Thiruvananthapuram or Trivandrum is the capital of Kerala and also the third largest city. Located in the south-western tip of peninsular India, Thiruvananthapuram is bordered by Arabian Sea in the west and Western Ghats in the east.
Thiruvananthapuram city, situated at an average elevation of 6 meters above sea level, is the administrative headquarters of Thiruvananthapuram District. Located on the banks of Karamana and Killi Rivers, it is categorised under Seismic Zone III by the Geological Survey of India.
Thiruvananthapuram got its name from the deity Lord Anantha or Shesha of Sri Padmanabhaswamy Temple of 7th AD, on which Lord Padmanabhaswamy (Vishnu) is seen to be in a reclining pose. As per historical records, Thiruvananthapuram was a famous port city during 1050 BC and it maintained trade relations with the Middle East and Mediterranean countries.
The earliest known rulers of the region were the Tamil Kings called Yadavas or Ays, who ruled from 3 AD to 10 AD. Later, it came under the Venad Empire. The region prospered in 1745 under King Marthanda Varma, who formed the princely state of Travancore and made Thiruvananthapuram its capital.
Thiruvananthapuram was submitted to Lord Padmanabhaswamy, the presiding deity of Sri Padmanabhaswamy Temple, and the Rajas of Travancore thence ruled the region on behalf of Lord Padmanabhaswamy as Padmanabhadasas'.
Thiruvananthapuram rose to become the centre of arts, culture and intellect in the 19th century during the rule of Maharaja Swathi Thirunal (1813 1846) and Maharaja Ayilyam Thirunal (1832 1880) of Travancore. It played an active role in the struggle for Indian Independence. Post-Independence, it merged with the Indian Union. The city became the capital of the state of Kerala in 1956.
The economy of the city is driven by IT, medical/bio-technology and medical tourism. Malayalam, Tamil, English and Hindi are the main languages spoken in this region. The major events in the city are Onam, Attukal Pongala, Aaraat of Padmanabhaswamy Temple, Vishu, Vettucaud Perunaal, etc.
Attukal Pongala is an annual festival which, is held at the Attukal Temple in Thiruvananthapuram every year. The festival is held for 10 days with the ninth day being the most important. It marks the largest gathering of women in the world, for which it holds a Guinness World Record, where boiled rice is offered to the goddess in earthen pots. The presiding deity of the Attukal Temple is Attukal Bhagavathy who is an incarnation of Shakti and the temple is often considered to be the Sabarimala of women. Another major tourist attraction in Thiruvananthapuram is the Kadammanitta Padayani Festival. The performances are a must-see for all tourists visiting Thiruvananthapuram in April.
Thiruvananthapuram also has historic monuments, backwaters, beaches and wildlife sanctuaries. Tourists visiting the city can also plan excursions to Tripparappu Waterfalls, Thiruvattar, Padmanabhapuram, Courtallam, Sabarimala, Thekkady, etc. Activities like river rafting, canoeing and trekking can be done. Thiruvananthapuram holiday packages too have a lot to offer to tourists. The best time to visit Thiruvananthapuram is between October and February.
Tourists can easily reach Thiruvananthapuram by air as the city has an airport - Thiruvananthapuram International Airport. It is also well connected to major cities in the country by trains and national as well as state highways.
Budget stays, homestays, lodges, guesthouses and resorts are a few of the many hotels in Thiruvananthapuram for tourists.