Poovar is a small coastal village situated in southern tip of Trivandrum, the capitial city of Kerala and is famous for it’s backwaters, pristine beaches, beautiful estuaries and exotic resorts. In Poovar you get to experience the remarkable sight of the Neyyar river, Poovar lake, Arabian sea and the Gold Sand Beach converging at the estuary. There are lots of exotic resorts and tour operators who offer tour packages based on your needs and requirements. Leela Backwaters in Poovar is one such tour operator who offers “an unique backwater boating experience” and they were our tour coordinators for the day.
The main attractions at Poovar are the backwaters,mangroves,estuary, golden sand beach, exotic resorts (Isola Di Cocco, Estuary island, Poovar Island resorts) floating restaurants, wide variety of birds and the biodiversity of the place. Other places of interest around Poovar are Kovalam, Vizhinjam and Azhimala. You can also go about seeing the Lighthouse, Lighthouse beach, Hawa beach, Vizhinjam Marine Aquarium, Halcyon castle, Vizhinjam harbour and the Vellayani lake. These places are also home for many private resorts and hotels.
Getting there and around
Poovar is situated around 30km from Trivandrum and just 17 kms from Kovalam. It is easily accessible by road. Leela Backwaters is located in Poovar just after the Poovar Bridge. Look out for a mud road to the left, leading to their boat jetty, just after crossing the Poovar Bridge.
Poovar Distance Chart
Trivandrum-30km | Kanyakumari-67km | Varkala-75km | Kazhakootam-40km | Kollam-94km | Cochin-230km
Things to do
The main activities you can indulge in Poovar are boating (motor boat, house boat, country boat), elephant rides, exploring the mangroves and the estuary (need to hire boats from tour operators like Leela Backwaters), bird watching, and photography.
Things to carry
- Camera / Binoculars
- Swimming trunk/suit (if you plan to dive into the sea)
- Dress to change
- Wallet/Credit cards
Backwaters of Poovar / Leela Backwaters – My Experience
The trip to Poovar was part of a well planned team outing from my office. The plan was to start off by 1:30 PM and reach Poovar by 3:00 PM. I along with my wife started off from our house by 1:30 PM and reached Vizhinjam by 2:30 PM. Since we were a bit early we thought of checking out the Marine Aquarium at Vizhinjam. The aquarium is located near the Theatre Junction at Vizhinjam. The cost of the ticket is Rs 20/person and gives you entry to the colorful world of marine life. The aquarium is open everyday from 9:00AM – 5:30PM.
We were bewitched, looking at the marvelous collection of marine life ranging from bamboo lobsters to tortoises, as they gracefully swam around in large aquariums on either side of the narrow walkways. Of the many aquariums that I have visited Marine Aquarium at Vizhinjam hosts the best collection of fishes and aquatic life I have ever seen. I would really recommend this place for children, it would be too fascinating for them.
Vizhinjam Marine Aquarium – A short video
By now, it was almost 3:00PM and we headed straight towards Poovar. We reached Poovar by 3:30 PM and located Leela Backwaters, just after the Poovar bridge. We parked the vehicle and joined others from office who had already boarded the boats. The tour co-ordinator Mr. Benny welcomed us on-board a small 10 seater motor boat and we started our onward journey to the Poovar Estuary through the Neyyar River.
The place was really beautiful with wild trees, shrubs, mangroves and coconut groves on either side. Soon we took a diversion, that lead us through narrow canals surrounding the mangroves . The canals seemed totally unexplored. It was a different experience cruising along the river, listening to the songs of birds, and sound of the leaves from the coconut groves. ( a miniature of what you see in the movie anaconda….. well that would be over exaggeration though) .
Cruising along, we reached Poovar, a breathtakingly beautiful island, a place where the Neyyar river, Poovar Lake and Viraly lake joins the Arabian sea forming a beautiful estuary. We could see the Gold Sand beach on one side and the resort chains and floating restaurants on the other.
Cruising further we reached Pozhiyoor, the end point of Kerala and from there we headed towards Viraly. Throughout the way I could sight lots of birds on either side of the lake. The boat driver of Leela Backwaters was very much patient and he stopped by each one of them, positioning the boat for me to take the snaps. Without his effort these pictures wouldn’t have been possible.
The ride was through coconut grooves and submerged marshy lands. I couldn’t believe the fact that this place was in Trivandrum, as it was by all means a different piece of cake.
We then headed back to the floating restaurant operated by Leela Backwaters in Poovar Lake. It was a fairly large restaurant painted in white and with an upper deck from where you can have a 360 degree view of the place.
We could see the estuary, gold sand beach,the anchored boats and sea from the restaurant. After having coffee and snacks we headed towards the Gold Sand beach by around 5:00PM. The beach was neat and tidy unlike the other beaches around. Additionally it was not crowded either, you could pick a spot and be there undisturbed with total privacy and enjoy the wonderful changes of nature as the sun sinks behind the endless ocean. We had a good time at the beach, enjoying the waves, playing a quick game of football followed by a dive into the lake.By 6:30PM it was quite dark and we headed back to the floating restaurant. Dinner was server by 7:00pm after which they took us back to the boat jetty at Poovar. We drove back home with sweet memories of the place and some awesome snaps.
Backwaters of Poovar / Leela Backwaters – A short film
Unspoilt and miraculously unexplored, Poovar Island is a rare find in Southern Kerala. Enveloped by the most serene backwaters and opening out to the Sea and a dream golden beach, this Island Resort is truly amazing. As for our tour operators Leela Backwaters, the entire team was very friendly and offered us the best of service. I would recommend Leela Backwaters to anyone who has plans of visiting this place. The two hours, twelve kilometer boat ride, without food would cost you anywhere from 1000-1500/ person ( the amount varies as per the tourist season) . This includes 15-20 minutes of fun at the Golden Sand Beach. Leela Backwaters also provides custom packages where they tailor the trip based on your requirement. You can contact Mr. Benny Johnson, the Operations Manager for any enquires or booking at 7736577303.