Thiruvananthapuram (City of the Sacred Serpent) is small and relaxed compared with other Indian state capitals. The city gets its name from the word, Thiruvananthapuram, meaning the city of Anantha or the abode of the sacred Serpent Anantha on which Lord Vishnu, the preserver of the Hindu trinity, reclines.
Trivandrum, the capital of the state of Kerala is a beautiful seaside city built on seven hills. The famous Sri. Padmanabha Swami Temple is dicated to Vishnu and is a landmark in the city. The sprawling city has an international airport. Most visitors to Kerala use it only as an arrival point, speeding on immediately to Kovalam.Trivandrum has good shopping areas and a variety of comfortable and reasonably priced hotels.
Travel Attraction :
Sri Padmanabhaswamy Temple :
Thiruvananthapuram's most interesting temple i open to Hindus only, and even they must wear wear a 'dhoti' or 'sari'. Still , it's worth visiting -even if you are just passing through town-to see the temple's seven story carved gopuram reflected in the nearby sacred tank.Constructed in the Dravidian style by a maharaja of Travancore in 1733, the temple is dedicated to Vishnu, who reclines on the sacred serpent, Anantha, which gives Thiruvanathapuram its name.
Kovalam Beach :
Kovalam is just 16 kms away from Trivandrum. This unique internationally renowned wonderful beach will get pride of place amongst the loveliest beaches in the world has been a favourite haunt of tourists since the 1930s. Today Kovalam has become one of the most popular beach hangouts in India. Kovalam means a grove of coconut trees and truly the coconut trees along the beaches gives it a ravishing look.
The palm-fringed bays in secluded coconut groves, promise a relaxed stay. The boundless blue waters of the Arabian Sea and miles of white sands washed away by the surf at the feet of the stalwart palms and the rocky promontories, makes this beach paradise. This marvellous beach is a tourist's dream come true.
A sheltered natural bay with cool soothing palms and gentle waves. Where when you are tired of aquatics, swimming or sunbathing, you can explore the handicrafts, jewellery and cloth shops spread along the waterfront. Not to speak of the delightful sea-food fare including lobsters available at the beachside restaurants.
Palace Museum :
The recently opened Puthen Maliga Palace Museum, adjacent to the temple ,is housed in several wings of the palace of the maharajahs of Travancore.
Padmanabhapuram Palace :
Padmanabhapuram Palace was once the seat of the rulers of Travancore, a princely state for more than 400 years which included a large part of present day Kerala and the Western coast of Tamil Nadu.
Padmanabhapuram is just inside Tamilnadu , 65km south-east of Thiruvananthapuram. To get there , you can either catch a local bus from Thiruvananthapuram or Kovalam beach or take one of the Kanyakumari tours organised by the KTDC. The palace is closed on Monday.
Shangumugham Beach :
It's a pleasant place to walk or watch the fishermen securing their catch. A large sculpture of a mermaid graces the roadside, an example of the work of the local artist Canai Kunuram. At dusk, during temple festivals, the beach is the site of the ritual bathing of the temple idols.
Neyyar Dam :
Neyyar dam, lying against the southern low hills of the western ghats, 32 kms away from the Thiruvananthapuram city is a popular picnic spot with a lake and a picturesque dam site. Neyyar dam affords a panoramic view of the the mountains and the lake. The lion safari is a star attraction.
The reservoir also offers boating facilities in addition to a crocodile farm. The project offers facilities for boating and mountaineering. A miniature wild life sanctuary, a lake garden and a swimming pool are the major attractions.
Ponmudi hill resort is cool and quiet. As the hills come awake you can begin a pleasurable exploration of the wooded paths. Trekking is a passion with visitors to Ponmudi. Ponmudi has other surprises too for you.
Orchids, for instance, grow in abundance here. A charming deer park is only 3kms. from Ponmudi. Picnic hampers that the staff at the guest house would be happy to arrange, which you could take down the hill to a picturesque ruined dam site or golden valley which is another pretty scenic spot. Other attractions are Bird watching, Deer park and long, enjoyable walks.
Travel Information :
Air : Thiruvananthapuram international airport (6 kms from the city.
Rail : There are direct trains to all the main towns in kerala as well as the major cities in india.
Road : Well connected to all towns & cities.