Adjacent to the Sagara Beach Resort is the Vizhinjam Light House. It has a height of 36 metres and is visible from a long distance during the day time because of the red and while colour bands that have high visibility even in low light. At night the light from the light house reaches a distance of 31 nautical miles.
The light house was commissioned on 15th June, 1972. The optical equipment supplied by M/S. BBT of Paris was installed and commissioned in the same year. Later on, the 3000 W incandescent lamp was replaced by three 150 W metal halide lamps and a direct drive system was incorporated in 2003. RACONs (Radar Transponder Beacons), operating on solar energy and operational under all weather conditions, were installed in 2008 with 'O' Code.
A high rock promontory jutting into the sand and forming a bay of calm waters and clean white sandy shores make Kovalam one of the finest beaches in India attracting thousands of visitors from India and abroad. It is just 14 kms from the international airport.
It is just 2 km from Kovalam Beach. Now a fishing harbour, Vizhinjam is believed to have been an ancient port. Old Vizhinjam Church was built by the Portuguese two centuries ago. Vizhinjam is being developed into an International Deep Water Container Trans-shipment Terminal because of its proximity to International Shipping channel and its natural depth.
This beach is easily accessible from the Kovalam Beach, Veli Tourist Village and Akkulam Tourist Village. Vast stretches of white sand and the serene atmosphere, away from the crowd in the city, provide all the ingredients for relaxation and for spending an ideal evening. The giant sculpture of Jalakanyaka - Mermaid - by Kanayi Kunhiraman is an added attraction. St. Andrews beach is another newly developed tourist place located near Kazhakuttom close by.
On the outskirts of Thiruvananthapuram, by the side of the placid waters of Veli lagoon, the Tourist Village and Boat Club attracts the city people and tourists. Here aquatic amusements and sports facilities like pedal-boating, row boating, swimming, etc make it an ideal place for an exciting outing. The Youth Hostel at Veli which is hardly three km, from the international airport, provides inexpensive dormitory type accommodation.
About 6 km south of Thiruvananthapuram on the road to Kovalam, lies Thiruvallam, where there is an ancient temple on the banks of the Karamana River, which is dedicated to the Trimurthis of the Hindu pantheon. A shrine of Parasurama, built entirely of granite is found in this temple.
Thiruvananthapuram is the Capital of Kerala and the district headquarters. It is well connected by air, rail and road. There are several places of interest to the tourists inside the city limits. Some of the historic and archaeological sites are Sree Padmanabha Swami Temple, the Kanakakkunnu Palace, the Observatory, the Kowdiar Palace, St. Joseph’s Cathedral and Sree Chitra Art Gallery with its rich collection of exquisite paintings. The Raj Bhavan, Central Library, Victoria Jubilee Town Hall, University College, Residency Banglaw, College of Fine Arts, the Science and Technology Museum, the Government Secretariat, the Tagore Centenary theatre, the Museum, Trivandrum Zoo, The S.M.S.M. Institute, Botanic Gardens at Palode, Chitranjali studios and the Wellington Water Works are other landmarks of the city.
Developed on the banks of the Akkulam lake, and extension of Veli lake, it is one of the popular picnic spots, in Thiruvananthapuram city. The Boat Club, which started functioning in 1989, now operates speed, safari, pedal and row boats from Akkulam to Veli Tourist Village. A traditional style Kettuvallam(house boat) is available for overnight stay. The Children’s Park is a unique amusement spot and has several new rides and a musical fountain. An international convention centre, which will be the largest in Kerala, is under construction at Akkulam.
Thiruvananthapuram city gets its water supply from this Reservoir, 16 km north of the city. and the surroundings are enchanting. There is an ancient temple dedicated to Durga, on the banks of the river.
This is an ancient town, situated about 20 km south-east of Trivandrum city. The Sree Krishna Swami temple, on the banks of Neyyar River, founded by King Marthanda Varma (1729–1758), is of historical importance. There is a historic jack tree, known as Ammachi Plavu, in the hollow of which Marthanda Varma is believed to have hid himself and escaped certain death at the hands of his enemies.
About 7 km from Neyyattinkara is a Siva temple consecrated by Sree Narayana Guru, the greatest social reformer of Kerala, which attracts a large number of pilgrims.
This dam across the Neyyar river, its catchment area and surrounding hills of the Western Ghats, 29 km from the city, offer facilities for boating and mountaineering. Two lovely waterfalls on the way, a Lion Safari Park and a Crocodile Rearing Centre are additional attractions.
An ancient port and historic trading centre in the colonial days, Poovar is 29 km from Thiruvananthapuram the city. The legendary Jesuit Missionary, St. Francis Xavier, visited the place in the 16th century.
