Varkala Travel and Tourism Guide

Varkala is a town steeped in history dating as far back as the Cenozoic Age. The formidable and unique cliff ridge exposing sedimentary rock formation popularly known as Warkalli formation in geology is an important tourist attraction in Varkala. The ridge has also been declared as a geo-heritage site in 2015 by the Geological Survey of India and the Ministry of Mines, Government of India. The sand of Varkala beaches is said to contain thorium oxide, a radioactive material. Legends tell the tales of the birth of the town - one story claims that a group of pilgrims approached the sage Narada asking for help to annihilate the sins they had committed. Narada, in response, flung his loin cloth (valkalam), and it landed at this site, thus, naming it Varkala. The pilgrims were asked to pray to redeem themselves at Papanasam (redemption from sins) thus giving birth to the beach and its age-old custom of dipping in its holy water to wash away one's sins. Another myth claims that King Pandyan was asked by Lord Brahma to build a temple at this site to redeem himself, which was the Janardhan Swami Temple that is 2000 years old.

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