Kovalam means a clump of coconut trees and this beach town has been named so because of the endless stretch of trees that dot its landscape. The Regent Maharani Sethu Lakshmi Bayi of Travancore set up her castle known as the Halcyon Castle in Kovalam and brought attention to Kovalam. However, it became popular with the arrival of the hippies in the Hippie Trail, en route to Ceylon. Since then, the Kovalam beach has been developed and today it has emerged as one of the most important tourist places in India.
The Kovalam beach stretches for a distance of 17 km. Some of the local attractions of the beach include Lighthouse, Hawah beach and Samudra beach. There are a number of resorts and restaurants around the beach. Another important landmark in Kovalam is the Vizhinjam port.
Kovalam is not just important for its tourism value, but these days it is also attracting tourists with its Ayurvedic centres. Kerala is known for its Ayurvedic treatments and many of the best centres can be found in Kovalam.
Kovalam is well connected by air, road and rail. The nearest airport is the Thiruvananthapuram Airport and the nearest railhead is the Thiruvananthapuram Railway station. Visitors travelling to Kovalam will first have to travel to Thiruvananthapuram as there are no direct connections to Kovalam. Thiruvananthapuram being the capital city is well connected to other parts in the state and in the neighbouring states. State run and private buses provide connectivity from Thiruvananthapuram to Kovalam. Travellers can choose from ordinary to luxury buses to suit their comfort.