Kannur, Kerala, India



   Identified as the ancient port town of Naura, which was known even to the early Greeks and Romans, Kannur, in northern Malabar, has been famous for its exports to the outside world from very early times. Over time, it also came to be known for its quality timber. Today, the town's rich history lives on through its ancient forts, old shrines, and many venerable institutions.

Kannur, Kerala, India

    While spices, coir, wood and sandalwood were exported from Kannur, traders from places as far flung as Sumatra and Arabia brought to the town varied merchandise - sugar, opium, dry fruits, silk, camphor, and even horses. Indeed, the celebrated Venetian traveller, Marco Polo, referred to the town as a great emporium of spice trade. Kannur has some beautiful sandy beaches, the longest of which is the Payyambalam. This beach is quiet and peaceful, perhaps because there is a Hindu burial ground nearby, where the remains of people such as EK Nayanar and AK Gopalan, the famous Communist party leaders of Kerata, are interred. The Kannur cantonment, established in 1938, is the only one in the State.

Essential Information




Telephone Code


Vehicle Regn. Code

When To Go

:  2996 Sq.Km

:  24,19,365

:  Thalipparambu, Kannur, Thalassery

:  Kndamkunnu, Koothuparambu, Thruppangottur, Kolavalloor, Panoor, Puthoor, Cheruvanjeri,    Mananderi, Kannavam, Kolayadu, Tholampra, Vekkalam, Vellarvalli, Manathana, Padya,    Mokeri, Pnnyannoor, Thiruvangadu, Thalasseri, Kottayam, Pathiriyadu, Eruvatti, Eranjoli,    Pinarayi, Kodiyeri, Dharmmadam, Kathiroor, Chokli, Peringathoor, Koodali, Keezhalloor, Kolari,    Chavasseri, Keezhoor, Payam, Aralam, Muzhakkunnu, Thillanderi, Sivapuram, Pazhassi,    Paduvilayi, Mangattidam, Pattannoor, Vilamana, Ayyankunnu,, Kannoor, Azhikkodu, South,    Valapattanam, Chiraykal, Puzhathi, Pallikkunnu, Elayavoor, Muderi, Kanjirodu, Anjarekkandi,    Eriveli, Chelora, Kadamboor< Chembilodu, Muzhuppilangadu, Azhikkodu North, Edakkadu,    Makreri, Mavilay, Panppuzha, Chruthazham, Kadannappalli, Kunjimagalam, Madayi, Mattool,    Ezhom, Cherukunnu, Kannapuram, Pappinisseri, Narathu, Kalyasseri, Kannipparambu,    Valiyannoor, Payyannoor, Karivelloor, Perlam, Alappadambu, Peringom, Vayakkara,    Thirumeni, Kuttor, Eramam, Kangol, Koro, Velloor, Ramandali, Vellora, Perindhitta, Pulingom,    Chuzhali, Panniyoor, Kolacheri, Cheleri, Maniyoor, Mayyil, Kuttyattoor, Malappattu, Padiyoor,    Payyavoor, Vayathoor, Nuchyadu, Kayaralam, Eruvasseri, Nidiyanga,

:  Payyannoor, Thalipparambu, Erikkoor, Kannur, Edakkadu, Thalasseri, Koothupparambu, Eritti,    Peravoor.

