Best place to stay around Kovalam
Being a travel adviser i have been to Kovalam for dozens of time ... A very nice place for relaxation... Uday Samudra is a good hotel worth the price but i would highly recommend a different hotel close to Kovalam i.e. Poovar Island Resort, far better than Uday Samudra and incomparable to anyother hotel of that region.... Simply amazing!!! they have floating cottages which could be the best experience of your trip.
http://www.poovarislandresort.com/ Floating cottages
Festival In January
The local festival to celebrate harvest in January is more like a vivbrant carnival. An electric atmosphere with drums beating, fireworks going off into the night. A stage was built in the square just outside a small local Temple next to The Uday Samudra Hotel; a mimed play was staged with all the locals watching. The women of the village sat around the stage whilst the men stood back almost in segregation. We were offered seats by the Temple (I thought at the time this is going to cost me) we were politely asked if we would like to make a small donation and of course we did. In all the highlight was the Elephants entering the village via GV Raja Road followed by a long procession making their way to the beach at approx 11pm, with the local of all ages joining the occasion.
DESERVES ONE MORE STAR!
Ending a months visit to India with a 2 week stay in Kerala, We hadn't expected much from the Uday Samudra. But we were SO pleasantly surprised! The pictures in the brochures do not do it justice.
The hotel has 3 lovely clean pools. Most Helpful + Friendly staff. Just about enough sun beds.
The rooms are excellent, ( we were in the new block 800's) especially after some of the 4* hotels we have stayed in in India! The Staff are 1 st class and always helpful. They cannot do enough to help you.
Breakfast very good- bit slow at replenishing, - probably at full capacity?
Gym REALLY good and very helpful staff.
Do Not go to this location if you want a beach holiday. Beaches NOT like Goa! - Strong waves + currents, Small beaches. Beware -Expensive canoe trips!
Kovalam is lovely, Friendly people. Visit Light House Beach. Great Food. Do the Back Waters- But try to take a few days!
A Hotel to be recommended.
Feel free to contact me re further info.
October Still Rainy Season
My husband and I stayed in the Uday Samudra mid-October. Firstly I would like to say that this is the end of the monsoon season and altho' we had a reasonable amount of sunshine we also experienced a good deal of "big rain coming" as the pool man used to say. Most tour operators do not offer holidays until beginning of November and my advise would be, if you want to be sure of good weather do not go until December!
We too were offered a room in the old block which was extremely musty and smelled of moth balls which were left in the drainage holes. We refused to accept this room and were moved to a more acceptable one. This however still felt damp and the reason for this was that after several months of rain and no heat to dry out the rooms, they were musty and there were mould marks on the curtains and furnishings.
At this time there was only one pool open as they were regrouting the second pool and there was a third which was still being built.
We only had breakfast in the hotel and this was passable. We enjoyed going out in the evenings to the Lighthouse Beach where we favoured The Fusion Restaurant where the lobster was really tasty and fairly cheap.
If you go out of the entrance of the UDS and turn left about five minutes up the road on the right is MOLLYS. This is a great place to eat. It is owned by an English lady from Staffordshire and her Indian partner. The food is wonderful and I really recommend it for a good meal and evening out. You can also stay at Mollys as there are about 8 rooms which were just being completed whilst we were there, not to mention a really great swimming pool. Definitely worth a visit!!!
Tut Tuts are fun but you take your life in your hands - they are in various states of disrepair - lack of windscreen wipers, wing mirrors, light etc etc. We had an exciting trip back from the Lighthouse Beach in the dark and pouring rain with no windscreen wipers and the windscreen steamed up as we had flaps down on the Tut Tut.
All in all this is India and we did have a good holiday. I prefer Goa as the beaches are much nicer. Kerala is less commercialised. We would go again if there was a good offer but would try another hotel or Mollys.
Great all round
We stayed at the Uday Sumudra beach hotel in Kerala, at the beginning of Dec and was impressed all round by it. We were a bit nervous at first as we had read bad reports. But we had nothing to worry about, the staff couldn't do enough for you. Rooms were brilliant.
Kerala is a great place to visit cannot fault it at all.
If you can afford it whilst you are out there get your teeth done, it will save you an absolute fortune.
