Kannur - The Land of Loom and Lore

Kannur - The Land of Loom and Lore

Kannur - The Land of Loom and Lore

By Shruti Menon

Kannur, formerly known as Cannanore, is now an idyllic city on the coast of Northern Kerala, a great place to escape to for a cheap and relaxing holiday. Though Kannur may be calm and peaceful now, the city wasn’t always that way. Marco Polo, the great explorer, is said to have christened it ‘a great emporium of spice and trade’, as it was a major port back in the day, and had been from the time of King Solomon to the Greeks, Arabs, and Romans. Naturally, this made colonialists want to exert their influence on the area, so there are a few forts left behind by them in Kannur. When visiting someplace, however, the goal is not always sightseeing, but pure, unspoiled rejuvenation and relaxation— Kannur is the place to go for that. 

Kannur nowadays is famous for its Theyyam performances and its still thriving weaving industry, so try and watch a performance and support the age old art of weaving by investing in a piece. Since the British favoured other ports to Kannur, it has been able to preserve its culture and its beaches too, which is great if you want to get to know Kerala cultural traditions better. 

And speaking of unspoiled beaches, those are probably the best part of a visit to Kannur. Make sure that you get a resort or guest house close to a beach so that you can take full advantage of the clean, sandy strip that’s very pristine compared to many other popular coastal destinations in India. Kannur’s Payyabalam Beach’s golden sands and unbeatable tranquility will make you fall in love with the place. The Muzhappilangad beach is also a must visit, especially if you’ve been driving around Kannur, as it is one of the best drive-in beaches in Asia. Driving so close to the shore and hearing the waves lap at the land is an experience like no other.

Kannur’s St. Angelo’s fort is a great place to feel the history of the city. The Moppila Bay can also be seen from the fort, a natural harbour, and makes for a good photo as well. The Kannur Lighthouse is also worth a visit— it’s Kerala’s oldest lighthouse, therefore yet another place where history is tangible and you understand the roots of the place you’re in. 

Now that you’ve seen Kannur, you can’t leave before tasting a few classic Malayalee delicacies. Fish items are a must have, and if you’re of age, definitely try the authentic kallu, or toddy— the classic malayalee alcoholic beverage. Also have a go at the famous Thalassery biriyani- its subtle flavours will have you asking for more. 

Kannur is an experience to calm your mind, and if that’s the purpose of your visit, it’s the best place to go. It’s not really for thrill-seekers, doesn’t boast of many water sports or adventure