Thrissur is considered as the land of Poorams or festivals and the cultural capital of Kerala for a reason. The annual festival of Thrissur known as the Thrissur Pooram is one of the largest gatherings on Earth. It is celebrated at the Vadakumnathan Shiva Temple, Thrissur. The Name Thrissur is derived from the Malayalam name Thiru- Shiva- Peroor which means “The land of sacred Shiva”. King Raja Rama Verma popularly known as Shaktham Thampuran, was the architect of the present day Thrissur town. Thrissur is a revenue district and a major commercial hub of Kerala. For people visting Thrissur, it has for them gorgeous giant waterfalls, ancient temples, Kalamandalam art institution, serene beaches and many more which can for sure educate them and refresh them from their busy tiring life.
One among the greatest gatherings in Asia, Thrissur Pooram is a 2 century old annual festival conducted during the Malayalam month Medam [April- may] at the Vadakumnathan temple, Thrissur. Witnessing this grand festival is a glistening sight. With more than 50 elephants adorned with Nettipattams [forehead ornament for elephant] lined in front of tens of thousands of spectators from many other parts of the planet, the sounds of trumpets, cymbals and madhalam, and the breathtaking fireworks that paints the sky with bright colors, all combine to give us an out of the world experience.
The rivalry between the principle participants Paramekkavu temple and Thirivambadi temple adds more energy and excitement during the Pooram. The Thrissur Pooram is a symbol of communal harmony in India, as everybody irrespective of their caste and creed participate actively on this splendid occasion. The Pooram is conducted at the Thekkinkadu maidan [ground] which is within the city itself, therefore easily accessible.
Situated near the Sholayar ranges of forests, Athirampally waterfalls is another wonderful architectural marvel of Nature. Thousands of visitors reach Athirampally to witness this 80 feet tall water giant. The water from the Chalakkudi River flows gently till Athirampally where it rushes its way down providing us a mind blowing scene of natural phenomenon. The combination of waterfalls in the middle of the thick green jungle is pure beauty. Vazhachal waterfalls is another mighty waterfalls just 5kms away from Athirampally. These two sites attract thousands and thousands of tourists from all parts of the world. Athirampally waterfall is 53 kms from Thrissur city and therefore can be easily accessed.
The temple built by the Lord Parashurama himself, the Vadakkumnathan temple is the pride of Thrissur. It is dedicated to Lord Shiva. This greatest gathering in Asia, the Thrissur Pooram is conducted here as a special occasion when all the other deities com and assemble to meet Lord Shiva. Spread over 8-9 acres of land, the Vadakkumnathan temple is surrounded by massive, strong walls. Inside the temple are 4 gopurams, each symbolizing each of the principle directions North, South, East and West. The temple opens at 3 am morning and closes at 10.30 am, and evening hours are 4 pm to 8:30 pm.
Thykattu mooss family is old practitioners and promoters of ancient Ayurvedic tradition in Kerala. The family is gifted with certain brilliant Ayurvedic physicians. They were praised by many kings and other noble men for their prolific Ayurvedic knowledge and practices. Patients from different parts of the world visit them to undergo ayurvedic treatments to end their sufferings. The Vaidyaratnam Oushadhasalla [Ayurveda pharmacy] was started in 1941 by Asthavaidyan Neelakanthan Mooss, the son of Ashtavaidyan Naryanan Mooss. It is situated at Ollur, Thrissur. Most of the Ayurvedic preparations produced at this pharmacy are based on the texts written in their ancient family Taliolas [Palm leaves] filled with Ayurvedic remedies and various other techniques which are used by their forefathers. You can reach Vaidyaratnam Oushadasala by road at Ollur located 7 kms from Thrissur city.
The most famous and premier traditional art school in Kerala, Kalamandalam is situated at Cheruthuruthy 32km northeast of Thrissur. The institution follows an ancient Gurukula system of learning in which students are taught various forms of art intensively. Mohiniyattom, Kathakali, Koodiattam, percussion are some of the art forms that students practice rigorously with passion and commitment. Visitors especially the art enthusiasts can spend time here and see for themselves how these students are moulded to exceptional artists in their respective art forms. The Institution holds inside a distinct ambience of Indian music and art and is a must visit if you plan Thrissur.