:  +91 497

:  670 XXX

:  KL-13, KL-58, KL-59

:  May to February

Sights and Attractions
Alluring Beaches
   The nearest beach is at Thaikandapuram, 5 km away. A small fishing harbour is located here, close to the estuary. Another beach at the mouth of the estuary at Azhithata is also worth a visit. Waves lashing the shore at high tide carve out large sections of the beach, literally altering its topography overnight.
Cheruvathur Kota Palli
   Although 'Kota Palli' refers to a mosque within a fort, there is actually no fort here. Nevertheless, large laterite outcroppings on the top give this little shrine, located 5.5 km from Nileswaram, a fort-like appearance. A long flight of steps meanders up the hill.
Delightful Backwaters
  Roads lead westwards into a delightful stretch of backwaters. Just 2 km west is Kottapuram on the banks of the river. The rivers, Tejaswini and Nileswar, meet a short distance away before spilling jointly into the sea at Taikadappuram,
   Ezhimalai, near Payyanur attracted our curiosity owing to its hoary history and awe - inspiring surroundings. This mountainous area just on the brink of the sea was a great centre of political power as early as Ad 5th century. A line of kings ruled this coastal tract with Mount Eli as capital, of which the Mooshika dynasty is the most famous one. Many a references about Ezhimalai can be traced in the travelogues of earlier travellers like Marco Polo and also in the ‘Sangam’ literature. We could observe burial chambers and caves at the foot of the hills, there relics of the past that indicates the ancient glory of these strange hills near the sea. On the top of the hills there are numerous granite platforms of gigantic size and old caves with sculptures and stone pillars. However, because of the upcoming naval academy in Ezhimalai there are some restirictions to the visitors
Fort St Angelo
   In 1505, Dom Francesco do Almeida, the first Portuguese viceroy of India, built a fort here on a cliff overlooking the sea, with permission from the Raja. The fort was named 'St Angelo'. This triangular structure is surrounded on all three sides by the sea and has a moat running all along its landward side.
Kanhirode weaving Co-operative
     This is a co-operative where around 400 workers create high quality furnishing fabrics. Apart from producing exquisite bed linen, upholstery and curtain material, weavers working on huge looms produce fine shirts, colourful lungis and saris. Visitors can buy these from the attached retail outlet. The annual Onam fair at the Kannur police grounds is the best place for looking at and buying these handlooms.
Kerala Folklore Academy
  Six kilometres north of Kannur, just off NH 17, is Chirakkal, the one-time capital of the Kolathiri rajas and an erstwhile centre for folk art and culture.
Kottiyoor Shiva Temple
   This shrine at Kottiyoor, also known as the Varanasi of the South, is an important pilgrim centre. There are actually* two temples here - the Akkara and Ikkara Kottiyoor - located in a forested area on the banks of a river. During May-June every year, a 28-day festival that begins with the neyyattam and ends with the thirukulasat.hu, draws devotees from far and wide.
Mahalingeshwara Temple
   Located on the edge of green paddy fields, this 13th century temple houses an idol of Shiva. A corniced latorite wall encircles the complex, and the roofs are covered in tiles. Kxquisite carvings on wooden rafters depict scenes from the holy scripts. Colourful paintings of Ganapati and Saastha adorn the walls. During the annual pooja, Kathakali and theatrical performances are staged.
   Nileswaram is not quite a tourist hub, but its delightful backwaters, meandering rivers and tranquil beaches draw visitors. A quiet, peaceful little town, it is also known for some unique attractions, such as the forest that has been created out of nothing, and the family that holds sway over an entire village.
Parassini Kadavu Temple
     Built on the banks of the Vallapattanam River and situated 18 km northeast of Kannur, the Parassini Kadavu Temple is one of the most important shrines in the region. This three-tiered temple, painted a brilliant white, is locally known as Tarassini Madapura'. It is an important centre of the muthappan cult, and the theyyam. Performances start early in the morning on all days, except when there is no moon or there is a dark moon. This celebrated shrine follows the unusual custom of offering dried fish and toddy to the deity. It is open to people of all religions.
Payyambalam Beach
   Just a stone's throw away from Fort St Angelo, is this long beach. At one end, laterite cliffs jut out into the sea with the Mascot Hotel perched atop. Close by is the beach park, with the unusual name of Baby Beach, beautifully landscaped and adorned with sculpture.
Rajarajeshwara Temple
     This Shiva temple is one of the holiest in these parts and the linga is believed to be thousands of years old. The temple follows an unusual custom - women are allowed inside only after eight in the evening as it is believed that Shiva is with Parvati at that time and will grant women devotees all that they desire.
    Thalassery known as the city of cakes, cricket and circus has a particular importance in the history of Kerala. It still has the imprints of the colonial rule. It was the citadel of the East India Company in the 17th and 18th century and the fort of Thalassery stands as an eternal monument of the colonial rule in Malabar. The British established their presence in Kerala in 1682 when they obtained permission to settle at Thalassery.
The tree of Karimthandan
   Sree Muthappan temple at Parassinikadavu, 16 kms. north of Kannur town attracts thousands of pilgrims. the customs and offerings of this temple are unique in every respect. The location of the temple on the banks of Valappattanam River itself is very attractive. Thsi is the only temple with Theyyam (a unique folk art form of Kerala) performance every day. The peculiarity of the offerings in the temple (toddy and dried fish) adds to the uniqueness of this temple
Ummichipoyil and Varikulam
   At Ummichipoyil, near Karinthalam Village on the banks of the Nileswaram River, blocks of laterite are said to have been hewn from a hill and used by the people of the Megalithic Age. There are a few tribal hamlets nearby, but today, the area is mostly covered with rubber plantations. The rock-cut caves, or Muniyaras, found hero, predate any other architectural structure found hi Kerala. These sepulchral monuments are at least 2,000 years old. The caves hold benches and beds, with intricately carved door frames and unique funerary offerings.
Valiyaparamba Backwaters
   Counted among the most delightful backwaters in Kerala, this large water body is fed by no less than five rivers and surrounded by lush green tongues of land. The place derives its name from Valiyaparamba Island, the longest in this region, stretching 24 km from Azhithala to Ezhimala. Ferryboats ply from a jetty at Kottapuram up to Kowal Kadapuram in Valiyaparamba. Verdant islets lie scattered in the waters and charming little villages line the leafy banks. Bekal Houseboats, leased from BRDC, caters to business and corporate clients on larger houseboats, as well as to smaller groups and families for short or overnight cruises. They also arrange bonfire dinners on nearby islands, canoeing, visits to temples, forts and tribal villages, ayurvodic massages and homestays.
Places to Visit