Sarkaradevi Temple is situated South of the Chirayinkil Taluk, 35 km north of Thiruvananthapuram. The temple assumed a significant status with the introduction of the famous Kaliyoot festival by Anizham Thirunal Marthanda Varma, the Travancore sovereign, in 1748.
Anchuthengu is situated 40 km north of Thiruvananthapuram city, along the sea coast, and is a place of historic importance. It was here that the first settlement of the English East India Company was established in 1864 A.D. The remains of the old English Fort, which had withstood many a siege, can be seen here even today. There is an ancient Christian church built in the 15th century by St. Francis Xavier. A station of the Indian Air Force is located here and from here one can sail across the river to Veli by boat.
North of Thiruvananthapuram, 41 km by rail and 51 km by road, lies Varkala is a pilgrim centre and a tourist attraction. The Samadhi (burial place) of Sree Narayana Guru,the great social reformer and philosopher, attracts devotees in thousands. The rocky cliffs and mineral water springs at the Papanasam beach here are also tourist attractions. The inland waterways system connecting Kollam in the north with Thiruvananthapuram in the south, passes the hillocks through two tunnels here. The Janardana Swami Temple here attracts many devotees.
Peppara is 50 km from the city on the way to Ponmudi. The sanctuary there, with its rich mammalian fauna and avifauna is a big attraction to nature lovers, wild life enthusiasts and ornithologists. It was established in 1938 over an area of 53 sq km on the Western Ghats. Elephants, sambars, leopards, lion-tailed macaques and cormorants are commonly seen here.
This palace is in the centre of a magnificent fort spread over 187 acres, 55 km from Thiruvananthapuram on the road to Kanyakumari. It is a jewel of Kerala archaeology. The main attractions are the entrance hall and the Navarathri Mandapam.
At an elevation of 912 m above sea level, Ponmudi is a refreshing mountain resort 61 km from Thiruvananthapuram. There are several tea and rubber estates around the hills and a mountain tribe called Kani who have been living here from time immemorial. A deer park, some dormitory facilities and trails for mountain hiking attract many visitors.
Agasthyarkoodam, one of the highest peaks in the Western Ghats, is 70 km from Thiruvananthapuram. About 1869 meters above sea level, it is in the form of a sharp cone. The place is famous for its abundant ayurvedic herbs and medicinal plants, including the Neelakurinji, a flower which turns the hill lilac with gregarious carpet flowering once in twelve years.
Alappuzha is the backwater capital of Kerala. It is 85 km from Kochi International Airport and 150 km from Thiruvananthapuram International Airport. It is well connected by rail, road and waterway. Alappuzha is famous for its boat races, houseboat holidays, beaches, marine products, and coir industry. A singular characteristic of this land is a region called Kuttanad, ‘the Rice Bowl of Kerala’, a land of lush paddy fields, where farming is done below sea level. Some of the attractions in and around Alappuzha are listed below:
Dense palm groves, a light house, a one-and-a-half century old pier that extends into the sea, imposing colonia l structures overlooking the sea shore and stretches of sandy beach are the attractions here. There is a beach park with boating facilities and a children’s park with toy train, bicycles, etc open in the evenings.
Beautiful house boats and other boats take you through the backwaters in leisurely pace allowing you to enjoy the unhindered view of the people and places around with ubiquitous coconut palms, monuments, temples, churches, mosques, rural industries, and what not.
During the August-September season, just after the main rainy season, boat races take place all over Alappuzha district, of which the most important are the Nehru Trophy boat Race at Punnamada, the Payippad near Haripad, the Thiruvandoor, the Neerettupuram, the Karuvatta and the Thaikkoottam boat races. Long snake boats with rowers in two rows throwing their short oars to the tune of traditional boat race songs enliven the backwaters. Thousands of people from all parts of the world come and witness these races.
Noted for typical Kerala architecture, this palace, built in the 18th century, is located at a distance of 47 km from Alappuzha on the way to Kollam. There is also a museum of antique sculptures, paintings and bronze articles in the palace, including the 'Gajendra Moksham' which is the largest mural in Kerala.
This is a small captivating island in the Vembanad Lake. Situated between Thaneermukkom and Kumarakom, this island is the favourite spot for hundreds of rare migratory birds from different parts of the world.
Renowned for the Palpayasam, the daily offering of sweet milk porridge and constructed in the typical Kerala architectural style, this temple is famous all over India. Paintings of the Dasavatharam (the ten incarnations of Lord Vishnu) displayed on the inner walls of the temple are of great art value.
About 22 km from Alappuzha is this Christian Pilgrim centre, the Saint Andrews Church built by Portuguese missionaries. The annual feast of St. Sebastian is held here in the month of January.
The St. Mary's Church here is believed to be one of the oldest churches in Kerala, originally built by St Thomas, the apostle of Christ. The annual feast is held on the 3rd Sunday of October. The feast of St. Joseph is celebrated on March 19th.
