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Sunday, July 15, 2007

Kannur (Malayalam:കണ്ണൂര്‍)

Kannur, (Malayalam:കണ്ണൂര്‍) , is a city and a municipality in Kannur district in the Indian state of Kerala. It is the administrative headquarters of Kannur district. Kannur is the fourth largest urban agglomeration in Kerala after Kochi, Thiruvananthapuram and Kozhikode with a population of 498,175. It is popularly known as the city of Looms and Lores. Theyyam is the famous performing art of Kannur. Kannur is also famous for its beautiful virgin beaches. Another attraction of Kannur is the Handlooms.

For google satellite maps of Kannur,click here


Kannur was an important port on the Arabian Sea which carried out trade with Persia and Arabia in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries and it was the British military headquarters on India's west coast up to 1887. In conjunction with her elder sister Tellicherry it was the third largest city on the western coast of British India in the eighteenth century, after Bombay and Karachi.

St. Angelo's Fort

St. Angelo's Fort, built in 1505 by Sir Francisco de Almeida, the first Portuguese Viceroy of India, is on the Arabian sea about 3 km from Kannur town. The fort changed hands several times. In 1663 the Dutch captured it and sold it to Arakkal royal family. The British conquered it in 1790 and transformed it into one of their major military stations on Malabar Coast. It is fairly well preserved as a protected monument under Archaeological Survey of India. A painting of this fort and the fishing ferry behind the fort can be seen in the Rijksmuseum in Amsterdam.
Inside St.Angelo's fort


As of 2001 India census,GRIndia Kannur has a population of 63,795. Males constitute 48% of the population and females 52%. Kannur has an average literacy rate of 83%, higher than the national average of 59.5%: male literacy is 84%, and female literacy is 83%. In Kannur, 12% of the population is under 6 years of age.


The tourism of the region is highly depended upon the beaches and beach-side forts.

* Payyambalam Beach: It is the beach of the Kannur town. It has an unbroken coastline of a few kilometres. From the beach, one can see ships in transit along the Malabar coast, that is, beyond Calicut (Kozhikode) and moving towards Mangalore, Goa and Bombay (Mumbai). The well laid out garden and the massive landscaped sculpture of mother and child erected by noted sculptor Kanayi Kunhiraman makes it extremely captivating.

* Baby Beach: It is called so as it is smaller than its bigger neighbourhood, Payyambalam Beach. The famous St. Angelo Fort is adjacent to it.

* Meenkunnu Beach: Situated at Azhikode, it is hardly a few kilometres from the town. The virgin beach is a tourist’s paradise with golden sand and surf.

* Thottada Beach: Situated at Thottada just 2 km from the NH 17 connecting Kannur and Thalassery, it is hardly 7 km from Kannur town. The virgin beach is ideal for sun bathing. Tourists could stay at the beach house or guest house near the beach.

* Mappila Bay: Situated near the St. Angelo’s Fort, the Mopila bay has a historical background. Centuries ago, it was the seat of Kolathiri Kings. The Kadalayi Fort and Sree Krishna Temple were quite famous. The remnants of the fort and the temple are still seen in Mopila Bay. A fishing harbour, built with Indo Norwegian project assistance, can be seen at this bay. Boating in the sea, if the weather permits, will be an unforgettable experience.

* Dharmadam Thuruthu Situated at Dharmadam in between Kannur and Talicherry on Nationa Highway 17 is a Tourist Attraction. This is a very small island with cliff in Arabian Sea and can be travelled in a boat.

* Azhikkal Ferry: Situated near Azhikode around 10 km from Kannur town. There is the Valapattanam river joining the Arabian sea. Azhikkal ferry gives a magnificent view of the sunset. There is a granite pathway around 2 km into the sea at this place; once you reach the edge of the pathway one will be surrounded by sea from all sides.

Places near Kannur town

The well known Sree Krishna Temple at Kadalayi is situated at Chirakkal, a distance of 5 km from Kannur Town. Another well known place in Kannur is Parassinikadavu temple. The god worshipped at this temple is Muthappan. This temple is situated at a distance os around 15 km from Kannur Town.

Perallassery temple, with Subhramanian/Murugan as the main deity is 16 km from Kannur town. The temple has a deep pond, which is said to be the deepest temple pond in Kerala. This Pond is now renovated and built with Red Stone and it is a major attraction in the temple.

Madaipara: A significant plateau land lying at about 150 ft height from the sea level having sight to an extent of 20 km from all sides. It is a popular tourist location and a preferred cinema shooting site. Vadukunda Siva Temple is located on “Madai Para”.

Kannur town and Kannur City

* Kannur town - the administrative headquarters of Kannur District and a major commercial area. The kannur railway station and municipal bus stand are located in Kannur town.

* Kannur City - the old kannur 3kms away from Kannur railway station. This is the ancient capital of the Arakkal kingdom. Kannur district HQ hospital and city bus stand are located near to kannur city.

Now a days owing to fast development, the region in and around Kannur municipality is also termed as Kannur City. But this is different from the old 'Kannur city' which actually is a place name.