Thrissur Travel Guide
Thrissur is the cultural city in the Indian state of Kerala. Thrissur City is built around the hillock Thekkinkadu Maidan which seats the Vadakkumnathan temple (Shiva Temple). It is the 5th most populous city in Kerala and 2nd largest corporation in the region. Thrissur is also known as spiritual as well commercial capital of Kerala because of its inclination to history and mythology. It is ensconced with Kerala Sahitya Kala Academy, Kerala Lalita Academy and Kerala Nadaka Academy. This city also hosts Pooram Festival which is the most spectacular and grand festivals of all. Thiruvambadi Sri Krishna Temple, Vadakkumnathan temple, Paramekkavu temple and the 2000 year old church ‘Basilica of Our Lady of Dolours’ are amongst the well known and most visited sanctums in the region. Christianity, Islam, and Judaism find their presence since ages.
Besides this, Thrissur is survived by small and big industries, and commercial farm culture. The rich entrepreneurs have spread their roots in this beautiful city. Today commercial trade largely flourishes in Thrissur and provides employment to millions of locale residents. The Thrissur City is also a major hub for shoppers interested in buying silk and gold items. Major part of the city is covered with Achaean rocks and is little prone to the seismic activity.
How to Reach Thrissur
The travelers can reach Thrissur by boarding bus, taxi and railways. Cochin international airport, Nedumbassery is 45km away from Thrissur. It is just 1 hours 15 minutes away from the airport. Rs 735 to Rs 996 is the price tag offered for commuting from Thrissur to the international airport. NH47 and NH 17 are the two highways which connects to the major parts of the city. More details on different modes of transport are as follows:
Reach Thrissur by Airways: The nearest airport to Thrissur is Cochin International Airport. Located 45kms from Thrissur, this airport can easily be reached by taxi, bus or car.
Reach Thrissur by Railways: The nearest railway station to Thrissuris Trichur railway station. Trichur station is well connected to Mumbai, Chennai, Kaniyakumari and Lakshwadweep. Amritha expresses, Mangla Lakshwadweep express and Trivandrum Rajdhani.
Reach Thrissur by Road: Thirssur’s KSRTC bus stand, on Chettiangadi Road , has regular services to Guruvayur, Ernakulam, Palakkad, Coimbatore, Kozhikode and Trivandrum.
Major Distances from Thrissur
Thriussur also known as Trichur is situated in South India. Sharing a close relation with the Mythology, this pilgrimage magnet allures many many people from different corners of India. The major attractions in Thrissur is as is as follows:
Vadakkunathan Temple: Believed to have been built by the sage Parsurama who is said to have reclaimed Kerala from the sea. This is one of the largest temple in Kerala. Shakthan Thampuran, an ardent devotee of Lord Shiva(Vadakunnathan, or Lord of the North), introduced the annual festival of Thrissur Pooram. This temple today is a grandeur edifice spread over an area of 10 acre of land enclosed by lofty walls and massive gopurams. Four majestic Gopurams made of sand,stone and wood. The mahalingam placed in the temple is laced with layers of ghee. These layers of ghee are believed to be about 1000 of years old and is in great demand amongst the Ayurvedic physicians. The devotees can catch the glimpse of 11 foot high mound of ghee with 13 cascading crescents of gold and three serpent hood at the top. The famous elephants of Vadakunnathan are worshipped as the incarnations of Lord Ganesha. Ashta Dravya Maha Ganapathy Honam(ceremonial feeding of elephants) is celebrated in the month of July to August and Onam is celebrated in the month of August to September when nearly 700 dress up and paint themselves in the tiger stripes and costume.
Timings:4.30-11.00AM, 5-8.30 PM, Neyyi Abhishekam 4.30 AM. Only Hindus are allowed to enter in this temple. Men should be bare chested and they must wear Mundu, women must wear Salwar kameez or Sari.
Thiruwambadi and Paramekkavu: Worship at the Vadakkunathan temple is incomplete without a visit to both the red roofed Thiruwambadi and Paramekkavu temple. The Thiruwambadi is Shiva’s son Subhramanya and there’s separate shrine of Lord Ganesha at the back. The Paramekaavu is the deity consort of Lord Shiva which is none another than goddess Parvathi, she sits facing her Lord. When illuminated with lights in the evenings, these temple completes the beauty of the Vadakkunathan Kshetram.
