15 Things To Do In Calicut

Things To Do In Calicut

Calicut, or Kozhikode as it is officially known, is a gem on the Malabar Coast of Kerala, India, steeped in rich history and vibrant culture. This picturesque city is not only celebrated for its historical significance but also for its captivating natural landscapes and warm hospitality. Whether you’re a history enthusiast, nature lover, or cultural explorer, Calicut offers a diverse array of activities to satisfy your curiosity and adventure. From serene beaches and lush greenery to traditional performances and bustling markets, this guide will uncover the top things to do in Calicut, ensuring your visit is both memorable and exhilarating.

Things To Do In Calicut

  1. Explore Kappad Beach

Kappad Beach is famously known as the landing place of the Portuguese explorer Vasco da Gama in 1498, marking a significant historical event. Today, it is a serene getaway for those looking to enjoy the natural beauty and tranquil atmosphere. The golden sands and the rhythmic waves create a perfect setting for relaxation and introspection. Nearby, the charming rock-studded beach provides an ideal spot for picnics and family outings. For history buffs, the ancient stone monument marking da Gama’s landing adds a touch of history to the scenic beach.

  1. Visit the Beypore Port

Beypore Port, located about 10 km from Calicut, is one of the oldest ports in Kerala and has a rich maritime history. The port is especially known for its shipbuilding yard, where the traditional Arabian trading vessel, the “Uru,” is built. Visitors can explore the shipbuilding yards to see craftsmen at work or stroll along the Beypore Pier which stretches nearly 2 km into the sea, offering stunning views and a peaceful walking path. The area is also great for shopping, with several shops selling local handicrafts, especially the famous Beypore wooden models.

  1. Discover the Pazhassi Raja Museum and Art Gallery

Dedicated to the legendary Kerala warrior, Pazhassi Raja, this museum in East Hill showcases a rich collection of murals, antique bronzes, ancient coins, and models of temples. The art gallery adjacent to the museum displays paintings by Kerala’s renowned artists, offering a glimpse into the region’s cultural heritage. This venue is perfect for those looking to delve into the historical and artistic past of Kerala. The well-documented exhibits provide a deep understanding of the local history and art evolution.

  1. Enjoy the Thusharagiri Waterfalls

Located in the heart of lush greenery, the Thusharagiri Waterfalls is a splendid natural retreat about 50 km from Calicut. The name ‘Thusharagiri’ signifies a snowy spray that emanates from the waterfall, creating a misty ambiance around it. Trekking to the waterfalls is a popular activity, with trails leading through dense forests offering glimpses of exotic flora and fauna. It’s an ideal spot for adventure lovers and those who enjoy the tranquility of nature. The cooling waters and the scenic surroundings make it a refreshing escape from the hustle and bustle of city life.

  1. Sample the Culinary Delights at S.M. Street

Sweet Meat Street (commonly known as S.M. Street) is the go-to place for food enthusiasts. This bustling street offers an array of traditional Malayali sweets and snacks, including the famous Kozhikodan halwa, a colorful and sticky dessert made from flour, sugar, and either coconut or banana. The street is also known for its variety of spices, banana chips, and handloom products. Walking through S.M. Street provides not only a taste of local flavors but also a sensory experience of Calicut’s vibrant market life.

  1. Wander Around Mananchira Square

Mananchira Square, located in the heart of Calicut, is a public park surrounded by historic and cultural buildings, including the Commonwealth Trust Office and the old City Hall. The square, named after the man-made lake Mananchira around which it is built, is a testament to the architectural prowess of the region. The park is beautifully landscaped with traditional Kerala-style architecture, a musical fountain, and a well-maintained garden, making it a popular spot for both locals and tourists seeking a peaceful retreat in the city.

  1. Visit the Mishkal Mosque

Mishkal Mosque, one of the oldest mosques in Calicut and a remarkable example of the architectural blend of Kerala and Arabic styles, stands as a testament to the rich cultural tapestry of the region. This four-story structure was built in the 14th century and is famous for its unique design: it has no domes and features a striking wooden facade. Visitors can appreciate the intricate wooden carvings and the peaceful ambiance of this historic mosque, making it a must-visit for anyone interested in architecture and history.

