There must have been times when someone asked what you would prefer between mountain and beach; you chose either of the two. However, what if you love both and could not choose one over the other? Therefore, we bring you several places in India where you can enjoy the best of both worlds.
Varkala is located 51 km away from Thiruvanathapuram and 37 km south of Kollam, south Kerala; it is a calm and serene hamlet that lies on the Thiruvananthapuram outskirts. Also, it has many tourist attractions, including a beautiful beach, a 2000-year-old Vishnu temple, and the Sivagiri Mutt ashram.
Varkala beach also known as Papanasam beach, which is 10 km away from Varkala, is popular amongst tourists and visitors for its natural spring. Furthermore, the spring water contains:
- Curative and medicinal properties.
- So taking a dip in the water is believed to purge the body of impurities and purify the soul from sins.
- Hence the name Papanasam( ending all sins).
Simultaneously, you can visit a 2000-year-old Janardhanswamy temple on the cliff overlooking the beach. Also, you can go to the Sivagiri Mutt temple, founded by the great religious reformer and philosopher Sree Narayana Guru. Besides, thousands of devotees across the country visit Guru’s Samadhi (the final resting place) every year during the Sivagiri Pilgrimage days (30th December- 1st January).
The Sivagiri Mutt receives many devotees and visitors throughout the year due to its spiritual significance; Shree Narayana Guru promoted the ideology that one caste, one religion and one God in a society torn by the caste system’s taboo. Hence, there is a spiritual hub for people apart from popular health resorts and ayurvedic clinics.
The word “Gokarna” relates to a cow’s ear in Sanskrit. According to one version of the story in Hindu mythology, Lord Shiva returned to earth from the underworld through the ear of a cow. For centuries, it has been a place of pilgrimage. Thousands of Hindus come every year to observe mourning rites at its Kotiteertha, a holy tank of water, and worship at its temples. Also, there are around 100 temples; foremost among them is Mahabaleshwar, considered as sacred as the Kashi Vishwanath Temple in Varanasi.
Gokarna is a small temple town formed by the confluence of two rivers and has a string of interestingly named beaches such as Kudle, Om, Half Moon and Paradise. Also, while travelling up to the town, you can see a scenic delight with rocky mountains and the Western Ghats on one side and the Arabian Sea on the other.
Tens of thousands of travellers visit the town every year; apart from the holidaying backpackers from western countries, Indians visit the quaint town to relax and enjoy themselves. Moreover, there are plenty of tourist attractions that you could go to, for instance, Kahani Paradise, A substantial villa on 20 acres that is available to book either as a whole or room by room. It was the passion project of a discreet British family, in which the husband, wife, and all six of their children had a shared enthusiasm.
Visakhapatnam is a coastal port city in Andhra Pradesh, often called” the jewel of the east coast. Besides, it is located among the hills of the Eastern Ghats and faces the Bay of Bengal in the East. In addition, it is the administrative headquarters of the Visakhapatnam District and is also home to the Eastern Naval Command of the Indian Navy.
If you want to go to the beaches, there are several superb beaches like Rishikonda, Yarada, Rama Krishna, Bheemunipatnam and Gangavaram beaches. But if you want to visit the hilly areas simultaneously, you can go to the surrounding hilly ranges. Also, there are many beautiful places for exploring, including the Borra caves.
Borra caves are located in the Ananthagiri hills of the Araku Valley of the Visakhapatnam district; they were formed due to the flow of the Gosthani River on limestone deposits. Also, the caves have impressive stalactite and stalagmite formations of Shiva-Parvati. Similarly, there are formations of mother-child, crocodile, human brain, rishi’s beard, and cow’s udder.
Ganapatipule is a small town located on the Konkan coastline, which has a long stretch of pristine beaches; it is a perfect getaway place to enjoy nature in its scenic beauty. Moreover, you can see the confluence of the beach with the river alongside a hill shaped like Ganpati, the Hindu God of prosperity and wisdom. Also, the town is well-known for its 400-year-old Ganapati temple.
If you are seeking some peace and solace in life, you might consider making a trip to Ganapatipule. As it offers serenity to beach lovers and peace seekers; furthermore, you can participate in water sports, which usually take place during the months of November to May.
We often choose to go to well-known places and have tons of typical tourist attractions, but seldom do we take the chance to go to some lesser-known spots. For instance, Bekal is one of the small towns located on the shoreline of the Pallikkara village of Kasaragod. The place’s beauty is intact and untouched by urbanisation or commercialisation; some of its significant attractions include the historical Bekal fort. Also, the fort offers a superb view of the Arabian Sea from its tall observation towers, where massive cannons used to be placed a few centuries ago. Furthermore, Bekal Fort is noted for its keyhole-shaped structure, which offers spectacular views of the surroundings, especially that of the sea from its ramparts. Moreover, you can also go to the Valiyaparamba backwaters, which are around 30 km from Bekal; besides, the view from a kettuvallam (houseboat) is probably the one thing you need to lay back and relax. Valiyaparamba is the third-largest backwaters in Kerala, which provides a picturesque view of the local flora and fauna.
Furthermore, you can take a boat ride through the backwaters and reach Valiyaparamba island, the largest island in the Kavvayi backwaters. One can relax on the houseboat and enjoy the rustic charm of the unspoiled backwaters, catch fish or enjoy a nice meal in the houseboat. The calm and secluded Valiyaparamba Island is a perfect getaway from the city.