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Varkala

Varkala, a calm and quiet hamlet, lies on the outskirts of Thiruvananthapuram district. It has several places of tourist interests like a beautiful beach, a 2000 year old Vishnu Temple and the Ashramam - Sivagiri Mutt a little distance from the beach. At the serene Varkala Beach is a quiet sea resort rich in mineral water springs. A dip in the holy waters at this beach is believed to purge the body of impurities and the soul of all sins; hence it is called the Papanasam beach.

It is a very ideal tourist spot surrounded by the greenery, beautiful meadows, deep puzzling valleys and dales. The enchanting hill station dotted with tea gardens will soon be one of India's foremost eco-tourism projects. Welcome to a land which would make you come back again andagain. So that you could rejuvenate yourself and cherish memories of this enchantingly beautiful land. What the world knows about Varkala is that it is a famous beach as well as a pilgrimate centre in Kerala.

Varkala India is the only place in southern Kerala where cliffs are found adjacent to the Arabian Sea. These tertiary sedimentary formation cliffs are a unique geological feature on the otherwise flat Kerala coast, and is known among geologists as Varkala Formation and a geological monument as declared by the Geological Survey of India. There are numerous water spouts and spas on the sides of these cliffs. Varkala Kerala is also famous for the 2000 year old Janardana Swami Temple which is an important Vaishnavaite shrine in India and is often referred to as Dakshin Kashi (Benares of the South).

The temple is located close to the Papanasam beach, which is considered to have holy waters which wash away sins, and is also an important Ayurveda treatment centre. The temple has an ancient bell removed from a shipwreck, donated by the captain of the Dutch vessel which sank near Varkala without causing any casualties. Varkala Kathakali Center, Kappil Beach, Ponnumthuruthu Island, Anjengo fort, Chilakkoor Beach, The Lighthouse are other beautiful tourist destinations in Varkala.

Varkala is located about 50 kilometers from Thiruvananthapuram on the way to Kollam. Kerala State Transport corporation operates frequent bus services to Varkala from important towns. Varkala is accessible through rail also. Varkala has a railway station and through rail the place is connected to all major cities in India. The nearest airport is Thiruvananthapuram.

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