Kozhikode - The District of Kerala

Once the capital of the powerful Zamorins and a prominent trade and commerce center, Calicut (Kozhikode) was the most important region of Malabar in the days gone by. Today, lush green country sides, serene beaches, historic sites, wildlife sanctuaries, rivers, hills, a unique culture and a warm, friendly ambience make Calicut (Kozhikode) a popular destination. The Past: In northern Kerala lies the area, which the legendary traveller Marco Polo described in 1320 A.D. as the ‘‘great province of Malabar.’’ Much of this richness today lies buried in the glory of a past grandeur, a past replete with the trading visits of European voyagers calling on the ancient port of Calicut (Kozhikode) on their regular journeys of commerce, lured by timber, ivory, pepper, ginger, cinnamon and other spices. The Arab Traveller Abdur Razzak also praised Calicut (Kozhikode) commercial glory in 1443 A.D.: ‘‘Calicut (Kozhikode) is a perfectly secured harbour, which, like that of Ormuz, brings together merchants from every city and from every country.’’ Interestingly, Calicut has also lent its name to ‘calico’, the fine variety of handwoven cotton clothe said to have originated in this place.
How to get there:
Air: Calicut Airport, at karipur, 23 km from the city.
Rail: Calicut Railway Station in linked by rail to major cities.
Road: Government-run and private bus services connect Calicut to several tourist and business centres in South India.
Tusharagiri Waterfalls: As the name suggests, land and water have struck an extraordinary kinship at Thusharagiri (mist capped peaks). The plantation destination that abounds in rubber, arecanut, pepper, ginger and spices, is also a trekker’s delight. Trekkers start early morning from the second waterfall on the hills and climb up through the pristine dense evergreen forests teeming with exotic birds and animals to reach Vythiri in Wayanad district by evening.
Peruvannamuzhi: The Peruvannamuzhi damsite set amid hills is a beautiful picnic spot. The reservoirs here provide facilities for speed and slowboat cruises. Uninhabited islands, a bird sanctuary and a crocodile farm add to the charm of the place.
Tali Temple: Built in the 14th century by Swamy Thirumulpad, the Zamorin, within his palace complex, this temple was the venue of Revathy Pattathanam, the annual cultural and intellectual event. The Tali Temple is a fine example of the total integration that can exist between wood and laterite, which is a remarkable feature of the Kerala style of architecture.
Pazhassiraja Museum: A veritable treasure trove for historians and connoisseurs of art, the Pazhassiraja Museum is located in Kozhikode - the land of spices, which lured navigators from time immemorial down to the Portuguese explorer Vasco da Gama in 1498. The Art Gallery adjacent to the museum displays the acclaimed paintings of Kerala's cherished artists, Raja Ravi Varma (1848 - 1906) whose works brought international repute to the State and his uncle Raja Raja Varma.The museum is managed by the State Archaeology Department and has on display mural paintings, antique bronzes, ancient coins, models of temples, umbrella stones, dolmenoid cists (quadrangular burial chambers with capstones), and similar megalithic monuments. The art gallery has the oil paintings and other works of Raja Ravi Varma. For more information on Ravi Varma's works, refer 'The prince among painters and a painter among princes’.The museum and the art gallery are named after the great Pazhassiraja Kerala Varma of the Padinjare Kovilakom of the Kottayam royal family. Pazhassiraja led the famous ‘Pazhassi Revolt’ (against the British East India Company during the second half of the 1700s). Nicknamed the Lion of Kerala, Pazhassiraja is also credited with introducing guerilla warfare in the hills of Wayanad to resist the increasingly intolerable British colonialism. This great freedom fighter was shot dead in an encounter on 30 November 1805.
Krishna Menon Museum: Krishna Menon Museum situated at East Hill is five km by bus from the Railway station / city bus station. Lying adjacent to pazhassi raja Museum, a storehouse of knowledge.
Beypore: Beypore, one of the prominent ports and fishing harbours of ancient Kerala, was an important trade and maritime centre Beypore was much sought after by merchants from Western Asia for its ship building industry. The boat building yard here is famous for the construction of the Uru (the Arabian trading vessel), which boasts a tradition of over1500 years.
S M Street: Sweet Meat Street is the busiest street in Calicut (Kozhikode) and derives its name from the times when the street was lined with sweetmeat stalls. Kozhikode is famous for its 'Halwa' and Sweets.
Kappad Beach: Situated 16 km from the city. For the people of Calicut (Kozhikode), this pleasant stretch of rock studded beach is Kappakkadavu. To the tourist it is one of the most charming of Kerala's beaches. Kappad finds mention in history and geography texts as the gateway to the Malabar Coast. Here, 501 years ago, 170 men led by the Portuguese navigator Vasco da Gama (1460-1524) sailed in and stepped into Kerala to create a new chapter in history. The story of a long and tumultuous socio-political relationship between India and Europe. It was the spices and wealth of Malabar that first brought the Arabs, the Phoenicians, the Greeks, the Romans, the Portuguese, the Dutch and the English to Kerala. Kappad has witnessed many such landings. Calicut (Kozhikode) was then the most important trade center of the Malabar region and the Zamorins who ruled this mighty land were powerful and shrewd.
Though the Portuguese were welcomed in Kozhikode they were not too well encouraged or entertained for long by the Zamorins, which might be the reason they shifted their base to Kochi and Kollam down south. Today only a little stone monument is left at the Kappad beach to speak of its great historic importance. On the rocks nearby is a temple believed to be 800 years old. To the tourist, however, this little sea faring town is a haven. The best route to Kappad is along the backwaters. Unspoiled and uncrowned, the picturesque backwaters of Kozhikode offer a bewitching experience. A ride down the backwaters through the Korappuzha River brings you to the beach.
Dolphin point: Here one can see in the early hours of the morning dolphins playing in the sea. The beach, 2 km from Calicut (Kozhikode) town centre is along stretch of tree lined sand popular with the local people because of the Lions Club park, the Light House and the two piers - and, of course, the opportunity to enjoy in the evening breeze.
Malabar Houseboats: For luxury boating and exploring pristine back waters of Calicut (Kozhikode), House Boats can be availed. The novel concept and excellent hospitality in this floating palace is worth enjoying, with family and friends. These are the first fully newly built HouseBoats of Kerala. These are stationed at Purakkattiri, close to Purakkattiri Bridge on Ullery - Perambra road. 10 kms. from Kozhikode
Kadalundi Bird Sanctuary: The sanctuary at Kadalundi is a Haven for migratory birds. Terns, Gulls, Herons, Sand pipers, Whim brels .
Other such migratory birds flock from the month of November and returns only by the end of April. It is 25 kms. from Kozhikode. The ideal season to visit is from December to April in the early hours of the day. BEYPORE It is one of the important ports and fishing harbor. Ancient Beypore had been the centre of ship building industry where merchants from West Asia and Middle East regularly placed orders for huge wooden crafts, locally called as URU's. This art is a mnemonic tradition of almost 1500 yrs old. It is 15 kms. from Kozhikode, City buses are available.

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