The Karamana river is another important river that flows through various places in Thiruvananthapuram district in Kerala. The Karamana river also flows through the main part of Thiruvananthapuram city and there is also a place named Karamana in the city. The Karamana river starts from the southern tip of the Western Ghats at Agastyar Koodam.
After its origin, it the flows westward for almost 66 km, before finally dissolving with the Arabian Sea at Panathura near Kovalam. As per various sources, the river attained its name from a suburb of Thiruvananthapuram city named Karamana, through which the river flows.
The Karamana River has a catchment area that is mainly forested and the command area of the river consists of dry land crops such as tapioca, coconut, plantain, pepper, rice etc.
The origin of the Karamana river is at about 1600m above sea level at Agasthiarkoodam. Chemmunji Motta and Aathiramala are the names given to the peaks of Karamana river’s origin. The river also has upper tributaries such as the Kaaviyaar, Attayaar, Vaiyappadyaar and Thodayaar.
Killiyar is the largest tributary of the Karamana river and is 24 kilometers in lenght. The Killiyar also has five anicuts for regulating the flow of the water. A portion of the water is also diverted towards the Kochar channel, that is the main source of water for the Padmatheertham pond, situated outside the famous Padmanabhaswamy Temple. The banks of Killiyar is blessed with various temples and one of the most popular among them is the Attukal Temple. The Nedumangad forest gets water from the Killiyar and it merges with the Arabian Sea via the Pozhikkara estuary.
There are two major dams on Karamana river and they are Aruvikkara Dam and the Peppara Dam. The Aruvikkara Dam was built in the 1930s, whereas the Peppara Dam was built in 1983. The Aruvikkara Dam provides piped drinking water to Thiruvananthapuram city, where as the Peppara Dam regulates the flow of water moving towards the Aruvikkara Dam by merging all the upper tributaries of the Karamana river.
There are various bridges across the Karamana river and some the include, Karamana bridge, Thrikkunnapuram, Aryanad bridge, Mangattu Kadavu, Vellaikadavu, Jagathi bridge, Kundamon Kadavu, Aruvikkara and Maruthoor kadavu.
The banks of the Karamana River has a lot of tropical plants such as wild cane, bamboo, mangroves, water lilies and coconut trees. The river also contain various fish species such as Karimeen, Chekkaali, Kariyida, Paruminali, Maalavu, Nedumeen, Aaral, Cherumeen, Vaala, and Paaval.
There are a lot of travel places, religious sites and other historical locations through which the Karamana river flows. The river Karamana has a good influence on the tourism industry of the city, and travelers are seen visiting various locations around the Karamana river to enjoy its natural beauty and charm.