Kozhikode CalicutBook Now
Kozhikode Calicut Details:
Tropical beaches and quiet mountains, lush jungles and pristine waterfalls, music and art, festivals and cultural events—all these and more are waiting for you as you journey to Calicut. A large city in the state of Kerala, Kozhikode (also known as Calicut) is located on the Malabar Coast of southwestern India on the Arabian Sea. The name “Calicut” is rooted in the word “calico,” as the city was once a centre for the weaving of this fine cotton cloth. Calicut has also been dubbed the “City of Spices” for its early years as a prosperous trading point for valuable spices like cardamom, cinnamon, ginger and black pepper. Both calico cloth and aromatic spices can be purchased in the city by visitors who wish to take a little bit of Calicut home.
Calicut’s long history of prosperity has continuously attracted visitors from around the world who hoped to also succeed here as merchants or traders of fine goods. In 1498, Portuguese explorer Vasco da Gama sailed around the southern tip of Africa, discovering a marine route from Europe to Asia, to make the spice trade available to Europe by sea.
Nowadays, the industrial mainstays of this area are agriculture and timber. Modern-day India also invests heavily in the development of IT technology.
Music and festivals are dearly beloved by the people of Calicut. They enjoy traditional Hindustani and Ghazal music as well as contemporary concerts by professional musicians and aspiring music students. Every year in mid-January, the Malabar Mahotsavam festival highlights the rich traditions of the region through classical dance, music and all manner of artistic performances. Participation is free and open to all. Many such festivals take place throughout the year in Calicut.
People and Traditions
The people of Calicut are personable, uncomplicated and content with simple pleasures. They defend their religious convictions and are known for their conservative values. The majority of the population practises Hinduism. The others follow Islam or Christianity. The indigenous language of the region is Malayalam; however, most people also speak English. They place a high value on education and literacy. Women dress in traditional saris, while most men wear lungi (a sarong-type skirt). In the cities, western attire is common as well.
The cuisine of Calicut is a blend of Hindu and Muslim dishes. Biriyani, all kinds of seafood, ghee rice and banana chips will enliven your palate in the many restaurants around town.
Calicut has very humid, tropical weather with highest temperatures occurring between March and May. In April the sea water reaches a pleasant 30°C. Highs in May often climb to 36°C. December is the coolest month with lows around 14°C. The Southwest Monsoon period goes from early June until September. The best time to visit is in December and January, when there are generally blue skies and fresh cool air.
10 km south of Calicut, the port city of Beypore, with its 2-km stone seawall, is legendary for its shipbuilding industry. Beypore was an export centre for spices in ancient times. A few kilometres from Beyport are the wetlands of Kadalundi. Here you may explore mangrove forests, rivers and the Kadalundi bird sanctuary.
Close to downtown Calicut is Dolphin’s Point. Here, in early morning you can watch the dolphins playing in the sea. You may enjoy splendid views from an excursion to the top of the Vayalada hills. Or travel into Janaki Forest and experience the unbridled beauty of lush green timberlands. About 11 km outside Calicut are the Thusharagiri Waterfalls, which cascade into rapids and are also set amid sumptuous forest scenery. You will marvel to find so many wonders in such close proximity.
In the heart of Calicut, Mananchira Square is a pleasant park with a manmade stream, a concert stage and an open-air theatre surrounded by pretty trees. About 1 km west is Kozhikode Beach. Find your way there at day’s end and enjoy a glorious sunset. 16 km north is Kappad Beach, where Vasco da Gama landed, and a monument stands to commemorate the historical event. Nearby Payyoli Beach is breathtaking, with palms bordering the golden sand. Here in November and December, the endangered Olive Ridley Turtles arrive to lay their eggs.
The Regional Science Centre and Planetarium offers interactive exhibits, the planetarium and an HD-3D theatre to educate and entertain you for the better part of a day.
The region’s heritage is preserved in various museums and galleries. The Pazhassiraja Museum and the adjacent art gallery operate under the direction of the State Archaeological Department. The museum houses treasures from antiquity, including murals, bronze sculptures and coins, that tell the story of Calicut’s fascinating history.