Locations: Thiruvambady Temple is on Shoranur road; Paramekkavu Temple faces the Vadakunathan temple on Round East.
Timings:4.30AM-10.30 AM, 5-8.30 PM, Usha Puja: 6:45 AM
Archaelogical Museum: The stately building used to be the summer palace of the Raja of Kellongode, and now houses a melange of artifacts. The sati stones, hero and heroine stones are real finds. Wooden model of the grand old ambalams fo Kerala, huge burial pots, Harappan shards and menhirs are part of the exceptional collection.
Location: Further down Museum Road from the state musuem, near the zoo. Timings:9.30 Am-4.30 Pm, Mondays and public holidays closed.
Thrissur Zoo: This is a run of the mill specimen, but with some special flamingoes, sad eyed tigers, camels, and the sweet cookoos of the North Eastern hills. The 13 ½ acres compound also holds variety of of animals such as the lion tailed macaque, sloth bear and species of birds and deer. The snake park has a repitilian collection of king cobras,kraits, vipers and rat snakes.
Location: Palace Road, Chembukkavu Entry Fee Adults Rs 20, Children Rs 15, Camera fee Rs 25, Video: Rs 50. Timings: 9:00 AM to 5:00PM.
Natural History Museum: With in the zoo compund is the natural history musuem, with an interesting section displaying the costumes of Kerala---Kathakali figures, studded treasure chest belonging to a raja, swords , arms and chain mail armour.
Timings: 10:00 AM-5:00PM
Art Museum: Also located in the zoo compound, the art museum holds a collection of wood carvings, metal sculptures and ancient jewellery. A magnificent beaten silver Anantha(snake god) is a beauty. There are also stone figurines, costumes of the Kochi rajas and Chinees and Japnees artifacts.
Timings: 10:00 AM--5:00 PM.
Marthoma Mariam big Church: In Thrissur, they call this the Valliya Palli, or big church, because of its age and not size. This is the oldest church in these parts and the headquarters of the Chaldean Syrian Church in India, dating back to when Shakthan Thampuran settled 64 Syrian Christians around the end of the 18th century. The congregation ceremony still takes place in the old Syrian rites and have no pictorial representations of the christ. Here you can see the wooden ornate carvings on wooden beams, choir’s gallery and a tulip shaped pulpit.
Location: Oppsoite the police club on high road, Service timings: Weekdays 7-8.15 AM, 6.15 PM to 6:50 PM, Sundays: 7.30 AM to 9.30 AM. Main Festival last Sunday of October , or first Sunday of November.
Dolores Basilica: This Roman Catholic Church, called Puthen Palli, was built in 1875. The chapel has 15 ornate altars.
Location: Near Jubilee Medical College
Service Timings: 6 and 7.30 am, 5.30 pm, Sundays 10.00 AM as well
Festivals: Basilica festival on Last Sunday of November, Ootuchurinal Festival on September 15.
Lourdes Cathedral: The third most famous and largest of all churches in the region, the Lourdes Cathedral has a uniquely defined under ground prayer chamber.
Location: College Road, Mass Timings: 6 and 7.30 AM, 5:00PM, Sundays 6.00 AM., 7.30 AM and 10.45 AM, 5:00 PM
Town Hall: Town Hall is a large pillared building which houses a formidable library. This library is amongst the oldest of all galleries. It is the repository of various administrative, historical and cultural books. Chitralayam gallery displays painting from all corners of Kerala.
Location: On the corner of Town Hall and Museum roads.
Thypooyam Shree Maheswara Temple: This 100 year old temple was established by Shri Narayana Guru and friezes depicting scenes of Shiva;s marriage and the Dasavtharam of Madurai Meenakshi. The main idol is a serpent deity.
Timings :5-11am , 5-8pm
Karthiyayini Temple: When Kansa decided to decided to kill every born child of his sister Devki, the 7th angel child incarnation of Jyoti Maya, predicted the birth of Lord Krishna. Suddenly she flew out of his hands in the air and showed her real profile of goddess. It is believed that the goddess would have flown away and landed at this play, where the temple is standing today.
