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“Dont know what others see here”
Review of Shiva Garden

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Shiva Garden
Ranked #14 of 99 Varkala B&B and Inns
Reviewed 21 March 2013

i think others that have stayed here are looking at this place through rose coloured glasses
the rooms are dark and dingy, there is no hot water, the toilet dont flush, there are no bed coverings
the whole place looks like it could do with a massive clean up, debris everywhere
this is really at the bottom end of the market
Okay it is a budget hostel, but it doesn't even reach a minimum standard, the menu is really basic, with 6-7 things on it
Would I come back ?
Only to see if it hard burnt down
It caters for back packers that would settle for anything cheap, but it should try and clean up the place, put rubbish in bins
It has lots of signs about saving the planet, they want to start here before thinking of saving anywhere else
the fan in my room sounds like a ticking bomb, there is no hot water, the hand basin has no tap, the toilet dont flush, the room is more like a cell, very dark and dingy, I have had to use a head torch to write this, its so dark in here (no windows, so no natural light)
This review relates to my single room, with attached bathroom
There is no way this place is clean, or beautiful
I stayed in better bush camps on my safari

Room Tip: unless you are really broke, avoid here
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  • Stayed: March 2013, travelled solo
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Thank trip-traveller99
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
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93 - 99 of 209 reviews

Reviewed 6 March 2013

Shiva Gardens is the sort of place you come to for a few days and end up spending a week. Or indeed longer.

As is often the case, people make a place, and this is the most sociable and welcoming guest house I have come across in India. I stayed for 8 nights, sleeping in the dormitory on the roof, just a mattress and a mosquito net, and it was bliss.

There is a cool hangout area, people are always talking to each other, you can play badminton or basketball or just chill in the hammocks... and of course you can always head to the beach.

The staff are friendly, the food is good (albeit slightly over-priced, but there is a good and cheaper restaurant right opposite), the vibe is perfect.

This is a great place to stay... and especially if you are traveling on your own, you should not stay anywhere else.

Room Tip: The dorm at the front is smaller with (as of Feb 13) rectangular mosquito nets, but is closer to the...
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  • Stayed: February 2013, travelled solo
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3  Thank Mark A
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 1 March 2013

Great hospitality, amazing staff. Clean and affordable.
Food is good, and it seems like only 'good' people stay here....

choice of shared rooms or private rooms, both are comfortable and clean.

A real garden of eden :)

Highly recommended!

  • Stayed: April 2012, travelled solo
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3  Thank Narilw
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 25 February 2013

This place, this very special place, was my home more than once over the last few years. Just returning to the US after four-months living at Shiva Garden, with Jayan and his lovely, loving wife, Sonja, I feel homeless in my own home now. There is a rare energy to Shiva Garden. It embodies "community." If you are looking for five-stars, find a sanitary, cold, five-star (or similar) right next door. If you want "real" people, travelers, "family" away from home and a community that cares for each other, often found nursing wounds, tired feet, playing music together, napping in hammocks or talking of travels and resting from journeys made, then you will find a home here. Not just a place to stay, but a place to truly rest. To be comforted and be soothed back to life. From heartaches to backaches, I've seen them come and I've seen them healed here. This is a place that will always be home to me anytime I am on that side of the world. There is a genuine love in my heart for Jayan and Sonja and reading some of the reviews here, it hurts to think some people just don't appreciate honorable hosts anymore? Spiders in rooms? Hippies smoking relaxant? It's going to happen anywhere in India. Come to Shiva Garden for real and safe and authentic souls. Go to the other places for white-washed people and walls...

Room Tip: Just look at the rooms. What you see is what you get. The rooms are kept neat and clean. It's th...
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  • Stayed: December 2012, travelled solo
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5  Thank Gaiabeliever
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 30 January 2013

well shiva garden, you made the start of my trip to inda a magical experience. beatiful place, people and atmosphere. The staff were friendly and helpful and ended up becoming friends. you have to go!.enough said x

Room Tip: go to to the dorms if your on a budgit. its like a family up there!
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  • Stayed: January 2013, travelled solo
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4  Thank alex p
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 12 January 2013

Young family: a yoga teacher, a journalist and two little children, 6 and 2 years old. It has been our perfect homestay in Kerala, perfect for us and for the children too, with a lot of space to play. Good people around, good atmosphere and energy and a really friendly welcome: you can ask the staff to help ypu in every way (tuc tuc and taxi, ayurveda treatment suggestion, shopping advice and much much more). The best thing? The familiar and friendly way the hostel is runned. Cheap, comfortable, easy! And you can even stay and eat for free, if you give some of your time for helping and work with them. A great opportunity to go deeper in the Indian life style and learn how to make a perfect masale chai! Don't miss the place!!

Room Tip: Dormitory is very cheap but at the same time comfortable, if you like to stay in good company; rooms...
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  • Stayed: January 2013, travelled with family
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3  Thank chiarameriani
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
Reviewed 10 January 2013

We were very disappointed that the family room we booked, which was advertised as having two bedrooms, two bathrooms and two living areas was actually a two bedroom and one bathroom place. There was meant to be a double bed and two single, but there was only one single and a couch. We had to request sheets for this, so that our son could sleep on it. During the night our power went off, and didn't come back on, so the fans stopped, there was no flywire or mosquito nets for the boys, so we couldn't open the windows... it was incredibly hot. The water stopped as well, and didn't go back on until late morning, so no showers nor the flush on the toilet work. We left the next morning after finding adequate accommodation, cheaper than at Shiva. The Thali was also very small, and not so good.

  • Stayed: January 2013, travelled with family
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2  Thank Kirsten B
This review is the subjective opinion of a TripAdvisor member and not of TripAdvisor LLC
shivaom1122, Owner at Shiva Garden, responded to this reviewResponded 13 January 2013

The Family who stayed in Our Apartment they booked Apartment Plan 2 ,The occupancy is 4 .We charged only for that (Apartment plan 2).The family who misunderstood the Apartment plan 2 n Plan 3. We are sorry for that.
There was power went off at night time in their Apartment.But they never informed us.We knew only morning time.we are so sorry for that.we care about that.

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Additional Information about Shiva Garden

Address: North Cliff Kurakkanni | Kurakkanni, Varkala 695141, India
Region: India > Kerala > Thiruvananthapuram District > Varkala
Amenities:
Free Parking Children Activities (Kid / Family Friendly) Restaurant Room Service
Hotel Style:
Ranked #14 of 99 B&Bs / Inns in Varkala
Price Range: £10 - £20 (Based on Average Rates for a Standard Room)
Number of rooms: 19
Official Description (provided by the hotel):
SHIVA GARDEN is one among the most reputed home stays in Varkala. Perched near a majestic red cliff overlooking the Arabian Sea, this charming home stay offers many warm hospitable services as well as a fantastic garden view. Here we have a magnificent garden growing many famous Ayurvedic plants and trees, surrounding the resort. Guests are only minutes away from the famous 2000 years old Janardhana Swamy Temple, Kappil beach and Angengo Fort built by the British East India company in the 17th century. Shiva Garden is the perfect base for leisure and you may never forget this in your life. ... more   less 
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Also Known As:
Shiva Garden Hotel Varkala
Shiva Garden Varkala, Kerala

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