North Latitudes : 9 16′ 48″ N' East Longitudes : 76 16′ 48″ E'.
October and March
Kollam district, is a veritable Kerala in miniature, reflecting all the colours of Kerala kaleidoscope. The district has immense tourist potential as it is blessed by nature's bounty. It has beautiful beaches and backwaters, meandering verdant valleys, lush forests, fertile plains with vast green fields producing tropical crops. It also has historic monuments and numerous temples built in the traditional architectural style.
The district has about 37.3 km long coastline and has a good network of backwaters and canals. It also has fairly developed coir and bamboo industry. The handicrafts produce include screw-pine fancy goods, cane and rattan works, paddy straw pictures and wood carving.
Kollam District is situated on the South west coast of kerala. The District is bound on the north by Alappuzha and north east by Pathanamthitta Districts on the east by Thirunelveli District of Tamilnadu, on the South by the Thiruvavanthapuram District and on the west by Arabian sea.
Two rivers Kallada and Ithikkara flows through this District. The Sasthamcotta lake, the only major fresh water lake in the state is in Kollam District.
Kollam or Quilon, an old sea port town on the Arabian coast, stands on the Ashtamudi lake. Kollam, the erstwhile Desinganadu, had a sustained commercial reputation from the days of the Phoenicians and the Romans. Fed by the Chinese trade, it was regarded by Ibn Batuta, as one of the five ports, which he had seen in the course of his travels during a period of twenty four years, in the 14th century.
The rulers of Kollam (Desinganadu) and China, exchange embassies and there was flourishing Chinese settlement at Kollam. Merchant Sulaiman of Siraf in Persia (9th Century) found Kollam to be the only port in India, touched by the huge Chinese junks, on his way from Carton of Persian Gulf. Marco Polo, the great Venician traveller, who was in Chinese service under Kublahan in 1275, visited Kollam and other towns on the west coast, in his capacity as a Chinese mandarin.
The Portuguese were the first Europeans to establish a trading center at Kollam in 1502. Then came the Dutch followed by the British in 1795. A British garrison was stationed at Kollam in pursuance of a treaty between Travancore and the British.
Velu Thampi Dalawa of Travancore, did much for the improvement of the Kollam town. He build new bazaars and invited merchants from Madras and Thirunelveli to settle here. Kollam later became the capital of the enlightened and liberal rulers of Desinganad.
Once a city of palaces, Kollam has been known to the outside world, by the time honoured proverb, "Once you have seen Kollam you would no more need your illam (Home)".
The history of the district as an administrative unit can be traced back to 1835, when the Travancore state consisted of two revenue divisions with headquarters at Kollam and Kottayam. At the time of the integrating of Travancore and Cochin in 1949, Kollam was one of the three revenue divisions in the state. These three revenue divisions were converted into districts. Shencottah taluk was merged with Madras state consequent on the implementation of the state Reorganisation Act of 1956.
The district has a tropical humid climate, with an oppressive summer and plentiful seasonal rainfall. The hot season, lasting from March to May, is followed by the south west monsoon from June to September. The north east monsoon occurs from October to November. The rest of the year is generally dry.
The area under forest in Kollam district is 81438 ha. and it falls in Thenmala, Punalur and a portion of Achencoil forest division. Thenmala range, Aryankavu range and Shendurney Sanctuary constitutes the Thenmala division. Achencoil range, Kallar range and Kanayar range, make up the Achencoil division while Punalur division includes Pathanapuram and Anchal Ranges. Teak and softwood form the major forest plantations in the district.
These two rivers Kallada and Ithikkara flows through this District.
The Kallada river is one of two major rivers that flow through the Kollam District of Kerala, India. It originates in the Western Ghats and travels for 121 km, finally ending at Ashtamudi Lake.
Ithikkara River is a 56 km long river in Kerala, India. It originates in Ponmudi in Thiruvananthapuram District and flows through Kollam District, finally emptying into Paravur Kayal.
Situated some 71 km from the capital city of Thiruvananthapuram along the coastline of Ashthamudi lake, Kollam is host to some beautiful buildings and structures. The most notable and astoundingly beautiful feature of Kollam is the Ashthamudi lake that covers around 30% of the city. One enjoys a variety of backwater tours offered by the city on this wondrous lake. The eight hour long journey on boat from Kollam to Alappuzha is a must for anyone who visits the fascinating city of Kollam in Kerala, South India.
The Ashtamudi lake (literally, having eight arms) covers a major portion of Kollam district in the south, is the second largest and is considered the gateway to the backwaters. The eight hour trip between Kollam and Alappuzha is the longest backwater cruise in Kerala.