I love Varkala!

Trip Start Aug 04, 2009
Trip End Oct 03, 2009

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Where I stayed
Skyland Hotel

Flag of India  , Kerala,
Monday, August 24, 2009

The journey to get here started oot a bit frightening, and started with my destination being completely different.  I took an overnight train from Madurai (had to return there from Kodaikanal), first class, non AC,  for 10 hours.  Trains always scare me a bit, and night trains are way worst, i never know what to expect (every single train ive been on seems to be different), who to expect.  I was safe though, in a cabin with 3 others, a family, i was relived.

I was even more relived when i realized how lovely my decision was to stop here in Vakala at the last minute, half hour before my orginal plan.  It's a very small coastal town, with high cliffs descending down to the ocean with scattered beaches.  There are many shops, restuarants, hotels, along the dirt path on the edge of the cliffs and some hidden back as you follow more dirt paths. I wandered a bit for a room, as it's all aboot ambience and atmosphere for me, i could feel this towns' potential and it starts with the room.  I found Skyland, freshly painted all pink and was honoured to be the very first customer ever, for 200 rupees ($4)!  yay!  The young owner was sooo excited, genuine and attentive but not overbearing.  I was happy. 

This is my first stop in Kerala, a different province.  Kerala is the richest in India and also most progressive for women with much opportunity for jobs and education.  On the train, i could notice the difference with homes being bigger, stronger, prettier, as well as it being a lot cleaner (still rubbish but not as much) and the landscape was more tropical, typical Asia as i would call it with palm trees everywhere, very green and lush...beautiful.

Varkala Cliffs (the town is 2km away) is definitely geared towards only tourists, and not represtnative of true Indian culture at all....it's a tourist culture.  It wasn't busy though as it's low season, just after monsoons, weather was grand, (still rained once a day usually but nice rain and usually when i just got into bed, nothing like rain putting me to sleep). The locals would sit ootside their shops, resturants the entire day, sometimes not having a customer at all, waiting patiently, asking me to come in as i would walk by several times a day.  I did do my share of shopping by the end and eating for that matter so i stopped feeling bad for their boredom as they do make good money from the tourists.

The natural beauty and laidback feel takes over as it did with me.  So i indulged for a week as i absolutely loved the atmosphere, the beauty, the vibe and with that brought great peace and freedom within myself.  Dont ask me what i did. I had nothing to do but all the time to do it and did that withoot boredom or loneliness...free! 

So my days were scattered and filled with sitting on my balcony, reading, going to the beach, playing with my poi, eating lots, shopping, swinging in a hammock, and i have to say my favourite...going for a walk (sometimes long, sometimes short) near dusk along the cliff edge.  I would walk until there were no shops or hotels, which wasnt' too far and kept walking to see the fishermen's wee village at the next beach (my beach), palm trees everywhere and then just keep walking as the coast goes forever (obviously) but so did the path and the pure beauty.  I would take pictures as i came to more houses, cows, villages, people and more stunning, coastline.  It was bloody brillant.  I reckon give it a few years and there will be alot more development.  I loved how  i could be spoiled and feel the comfort of all the tourist amentities then a short walk away i was alone, standing beside the ocean and staring into a village...best of both worlds.  I couldn't ask for more.  I was very happy and appreciative of that happiness.

Eventually it was time to move on though....oot of my little Varkala world.

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