Location: In Ayanthole, near the collectorate, Timings: 5-11AM, 5-8PM.
Tourist Places around Thrissur
Thrissur has immense numbers of getaways which includes hill stations, rivers, temples exclusively. The attractions situated around Thrissur are as follows:
Vilangankunnu(10km): A grassy knoll of modest size, is a popular picnic spot for day trips out of Thrissur. The childern’s park here is a big hit and the tiny toddlers can enjoy array of rides at Thrissur.
Location: On Guruvayur Road, Entry fees for Adults Rs 10 for adults and Rs 5 for childrens. Timings: 10: 00 Am to 6:00 Pm Camera fees Rs 20.
Aratupuzha Temple(16km): The first impression one gets is of the huge blue stone pillars, shining bell metal lamps around the main shrine, vada mala offerings, the sound of Chenda,green paddy fields and the Aarat river flowing by. This Subramanya temple has its own pooram festival shares its history dating back to 1,500 years held in the month of April-May, during which ceremonial processions are also carried by the group of ca-prisoned elephants the peopel in their different types of attire. It is believed that attending the Pooram festival could wash away your sins.
Location: South of Thrissur on SH 22.
Timings: 5:00 Am to 11:00 AM, 5-8 PM.
Urakam Amma Thiruvaddi Temple (13km): En route to the Aratupuzha temple is this Devi Temple. One of the oldest in the area, it was set up by the old Namboodiri family. This temple is believed to be avert all the disasters. The idol here is regularly cleaned with the peacock feathers.
Location: En route to Aratupuzha
Timings: 5-11 AM, 5-8 PM
Arthat(28kms) Arthat has three small Jacobite church and St Mary’s Church to be 1700 years old. Both churches have huge villakus with the cross atop. Different sects of Jacobites worship in these churches.
Location: Arthat is 3km from Kunnam Kulamon the Thrissur-Kunnamkulam--Guruvayur Road.
Kiomoi Must Do`s
Here we have the list of Kiomoi’s must do’s which are as follows:
*The vacationers must try the South India and Thrissur’s nendrakai chips.
*The getaways around the Thrissur are must visit spots.
*The travelers visiting in the month of May must participate in the Pooram festival.
*The cultural hubs, museums, zoo’s and Churches should not be missed by any chance.
*The travelers must make a visit to all the temples in the region.
Thrissur Pooram Festival in Kerala—12th May 2011
“This year the Thrissur’s Pooram Festival will be celebrated on 12th May 2011”
Venue: Thriussur, Trichur (Anglicised name), Thrisivaperoor (Old name)Thrissur`s Thekkinkadu Maidan, Kerala, South India
Duration: One and a half day, (36 hours)
The Thrissur’s Pooram Festival is associated with the caparisoned elephants that symbolize Kerala. Pooram is an annual festival held after the summer harvest. The legend has that in the 18th century AD there was a quarrel among 10 temples about the participation in the festival held at Arratupuzha. To finish this dispute, the king (Raja) Rama Varma decided to unite these temples and decreed them into one temple festival. Since 1798 , it became the largest Pooram festival. The grand Pooram festival was born where participants from 10 temples of Kerala, accompanied by the idols of respective deities, carry the processions on the golden caparisoned elephants.
The Pooram day commences with the wave of joy and excitement at Thrissur Maidan. Eleven Elephants stand in the each row and with the sudden beat of the Kobum, Chendas and elathalams fills the air. Kobums are the wind trumpets and Chendas and Elethalams are the drums, cymbals etc. With rigorous and regular beating of the instruments hands are moved up and down. 50 selected elephants create an electrifying wave in the silent ambiance. 400, 000 lakh people throng to mark their presence in this humongous ceremony. The roar of millions of people bandies the air. The participants in the procession move there feet with a great energy. They tap their feet and bang their heads with immense force. The festivity becomes grander when with the medley of sounds, the priests or leaders or escorts from the 10 villages move the thread chiseled fans in consecutive manner. The elephants swirl their ears and nose with pride. Approximately 200 meters away from the maidan, the huge clump of 400,000 lakh people could be noticed entering the Vadakkumnathan (Shiva) temple. Madathil Varavu (temple entry) looks like completely packed. The rampant hum of the crowd can be heard while Vedic chants are recited in the temple. The procession of 10 temples deities (idols)are carried into the Vadakkumnathan temple(Shiva temple). All together, this ceremony is named Madathil Varavu(temple entry ceremony), as mentioned in the above lines.
