Another legend goes like this - when a group of pilgrims approached Sage Narada and told him that they had sinned, Narada threw his valkalam (a loin cloth made from the bark of a tree) and it landed at this scenic village and hence, the place came to be known as Varkala.Narada told the pilgrims to pray for their redemption at Papanasam, which literally means redemption from sins.Varkala has an average literacy rate of 88%, with 92% of males and 85% of females literate. According to the 2011 Census of India, The Varkala Municipality has population of 40,048 of which 18,312 are males while 21,736 are females.Population of Children with age of 0-6 is 4479 which is 11.18% of total population of Varkala (M).Another major landmark in Varkala is the Sivagiri Mutt, established by the social reformer Sree Narayana Guru.The hill-top mausoleum of Sree Narayana Guru is one of the most famous monuments in Kerala state.In Varkala Municipality, Female Sex Ratio is of 1187 against state average of 1084.
Varkala is at a distance of 11 km from National Highway 66.
The temple is located close to the Papanasam beach, which is considered to have holy waters which wash away sins, and is also an important Ayurveda treatment centre.
The temple has an ancient bell removed from a shipwreck, donated by the captain of the Dutch vessel which sank near Varkala without causing any casualties.
Arabian Soul, a tropical guesthouse can be found close to the Helipad and is the most convenient place to stay on the cliff due to its close proximity to everything tourists look for yet set back in a tropical garden setting for seclusion and privacy.
Scores of ayurvedic massage parlours line the promenade above the beach.