The only problem we came accross was using our credit cards. It is advisable to let your banks know what country you will be using it, as it is not uncommon for them to put a stop on your card after you have used it once.
Have a great time if you go there and try to visit before it becomes to touristy
Fantastic - If you are with First Choice-
We enjoyed it alot and will be going back.
Firstly - It is great, if you have ever stayed in some of the small hotels in North Goa, this knocks them into a cocked hat.
First Choice Flight was fantastic loads of legroom etc etc. Mytravel people not as pleased.
Rooms for First Choice were the new building which is clean tidy, and basically superior to anything in goa for the same price. The other operators ended up in the older rooms which looked fine just a bit tatty after 5 or 6 old and usual levels of indian maintenance ;)
Services and grounds were great and clean. Food in the hotel was only tried once or twice and was decent. Breakfast was a nightmare as we were there over xmas and newyear it was packed every morning not enough tables guys.
Pools were great, new pool looks fantastic. Not enough sunbeds for everyone and you get the usual European Morons bagging a sunbed at 8am and never sitting on it all day long. This is a pain as the beach is well used by the the fishermen to dry their nets and is not a good beach for swimming etc. If you see a reading book and a stripy towel on a bed and the book looks old and manky someone will have bribed the pool boys to save the bed. Simply put the book back on the pile of "borrow me" books and get on with your day in the sun!! If the bagger of the sunbed moans at you, tell them a raven must have nicked the book whilst they have been away for the last 4 hours!
Bar - virtually non existent not a very social hotel after dark everyone uses the local eateries
Plenty of restaurants (8 within 100m) (2 more within 5-10 mins walk) no horror stories, good food from each of them. Please remember you are in India and you wont get much euro food here. No Pizza, Little Pasta and little straight (unspiced) meat. You get really tasty curries prepared how you want them (spicewise). Dont expect to get the same dish coming exactly the same twice in the same place though as every day is a little adventure.
Tuk Tuk to Lighthouse beach (return) 150Rupees, You can hire a scooter from a little shop up the side of the hotel (300 Rs a day) What a giggle!. Ayuvedic Centre quite expensive but same as all other large hotels. 800Rs for half body massage 60mins.
Lots of other beaches to the south of the hotel. If you get a tuk tuk, scooter or taxi try out the following beaches
Lobster Pot beach 2 mins - walk over the rocky headland (use path) and you will have a busy(ish) beach, bit regimented but nice enough. Pervy Local problem in the afternoon they dont hassle just stare at the pink ladies bodies on show. The beach blokes chase them on pretty quick.
Lighthouse Beach 10 mins - dead touristy and busy good shopping. but full of Brits
Vinjam (how its said not spelled) 15 mins - Other side of the lighthouse nice and quiet few hawkers no pervy locals looking at pink ladies!
Chowra - Quite a few down here just go along the main road and look for xyz hotel beach resort signs and trundle off to the hotel. They dont charge for you to leave your scooter or tuk tuk there. just walk through the hotel grounds and down to their part of the beach. Dont go too far along as this beach is about 8km long and other than the hotel bits is very local (i mean very) you will certainly see people using the beach / sea as a loo! if you go amongst the fishing boats pulled up. If you dont mind it, its actually quite interesting walk past hundreds of boats pulled up on the shoreline. Just pretend you are in France and its Dog merde you are avoiding!
In general fantastic place. One word of warning if you do get a scooter the roads are fine just take it steady and use your mirrors all the time. Beeping essential at all times. Dont scoot into Trivandrum unless very brave we did got as far as East fort and bailed out as it got really really busy (about 5 x worse than Panjim in Goa). Other than that its a blast, total relax get a peice of semi-untouristy india before it goes for good.
