Situated 71 km north of Thiruvananthapuram, the town of Quilon is a prosperous commercial hub. The town edges with the famous Ashtamudi Lake. It was one of the early centers of Christian activity in Kerala.
Thirteen kilometers south of Punalur is Anchal, known for its cattle market held twice a month. The Mudi festival of the Bhagavathy temple here, conducted once every 12 years, attract huge gatherings.
Achencoil is famous for its Sastha temple, which is situated amidst dense forests. The idol of Sastha is supposed to have been installed several centuries before the Christian era. The two important festivals of this temple are Mandala Puja (December-January) and the festival held at Ravathi (January-February). The most important features of the festival are the Therotam (Chariot festival) and Pushpabhishekam (offering of flowers). In no other temple of South India are flowers offered to the deity so lavishly as at Achencoil.
Aryankavu, situated about 73 km east of Kollam, is an important pilgrim center. The chief attraction of Aryankavu is the shrine dedicated to Lord Sastha. The temple has some fine sculptures and mural paintings. Thousands of pilgrims flock to this temple during the Mandala puja and Thrikalyanam festivals in December. The place is connected with trains and buses from the city of Quilon. A big waterfall, falling from a height of 300 feet, is situated around 5 km from Aryankavu. The fall is known as Palaruvi, which means river of milk. The scenic beauty, with the hills, valleys and cascades, covered with dense tropical forests, is breathtaking.
The town of Karunagappally, which has an idol of Buddha recovered from a local tank (now preserved in the Krishnapuram Palace), is situated 27 km north of Kollam. The city has a civil railway station at Karunagappally. Padayanarkulangara, which forms part of the town, was once the military station of the Kayamkulam Rajas. The town has a temple dedicated to Lord Shiva, two old mosques and a Mar Thomas Church.
Situated 27 km away from Quilon, Kottarakkara is linked with the former both by road and rail. The city that gave birth to the internationally renowned dance form of Kathakali was once the capital of Elayadathu Swarupam, a principality ruled by a branch of the Travancore royal family. Kottarakkara has a very old temple dedicated to Lord Ganapathy and a 700-year-old church belonging to Mar Thomas.
Ten kilometers south of Quilon is situated Mayyanad, noted for its shrines and temples. It is said that Shankaracharya of Kaladi constructed the most important temple of Mayyanad at Unayanalloor, dedicated to Lord Subramaniya. The city also takes pride in its three churches and a mosque. Mayyanad is the birthplace of C. V. Kunjuraman, one of the leading literary, social and political figures of modern Kerala.
A historical city, Thangassery is situated 5 km away from Quilon town. The city has old churches constructed in 18th century, a lighthouse built in 1902 with a height of 144 ft., and remnants of Portuguese and Dutch forts.
Sasthamcottah boasts of the largest fresh water lake in the whole of Kerala. Situated 19 km away from Quilon, Sasthamcottah is an attractive village, a beauty spot, a health resort, and a center of pilgrimage. Water supply to Quilon town is met by purifying the water from this lake.
Known also as Daksina Kashi, Oachira is situated 32 km north of the Quilon-Alappuzha National Highway and touches the boundary of Quilon district. Oachira is a unique pilgrim center. The peculiar template of the city has no temple buildings as such nor does any idols. All classes of people worship the presiding deity, the Parabrahmam. Oachira draws thousands of pilgrims for Oachirakkali, a festival held annually in June. Another festival held here is Panthrandu Vilakku in November-December, which lasts for 12 days. The festival is also followed by a fair that attracts thousands of pilgrims from all walks of life. Oachira is also an important handicraft center, where fancy articles of screw pine mats are manufactured