Detour: Kannur (Cannanore), India

We spent a week in Kannur, a small city on Kerala’s Malabar Coast. We attended a wedding and celebrated Onam, Kerala’s rice harvest festival, with our extended family.

The laying down of a pookkalam, or a flower carpet, is an integral ritual of Onam. The photographs above are of a pookkalam (in progress) on our verandah.

o o o o o

Kannur was an important port on the Arabian Sea. Apparently, Marco Polo referred to the city as “a great emporium of spice trade.” “It also served as the British military headquarters on India’s west coast until 1887. In conjunction with her sister city, Tellicherry, it was the third largest city on the western coast of British India in the eighteenth century after Bombay and Karachi.

If you go: 1. Visit St. Angelo’s Fort. Portuguese navigator Vasco da Gama visited Kozhikode (Calicut), just north of Kannur, in 1498. St. Angelo’s Fort was built in 1505 by Dom Francisco de Almeida, the first Portuguese Viceroy of India. 2. And catch a theyyam performance at Parassinikkadavu, the only Hindu temple in Kerala where this ancient ritual form of worship is a daily offering.