Thiruvananthapuram Kerala

Introduction to Thiruvananthapuram

Thiruvananthapuram, also known as Trivandrum, is the capital city of the Indian state of Kerala. It is located on the southwestern coast of India, bordered by the Arabian Sea to the west and the Western Ghats to the east. With a rich cultural heritage, stunning natural landscapes, and a blend of modernity and tradition, Thiruvananthapuram attracts visitors from around the world.

Location and Geographical Features

Thiruvananthapuram is situated in the southernmost part of Kerala, making it an important gateway to the state. Its geographical coordinates are 8.5241° N, 76.9366° E. The city spans an area of around 214.86 square kilometers and is characterized by its diverse topography, including coastal areas, hills, and plains.

The city’s coastal regions are dotted with beautiful beaches such as Shanghumukham Beach, which offer breathtaking views of the Arabian Sea. In contrast, the eastern parts of Thiruvananthapuram are marked by the majestic Western Ghats, known for their lush greenery, wildlife sanctuaries, and scenic beauty.

History of Thiruvananthapuram

The history of Thiruvananthapuram dates back to ancient times, with references to the region found in texts dating as far back as the 3rd century BCE. It has been a prominent center of culture, trade, and governance throughout its history.

The city was a major part of the Travancore kingdom, which emerged in the 18th century under the leadership of Marthanda Varma. It later became the capital of the princely state of Travancore and continued to flourish under the rule of successive rulers.

Thiruvananthapuram played a significant role in India’s independence movement, with several prominent leaders and activists hailing from the region. After India gained independence in 1947, Thiruvananthapuram became the capital of Kerala when the state was formed in 1956.


Thiruvananthapuram’s geography is diverse and captivating. The city’s coastal areas are characterized by sandy beaches, palm-fringed shorelines, and beautiful sunsets over the Arabian Sea. The most famous beach, Shanghumukham Beach, attracts locals and tourists alike with its serene ambiance and recreational activities.

Moving inland, Thiruvananthapuram transitions into hilly terrain, with the Western Ghats offering picturesque landscapes, dense forests, and wildlife sanctuaries. The Neyyar Dam & Wildlife Sanctuary is a prime example of the natural beauty found in this region, with its reservoir, lush greenery, and diverse wildlife.

The city’s urban areas feature a mix of modern infrastructure and historical landmarks, showcasing its cultural and architectural heritage. The Kanakakunnu Palace, Napier Museum, and Sri Chitra Art Gallery are notable attractions that highlight Thiruvananthapuram’s cultural richness.

Getting to Thiruvananthapuram

Thiruvananthapuram is well-connected by air, rail, and road, making it easily accessible for travelers from various parts of India and abroad.

  • By Air: The city is served by the Trivandrum International Airport, located approximately 4 kilometers from the city center. The airport operates domestic and international flights, providing convenient connectivity for air travelers.
  • By Rail: Thiruvananthapuram Central Railway Station is a major railway junction in southern India, with trains connecting the city to various destinations across the country. It is part of the Southern Railway zone and is well-connected to major cities like Chennai, Bangalore, Mumbai, and Delhi.
  • By Road: Thiruvananthapuram has a well-developed road network, with National Highways NH-66 and NH-544 passing through the city. State-run and private buses ply regular services to and from Thiruvananthapuram, linking it to neighboring towns and cities.

Most Railway Stations near Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala

Station Distance

Airports near Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala

Airport Distance
(TRV) Trivandrum International Airport 10 km
(TCR) Tuticorin Airport 182 km
(COK) Cochin International Airport 235 km
(IXM) Madurai Airport 253 km

Top Tourist Places in Thiruvananthapuram

  1. Neyyar Dam & Wildlife Sanctuary: Located about 32 kilometers from the city, Neyyar Dam offers scenic views, boating facilities, and a wildlife sanctuary with diverse flora and fauna.
  2. The Kanakakunnu Palace: This historic palace, situated in the heart of the city, is known for its architectural beauty, sprawling gardens, and cultural events.
  3. Poovar Island: A serene backwater destination near Thiruvananthapuram, Poovar Island is famous for its golden beaches, backwater cruises, and Ayurvedic resorts.
  4. Happy Land Water Theme Park: Ideal for families and thrill-seekers, this amusement park offers water rides, slides, and recreational activities for all ages.
  5. Agastya Mala: A sacred peak in the Western Ghats, Agastya Mala is known for its biodiversity, trekking trails, and panoramic views of the surrounding landscapes.
  6. The Napier Museum: A museum showcasing Kerala’s art, history, and culture through exhibits, artifacts, and paintings, located near the city center.
  7. Chalai Bazaar: A vibrant market in Thiruvananthapuram known for its local handicrafts, spices, textiles, and street food, offering a glimpse into Kerala’s traditional commerce.
  8. Sri Chitra Art Gallery: Housed within the Napier Museum complex, this art gallery features a vast collection of paintings, sculptures, and artworks by renowned Indian artists.
  9. Science and Technology Museum Trivandrum: An interactive museum highlighting scientific innovations, space exploration, and technological advancements, engaging visitors of all ages.
  10. Shanghumukham Beach: One of Thiruvananthapuram’s most popular beaches, offering golden sands, clear waters, sunset views, and recreational activities like beach volleyball and kite flying.

