It is one of Kerala’s important coastal districts. It is just over 300km from Cochin and 90km from Calicut. Known as Cannanore by the British, it was the capital of the north Kolathiri Rajas for many centuries. It has many monuments of great historical interest. Marco polo has referred to Cannanore as great emporia of spice trade. Historians believe that the district and the headquarters get their names from an ancient village called Kanathur. Another theory is that it could be Kannan Ur that is the ‘Land of Lord Krishna’.


The tourism potential for Kannur district is high. Vasco da Gama made contacts with the Kolathiri king of the time and associated with the Portuguese. The Portuguese traded in pepper from here. In turn, the Kolathiri Rajas grew ruicher.

The St.Angelos Fort, also called Kannur Kotta locally, in the Kannur Cantonment, was constructed in 1505 by Francisco De Almedia from Portugal, and is a symbol of Portuguese architecture and attracts plenty of tourists. The Thalassery Fort is an important tourist centre, too. Other centres of interest are the Kannur beach and Ezhimala. The Snake Park at Parassinikkadavu attracts a lot of people. Do not forget to visit the Payyambalam Beach, Moppila Bay, Muzhappilangad Beach and Gundert Bungalow, Hermann Gundert;s house. He was the first person to compile a Malayalam-English Dictionary.


Tourists will find the Pazhassi Dam, Pythalmala, Parassinikadavu Muthappan Temple, Thiruvangad Temple, St. John’s Church Trichambaram temple, mosques at Thalassery and Madayi, Jagannatha Temple and Annapurneswari Temple interesting. The Madayi mosque is unique for the fact that the marble used for it was brought from Mecca and constructed in 1124.


Kannur is easily accessible by rail and road. The nearest airport is at Karipur, 25km from Calicut. There are many bus services to Cochin, Calicut, Trivandrum and to cities in Karnataka such as Mysore, Mangalore and Bangalore.


Rivers of Kannur
The Valapattanam River, which originates in the Western Ghats, is the longest river in the district. It is more than 100km long and its main tributaries are Valiapuzha and Aralampuzha.

The Kuppam river covers about 539 sq.km and is 82km long. Other major rivers here are Mahe (54km), Thalassery, Anjarakandy, Ramapuram and Perumba rivers.



  • “It was absolutely out of the world to watch a Theyyam performance. It goes beyond a devotional art form-it is a culture in itself.”Chris Scott
    New Zealand
  • “Make sure you visit the Kannur Kotta, the local name for the St Angelo’s Fort.”Pratik Nagpal


Alappuzha | Ernakulam | Idukki | Kannur | Kasaragod | Kollam | Kottayam Kozhikode | Malappuram | Palakkad | Pathanamthitta | Thiruvananthapuram Thrissur | Wayanad


Top Tourist Destinations

Fort Cochin | Thiruvananthapuram | Kovalam Beach | Munnar | Alappuzha
Thekkady | Kumarakom | Varkala | Silent Valley National Park | Athirappilly