In the trail of successive events, the evening in celebrated with Kuda Mattom, or Umbrella swapping. One row of elephants stands in front row and the other row of elephant’s cramp on the other side. The action begins when the participants a top on the elephants back, exchange the multicolored parasols. The men in their traditional attires lower down their parasols swap them and then raise them in alternative manner. This action is repeated many times, whenever the parasols are moved, the visitors can hear the echoing voice of 4 lakh people. The row of multi colored parasols begins to resemble a Jugalbandi between the exhilarating crowd and the parasols swappers. One team raises a parasol carrying the Lord Krishna idol; the other team repeats the similar activity by raising the idol of Bhagwathi, followed by Ganesha and Shiva respectively. With the sunset, crowd starts easing off. The villagers start doing preparation for the final event and wait keenly till mid night when crackers are going to enlighten the sky.
The final event of the Thrissur Pooram is the fireworks display, the vedikettu at 3am. The crackers bursting ceremony is organized at Swaraj round, the area surrounding the Thekkikandu maidan is spread in a restricted ambit of 1 meter and during the festivity; it brims up to the road end. The visitors at this time should ensure complete safety of their valuables. Besides this, ceremony starting at 3:00 AM fills the air with enthusiasm. The ceremony commences with a sudden boomerang sound, the flower of exploding fire works in the sky can be appraised and the element of excitement is assured to over ride the mind. The whole night fades out amidst the presence of fireworks, pounding sounds and clusters of noise. With every pause, the deep lull exudes the air, surprisingly, the crackers are exploded again. Perhaps, this kind of chain is carried in the loop. By 5:00 AM, as the sun coasts out with its light rays, the fire works are stopped and every one goes back to their normal routine. The whole festivity is carried for 36 hours and finally, ends up in the morning. The travelers are advised to make an advance booking at hotels in Thrissur, as during the peak season all accommodations are booked. To avoid any chaos, Kiomoi offers also offers an advance online booking at best price tags. So move ahead and make your religious tour a memorable experience by making an advance online booking.
Thrissur has plenty of stay options which includes both budget as well as luxury hotels. The travelers who want to make their stay an excellent experience can plan to stay at these accommodations. Amongst all those accommdtaions, Dass Continental, near the Shaktan Thampuram Bus Stand, with 30 rooms. The hotel has the multi cuisine Galaxy restaurant and a separate pure veg restaurant, Annalakshmi.
Best Accommodations in Thrissur
Elite international is amongst one of those accommodations which has 77 rooms. Its multi cuisine Syamanthak Restaurant offers Kerala food as well. Casino hotel is another hotel in the same league which has 47 rooms, bakery and a beauty parlor, Internet and a travel desk.
Trichur Towers, on TB road, has 28 rooms, a restaurant and bar.
Mid range option include the Luciya Palace on Marar Road with 36 rooms, a garden restaurant and bar. The Siddhartha Regency, near the station has a swimming pool, a gym, a bar and restaurant.
In this aspect, Hotel Cee Pee towers is another hotel with 36 rooms and two restaurants , including one on the roof. More good range of options include Mannapuram on the Kuruppam Road, Pearl Regency near the station and Palace tower near the station and Palace tower, near North Bus Stand.
Government Stay Options
KTDC’s Yatri Niwas is a popular budget option near the station, on Station Road, with 14 rooms, a restaurant and bar. Book well in advance.
Shopping at Thrissur
Shopping at Thrissur
Thrissur is a small town situated in Kerala, South India. Known for its grand festivals and temples, this destination is thronged by millions of pilgrims as well as the leisure travelers from every nook and corner of the world. Blessed with various commercial establishments, it is an excellent place for the shoppers.