Best Time to Visit Thiruvananthapuram

The best time to visit Thiruvananthapuram is during the winter months from November to February when the weather is pleasant and ideal for exploring outdoor attractions. This period offers comfortable temperatures, clear skies, and minimal rainfall, allowing visitors to enjoy sightseeing, beach activities, and cultural events.

The monsoon season from June to September brings heavy rainfall to Thiruvananthapuram, enhancing the region’s greenery but limiting outdoor activities. The summer months from March to May can be hot and humid, although coastal areas like beaches provide some relief with sea breezes.

Best Hotels near Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala

The below listed hotels are within 2 km of Thiruvananthapuram, Kerala.

  • Ginger Trivandrum
  • Mascot Hotel (KTDC)
  • Hotel Indrapuri Rajadhani
  • Fortune Hotel South Park, Trivandrum
  • Taj Residency Trivandrum
  • Vivanta By Taj Trivandrum
  • The Muthoot Plaza
  • DoubleTree by Hilton Izmir
  • Sp Grand Days Hotel
  • Maurya Rajadhani
  • Hotel Town Tower
  • The Residency Tower
  • Keys Hotel
  • Hotel Pankaj
  • The Seven Hills

Shopping and Souvenirs

Thiruvananthapuram is a paradise for shoppers, offering a wide range of traditional handicrafts, textiles, spices, and souvenirs that reflect Kerala’s rich cultural heritage. Some popular shopping destinations in the city include:

  • MG Road: Known for its bustling markets, shops, and boutiques selling clothing, jewelry, and accessories.
  • Chalai Bazaar: A vibrant street market famous for spices, handicrafts, antiques, and local snacks.
  • Connemara Market: Ideal for buying fresh produce, fruits, vegetables, and seafood, offering a glimpse into Kerala’s culinary delights.
  • Government Handicrafts Emporium: Showcases authentic Kerala handicrafts, artworks, and traditional souvenirs like wood carvings, metalware, and handloomitems such as sarees, jewelry, and pottery.
  • Sarwaa: A boutique known for its elegant sarees, ethnic wear, and handcrafted accessories, showcasing Kerala’s traditional textiles and craftsmanship.
  • Pothy’s: A renowned department store offering a wide range of clothing, footwear, and home decor items, catering to both locals and tourists.
  • SMSM Institute: Famous for its handloom products, including Kerala sarees, dhotis, and fabrics woven with intricate designs and vibrant colors.
  • Attukal Shopping Complex: Specializes in spices, Ayurvedic products, souvenirs, and local delicacies like banana chips and pickles, perfect for food enthusiasts.

Visitors can also explore the city’s numerous art galleries, craft fairs, and cultural centers to purchase unique artworks, paintings, and handicrafts created by local artists and artisans. These souvenirs serve as memorable gifts and mementos of Thiruvananthapuram’s cultural heritage.

Nearby Destinations

While Thiruvananthapuram itself offers a plethora of attractions and experiences, there are several nearby destinations that visitors can explore for a comprehensive Kerala experience.

  1. Kovalam: Just 16 kilometers from Thiruvananthapuram, Kovalam is famous for its pristine beaches, water sports, and beachside resorts. Lighthouse Beach, Hawa Beach, and Samudra Beach are popular spots for relaxation and recreation.
  2. Varkala: Approximately 50 kilometers north of Thiruvananthapuram, Varkala is known for its dramatic cliffs, mineral springs, and the ancient Janardanaswamy Temple. The Varkala Beach offers stunning views and opportunities for swimming and sunbathing.
  3. Kanyakumari: Situated at the southernmost tip of India, about 87 kilometers from Thiruvananthapuram, Kanyakumari is renowned for its confluence of three seas, Vivekananda Rock Memorial, Thiruvalluvar Statue, and spectacular sunrises and sunsets.
  4. Ponmudi: A picturesque hill station located around 55 kilometers from Thiruvananthapuram, Ponmudi is known for its misty mountains, lush greenery, trekking trails, and scenic viewpoints like Golden Valley and Peppara Wildlife Sanctuary.
  5. Kumarakom: About 175 kilometers from Thiruvananthapuram, Kumarakom is a tranquil backwater destination famous for houseboat cruises, bird watching at Kumarakom Bird Sanctuary, and Ayurvedic treatments amidst serene natural surroundings.
  6. Alleppey (Alappuzha): Known as the Venice of the East, Alleppey is around 150 kilometers from Thiruvananthapuram and is renowned for its backwaters, houseboat stays, Alleppey Beach, and Nehru Trophy Boat Race held during Onam.
  7. Kochi (Cochin): Approximately 220 kilometers from Thiruvananthapuram, Kochi is a bustling port city known for its historical landmarks like Fort Kochi, Mattancherry Palace, Jewish Synagogue, Chinese Fishing Nets, and cultural fusion.

These nearby destinations offer a diverse range of experiences, from beach holidays and hill station getaways to backwater cruises and cultural explorations, making them perfect additions to a visit to Thiruvananthapuram.

Thiruvananthapuram Google Map location: