Cruising silently on the naturally drenched backwaters in Kozhikode, one can sink into the atmosphere, retune the rusted senses, and start to think afresh. And just when you know that the cruise is about to get over and you begin to get all choked up again, know this that it's not over yet and you can begin to plan out the next set of excursions because there's still lots, whose bewitching ambience will transport you back in the state of Zen. The Kadalundi Bird Sanctuary that is home to more than 160 species of birds, the 500-year old Mother of God Cathedral, Kappad beach where Vasco Da Gama is believed to have first landed, the Beypore Beach that is known as the shipbuilding center, and many other excursions like this - Kozhikode is the place for you. Read below to know more about the excursions in Kozhikode.
Beypore is a small coastal town famous for centuries as a shipbuilding center and still is known today for its country crafts called 'Uru' built by traditional shipbuilders, known as 'khalasis'. The beach, located about 10 km from Kozhikode town at the mouth of Chaliyar River is a major fishing harbor of Kerala and is still a favorite destination among the Arabs for buying boats.
Kadalundi Bird Sanctuary
Kadalundi Bird Sanctuary, located about 19 km from Kozhikode and 7 km from Beypore Beach Port, is home to more than a hundred varieties of native birds. Over 60 species of migratory birds flock here in large numbers in the month of November and return only by the end of April. Terns, seagulls, herons, sandpipers, sand plovers, red & greenshanks, turnstones, and other exotic birds make for most of the bird population in the sanctuary. The sanctuary is also known for a wide variety of fish, mussels, and crabs.
It is at the Kappad beach where Vasco Da Gama landed on the 27th of May 1498 with three vessels and 170 men, thus discovering a sea route to India. This landing is commemorated by a small stone monument at the beach. The beach itself is located 16 km from Kozhikode town and, with its calm and quite atmosphere, is an ideal place to relax and unwind. A backwater cruise through the Korappuzha River is the best way to reach the beach.
Regional Science Centre and Planetarium
Regional Science Centre and Planetarium located in Kozhikode is a non-commercial science institution under National Council of Science Museums, Govt. of India. This 250 seater planetarium is fitted with a powerful Zeiss projector. As you move in the planetarium, an array of rolling balls move in circular path and perform acrobatics, objects float in space defying gravity, and parabolic reflectors carry whispers from one end of the park to another. The centre unravels mysteries which otherwise would be termed as supernatural.
Mother of God Cathedral
Mother of God Cathedral, also known as Matri Dei Cathedral, is located about half a kilometer from Kozhikode town near the beach road and is one of the oldest churches in the entire Malabar region. The church dates back to 1513 AD and is built in Roman architectural style, the only of its kind in Kerala. The cathedral is also known to have a 200-year portrayal of Saint Mary.
Thusharagiri, situated 55 km from Kozhikode is a major tourist destination in the state of Kerala. Nestled lovingly in the arms of the Western Ghats, the place offers a spellbinding sight to its visitors with three waterfalls on the backdrop of Western Ghats, from which two streams meet here to form the Chalippuzha River, which further separates into three waterfalls creating a snowy spray. The place also offers trekking and rock climbing facilities for adventure lovers.
With a unique temple like architecture, the mosque of Muchundipalli is the oldest in the state of Kerala. It was built in the 13th century and is famous as Sheikh Zainuddin Makhdoom II, the author of the famous book Tuhafat Ul Mujahideen, taught his students and probably wrote this book which narrates the story of Islam in Malabar. The mosque also holds a bilingual stone inscription, written in Arabic and an earlier form of Malayalam, dating back to the 13th century.
Kozhikode Beach, easily accessible from the city, is one the most loved spots in Kerala. This serene beach offers a soul-pleasing view of the sunset which, coupled with untouched natural beauty and an old world charm, makes it an addition in the list of "not to be missed places when in Kerala". An old lighthouse, two crumbling piers (each more than 100 years old), the Lions Club Children's Park, and a marine water aquarium with varieties of marine and fresh water fish are some of the added attractions that one can explore at the beach.
An experience that is not to be missed when in the town of Kozhikode is the quiet houseboat cruise in the virgin backwaters that run along the waters of Elathur Canal, Canolly Canal, and Kallai River. Apart from a day cruise on a houseboat, one can even plan an overnight stay in them, which is surely a memorable experience to be cherished for long. These houseboat services can be availed at Purakkattiri. And the exotic natural beauty that surrounds these backwaters will give you an all-time high.
The Mishkal Mosque, located in Kozhikode, is one of the oldest mosques in Kerala. It is built of wood and supported on 24 carved pillars. One unique feature of the mosque is that it does not have minarets, like other mosques, but bears a similarity to Kerala's temple architecture. The mosque is said to have been built nearly 700 years ago by an Arab merchant Nakhooda Mishkal, after whom the mosque is named.
The Sweet Meat Street (S.M. Street) is the busiest shopping street in Kozhikode town. The street is named so as it once was lined up with sweetmeat stalls. Fancy clothes, handloom fabrics, handicrafts, coir products, miniature snake boats, and much more is available to buy in and around the street. There is also a wholesale spice market at the Big Bazaar Road where one can shop for specialties of Kerala.
Read about popular excursion points around Kozhikode/ Calicut city.
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