#Kovalam #Kerala #India: Beaches, Hostels, and Wise Cracks

What a difference a year can make! the sky will split, And the planets will shift, Balls of jade will drop and existence will stop

Hyper-Travel: Karma Bum, Dharma Dawg, and the Ballot-Proof Monk

Miracle Mile at Kovalam Beach, India Miracle Mile at Kovalam Beach, India

Kovalam is the kind of place that Lonely Planet writers like to disparage as having sold out to commercial interests long ago, with their chock-a-block cafes and resto–bars and boutiques a la Cannes, while noting how Varkala up the road manages to maintain its wild and rustic more authentic nature. I beg to differ. For one thing: Kovalam ain’t that bad. For another thing: Varkala ain’t that good. These are basically your two beach options within an hour’s ride of the Keralan capital Trivandrum, aka Thiruvananthapuram (say that three times really fast and try to pull your tongue through the loop).

True, Kovalam is a fairly homogenized and pasteurized version of an Indian beach town, leaning toward European models and menus, with paved sidewalks and handrails to boot, all clean and neat and ready for biz. But it’s also an upgrade. Is that…

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