Quilon is a bustling port town in south-west India, known as the gateway to Kerala’s beautiful backwaters. Colonial architecture sits amid lush coconut groves, palm trees, cashew nut plantations and meandering canals.
Things to do in Kollam
Explore antique furniture, paintings and sculptures at the Krishnapuram Palace Museum. Built by the Travancore Kingdom in the 17th century, the summer palace is a beautiful example of grand Keralan architecture. Wander through the terraced gardens while taking in the fountains, ponds and lawns and admire the acclaimed three-meter-high mural depicting the liberation of Gajendra.
For excellent views over Kollam and the entire Malabar Coast, climb to the top of Tangasseri Lighthouse. This imposing red-and-white lighthouse features a spiral staircase with 195 steps as well as a convenient elevator. For a unique experience, visit Jatayu Earth’s Centre, a 23-hectare nature reserve home to the world’s largest bird sculpture.
Cycle along Kollam Beach to the colorful port town of Thangassery, established by the Portuguese in 1502. Watch the vibrant fishing boats in the bay and stop by the Seafood Market to purchase freshly-caught fish.
Board a narrow wooden boat and cruise along the meandering Kollam Canal to Ashtamudi Lake, home to coconut groves, palm trees and traditional villages. Stop off at the lakeside Asramam Adventure Park to explore the mangroves and sculpture garden.
Getting around Kollam
Kollam is just over an hour by train, taxi or car from Trivandrum International Airport. Trains arrive from Alappuzha, Thiruvananthapuram and other major cities within Kerala. Kollam is easily explored on foot or by hailing taxis.