Known to most by its anglicized name Trichur, Thrissur is also called the “Cultural Capital of Kerala“. Built around a 65-acre hillock, Thrissur is home to several temples, learning centers, cultural centers, churches and several colorful cultural festivals. The city was one of the oldest sites of human settlements with megaliths and dolmens belonging to the Neolithic period. Thrissur also came under the rule of the Chera dynasty of the Sangam era and later under the Kingdom of Cochin and eventually the British. The climate of Thrissur stays pleasant all year round with the city receiving rains between May and October. Here’s the list of the best places you can visit in Thrissur.
1. Cheraman Juma Masjid
The oldest mosque in the country, the Cheraman Juma Masjid was built in 629 AD and was rebuilt in the 11th century AD. The mosque was built on a place rewarded by the last Chera ruler who upon witnessing a miraculous phenomenon, travelled to Mecca and adopted Islam. Interestingly the mosque is built in a distinctive blend of Dutch-Kerala and Hindu architectural styles.
2. Vadakkunnathan Temple
The origins of the temple are mentioned in the ancient texts of the Hindu Puranas and it is considered to be the place where the Hindu deity Parasurama built a shrine dedicated to Lord Shiva as atonement after killing the Kshatriyas. The best time to visit the Vadakkunnathan Temple is during the festivities of Thrissur Pooram. Sadly non-Hindus are not allowed to enter the main temple.
3. Shakthan Thampuran Palace
Shakthan Thampuran Palace was coroneted in 1791 and was built by Raja Rama Varma IX the ruler of the erstwhile kingdom of Cochin. The palace complex is spread around 6 acres and is built in a typical Dutch-Kerala architecture. The palace’s architecture is a marvel to behold and also contains a small museum that contains several antiquities and relics of the old world.
4. Snehatheeram Beach
Maintained by the Kerala Department of Tourism, the Snehatheeram Beach is located on the shores of the Arabian Sea and is one of the most well maintained beaches in Kerala. The Beach is close to a children’s park which contains a marine aquarium and well maintained landscaped gardens. One can also enjoy the local cuisines in the various eateries located near the beach.
5. Our Lady of Dolours Basillica
The 3rd tallest Church building in Asia, the Our Lady of Dolours Basillica was first established in 1814 and is a massive 79 meters in height. The Church is built in a marvelous Indo-Gothic style and was designed by Chief architect Ambrose Gounder. The church complex is built in a massive area of 2300 sq meters and is the largest church in India with 11 altars.
6. Paramekkavu Bagavathi Temple
The largest Bagavathi Temple in India, the Paramekkavu Bagavathi Temple is built in a distinctive Kerala temple architecture. The exact date of the temple’s origin is unknown but according to the locals, the temple is at least 1000 years old and is also evidenced by the archeological evidence. Paramekkavu Bagavathi Temple is one of the two rival temples that are involved in the Thrissur Pooram.
7. Archaeological Museum, Thrissur
Established in 1938, the Archaeological Museum is located in the Thrissur Zoo complex. What started as a humble picture gallery by the Government of Cochin and was converted to a newer building as an Archeology Museum in 1975. The Museum contains statues of prominent personalities along with several archeological antiquities in Thrissur. It also contains excavations from the archeological sites in Kerala that date back to the Stone Age.
8. Chettuva Backwater
Starting at a confluence between the Enamakkal Lake and the Arabian Sea, the Chettuva Backwater is located in the Chettuva Village and is considered a State heritage. The backwaters are laden with mangroves, sandy shores and a dilapidated fort built in 1714 by the Dutch east India Company. The natural surrounding is marvelous and breathtaking. One can enjoy the views of the sea along with the Chinese fishing nets on the shorelines.
Thrissur is a part of the international twin city program and is paired with Yessentuki in Russia since 2013. The above-mentioned places are few of the several locations in Thrissur that will keep you coming back to this town.
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