This is the place where the Communist uprising of 1946 was put down by the Travancore State Police killing hundreds of Communists. In Kerala, where the Communist Party has been in power off and on for several decades, the place inflames the revolutionary zeal of the party comrades all over the State even now.
Kochi is the largest city of Kerala, almost in the centre of Kerala State, with an international air port, rail connections and road connections from all over the country and is verily called 'the Queen of the Arabian Sea'. Backwaters of Kochi, brackish lagoons lying parallel to the Arabian Sea, with Chinese fishing nets and coconut palms along the coast offer some calendar-perfect scenery that keep the visitors from all over the world spell-bound.
Marine Drive, the picturesque promenade, the Wellington Island where the Southern Naval Command, Cochin Harbour, Port Trust Head quarters and some of the best hotels in the city are situated, the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium (known locally as Kaloor International Stadium), Fort Kochi / Mattanchery Penninsula, the historical part of the city, the Mattanchery Palace or the Dutch Palace, the Santa Cruz Basilica, built by the Portuguese, the Hill Palace housing the largest archeological museum in Kerala, the Bolgatty Palace in the enchanting island of Bolgatty, the Jewish Synagogue, the oldest synagogue in the Commonwealth of Nations built in 1568, St Francis Church which was originally built in 1503 and is the oldest European church in India, the Pallippuram Fort in Vypin Island, built in the same year, Parikshit Thampuran Museum, Kanjiramattom Mosque and Bastion Bungalow are some of the attractions Kochi offers to the visitor.
Thekkady is located about 257 km (160 miles) from Trivandrum, 114 km from Madurai Airport, 185 km from Cochin International Airport and 114 km from Kottayam railway station. It is well connected by roads from all these points. It is part of the Periyar Wildlife Sanctuary. The Sanctuary is one of the world's most fascinating natural wildlife reserves, spread across 777 sq. km, of which 360 sq. km is thick evergreen forest. It was declared a Tiger Reserve in 1978.
This is the only sanctuary in India where you can have the unique experience of viewing wildlife at close quarters from the safety of a boat on the lake. Large herds of wild elephants that come down to the lake's edge attract thousands of tourists. Noted for its scenic beauty and geo-morphological diversity of wildlife, being on the Western Ghats, one of the most bio-diverse parts of the world, The sanctuary is famous for its dense evergreen, semi-evergreen, moist deciduous forests and savanna grass lands. It is home to herds of elephants, sambar, tigers, gaur, lion-tailed Macaques and Nilgiri Langurs. Thekkady attracts thousands of visitors from all over the world. The splendid artificial lake formed by the Mullaperiyar Dam across the Periyar River is an added attraction.
Munnar is about 130 km from Kochi and nestles on the Western Ghats at an elevation of 1600 to 1800 metres. There are roads from all major towns of Kerala and Tamil Nadu to Munnar. There are tea gardens near Munnar at an elevation of 2100 metres and the highest peak in South India, the Anamudi at height of 2695 metres, is also close by.
Manicured tea gardens, verdant valleys, rocky cliffs, gushing streams and waterfalls, placid lakes and spectacular viewpoints make Munnar an ideal hill resort for the nature lover, adventure tourist and wild-life enthusiast. Salubrious climate all throughout the year and friendly residents make your trip unforgettable. Devikulam Sita Devi Lake with its mineral rich water and charming ambiance, Mattuppetty cattle farm and lake with boating facilities, Erivikulam National park with very rare fauna like the Nilgiri Tahr and flora like the Neelakurinji which covers the hills in lilac by carpet flowering once in twelve years, Pothamedu where the tea gardens take your breath away and Marayur where sandal wood trees grow in plenty are a few of the places around Munnar.
Kanyakumari is the southernmost tip of the Indian subcontinent and is situated at the confluence of the Indian Ocean, the Arabian Sea and Bay of Bengal. It is 87 km from the Thiruvananthapuram International Airport and 304 km from Kochin International Airport. It is well connected to all major cities of India by rail and road. The sunrise and sunset here are spectacular views that spellbind the visitors.
There are several religious pilgrimage centres like the Kumari Amman Temple and the Church of Our Lady of Joy, imposing monuments and archeological structures like the 40-metre high Thiruvalluvar Statue, 70 feet high Gandhi Memorial, the Vivekananda Rock Memorial, the Kamarajar Manimandapam and the Udayagiri Fort, which now houses a Biodiversity Park where tourists can see deer, ducks, migrating birds and over 100 varieties of trees. There are also other attractions like the Mathur Hanging Bridge (70 km from Thiruvananthapuram Air Port) which is the tallest as well as the longest trough bridge in Asia, with a height of 115 feet and a length of one kilometre.