Another overnight train and here we are, in Varkala, North Cliff.
Varkala is a small town of about 40,000 inhabitants in the state of Kerala. But our final destination was so-called North Cliff, a purely touristic spot on the top of a cliff adjacent to the Arabian Sea, about 5 km off from Varkala town.
The first line on the cliff is a chain of hotels, shops, cafes, restaurants and Internet cafes. Behind them you will find various guest houses, jewellery shops, drum and joga classes, and numerous ayurvedic spas. Life here is quiet. Unlike Goa with parties-all-night, Varkala is for families and health-conscious people. As our Lonely Planet book says, “It seems like every man and his dog has an Ayurvedic-related product to sell”. This is so true!
For me Varkala smells
Incenses from the shops…
Fresh fish and sea food in the evening from nearly every restaurant…
And it sounds
Reggae music (and don’t ask me why it is so popular here!)
Coconut fall that can make wake you up in the middle of the night
Invites from the shops with an unforgettable accent, “Have a look! Come to my shop!”
I should admit that food in South India is the one I prefer the most. It is less hot than in the north but still full of mild spices like coriander, fennel, cinnamon and a lot of coconuts. The specialty of Kerala is fish molee, fish stew with coconut milk, and for me, fish has never tasted so sophisticated! If you did not manage to go to Nepal, here in Varkala you will have a chance to taste Tibetan food as many restaurants here are hold by Nepalese.
Typical shops on the cliff. Note the 'emergency' stuff displayed: water, cigarettes and toilet paper. The last one can only be found in the shops for tourists.
Women wearing a traditional Nepalese dress.
Our room at North Cliff guest house. We had our private terrace and a mango tree!
Hot afternoon and the dogs are sleeping in the shade of the restaurant tables.
Momo, Tibetan dumplings, and cheese naan, Indian flatbread.
Typical evening scenery. Fresh sea food on display and beer served in tea mugs, most restaurants here do not have a license to sell alcohol.
This blue nets on the trees are meant for falling coconuts. I guess it does not help always and I am still wondering about coconut-related accidents. By the way, have you even seen a red banana?
I could not hide this menu from you. It is hilarious! Light coca anyone?