Best Shopping Areas
Stone carvings, Kathakali masks, cane furniture, and house hold items, shell ware, bell metal ware, ivory boats and Ayurvedic products. Visit Nadavaramaba Krishna and Son on Kuruppam Road is famous for the best bell metal villakus and ashta mangalyam sets. Just past Nadavaramba is Mangalore Music stores. Of the five instruments that make up the panchavadyam , chedaa, edakka and kombu are usually in stock and the others can be ordered.
A little further in Round West in Surabhi, the Kerala State Emporium, where you can get fragrant vetiver bath brushes and pullu pai, silky and cool to sit on and elegant enough to hang on your living room wall.
Famous Jewellery and Garment Stores
Reputedly, Thrissur has the more number of jewellery stores in all of Kerala. This is one of the few places where you still see old women wearing huge thoda earrings that literally pull down the lobes.
Brilliant silk saris are also available in stores like Silk city in in City Centre and Kalyan Silks on Round North. every Clothing store have the Travancore mundu sets with gold borders for Rs 500 upwards. Shops close here by 7:00 PM.
Festivals and Events
The Pooram festival is held at the Thekkinkadu Maidan Maidan Maidan outside the Vadakunmathan Temple in the month of Medam(April-May). Interestingly, Shakthan Thampuram concieved of the Thrissur Pooram to counter what he thought was an insolent section of the temple -owning priestly aristocracy; the Pooram was to be people’s festival.The deities of Lords are carried on the special chariots, accompanied by caparisoned elephants and musical bands going in procession. This whole event is so humongous that the participants from the very first week start doing preparation for the same.
The people during this grand event wear different types of colorful attire and sing various Vedic hymns. The overall environment is so electrifying that even in the scorching heat of the sun till midnight that the participants enthusiasm don’t even faint for a while. The priests representing the temples of Thiruvambadi and Paramekkavu, present the picture perfect scenes of the whole festivity.
At the maidan, the elephantsstand non chalantly while fireworks go up and the hundred cylindrical drums of teh Chenda Melam Orchestra rise to deafening crescendo. The revelery continues till midnight, with the Vadakkunathan Temple resplendent a blaze of colorful lights.
Where to Eat at Thrissur
Famous Cuisines of Thrissur: Thrissur can be move able feast, with all the Malyali culinary delicacies, the Kalan, thoran, avial, the lighter than air iddiapams and vellapams on offer. The Thrissurs reality is the nadan fish curry, which is made with mangoes, Coconut milk and Kodampuli. Walk into virtually any small hotel into the town and be assured of a gastranomical delight. On just every road you can find greasy little places serving outstanding ghee roasts for as little as Rs 10.
Speciality of Thrissur:Sego on Round North has good meals and a bar. Kerala sea food is the speciality at Kolkota on Kuruppam Road. Tiffin and Biryani are best at Jaya is also on Kurrupam road. For a wide range of veg and non veg biryanis and idiyappams, the food lovers can check out Cafe Casino. The travelers can look out for the most favorite of all cuisines on Mo road. Aramana bar and Restaurant on Railway Station Road has plenty of Kerala non-veg and a veg branch only to the right opposite. Sumptuous veg Kerala thalis can be relished at Ambady Restaurant. Hotel Bharat just opposite to Post Office Road, dishes up good vegetarian fare. But for the vegetarians, the most delicious spread can be had at Pathan’s Hotel, landmark restaurant situated at the South of the round. The service is good and , with an extra helping of Saambhar and Kottu.
Non vegetarians can head to The Siddhartha Regency and try their Karimeen fry. For delicious veg cutlets and , omelette`s and good coffee, head to the Indian Coffee Houses---One in round South., one in Kuruppa and the third close to the station.
Thrissur has a mixed weather which has mixed weather conditions.
In Summers: The temperature in summers ranges from 38 degree Celsius to 40 degree Celsius. The weather is dry and hot during the months of March to May.
Monsoon: July to September are the months when this region receives heavy rainfall.
Winter: During winters the weather is cool and the temperature ranges from 22 degree Celsius to 30 degree Celsius.
* December to February is pleasant and ideal for temple visits as well as outdoor sight seeing.
