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This travel guide to lighthouse beach Kovalam contains all the information you need to plan a beach getaway to Kovalam, Kerala.
During my month-long backpacking trip to Kerala, I almost made the mistake of not visiting Kovalam. I had seen a picture of the lighthouse beach, Kovalam a couple of months before my Kerala trip and had made up my mind to go there. This beach, popularly known as the lighthouse beach due to the towering presence of the Vizhinjam Lighthouse on a hillock near the beach, is one of the most beautifully set beaches I've ever come across. However, as I started planning my trip to Kerala, most of the places I wanted to visit were around Kochi and thus Kovalam was a little far for me. But boy am I glad I didn’t skip this place from my itinerary.
Apart from this Kovalam travel guide, if you're want to see more pictures of my month-long backpacking trip to Kerala, then head over to my Instagram profile (@thespicyjourney).
Travel Guide to Lighthouse Beach, Kovalam
Not many people backpacking through Kerala or on a tour of the state are aware of the lighthouse beach, Kovalam. Most travellers that I met during my trip to Kerala had never even heard of this place. This is not very surprising, given Kovalam's offbeat location. Plus, this beach is frequented only by foreign visitors and a handful of locals. With this travel guide to lighthouse beach, Kovalam, I hope to create a buzz about Kovalam beach among Indian travellers and other visitors to Kerala because I believe that this is not a place that anyone would want to miss out on.
Best Time to Visit Kovalam Kerala
The monsoon season in Kerala is from June to September. It’s not advisable to visit Kovalam during this time, because the sea is rough and you can’t really enjoy the beach while it's pouring.
On the other hand, October to March is a good time to visit Kovalam. The weather is pleasant during this time, making it the best time to visit Kovalam.
The summer season starts from April and goes on till early June, during which it can get very hot and humid.
How to Reach Lighthouse Beach Kovalam
Nearest Airport to Kovalam
The Trivandrum International Airport is the closest airport to Kovalam. This airport is well connected to cities within India and many countries worldwide. The distance between Trivandrum (also known as Thiruvananthapuram) airport and Kovalam is only a short 15 km. If you’re coming from the airport, you can directly book a pre-paid taxi cab as you exit the airport.
Nearest Railway Station to Kovalam
Due to its offbeat location, Kovalam doesn't have its own railway station. Plus, since it’s located only 15 km from the capital of Kerala, Thiruvananthapuram or Trivandrum, the Thiruvananthapuram Central railway station is the closest railway station to Kovalam.
Thiruvananthapuram to Kovalam
There are regular buses from Thiruvananthapuram to the lighthouse beach, Kovalam. The bus stand is located very close to the Thiruvananthapuram Central railway station. There are buses every half an hour to Kovalam. In fact, there are a few air-conditioned buses on this route too. Alternatively, if you don’t wish to take a bus, you can take an autorickshaw (tuk-tuk) ride to Kovalam from Thiruvananthapuram as well.
Kochi to Kovalam
In order to reach Kovalam from Kochi, first, you will need to reach Thiruvananthapuram then proceed from there. I took a train from Kochi to Thiruvananthapuram. The train took roughly 5 hours to reach its destination. On the other hand, there are direct flights available from Kochi to Thiruvananthapuram. From Thiruvananthapuram, take a bus, cab or tuk-tuk to lighthouse beach, Kovalam.
What to Pack for Kovalam
Because Kovalam has numerous beaches to offer, carry beach essentials - beachwear, towels, sunscreen, hats, glasses, books to read while lounging on the beach and anything else to help you pass your time and chill out.
Also, while it is acceptable to wear bikinis and shorts at the beach, I strongly advise covering up while you're in town for any activity like shopping or catching a bus or train. So carry some cover-ups, kaftans, t-shirts, pants etc as well.
Where to Stay in Kovalam
Wilson Ayurvedic Beach Resort
The pool at Wilson Ayurvedic Beach Resort
There are many good hotels and resorts in Kovalam that are located near the beach. I booked a stay at the Wilson Ayurvedic Beach Resort which was just a 1-minute walk from the lighthouse beach. The resort had a clean tempting pool, lounge chairs by the pool, and a range of rooms to choose from. While booking a stay via booking.com, there was even an option to add breakfast at a nominal rate. The staff here was friendly, rooms spacious and so I had a great stay overall.
Hotels and Resorts in Kovalam
Because Kovalam is a small coastal town, almost every hotel or resort in Kovalam is within a walking distance to the beach. There are plenty of good hotels and resorts to choose from, over here. I suggest booking a stay overlooking the beach for the best experience.
Things to do at Lighthouse Beach Kovalam
Take a Dip in the Ocean
The water at the lighthouse beach is so tempting that there are people taking a dip in the ocean as early as 7 in the morning. While there are lifeguards present at the beach, be careful not to venture too deep though. Apart from that, you can walk along the stretch of the beach. There are lots of people walking and jogging along this stretch during the wee hours of the morning. Additionally, morning yoga sessions are also organised by various groups on the beach. Join in any of these activities prior to taking a nice long dip in the ocean.
Lounge at the Beach
The iconic lighthouse beach, Kovalam is so tantalizing that just one look won’t be enough. Sit back on one of the many comfy lounge chairs at the beach to soak in the best view of the lighthouse. Grab your hat, sunglasses, plenty of sunscreen lotion and a good book to make the best of your time. The owners of the lounge chairs offer to take your order and serve food right there as well. What better way to unwind during a beach vacay?!
Get an Ayurvedic Massage
Kerala is famous for the many varieties of ayurvedic massages and treatments that are offered here. Kovalam is no exception to this speciality. There are numerous ayurvedic massage parlours present all over town offering massages by the hour at decent rates. Ask your hotel or resort to recommend a good place or try out one of the many massage centres in Kovalam.
Where to Eat at Lighthouse Beach Kovalam
The narrow lane that runs parallel to the beach is lined up with lots of restaurants and cafes with a direct view of the lighthouse and the beach. While I’m sure most of them must have decent food, I loved my breakfast at German Bakery Kovalam. A hearty Spanish omelette with freshly baked bread, butter and a strong cup of coffee was the perfect way to start my day. The epic view of the lighthouse beach was a treat to the eyes. I liked that they had an extensive menu with a whole range of cuisines and dishes to choose from.
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