Aakulam Tourist Complex, Agasthayarkoodam, Anjengo Fort, Ammachiplavu, Ananthapuri, Beemapalli, Kanyakumari, Kerala State Science and Technology Museum, Kovalam Beach, Maruthwamala, Napier Museum, Neyyar, Padmanabhapuram Palace, Priyadarshini Planetarium, Puthen Malika, Shankhumugham Beach, Sree Chithra Art Gallery, Sree Chithra Enclave, Sree Padmanabha Swamy Temple, Sucheendram temple, The Zoo and Museum Complex, Thriparappu waterfalls, Varkala, Vattakkotta, Veli, Vivekanandappara, Vyloppilly Sanskrithi Bhavan,


Adventure Park, Alumkadavu Boat Building Yard, Ashtamudi Backwaters, Houseboats, Mata Amritanandamayi Ashram, Munroe island, Thangasseri, Thenmala, Thevally Palace.


Aranmula boat race, Ashtamudi Backwaters, Kakki Reservoir, Kaviyoor, Konni, Mannadi, Maramon, Perumthenaruvi Falls, Sabarimala, Thiruvalla, Vastu Vidya Gurukulam, Vijnana Kala vedi Cultural Centre,


Ambalappuzha Sree Krishna Temple, Bhagavathi Temple, Chakkulathukavu Bhagavathi Temple, Chavara Bhavan, Karumadi Kuttan, Krishnapuram Palace Museum, Kuttanad, Mannarassala Snake Temple, Pathiramanal Island, R Block,, St George Orthodox Syrian Church, St Mary's Church, Champakulam, Subrahmanya Temple.


Blossom international Park, Cheriyapalli, CSl Church (St George's Church), Devikulam Lake, Eagle Rock or Parunthumpara, Idukki Arch Dam, Kalvary Mount, Kolukkumalai, Kundala, Kurisumala Ashram, Kurisumala, Malanadu Development Society (MDS), Mampara Grasslands, Mangaladevi Temple, Marayoor, Mattupetty, Mount Carmel Church, Munnar, Murugan Para, Nelliyampathy, Orange and Vegetable Farm,Panchalimedu, Peermede, Pine Forests, Pothundy, Rajamalai, Seetharkundu,Summer Palace, Tea Museum, Thekkady, Thommankuthu, Thrisangu Hills, Top Station, Vagamon, Viewpoints, Waterfalls of Munnar,


Ayyampara hills, Cheriyapalli, Erumely, Ganapathiyar Kovil, Good Shepherd Church, Ilaveezhapoonchira, Kanjirapally, Kayyoor Temple, Krishnapuram Palace Museum, Malanadu Development Society (MDS), Pala, Poonjar Palace, Shrine of our Lady of immaculate Conception, St Dominic's Cathedral, St George Church, St Mary's Church, St Mary's Church Bharananganam, St Mary's Forane Church, St Thomas Benedictine Abbey, Thirunakkara Temple, Vagamon, Valiyapalli, Kumarakom, Driftwood Museum, Bird Sanctuary, Midlands.


