rtmanteau of two Malayalam words - kayam (sap of a spice tree) and kulam (pond)while a more reliable version is that Kayamkulam got its name from "kayal" (lake) and "kulam" (pond),since the Kayamkulam lake (Kayamkulam kayal) is as shallow as a pond (a bit exaggerated). Kayamkulam is well known for its coir, fishing and tourism industries. The town is an important township located on the backwaters of Kerala. One of the largest power plants in Kerala, run by the NTPC, is located in Kayamkulam. The climate is tropical wet, with heavy rain in the monsoon season.
Kayamkulam is closely associated with the legend of Kayamkulam Kochunni. He was a famed highwayman, active in the area known as Central Thiruvithamkoor, in the early part of the 19th century. He is said to have stolen from the rich and given to the poor (like Robin Hood). Legends about his exploits are part of the local folklore.