  1. Take a Boat Ride on the Kallai River

Once considered one of the major timber trading centers in Asia, the Kallai River is perfect for a scenic boat ride. The riverbanks are lined with lush greenery and offer a picturesque view of the countryside. Boating here provides a serene escape from the urban sprawl and an opportunity to witness the traditional wooden shipbuilding that still occurs along the river. It’s a relaxing way to spend an afternoon, drifting on the gentle waters and soaking in the natural beauty of the area.

  1. Explore the Peruvannamuzhi Dam

Located about 60 km from Calicut, the Peruvannamuzhi Dam is set amidst the scenic Western Ghats and offers a range of activities for visitors. The dam site features a beautiful garden and a bird sanctuary where you can spot various species of birds. Boating facilities are available to explore the reservoir, and there’s a small zoo that houses several native animals. The area is also popular for trekking, with several trails offering panoramic views of the lush landscape.

  1. Learn About Handloom Weaving at the Calicut Handloom Weavers Cooperative

The Calicut Handloom Weavers Cooperative provides a deep dive into the traditional craft of handloom weaving, a significant part of Kerala’s cultural heritage. Visitors can tour the cooperative to see weavers in action, creating exquisite handloom products like sarees, bedspreads, and table linens. It’s an excellent opportunity to learn about the intricate process of weaving and to purchase authentic handwoven textiles directly from the artisans.

  1. Attend a Theyyam Performance

Theyyam is a ritualistic dance form that is highly revered in Northern Kerala, and witnessing a performance is a truly mesmerizing experience. Characterized by elaborate costumes, intense makeup, and spirited dancing, Theyyam tells stories of gods and demigods from ancient folklore. These performances are typically held in local temples and provide a fascinating glimpse into the spiritual and cultural traditions of Kerala. Watching Theyyam allows visitors to experience the vibrancy of Kerala’s living traditions and its community’s deep-rooted spiritual beliefs.

  1. Stroll Through the Calicut Botanical Garden

The Calicut Botanical Garden is a haven for nature lovers, offering a peaceful retreat with a wide variety of plants and a serene environment. Visitors can enjoy a leisurely walk through well-maintained pathways, surrounded by lush flora, ornamental plants, and medicinal herbs. The garden also features a children’s play area, making it ideal for family outings. It’s a perfect spot for picnics, nature photography, and simply relaxing amidst greenery.

  1. Visit the HiLite Mall for Shopping and Entertainment

As one of the largest shopping malls in Kerala, HiLite Mall offers a contemporary shopping experience with a mix of international and local retail brands. Beyond shopping, the mall features a cinema, a gaming zone, and a food court with a variety of dining options. It’s a great place to enjoy the modern amenities of Calicut, whether you’re looking to shop, catch the latest movie, or enjoy some local and international cuisine.

  1. Explore the Marine Water Aquarium and Research Centre

The Marine Water Aquarium and Research Centre in Calicut is dedicated to the conservation of marine biodiversity and offers an educational experience for all ages. Visitors can see a variety of marine species, including colorful fish, crustaceans, and sea turtles. The center plays a crucial role in marine research and environmental education, making it an insightful visit for those interested in marine life and conservation efforts.

  1. Go Bird Watching at Kadalundi Bird Sanctuary

Located near the mouth of the Kadalundi river, the Kadalundi Bird Sanctuary is a paradise for bird watchers. The sanctuary is home to over a hundred species of native birds and several migratory birds that visit during the winter months. The scenic beauty of the surrounding mangrove forests and the river delta provides a perfect backdrop for bird watching and nature photography. Visitors can explore the sanctuary by foot or by boat, enjoying the tranquility and the opportunity to spot rare and exotic birds in their natural habitat.


Exploring Calicut is like unwrapping a cultural and natural treasure chest. Each activity and site mentioned in our comprehensive list offers a unique slice of what makes Calicut a remarkable destination. The city’s blend of historical landmarks, natural beauty, and cultural richness provides something for every type of traveler. Whether you’re spending a leisurely day at the beach, immersing yourself in a traditional Theyyam dance, or exploring the ecological wonders at a bird sanctuary, Calicut promises an array of experiences that are both enriching and enchanting. So, pack your bags and set out to explore the myriad things to do in Calicut, where every corner offers a new discovery.

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