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“Pick the Right Spot Kind of Great beach”
Review of Varkala Beach

Ranked #1 of 23 things to do in Varkala
Certificate of Excellence
Attraction details
Chennai
Level 4 Contributor
38 reviews
11 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 44 helpful votes
“Pick the Right Spot Kind of Great beach”
Reviewed April 6, 2014

Varkala is a wonderfully set beach in the foot of the North and South Cliffs. The access from North Cliff if close to 100 steps and a slight steep climb cut out as stone steps. The other access is from South Cliff with the same steps pattern. Some private resorts atop the cliff have their own steps as well.
There is a central access via road where all the tourists arrive for the evening or morning leisure trip. That access is bustling with activity and shops.
The stretch from Central access to North cliff is the predominant beach with activity of local crowds, those playing frisbie or games, sun bathing and just swimming in the friendly waves. One can walk in upto 50meters with just waist level water (low tide). There are high mast lights and visibility is there till night.
South Cliff access leads to a more serene narrower beach stretch and more private. One has to navigate boulders and rocks with shallow water level to cross over to this side. Most sunbathers can prefer this quiter spot. But this is advisable to those staying in Seashore resort or Soul n Surf. (In Varkala beach exploring North Cliff is ideal for food and shopping. South Cliff is residential and quite. The steps is not for the aged. As an option one can take an auto rickshaw for INR 50 to 80 instead to go from beach to North cliff (also called Helipad). Beach has some shacks style restaurants serving fresh sea food at better value for money than on the North Cliff. (But North Cliff gives you the Arabian sea in aerial view).

Visited March 2014
Helpful?
3 Thank ArjunKarthikeyan
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
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Belfast, Northern Ireland
Level 6 Contributor
350 reviews
111 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 291 helpful votes
“Good stop for a couple of days”
Reviewed April 3, 2014

Varkala beach is, essentially, a long stretch of clean sand below cliffs where the Arabian Sea meets the Keralan coastline. The North end is populated pretty much by Western tourists - but groups of Indian men are quite happy to walk here in order weave in and out of the sunbeds and beach-towels admiring and photographing the micro -bikinis on offer. So, if you aren't an exhibitionist at heart, there's no point in being offended. Instead, respect the local culture - and wear something a little more modest. The South end of the beach (near the Temple) is used from time to time for the disposal of cremated remains - this also tends to be the place where the majority of Indian families spend their day-trips. The sea is warm and clear, with good waves and the lifeguards are plentiful - and very vigilant. The constant blowing of their whistles can be irritating, but it's done with good reason - there is one hell of an undertow, even in the shallows, and drowings do occur here.
There are plenty of places to stay and many restaurants to choose from. Walking along the narrow clifftop path can be a bit tortuous, with the constant requests of "come see my shop". Also, the fact that Varkala is laid back and attracts a lot of backpackers may also explain the characteristic smell of cannibas everywhere in the evenings!

Visited February 2014
Helpful?
3 Thank NED541287
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Chennai
Level 5 Contributor
74 reviews
6 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 43 helpful votes
“Great Beach”
Reviewed March 30, 2014

It is a great beach in Kerala. Water is very clean and waves are great with strong currents. Northern part of the beach is very calm and lest frequented by locals. Beach umbrellas and chairs are available for rent. Beach lifeguards are very vigilant. No beach shacks available. Restaurants are available only on the cliff or on the south side of the beach near Varkala Marine Palace. The scenery is nice and the views are great from the cliff. Early morning walk on the beach from north to south cliffs is fantastic. You will find groups of local boys playing cricket and many hatha yoga sessions to tourists. Will definitely visit again.

Visited March 2014
Helpful?
2 Thank Vanderluzt
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
Mumbai (Bombay), India
Level 1 Contributor
4 reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 2 helpful votes
“Nice calm beach”
Reviewed March 28, 2014

The scenery is very nice with the red cliffs. The waves are pretty good but currents are strong. I didn't dare swim. There is no shade but you can rent parasols. Stick to the northern areas were other tourists gather if you want to avoid the local boys to stare at you too much. I have been approached sometimes but all harmless and more curious than anything else.

Visited March 2014
Helpful?
2 Thank berlinaise
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.
South Florida, Florida
Level 6 Contributor
154 reviews
51 attraction reviews
common_n_attraction_reviews_1bd8 121 helpful votes
“One of the good beaches ..”
Reviewed March 22, 2014

The north cliff beach and south (Papanasam) are lovely to walk, relax in the sun, and wade in the surf. The beach has helpful lifeguards and lounges with umbrellas for rent if you like. There is also a natural spring shower to rinse off.
Good place for people watching at both north and south cliff.. South cliff beach is a sacred beach you can sit in the beach cafes and watch the blessings/offerings and pooja rituals performed in the mornings.
In my opinion this is one of the better beaches in south Kerala ..

Visited February 2014
Helpful?
1 Thank Aleta14
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC.

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