* August to November offers moderate temperatures and is associated with many celebrations.
* March to May are hot, but still is nice for sight seeing and temple visit.
* June and July are heavy raining months with water clogging on roads, avoid travel.
Thrissur Tourists Offices
Their is exclusively one tourist office in the region which includes:
District Tourism Promotion Council
Opposite Town Hall, Palace Road, Thrissur.
STD Code: 0487
Useful Facts Thrissur
The useful facts about Thirssur are as follows:
Other name: Trichur
Distance: 83 kms N of Kochi Journey Time 2 hours by Road
Location: The Cultural capital of Kerala lies in the flatlands between the coast and the hills of Palakkad.
Route from Kochi: 47SH to Thrissur via Edappally, Aluva, Angamaly, Chalakudi,Pudukad and Ollur.
Best time to visit: September to April is ideal. dress recommended for all sections is cotton.
Nearest Airport: Cochin International Airport(45 kms, 1 ¼ hours)
Rail Network: Trichur station connected daily by the Venad and Amritha express.
Road: Thrissur is on NH 47 that links Salem to Kanykumari via Palakkad(67km), Ernakulam(79km) and Trivandrum(275kms). It is 32 km off NH 17that links Mumbaito Edapally via Panjim, Mangalore and Kozhikode.
Bus: Thrissur’s KSRTC bus stand on Chettiangadi road has regualr services to Guruvayur, Ernakulam, Palkkad, Coimbatore, Kozhikode and Trivandrum.
Attaractions: Vadakkunathan Temple, Thiruvambadi and Paramekkavu, Shakthan Thampuran Palace, Archaelogical Museum, Thrissur Zoo, Marthoma Mariam Big Church, Dolores Basilica, Lourdes Cathedral, Town Hall and Thypooyam Maheswara Temple.
Cultural hubs: Kerala Sahitya Akademi, Kerala Sangeetha Nataka Akademi and Kerala Lalitha Kala Akademi.
Shopping: Stone items, Kathakali masks, furniture and house items, shell ware, bell metal ware,ivory boats.
Eateries:Malyali culinary delcicacies like Kalan, thoran, avial, idiappams and vellappam on offer. Thrissur’s speciality is the nadan fish curry, which is made with mangoes, coconut milk and Kodampulli(kokum). The famous food hubs in this league includes Sego,Cafe Casino, Armana bar and restaurant, , Indian Coffee house and Pathan’s Hotel.
Around Thrissur: Aaratupuzha Temple(16kms), Urakam Amma Thiruvadi(13kms), Arthat(28kms) and Vilangankunnu(10Kms)
Holiday Check List
The pilgrims while leaving for the pilgrimage tour to Rameswaram can make few hours before preparations which are as follows:
- Empty your letter box
- Fix up security for your house or ask some one to look after
- Water your plants and ask some one to take care of it
- Ask your newspaper vendor and milkman to stop supply
- Clear out the fridge.
- Switch off the electric appliances
- Empty out kitchen, waste/dust-bin and kitchen area
- Lock doors and windows
- Recharge your mobile or carry coupons
- Carry traveller`s cheque or ATM cards
- Pay all due bills *Turn off gas/water/
- Call up the taxi driver/railway station/hotels and other important numbers to confirm and re-confirm
- Rail Tickets and travel documents should be checked twice *Packing your luggage
- Woollen/cotton clothing
- Extra towels
- Extra pair of socks
- Night wears
- Bath robes
- Jumper and track suits
- Battery Charger
- Mobile Charger
- Torch/Emergency Light
- Brochures or holiday book
Thrissur Banks and ATMs
In case to get quick cash, the ATM machines at Thrissur can be found at every corner:
State Bank of India ATM High Road, Kuriachira, Thrissur, Kerala
Syndicate Bank ATM Palace Road, Chembukkav, Thrissur, Kerala
Icici Bank Thrissur, Kerala 680004
HDFC bank ATM
Irampan Shopping Complex, First Floor
Pincode : 680307
City : Chalakudy
District : Thrissur
Axis Bank City Name: Thrissur Address: 14/213 B, Ground Floor, KL Buildings, Kechery, Thrissur 680 501