After being known for its rather elaborate temples, Tamil Nadu is famous for its hill stations and pristine beaches. And if you think you’ve covered all that there is to see, think again. Colachel is a hidden gem, a peaceful beachside settlement in Kanyakumari.

Located at a distance of about 23km from Nagercoil, even though Colachel is home to numerous historical sites and unspoilt beaches, it remains unexplored throughout the year. The locals hold it in high regard; courtesy its rich culture and history. Apparently, it was once part of the Travancore kingdom and was ruled by the Dutch East India Company for some time.

The highlight of Colachel has to be the Colachel Pillar. Located within the town, it was erected to commemorate the victory of the Travancore empire over the Dutch army in the year 1741. This ancient pillar is of great historical significance, and is of great value to historians as well as academicians. The town is also home to numerous churches and temples of stunning architecture.

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If you are a history buff, and have some extra time in hand, don’t forget to visit the nearby town of Eraniel, well-known mostly for its Eraniel Palace, which is now in ruins. Since it’s hot and humid through out the year, the best time to visit Colachel is between November to March when the temperatures are relatively pleasant.

Therefore, in case you are looking for a break from mainstream beach destinations and still want to savour the tranquility of a seashore, Colachel is your answer. The town is well-connected to most of the country by air, train and roads. The nearest airport is in Trivandrum, about 70km away. The closest railhead is in Eraniel, about 10km away. You can hire cabs and taxis from there to your destination.