The district is bounded in the east by the Western Ghats in the west by the Arabian sea in the north by the Kasargod district and in the south by the Mahe region of the Union Territory of Pondicherry. Going about the district one finds no paucity of entertainment and enchantment, Kannur, formerly known as Cannanore is rich in ancient temples and monuments. The 16th century Portuguese fort the Gundert Bungalow and a number of other monuments speak volumes of important historic events which had taken place in the region. The Mosque at Madayi Para was built of gleaming white marbles brought from Arabia the birth place of Islam. An ancient Siva temple of the district as alludes a belief has references of having been in existence since two millenniums. The region also has a plenty of picnic spots beach resorts and hill stations. The wildlife sanctuary and the snake park of the district are much favoured by the enthusiastic tourists. The region also has a centre to teach and promote the cultural and traditional fine arts.
In and Around Kannur
Sri Sundareswara Swamy Temple:-This templeis dedicated to Lord Siva. An annual festival is celebrated here attended by several devotees.
Sri Krishna Temple:- This temple dedicated to Lord Krishna is located at Kadalayi about 6 km from Kannur. An eight day annual festival is celebrated here. Traditional art performances like the Kathakali the Ottamthullal, etc., come alive during the festival.
Sri Jagannatha Temple:- This temple located about 3 from Thalassery is dedicated to Lord Siva. The deity was installed by the famous reformer Sri Narayana Guru. An eight day festival is celebrated every year.
Malliyottu Kurumba Bhagavathy Temple:-This temple at Kunjimangalam 4 km from Payyanur is dedicated to Goddess Kurumba. A five day annual festival is famous here.
Muchilottu Bhagavathy Temple :-About 36 km from Kannur this temple dedicated to Goddess Bhagavathy is situated at Kadanapally, Payyanur. The annual festival here lasts for 4 days.
Paralessery Temple:-This temple is situated at Mundalur. The presiding deity is Lord Muruga the son of divine couple Lord Siva and Goddess Parvathy. An eight day annual festival is held here.
Sri Krishnaswamy Temple:-This ancient temple which interests archeologists and the layman alike is situated at Thrichambaram 2 km from Thaliparamba. It is believed that the deity has been installed by Lord Parasurama.
Sri Annapoorneswari Temple:-About 14 km from Kannur this is one of the temples where the grand Kerala architecture is at its best. The idols of Lord Krishna and Goddess Annapoorneswari are installed here. The annual festival here extends upto 14 days.
Kalarivathukkal Sri Bhagavathy Temple:- Located at Chirakkal about 6 km from Kannur this temple is dedicated to Goddess Bhadrakali the Goddess of ‘Bravery’.
Payyambalam Beach:-This beautiful beach is the favourite haunt of a number of visitors. It is situated about 2 km from Kannur.
St.Angelo Fort :- This wonderful fort on the seaside is a 16th century monument of the Portuguese. Francisco De Almeda the first Portuguese Viceroy to India raised the fort in 1505 AD with the consent of Kolathiri Raja the then ruler of the region. The fort had then been in the possession of the Portuguese the Dutch and the British before it came under the canopy of the ‘Archaeological Survey of India’ lately. Mappila bay fishing harbour is an entertaining sight from the fort.Arakkal KettuArakkal Ali Rajas the only Muslim rulers of Kerala had their residences here. It is about 3 km form Kannur.
Kizhunna Ezhara and Meenkunnu Beaches:- About 11 and 12 kms from the town respectively these beaches are most sought-after by tourists as well as locals for their beauty and solitude.
Parassinikadavu:- About 16 km from Kannur this enchanting place is nourished by the serene ‘Valapattanam River’ on whose beautiful banks stands the famous Sri Muthappan Temple which makes the place a popular pilgrim centre. Boating facility and accommodations are available. There is also an entertaining snake park nearby with 3 snake pits 15 glass cases and 2 glass houses exclusively for King Cobras. A fascinating variety of the reptile species can be seen here. Hourly snake shows are the ‘Crown’ to the endless entertainment
Muzhapilangad Beach:- About 8 km from Thalasseri and 15 km from Kannur this elegant stretch of about 4 km along the shallow waters is probably the only drive-in beach in Kerala. Black rocks which forebode the deep currents and clean waters are characteristic of this beautiful beach which is well suited for swimming.
Gundert Bungalow:- 20 km from Kannur near Thalassery this mansion plays a significant role in the recent bibliography of ‘Malayalam’ the language of the State since the first ever dictionary and a newspaper in the language were brought out from here. The great German missionary scholar and lexicographer Dr. Herman Gundert had lived here for 20 years from 1839.
Thalassery Fort:- The construction of this grand fort which served as the centre of military proceeding for the British dates back to 1708 AD. The tourists to this place also have other attractions around; The tourists to this place also have other attractions around; the Mosque, Jagannatha Temple, Sri Rama Temple and the Gym.
Sri Ramaswamy Temple:- This temple dedicated to Lord Rama the divine Hero of the great Hindu epic ‘The Ramayana’ is adorned with marvellous carvings which are said to be 400 years old. This is one of the important ancient temples in Malabar situated in Thiruvangad 23 km from Kannur.
Madayi Para:- The wonderful mosque here built in the 12th century by Malik Ibn Dinar shines with white marbels imported from Arabia the birth place of Islam. The Madayi Kavu Temple and Vadakunnu Temple add importance to the place. The ramshackle fort which had been a marvellous structure at Madayi is said to have been built by Tipu Sultan.
Malayala Kalagramam:-The Kalagramam is at New Mahe 29 km from Kannur. Painting, music, dance, sculpture, etc.,are taught here. This renowned centre craddles arts.
Thodeekulam Siva Temple:- A prevalent belief relates the existence of this ancient Siva Temple to over 2000 years ago. The Pazhassi Raja family is said to have had close associations with this temple. It is situated about 34 km southeast off Kannur and 2 km from Kannavam on the Thallssery-Mananthavady road.
Pazhassi Dam:- About 37 km on the East of Kannur this picturesque region with the beautiful ‘Pazhassi Dam’ draws flocks of tourists. The serene reservoir paves the way for added enjoyment the pleasure boating. The project inspection bungalow and its dormitories provide accommodation to the tourists.
Ezhimala :- This is an exciting spot about 55 km from Kannur which couples the conjuring beauty of the elegant beach and the extravagant hill of about 286 m above the sea level. The hills here are treasures of rare medicinal herbs with amazing curative property.Carved stone pillars of ancient times sprout majestically from the ground at the hillfoot and an ancient burial chamber can also be seen. This is now a restricted area which can be entered only with permission since a ‘Naval Academy’ is underway.
Pythal Mala :- This hill resort where tourists frequent and get delighted is about 4,500 ft.above the sea level. This region near Kerala-Karnataka border abounds in flora and fauna. An interesting aspect is that it takes a trek of about 6km on the challenging terrain to get to the top of the hills.
Aralam Wildlife Sanctuary:- This fascinating sanctuary spreads over beautiful landscape of 55 sq. km. Elephants, bears, sambars, mouse deer and a number of other animals wander in their vast territories.
Kottiyoor :-The beautiful river Bavali here flows by the ancient famous temple dedicated to Lord Siva. During May/June a long festival which lasts for 28 days is celebrated every year.
Dharmadom Island:- About 3 km from Thalassery lies the small island of Dharmadom. A bus ride from Thalassery will take one to the place of destination. The place was earlier known as Dharmapattanam getting its name from the popular belief that it was a Buddhist monastery as Buddha’s images are said to have been excavated from this place.