Kovalam is located by the Arabian Sea in the Indian state of Kerala. The name of the state has been derived from the Malayali word ‘Kovalam,’ which means ‘Grove of coconut trees’ and as the name suggests, the city’s most prominent character is the endless rows of coconut trees. The city first came to light in the 1920’s with the construction of the first beach resort called Halcyon Castle by the Regent Maharani Sethu Lakshmi Bayi of Travancore. The spot soon turned into a tourist and beach destination for the European guests of the 1930’s. Kovalam once again shot into limelight in the early seventies with arrivals of the masses of hippies on their way to Ceylon in the Hippie Trail, exposing the rich and unique culture of the area and transforming it into one of the most sought after travel destinations in the world. Today this pristine land boasts white sand beaches, stunning views of the Arabian Sea, ayurvedic treatments, lakes, rivers, historical structures, shopping districts, excellent cuisine, outdoor activities and adventure sports, aptly giving it the name of the ‘Paradise of the South’. In the relaxed, tranquil ambience of Kovalam, one can spend the day loafing on warm sand, watch the sun set, visit the beach shacks or rejuvenate the senses by indulging in a well renowned Ayurveda Massage. Kovalam is a land of endless possibilities and it is inevitable that one would stumble upon some new treasures and exciting adventures that the city has to offer.
Essential travel information and Kovalam tips for your visit
- Kovalam Time Zone – IST (Indian Standard Time) GMT+5:30
- Currency – The currency used in Kochi is Indian Rupee.
- Electricity – India uses 230 Volts, 50 Hz alternating current as the power source. Plugs and sockets have grounded / earthed 3 Pin connections (Type D) or ungrounded 2 pin connections (Type C).
- Internet – 3G, Wi-Fi connections are available in almost all the hotels in the city.
- Languages – The dominant languages spoken in Kovalam are Malayalam and English
- Security – Police – 100, Ambulance – 102, Fire – 101
- Tipping: Tipping is a common practice in Kovalam. The tips should not be more than 15% of the bill. At high-class restaurants and hotels, generally a 10 per cent service surcharge is added to the bill. Tipping at such places is discretionary.
- Ask for permission before photographing local people and places.
- Remember, to remove headgear, footwear and cover your body reasonably well when visiting religious places. Locals generally wear white or sober colours. Conservative dress is the norm.
- Some of the areas in our itinerary are fragile in nature and hence refrain from activities, which may pose negative impacts there.
- Do not litter. Litter management is essential for the pleasant upkeep of the destination.
- Kovalam is a conservative city and demonstrating affection in public like hugging or kissing is not an accepted practice in Kerala.
- Heavy penalties including imprisonment for possession of narcotic drugs. Do not carry drugs to the city.
- Nudity is not allowed in any Kerala beach.
- Tap water in India is not drinkable water. Always try to carry mineral water with you and avoid unsafe water from taps for drinking
- Don't encourage beggars by giving them money or any kind.
- Pickpockets are often attracted to crowded places. Be aware of someone who bumps, shoves or gets too close.
- Do not leave any articles such as phones, purses and wallets unattended.