Firstly I must say that this is our 7th visit to India 5 to Goa and 1 to Rahjistan so we know what to expect. The Uday Samundra overall was not too bad as long as you do not get put in the old block or any of the ground floor rooms the balconies are very small and overlooked and lack any privicy and the rooms with full glass doors and windows are the same, you have to keep the curtains closed at all times to escape prying eyes.We were originally put in room 112 old block ground floor next to the restaurant, the room was very shabby and worn and quite dirty, the waste bin was distgusting but worst of all when you opened the toilet / bathroom window it opened into the kitchen!!! we complained that staying in this room was unacceptable it took a lot of shouting and threats to eventually get a promise that they would move us the next day as there were no other rooms available and some new arrivals still did not have a room, it appears that between package visitors the hotel takes in touring visitors to maximise profit on all rooms and then cannot get them to leave and also Air India crews stay here on stopovers which also takes up package rooms in other words the hotel is over booking rooms. We were moved the next day to room 822 in tne new part, which was more acceptabl. The breakfast was typical Indian Buffet food and eggs any which way you like them but adequate even if the retsurant was a bit crowded the other meals were mediocre. Three good pools but lack of sun beds, the beach outside is nonexistant, not a patch on Goan beaches,and you have to sit on the sea wall again lack of sun beds, the sea was rough most of the time and hard to get into and has a deep shelf and undertow. There is a passable small beach with sunbeds, 250 rupees per day, over the next headland 5 minutes walk. Resturants outside the hotel good especially the Sea Gull and the 3rd Rock also the Kingfisher and Santana at Light House Beach. as Kerela is a dry state the supply of alcohol is run by the state and provided in state run shops most places serve beer some times in brown paper bags and the occaisional cocktail, wine is very expensive 1200 rupees £14 for abottle cheaper if bought in Government shop £6.50 and this is for Indian wine, only the hotel and the Sea Gull sold wine by the glass £3. There is little to do at night other than the entertainment provided by the hotel no bars clubs ect. most people are in bed by 10.30pm Ok for old codgers, honeymoon couples and those with sleeping sickness. Lastly do not got to this hotel around 23rd to 29th January as the Temple next to the hotel has its annual festival with some very very loud music and chanting which starts at around 5am and continues all day until after midnight this can be heard throughout the hotel they have banks of huge speakers which makes a pop concert at Wembley seem tame. Only a holiday destination for the worn out or overworked too quiet for us we are back to Goa.
Local entertainment at The Uday Samudra Beach Hote
Uday Samudra Beach Hotel
Thinking about booking a 2 week holiday to the hotel on a B & B basis. Can anyone tell me how close we are to other eating places, and, what is the cost of a meal (roughly). Also, if we book it will be in mid April, is that the monsoon season?
RE: Uday Samudra Beach Hotel
Monsoon starts in June. April will be very hot!
RE: RE: Uday Samudra Beach Hotel
TRIVANDRUM has no winter or summer . Tempratures are always above 27 drg C and always below 38 deg C .
Avoid later half of June onwards till late October to avoid the Monsoon
The cost of a meal in Trivandrum depends on the choise of thr resturant and the Menu. A local Menu would cost $0.50 to a maximumum of$ 4.00
A western fsre is priced higher and depends on the Choice of the resturant and Menu but will not exceed $10.00 .
RE: RE: Uday Samudra Beach Hotel
Other hotels for eating out:
They are all in the city of Trivandrum and are 10 to 18 kms away .
You can always use a local three wheeler autoricshaw to ply up and down at a fare not exceeding $2.00 for a one way ride for two persons. You can always hire a taxi for a half day at a cost not exceeding $10.00
RE: Uday Samudra Beach Hotel
The UDS is great for B&B, we stayed there last Easter, there are 2 cafes just out side the hotel on the beach, although not expensive by English standards they are by Kovalam standards, If you walk down to lighthouse beach the food is cheaper, Veg curries from 40rps or meat from 75rps its the price of beer that is a bit expensive on the beach a bottle of Kingfisher is 80prs, I know its more in the hotel but its 50rps if you buy from the shop. Yes food is even cheaper if you go into Trivandrum, but by the time you have spent 200rps on a tuk tuk(there and back)!!!! April is hot and there is not much of a beach outside the hotel at that time, but the swimming pools are great and there wont be many people in them. 300-500rps on a meal for 2 inc drinks, the seafood platters can be expensive £10 for 2 LOL, but you get a lot for your money and you know its fresh.
RE: Uday Samudra Beach Hotel
The hotel is near several restaurants but the main ones on lighthouse beach (lots of choice) are walkable (through the hotel Samudra's grounds or over a rocky outcrop)or you can pick up a local taxi. We stayed in the Samudra and used to walk to Lighthouse beach and get a rickshaw back (or walk if we were feeling energetic)you will a torch. Meals around £5 each including beer
Do you really want to stay in the Uday Samudra?