Kollam, also referred to as Quilon or Desinganadu, is a famous town in Kerala which is credited for being the centre of India’s cashew trading and processing industry. The region is a perfect blend of beautiful surroundings, hospitality and tradition. It is also widely known as the ‘Dreamland of Kerala’.
It is also among the oldest ports situated on the Malabar Coast and it is the port which has attracted foreign countries around the world for trading purposes. The town also served as one of the main spice markets in the past. It should be noted that the name of the town, Kollam, has been derived from the Sanskrit word of the same name which translated to ‘pepper’. The current town is said to have been constructed by a Syrian merchant named Sapir Iso in the 9th century A.D.

Trade relations with the town were established around the 14th century. The first Europeans to land here were the Portuguese, thus paving the way for the Dutch and British. Kollam was also well-known for palaces and was thereby also referred to as the ‘City of Palaces’. It is also home to some of the best cashew plantations in the country.

Travel Tips

A single daily boat departs for Alappuzha (Alleppey) at 10:30AM from the ferry terminal which is proximate to the bus station. Carry lots of water as the weather can get quite sultry and humid.


The average temperature ranges from 25 to 32 degrees Celsius

When to visit

  • Jan
  • Feb
  • Mar
  • Apr
  • May
  • Jun
  • July
  • Aug
  • Sept
  • Oct
  • Nov
  • Dec
sprinkles Hot
  • 40° Max
  • 32° Min
  • 23.0 mm
Things to do

Most visitors who tour Kollam make it a point to visit the local beach. Throngs of tourists visit the beach. It also houses a park which is has been constructed at par with other parks found around the world. The beach also has a marine aquarium which was the first of its kind in Kerala.


The Kollam Fest is the best event of the year. It draws local and international tourists every year. It is always held at the historic Ashramam Maidan. The aim of the festival is to showcase the rich culture and heritage of the town.


There are a number of temples and churches which one can visit on their trip here. The Roman Catholic Diocese of Kollam is the first Catholic diocese in Kerala. The Mukathala Murari Temple is a famous temple in the region.


Embark on a backwater tour. There are tours available for a half or full day for a reasonable price.

Getting Around

Road transport is available in plenty when travelling within Kollam. Private taxis and auto rickshaws ply regularly and are the best way to travel in the city. KSRTC bus station is located beside the Ashtamudi Lake. These buses function regularly to various towns in Kerala; interstate bus services also function to other parts of the state. The bus journeys can be quite long; however, there are AC buses which are also available for tourists.

Places to Stay

How to Reach

  • The Trivandrum International Airport is the closest airport to the town, located just 56 kilometres away. There are domestic flights available to major cities in India like Mumbai, Delhi, Cochin, Bangalore and Chennai.
  • The town is proximate to the Kollam Junction Railway Station. Trains from different parts of Kerala and India converge here.
  • Kollam is well-connected by road to other parts of Kerala through the National Highways and other PWD roads.

Surrounding Attractions

Neendakara (8 km north of Kollam). It is well-known for its fisheries.

Oachira, (32 km north of Kollam in NH47). Some of the main highlights of the place include a temple & mosque, a unique pilgrim and handicraft centre. 

Paravur, (13 km south of Kollam). This small town is blessed with an estuary, beaches and backwaters and is famous for fishing as well as its coir industry.

Sasthamcotta, (19 km from Kollam). It is known as the biggest freshwater lake in Kerala.

Thangassery, (5 km away from Kollam). It is a historically important place which houses 18th century churches, a light house and the ruins of Portuguese and Dutch forts. The Anglo-Indian community has since occupied the place and the churches and schools in the area are usually run by them. This town is frequented by tourists who wish to explore the history of the place.

Emergency No.

Police station: 0474 2764422

Ambulance: 101