Kerala is a home to a variety of landscapes and anyone who’s come across this God’s own country would surely agree. Calicut or much famed as Kozhikode, is one such beautiful city in Kerala that feel like every traveller’s dream. The name Kozhikode is said to be derived from Koyil (palace) Kotta (fort). Kozhikode was once the capital of the powerful Zamorins and a prominent trade and commerce centre. Kozhikode city continues to be a centre of flourishing domestic and international trade. The town is known for its beautiful countryside, pristine beaches, historic sites, calm backwaters, wildlife sanctuaries, rivers, timber industry and ayurvedic medicines & ship building. The city and its surrounding areas provide visitors with several places to see and things to do options.
Read on to find out the top 10 must visit destinations in this beautiful and peaceful city.
1. Kozhikode beach
Of all the best beaches Kozhikode is famous for, Calicut or Kozhikode beach happens to be an ideal location for tourists who want to unwind themselves from the stress and pollution of the city. Kozhikode Beach has two piers, each more than 100 years old. There is a lighthouse that offers stunning views of the seashore and the Arabian Sea. The other attractions here include a Lion’s Park and an aquarium, which serve as excellent spots for children visiting the beach. In the early hours of the morning, people can even spot some real-life dolphin shows. It is a great spot for food lovers and photography enthusiasts.
2. Mananchira Square
Fed by a natural shower, Mananchira is a man-made freshwater pond surrounding which is the astounded complex, Mananchira Square. The pond was built in around 14th century as a bathing pool by the feudal ruler of Kozhikode, Zamorin Mana Vikrama whereas the Mananchira Square was opened in 1994. The renovated square today houses important structures such as Commonwealth Trust Factory, Town Hall, Lalitkala Academy Hall, Jama’atpalli Mosque and Muchhandipalli Mosque, the oldest in Kerala. Apart from that, one must visit the musical fountain, open stage, and theatre where regular shows are held to depict the historical lives of kings and palaces.
3. Thikkoti lighthouse
Said to be built on the remains of a shipwreck, the Thikkoti Lighthouse is one of the major attractions of Kozhikode. Located on a rocky shoreline, the place is best known for the scenic views it offers as well as several species of nomadic birds. For those who’re looking forward to spend a quiet day by the sea, look no further than the Thikkoti Light House.
Located in the heart of Calicut, Beypore is a popular ship building port which is known to be one of the busiest fishing harbours of Kerala. Located at the mouth of the energetic Chaliyar River, this town is covered in vibrant shades of green and surrounded by mystic shades of blue. The shipbuilding yard here is renowned for the construction of Urus and Dhows, the traditional Arabian trading vessel. One of the major attractions at Beypore is its magnificent 2 km long stone bridge called as Pulimoodu, built entirely of stones, making a pathway into the sea.
5. Mishkal Palli Mosque
Believed to be constructed around 700 years ago at Kuttichira, Mishkal Palli Mosque was named after Nakhooda Mishkal. He was an Arab merchant who established this mosque, which doesn’t have any minarets making it unique. Featuring intricately designed wooden pillars and doors, beautiful flooring done with Italian tiles steals the show along with which, the four-storied mosque also features a square tank resembling to the one found in temples. Nearly 300 people can pray in the ground floor alone.
6. Thusharagiri Fall
Lying in the Western Ghats of Kozhikode district in Kerala, Thusharagiri Fall cascades down as three waterfalls. Located in a small tribal village, the name of the falls means ‘snow covered mountains’. Two streams originating from the Western Ghats meet here to form the Chalippuzha River. The river diverges into three waterfalls creating a snowy spray, which gives it the name. Trekkers and rock climbers will find trekking trails towards the falls passing through thick foliage & lush, green surroundings offering its visitors a sheer delight.
7. Mother of God Cathedral
Located at a distance of just 1.5 kilometers from the Calicut Railway Station, the Mother of God Cathedral portrays a Roman architecture which was built in 1513 AD. Also, this church houses a famous and an ancient portrait of Mother Mary which is said to be more than 200 years old. This church is the Headquarters of the Latin Catholic congregation in Malabar. Built in the Gothic style, the church is a tribute to the beauty of Italian architecture and the skill of Indian craftsmen.
8. Kadalundi Bird Sanctuary
Spread over a cluster of islands, surrounded by beautiful hillocks lies a bird watchers’ planet, the Kadalundi Bird Sanctuary. Located in Kozhikode, the sanctuary greets its visitors with freshwaters of Kadalundi River. This virgin land is home to 60 migratory and more than hundred native birds. The paradise designed for bird lovers also offers you a place in serenity. Moreover, the river flowing inside forms a union with the Arabian Sea at a point called Kadalundi Nagaram. This river houses a variety of fishes, crabs, and mussels.
9. Thali temple
Located close to the Mananchira square, the Thali temple is one of the most renowned and oldest temples of Calicut, and is a 14th century temple dedicated to Lord Shiva . It is popular for its five different religious ceremonies performed every day. The Malayalam New Year is the best time to visit the temple. The two storied sanctum has artistic stone sculptures and wood carvings with scenes from the puranas. Very high walls and an expansive temple pond are some of the specialties of this temple.
10. Kappad beach
Having a historical significance, Vasco da Gama landed on Indian soil on 27th May 1498 at Kappad beach along with 170 men. Today, Kappad is one of the most scenic beaches India has to offer. It is lined with palm trees and sedimentary rocks that decorate the shore and give any visitor a serene feeling. The idyllic beach is apt for rejuvenation of body and soul. There is a monument on the beach that commemorates the landmark event of Vasco da Gama’s arrival. Devi Temple, which is believed to be 800 years old, is situated on top of a rock near the beach.
As you can see, this is a list of the best places Kozhikode has to offer and we assure you, each one is better than the previous. You need to see it to believe it and hence must surely add it in your list and make a plan to visit it soon. A pristine haven in nature, Kozhikode is filled with lush greenery, tranquil beaches, and historical forts and also serves as the perfect weekend getaway for the locals and nearby travellers. Kerala itself has innumerable tourist destinations and if you choose to visit Kozhikode first, it definitely won’t disappoint you.