Built in the Dutch and Kerala style of architecture, this 2 storied building is one of a kind in Kerala. The main building is designed in a traditional Naalukettu style with open courtyards at the center. The Palace holds and display lot historical informations about other rulers of Kochi, Mysore and so on. It has a Bronze gallery and a sculpture gallery where one can find bronze statues of the 12th and the 18th centuries along with granite statues of the 17th century respectively. There is another Epigraphy gallery showcasing the genesis and evolution of ancient writings. The Palace is close to the Vadakumnathan temple within the city and therefore can be easily accessed.
Probably one of the most pristine seasides on the West Coast of India, Chavakkadu Beach attracts a lot of people. It is famous for the Sangam of the sea and river where the Arabian Sea meets a river and it is known as Azhimukam in Kerala. You can spot this beach 29 km North West of the Thrissur city and there are frequent bus services available from the city to Chavakkad. It takes a 1 hour ride on road before you reach this beautiful sea site.
The Guruvayoor temple is built in typical Kerala style architecture. It was built by the divine architect Vishwakarma in such a manner than the Sun referred to as Surya Deva [Sun God] in Hinduism directly falls on the Vishnu idol and pays his respects to Lord Vishnu. The idol is believed to be installed by Brihaspathy and Vayu Deva [God of the winds] and the temple has a history of about 5000 years. The temple was renovated in 16th century and since then it has become one of the most visited pilgrim centers in India. It is also known as the “Bhooloka Vaikuntha”, the heaven on Earth. After the temple visit you can go for shopping at the east and west gates of the temple and buy some souvenirs to take home.
There is an Anakotta [Elephant Fort] 2kms from the Guruvayoor temple which houses the largest number of elephants in India considering the small area of 11.5 acres. This Anakotta was initially the palace of a local ruler which is now home for 59 elephants of the Guruvayoor Temple.
Summer - Summer is hot and humid in Thrissur with highest temperature recorded of 38°c and minimum of 32°c. Summer Season at Thrissur is during March to May every year and is a fair time for sightseeing.
Monsoon - Season starts by June and ends by November. This is when the Monsoon hits cooling down the hot and humid land of Thrissur. This time is good to make a visit too, but sometimes heavy rainfall will be a problem in outing.
Winter - Winter starts by December and lasts till February. This is the best time to visit Thrissur. The lowest temperature recorded during winter is 18°c. The nights are cooler and the atmosphere is lovely all around, during the months the winter.
Thrissur is one of the major cities in Kerala and therefore t is well connected by all means of transport.
By Road - Thrissur is well connected by the National Highways as well as the State Highways. The neighboring cities are Kochi and Palakkad which are 82kms and 70kms away from Thrissur respectively. There are frequent buses available from these cities to Thrissur.
By Air - The nearest International airport is Kochi International Airport at Nedumbassery which is 58 kms from Thrissur city. From the Airport, there are taxi services and Government bus services available 24/7 to any part of the state.
By Rail - Thrissur Railway Station is located within the city, and thereby reduces confusion among its visitors. There are trains available from and to Thrissur from all the cities in India.
With a large area of Thrissur dominated by thick natural vegetation, it promises to entertain all nature enthusiasts, also with its rich cultural heritage and artistic history, it never disappoints an art enthusiast too. Witnessing the Thrissur Pooram and the mighty elephants wearing different Kolams [mask] and Netipattams is a spiritual as well as an exciting moment. Praise the splendor of the giant Athirampally Waterfalls. See how the traditional art forms of Kerala are stil preserved and passed onto the next generation at the Kalamandalam institution at Cheruthuruthy. At last visit the famous Guruvayoor Sreekrishna Temple which has a history of over 5000 years. Visit Thrissur and have an unforgettable experience at the land of cocunuts.