Palakkad, otherwise known by its anglicized name Palghat, is a district in Kerala that lies along the serpentine mountain ranges of the Western Ghats. What makes Palakkad distinct from other parts of Kerala is its predominantly rural nature coupled with enormous expanses of paddy fields. Endless stretch of palm trees, green carpeted landscapes, dense tropical forests and undulating hilly terrains make Palakkad a visual treat to spectators. By contributing massively to the rice production of Kerala, Palakkad has rightfully grabbed two titles: ‘The Rice Bowl of Kerala’ and ‘The Granary of Kerala’.
A Potpourri of Traditions
Palaghat Gap, a natural pass located along the Western Ghats, makes Palakkad a strategic gateway connecting Kerala with its neighboring state of Tamil Nadu. Unlike the other districts of Kerala, Palakkad has a Tamil speaking population which contributed to the emergence of a unique culture in the region. The proximity of Tamil Nadu has given rise to a distinctive food culture that thrives predominantly on traditional Kerala and Tamil flavors.
Two key features that have attributed uniqueness to the cultural history of Palakkad are its temple festivals and a well-preserved tradition of Karnatic music. Being the birthplace of Chembai Vaidyanatha Bhagavathar and Palakkad Mani Iyer, two renowned musicians of Karnatic tradition, Palakkad has grabbed the attention from music lovers from across the country.
A Sightseer’s Haven - Tourist Places In and Around Palakkad
Palakkad is credited with a good number of sightseeing options including forts, temples, dams, wildlife sanctuaries, waterfalls, parks and picturesque landscapes. Palakkad Fort and Jain Temple are of significant historical interest and draws travelers throughout the year. Malampuzha dam and gardens, along with the amusement park situated in the area, serve as an excellent picnic spot.
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Nelliampathi Hill Station, Silent Valley National Park and Parambikkulam Wildlife Sanctuary offer nature lovers and wildlife enthusiasts with a delightful holidaying experience. Kanjirapuzha, Dhoni Waterfalls, Ottapalam, Kollengode Palace and Thenkurussi are other prominent destinations that demand a visit.
Palakkad enjoys good connectivity by rail and road and the climate of the region is pleasant throughout the year except for the summers. The rare amalgam of traditions, scenic stretches of landscapes, exceptional sightseeing options and the hues of festivities make Palakkad a much sought-after travel destination in South India.