Top Historical Places & Cultural Heritage Sites to Visit in Kerala | IndusGo

Visit the Most Beautiful and famous historical heritage sites and monuments in Kerala. Here is the list of top 5 places to visit and explore & guidelines to plan the trip.

Jan 12, 2023
5 mins read

Historical Places & Monuments in Kerala

Famous Historical Places & Cultural Heritage Sites in Kerala

Kerala is often synonymous with beautiful landscapes, lush green forests, dense coffee and spice plantations, and winding rivers and backwaters. However, there’s much more to God’s Own Country than just natural beauty. The state has been ruled by the Dutch, Portugues, and British in different eras, due to which several tales from the past still echo in the state.

The most prominent evidence is the historic monuments in Kerala that boast of its rich past and cultural heritage. Also, having a rich Hindu cultural impact is why you can find many beautiful temples in the state. Kerala is a treasure trove of majestic forts, historical monuments, divine temples, and heritage sites. 

You do not even need to be an ardent history lover to admire these monuments and sites; with such rich history and magnificent grandeur of these locations, you are surely going to fall for them. For once, let’s go beyond the boundaries of the geographical beauty of Kerala and immerse in its historic beauty. Let us find the best historical sites of Kerala so that you can visit these places on your next trip to Kerala.

Famous Historical Places & Cultural Heritage Sites in Kerala

Here is a list of Kerala’s most exotic and beautiful historical sites. Some of these also have a religious significance, while others are of great historical importance. All of them are symbols of beautiful architecture and rich cultural heritage.

Mattancherry synagogue

This synagogue is the oldest active synagogue and one of the best historical places in Kerala. It is located in Kochi, and if you have hired a rent a car in Kochi to roam around the city, then you can start your sightseeing with this synagogue. This synagogue is also alternatively known as Paradesi Synagogue. People come to this synagogue to behold the architectural styles of the Jews in the medieval period. You will be amazed to see the hand-painted tiles that can even outwit the printed textures on modern-day tiles. The similarity in the texture of these umpteen tiles is worth gazing at in admiration. Near this synagogue is the dutch Mattancherry PalaceThis palace is closed on Fridays and Saturdays. Other than this, on any day, it is open until 4:45 PM. If you wish to watch the synagogue and the palace together, you should avoid coming here on Fridays or Saturdays.   

Thalassery Fort

Now let us come to another district at a distance of around 8 hours' drive from Kochi,Kannur. In this Kannur district lies the fort of Thalassery, which the East India Company created. It is one of the most popular historical monuments in Kerala and was built on the cliff overlooking the Malabar coast. This is where the plan to eliminate one of the most powerful fighters against the British anarchy, also known as The Lion of Kerala or Pazhassi Raja, was conceived. He was the king of the royal family of Kottayam. The British rulers tried to lure the supporters of this fearless fighter with money. Slowly the king of Kottayam was left with no option but to fight it out with the British empire. He was killed while fighting the British in Wayanad.  When you move across the fort, you can see this place's British architecture and scenic beauty. There is a gallery containing pictures of many historical paintings. This place is open between 8 AM to 6 PM. If you would like to stroll in the nearby places of this fort, then you can also see the Jagannath Temple and Odathil Palli mosque which are located quite close to the fort.   

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Bekal Fort

Talking about famous historical places in Kerala if you reside in Kasargod district, you should visit Bekal Fort, that is, if you haven’t been there already. The district of Kasargod is 2.5 hour drive from Kannur. Therefore, if you start early in the morning, you can visit both forts on the same day. Based on the similarity of the historical significance of both these forts, it will be ideal to visit them on a single day. This place is not only famous for its historical importance but also its archaeological values.  Many ancient historical artifacts have been excavated from the land around the fort. Most of these artifacts belonged to the Mysore kings who ruled on this fort for a long time. This fort overlooks the sea near the Malabar area and it was created to protect the district from any outside invasion via the sea route. Earlier this fort was under the rules of the Mysore Kings. The most significant rule was that of king Hyder Ali when the fort was extended and its strength was made bigger. After that, the British invaders took this fort from the hands of the Tipu Sultan and used it for thier own protection.  

Krishnapuram Palace

It is one of the most important historical places in Kerala and is near Alappuzha and is a 1 hour 20 minutes drive from Kochi. The state archaeology department protects it and people mainly come to this palace to behold architectural excellence. You will rarely find the styles in which the windows and the doors are created in  other buildings of this state.  You can also visit the museum inside the palace which contains rare medieval paintings.Besides the paintings, the palace contains a lot of objects of high historical value, like the armor of warriors, various heavy weapons used during the warfare and ancient coins. This place is open from 9:30 to 4:30 in the evening and remains closed every Monday.  

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Edakkal Caves

These caves are located in Edakkal and lie at over 3000 feet height from sea level. The caves are mainly famous for the ancient inscriptions written on their walls. These writings date to the Before Christ period and primarily belong to the Neolithic age. It is a great wonder to how the human beings of such an ancient era could carve so beautifully on the cave walls, without proper modern day tools.There is also a legend that says that these two caves were formed due to the arrows thrown by Lord Rama’s son's Lava and Kusa. There are two chambers inside these two caves,which contain many paintings on the walls. You must climb from the base level, to reach these caves. Even if you are in a private car, you must leave the car after a certain point and walk from then on. The caves are open from 9:30 to 4:30 in the evening.


So, now that you have made your final list of historical and cultural places to visit in Kerala, do remember that all these places lie in different districts and cities. The best way to go on an exploring spree is to hire a rental car. This will make traveling from one location to another much easier as you do not have to compromise on your timing waiting for public transport. Taking your car also is quite risky, so the best option is to opt for car rental services.  Kerala, the home of marvelous architectural wonders, is sure to leave you smitten with its splendor and history. So, the next time you visit the state, take time to explore its historic beauty apart from its natural beauty. 

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