Kollam Beach (Malayalam : കൊല്ലം ബീച്), also known as Mahatma Gandhi Beach, is a beach at Kollam city in the Indian state of Kerala.
The beach also features an park of international standard, the Mahatma Gandhi Park, which was inaugurated on 1 January 1961 by the then Vice President of India, Zakir Hussain. Kollam beach is one among the few beaches in Kerala with a lifeguard outpost. Lifeguards were stationed at the beach from 2005. As of July 2015[update] Kovalam, Varkala and Kollam are the only beaches in south Kerala with lifeguard outposts.
Kollam Port is one of the oldest and most important ports for the international cashew trade on the Malabar Coast of the Arabian Sea. As of 2010[update], Kollam Port was the second largest port in Kerala after Cochin Port.
Kollam was once a favourite settlement of the Portuguese, the Dutch and the English in succession before Independence.
The port is protected by the Tangasseri Breakwater, extending about 1.1 miles (1.8 km) south-south east of Tangasseri Point. The exotic location and backwaters makes Kollam Beach one of Kerala's most popular tourist attractions.
On 22 June 2014, construction work started on a marine aquarium at Kollam Beach, which was first of its kind in the state of Kerala. The Harbour Engineering Department is constructing the aquarium at the eastern side of the beach on behalf of Kollam Municipal Corporation. The foundation stone for the project was laid in March and is expected to complete by December 2014. It will be a single storey aquarium with 40 large tanks to hold a diverse collection of marine life and will be an added attraction for visitors to Kollam beach.
The 144-foot (44 m) Tangasseri lighthouse built in 1902 is a major landmark at the beach.
Ruins of Portuguese / Dutch forts and 18th-century churches near the port remain as a memento of the Portuguese and Dutch rule of the area.