Antique Shops in Jew Street, Bhoothathankettu, Bishop's House/indo-Portuguese Museum, Broadway, Cherai Beach, Chottanikkara Temple, Clock tower, Dutch Cemetery, Fort Kochi Beach, Hill Palace Museum, Kerala Lalitha Kala Akademi, Kochi, Kumbalangi, M.G.Road, Marine Drive, Maritime Museum, Museum of Kerala History, Pardesi Synagogue, Santa Cruz Basilica, Shiva Temple, SNC Maritime Museum, Spice Market, St Francis Church, Thirumala Devaswom Temple, Willingdon Island, Chendamangalam.


Athirappally and Vazhachal water falls, Ayyappa and Edathedathu Kavil Bhagavathy, Basilica of Our Lady of Dolores, Cheraman Perumal Juma Masjid, Cheruthuruthy, The land of Arts, Guruvayur, Irinjalakkuda, The land of Bharatha, Juma Masjid,Kodungallur, Koodalmanik, Yam Temple, Irinjalakuda, Kurumba Bhagavathi Temple, Lourdes Cathedral,Mar Thoma Pontifical Shrine, Martha Mariyam Chaldean Church, Palayur Church,Punnathoor Kotta, Sakthan Thampuran Palace, Shiva Temple,Sree Rama Temple, Thriprayar,The Cheraman Perumal who embraced Islam, The State Museum and Zoo,The Swaraj Roudn the heart of Thrissur,Vadakkumnathan Temple,


Jain Temple, Lakkidi, Mayiladumpara Sanctuary, Nelliyampathy, Silent Valley, Tipu's Fort, Trithala, Varahamoorthi Kshetram.


Kadalundi Nagaram, Kondotty, Kottakkal(Centre of Ayurveda), Kottapadi, Malappuram, Manjeri, Nilambur(Forest area), Perinthalmanna, Perumpadappu, Ponnani, Tanur, Teak Museum,Tirur,Tirurangadi,


Beypore and its ‘Urus’, Beach Road, CSI Church, Kallai, Lokanarkavu of Vadakkanpattu, Mananchira Square, Mishkal Mosque, Mother of God Cathedral, Muchundipalli, Pazhassiraja Museum and Art Gallery, Planetarium and Science Centre, Tali Temple,Valayanadu Devi Kshetram,


Mananthavady, Brahamagiri, Chembra Peak, Edakkal Caves,Jain Temple, Karalad Lake, Kerala Kalamandalam, Kuruva Dweep, Lakkidi's Chain Tree, Mahe, Meenmutty Falls,Muthanga,The jungle of secrets, Pakshipathalam,Pazhassi Museum,Pookot Lake,River Nila,Soochipara and Kanthampara Falls, The tree of Karimthandan,Thirunelly Temple,Thrissiteri Temple,Wayanad Heritage Museum,


Alluring Beaches, Cheruvathur Kota Palli, Delightful Backwaters, Ezhimalai, Fort St Angelo,Kanhirode weaving Co-operative, Kerala Folklore Academy, Kottiyoor Shiva Temple, Mahalingeshwara Temple, Nileswaram, Parassini Kadavu Temple, Payyambalam Beach,Rajarajeshwara Temple,Thalassery,The tree of Karimthandan,Ummichipoyil and Varikulam,Valiyaparamba Backwaters,


Anandashram, Ananthapura Temple, Bekal Fort, Chandragiri Fort, Kanhangad Hosdurg Fort,Kanwatheertha Beach, Kappil Beach, Kodagu, Kottanchery, Malik Ibn Dinar Mosque, Possadi Gumpe, Ranipuram.