Kannur also known as Cannanore, is a city in Kannur district in Kerala. It is the administrative headquarters of the District of Kannur and 518 km north of state capital Trivandrum. During British rule in India, Kannur was known by its old name Cannanore, which is used only by the Indian Railway as of now. Kannur is the sixth largest city in Kerala, after Thiruvananthapuram, Kochi, Kozhikode, Kollam and Thrissur. It is the largest city of the North Malabar region. Kannur Municipality was established in 1867 and is one of the oldest municipalities in Kerala.
Kannur is one of the Million Plus urban agglomerations in India with a population of 1,642,892 in 2011. Kannur is known as the Land of Looms and Lore, because of the loom industries functioning in the district and ritualistic folk arts held in temples. Kannur is famous for its pristine beaches, Theyyam, its native performing art, and its handloom industry.
Kannur is of great strategic military importance. It houses one of the 62 military cantonments in the country, the Kannur Cantonment, and is the current headquarters of the Defence Security Corps and Territorial Army's 122 Infantry Battalion (under Madras Regiment). Ezhimala Naval Academy(INS) is situated 35 km north of Kannur City. It is Asia's largest and the world's third largest naval academy. An Indian Coast Guard Academy is approved to be built at Kannur. This Coast Guard Academy will be built on the banks of Valapattanam River at Irinave, east of Azhikkal. Kannur Cantonment is also one of the important cantonments in India.
Caltex is the central junction of Kannur.
St. Angelo Fort
St. Angelo Fort was built in 1505 by the first Portuguese Viceroy of India, Dom Francisco de Almeida. In 1663, the Dutch captured it and then in 1772, they sold the fort to the Arakkal King. In 1790, the British captured it and it was under the British until 1947.
Payyambalam Beach is a famous Kannur beach with an unbroken coastline of a few kilometres. From the beach, one can see ships in transit along the Malabar Coast, from beyond Kozhikode moving towards Mangalore, Goa and Bombay (Mumbai). It contains a well laid out garden and the massive landscaped sculpture of Mother and Child erected by noted sculptor Kanayi Kunhiraman. But now, rowdies have destroyed those sculptures.
Arakkal Museum, located in Ayikkara, is a museum dedicated to the Arakkal family, the only Muslim royal family in Kerala, South India. The museum is actually a section of the Arakkalkettu (Arakkal Palace). The Durbar Hall section of the palace has been converted into a museum by the Government of Kerala. It was opened in July 2005 after a massive renovation and is managed by the Arakkal Family Trust.
Sree Peralassery Temple
Sree Peralassery Temple is located 14 km from Kannur on the way to Koothuparamba.
MGS Kalari Sangam
MGS Kalari Sangam is a martial arts and massage training academy founded in 1934.
The Cannanore Lighthouse
The Cannanore Lighthouse near the Sea View Park is another place of interest. The first lighthouse at Kannur was built in 1843 by the British at St. Angelo Fort. Over the years, the lighthouse was renovated and in 1948, it was moved to its current location. The lighthouse is still in use.
The Cannanore Cantonment is one of the 62 cantonments in the country and the only one in Kerala. It was established by the British in the 19th century and is still an important location for Indian armed forces.
Puthiyatheru, which is situated between Kannur-Taliparamba road, is one of the busiest streets in Kannur, which consist of three roads to Kattampalli and Panakavu and Chirakkal.
The Defence Security Corps (DSC) Centre and DSC Records are located in Kannur town, on the road to Payyambalam Beach. The area is a part of the Cannanore Cantonment and is maintained by the Cantonment Board. The DSC centre at Kannur is the mother depot to all platoons in the country.
Baby Beach is so called because it is smaller than its larger neighbour, Payyambalam Beach. St. Angelo Fort is adjacent to it. The baby beach is part of the Cannanore Cantonment and access may be restricted at times.
Meenkunnu Beach is at Azhikode, just a few kilometres from the town.
Mopla Bay in Ayikkara, near St. Angelo fort, is a major fishing harbor overlooking the Arabian Sea.
The Azhikkal Ferry operates near Azhikode, about 10 km from Kannur town, where the Valapattanam river joins the Arabian Sea. The Azhikkal ferry gives a magnificent view of the sunset. There is a granite pathway here which stretches 2 km into the sea. Frequent passenger boats are available to Mattool, Parassinikkadavu and Valapattanam from here.
The Fort road
The Fort road is the one of the busiest roads in kannur. There are many malls and shopping streets there. The Kannur City Center is a prominent shopping center on Fort Road.
Sea View Park, near Payyambalam Beach, is overlooked by the Government Guest House. The park is elevated above the sea level and gives a magnificent view of the sunset.
Kannur Central Bus Terminal
Kannur Central Bus Terminal is Kerala's biggest bus terminal. Located at Thavakkara, it is also India's first bus terminal to be developed on a build-operate-transfer (BOT) basis.
Thottada Beach is a beautiful beach in Kannur district. It is situated just about 2.5 km from the NH 17 connecting Kannur town and Thalassery.