Hawah Beach
Lighthouse Beach is no doubt, a paradise of a beach, but the Hawah Beach in Kovalam is glorious too. I, for one, was awestruck by how beautiful the natural scenery was. This was unlike any beach I had been to or even imagined! The things that will catch your attention the most are all too naturally pleasing. Located only opposite the wondrous Lighthouse Beach, the Hawah Beach is a Kovalam local sightseeing marvel. It was also once credited as the first topless beach; however, topless bathing has now been banned.
Hawah Beach is incredibly popular amongst European women; they come here for sunbathing and obtain the perfect natural tan. The natural beauty, exceptional sunbathing spots, and the plenty palm grooves get the Hawah Beach a spot in most Kovalam tour packages. Apart from that, I greatly enjoyed food from the many eateries and small restaurants along the beachside. My favourite, however, was the incredible fried pomfret. Yum!
3. Samudra Beach
The list of sightseeing places in Kovalam is endless. It is so vast that I ended up visiting the third beach in Kovalam; and boy, was it worth it!
Have you ever felt the sea calling you? I have, at the ‘Samudra’ beach. Poetic isn’t it?! This beach attracts a horde of travellers from across the world with the azure and alluring Arabian Sea, clear blue skies, and the sun-kissed sand. I was quite frankly astonished to see such an elite crowd of local and global beach lovers here. Or maybe not, the many surreal attractions are after all, incredibly beckoning to those who appreciate natural beauty! Whichever be the case, you will surely be captivated by the wondrous appeal of this sightseeing gem in Kovalam.
If you’ve planned a trip to visit the sightseeing places in Kovalam with your partner and wish for some privacy, trust me, Samudra Beach is the beach you should be heading out to. I was with my partner, I should know! Owing to the lesser crowd, great cafés and eateries around and a perfect amalgam of rocky and sandy shore, you can celebrate your togetherness without being disturbed much, all the while availing the service of some of the town’s best hotels and restaurants.
I still remember the unearthly feeling of the sea calling me as I walked along the shore of the Samudra Beach.
4. The German Bakery
No travel, tour or trip anywhere in the world is complete without trying the speciality cuisine of that particular place. Well, I’d be lying if I said I didn’t fall in love with the German Bakery in Kovalam. I even thought of skipping my flight back home, just to have one last cheesy quiche. Fortunately, or unfortunately, they did manage to prepare mine well in time. This only tells you how phenomenal the restaurant is!
The German Bakery is situated right across the Lighthouse Beach, but before you step into the restaurant, promise yourself that you won’t drool. I, however, could only keep that promise for no more than 5 minutes. The place is a foodie’s heaven, but I wasn’t drooling because of the food alone, the prices were off the chart, inversely. The German Bakery is one of the very few places I have visited in the world where I and my pocket, both walk out happy and satisfied!
But if you’re out of time and can choose to visit the restaurant only once, breakfast is, without a doubt, the best time to head out to the German Bakery. When you lay your eyes on their breakfast, you’ll know what I meant. Oh, and while you order your breakfast; do climb up to their terrace top. You’ll thank me later. It’s almost unreal how good the sightseeing view from Kovalam’s prime eatery is!
For those who plan to visit the German Bakery anytime during the day or the evening, the menu itself will bring a smile on your face! If food is your indulgence, you must try from one of these lip-smacking dishes: –
- Creamy and rich milkshakes
- Aromatic and exotic coffee
- Too good to be true pastries
- Awesome spicy pizzas and calzones
- My favourite, cheesy quiche, and
- Heavenly pancakes
5. Valiyathura Pier
Talking about calm, Valiyathura Pier acquainted me to the epitome of tranquillity. I remember how quickly I was able to travel the 12-kilometre distance between Kovalam and Valiyathura Pier, but how the 214 meters long jetty felt like the longest walk that I have ever walked. In my quest to finding some of the best sightseeing places in and around Kovalam, I did tread to this quaint sightseeing marvel, but little did I know that this was going to be the place that I would fall in love with; the place where I would revitalize and the place the where I would find tranquillity like no other.
‘Valiyathura’ in the local language means a huge port, and yes, the appeal of the splendid vistas of the Malabar Coast and the Arabian Sea at this pier is nothing less than ginormous! You can spend some of the most meaningful ‘me time’ here as I did. However, I did come again with my partner, and the walk we took was so much more than just romantic.
You too must come here to experience the calm and tour Kovalam for its sightseeing wonders. And if you were to take my advice, I’d say that the panoramic views of the Valiyathura Pier are better off in your minds as beautiful memories than just beautiful pictures in your camera roll.
6. Halcyon Castle
The Halcyon Castle also famed as the Napier Museum was sinfully good as a resort! It is palatial and why wouldn’t it be, it is, after all, a palace turned into an exceptional 5-star resort! If you have flexible pockets, a family to entertain and yourself who is in dire need of a much-needed break, head over to the Halcyon Castle and just relax. As I too was desperately looking for a break, I stayed here for 3-4 days and that’s when I realised, I’m capable of making good decisions in my life! During my stay here, it almost felt like I was wearing a robe; such was the grandeur of this resort.
World-class amenities are the norm here. However, it is the exquisite Kerala style architecture that deserves the limelight. Even the courtyard felt very denizen and became my go-to place to take languorous walks. Oh, and I must say, at Halcyon Castle, you can educate yourself about the Kerala culture and learn more about the local sightseeing places in Kovalam. I incredibly benefitted doing so!
I booked the longest Kovalam tour package and stayed in the town for over two weeks. I honestly don’t remember a second in which I wasn’t completely absorbed in the pulchritude of the town. With the leisure on offer, water sport and touring options and the picturesque panoramic beauty, the town has made a special place in my heart. Every experience in Kovalam be it sightseeing, touring, socializing or walking along the shore of the town’s beautiful beaches was as satiating as it was inspiriting.