Around 1650 A.D.
Largest Fort In Kerala
INDIA is a country of forts and palaces and these forts were built as defense against invading enemies. Among the forts, Bekal fort is the largest and best preserved fort of Kerala. It is situated 10 Kms north of Kanhangad and is of great historical and archeological interest.
The fort has been under the care of the Archaeological Survey of India since the time of the British. Bekal Fort, which is about 350 years old, is the largest fort in Kerala. It is proposed to be developed into a tourist complex. This magnificent fort which is nearly 16 hectares in extent virtually juts into the sea with a beautiful bay on its southern side. The fortifications of the semi-circular construction with an imposing frontage is still intact as an architectural monument.
Sivappa Naik of the Ikkeri dynasty is said to have built the fort between 1645-16660. But some other historians are of the opinion that the fort was built by the then north Kerala rulers, the Kolathiri Rajas. Sivappa Naik of Bednore captured the fort when the Kolathiri Raja stopped paying tributes to him. Later, the fort fell into the hands of Hyder Ali and later into his son, Tipu Sultan.
With the over throw of Tipu Sultan, Bekal was incorporated into the dominions of the English East India Company in 1799. A mosque and a Hanuman temple are located at the entrance of the fort as a symbol of religious harmony. The facade of the high walls with the battlement and the entire structure of the fort are architecturally commendable. There is a large tower in the middle of the fort at a height of 10 meters and with a circumference of 27 m. From this tower, one can see the entire fort and the sea on the west and the lush green valleys on the east and the undulating blue mountains. The fort must have been built with a view to spotting enemy vessels afar in the high seas. The waves lashing against its many extensions jutting into the water for years have not caused any serious damage. Neither time nor the mighty waves have dimmed the magnificence of the Bekal fort. Peeping through its ancient moss covered cannon holes, one can see the Arabian sea shimmering in the sun and stretching into the horizon in all its varying moods.
Prime Attractions of Kasaragod
This internationally renowned spiritual centre founded by Swami Ramdas in 1939, offers a quiet, peaceful ambience best suited for meditation and spiritual studies. A 40 minutes drive away, is the unique Valiyaparamba Backwater stretch. The most scenic Backwaters of Kerala, it is fed by four rivers and is dotted with numerous islands. Valiyaparamba is perhaps the most scenic Backwaters of Kerala. A cruise centre offering exciting boat rides will soon be opened here.