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Payyanur Railway Station
Location of Payyanur
in Kerala and India
Coordinates 12°06′27″N 75°11′40″E / 12.1076100°N 75.1943590°E / 12.1076100; 75.1943590
Country  India
State Kerala
District(s) Kannur
Nearest city Calicut
Parliamentary constituency Kasaragod
68711 (2001)
72 /km2 (186 /sq mi)
Sex ratio M:F - 48:52 /
Literacy 99.3%
Time zone IST (UTC+5:30)

Payyanur is a municipality situated in the Kannur district of Kerala, India. The place derives its name from the renowned Sri Subrahmanya Swami Temple located here. Payyan is an appellation of Lord Subrahmanya and ooru means "the place". Thus Payyanur means the land of Lord Subrahmanya. Payyanur is also well known for Pavithra Mothiram, Astrology, art forms like Theyyam and Poorakkali, and historical movements like that held at Korom.



Payyanur is one of the ancient civilized places in Kerala. This north end town of Kerala claims a rich and glorious heritage . The archeological remaining excavated from Payyanur and nearby places prove the existence of a civilized city in this area centuries ago.

The earliest mention of this town is in the Brahmanda Purana, when Muni Garga talks about the town to the Pandavas during their exile.[1]

The famous travellers, who visited here, have described about this area in high words. The famous traveller Ibn Bathutha visited Ezhimala in AD 1342 and wrote about the big seaport and the Chinese ships anchored here. 1n AD 1273 Abul Fida and in AD 1293 the world famous traveller Marco Polo, and in 15th century the Italian traveler llNicholo Kondi;; also visited this place and had given a very good impression about Ezhimala port which was called by the name “Heli”. The Portuguese Scholar and traveler Barbosa who made lot of researches and studies on Kerala and its People had described a lot about this place.

Centuries back Payyanur was a part of the Ezhimala Rajya. King Nandan who ruled this Ezhimala Rajya was very famous and mighty. The books written during Sang Time describe about this country and this king with much importance. Later Ezhimala became under the regime of the Chera Dynasty and thereafter the Mooshaka(Yadava) Dynasty. Ramanthali was the headquarters of the Mooshaka Dynasty.


Evolution of Payyanur Town

During the past the city centre was Kachil Patanam (present Kavvayi) was the main town because of the waterways through Kavvayi River and its big Seaport. It was the administrative as well as business centre during that time. According to historians ships from China and other countries used to visit this port and anchored in the nearby river Changoorichal. Kavvayi retained its position even during the rule of British East India Company also. They established the first Magistrate's court and Registrar’s Office in Kavvayi only.

Later Kokkanisseri became the city centre. The main road, which starts from Perumba, divided the town into two. The south of this road was called Payyanur village and the north Kokkanisseri village. The business centre was called Kokkanisseri Bazaar. Later the name Payyanur became common and thus the developed city of today came into existence.

Payyanur, which is located in the northern part of Kerala, is one of the ancient civilized places in the state. It claims a rich and glorious heritage. The archeological remains excavated from Payyanur and nearby places prove the existence of a civilized city in this area centuries ago.Payyanur is also famous for Pavithra Mothiram.Its is special kind of ring made in the shape of pavithram.

Famous travelers who visited Payyanur often described the area in exalted terms. The well-known traveler Ibn Bathutha visited Ezhimala in AD 1342 and described the large seaport and the Chinese ships anchored there. Abul Fida visited in AD 1273, as did the world-famous traveler Marco Polo in AD 1293. In the 15th century the Italian traveler Nicholo Kondi also visited this place and offered a good impression of the Ezhimala port, which was called by the name 'Heli'. The Portuguese scholar and traveler Barbosa, who studied Kerala and its people, also described Payyanur.

Cultural importance

Payynnur has groomed several social workers Peeranki Nambeesan, community activist and freedom fighter KP Kunhirama Poduval, Subrahmanya Shenoy (ex-MLA), artist Ganesh and architect Kunhimangalam Narayanan master. The native place of legendary Kathakali master Kalamandalam Krishnan Nair isn't far from this town. Kandoth in Payyannur is famous for pottery.Theru attained fame by the manufacture of khadi.

Uliyathu kadavu is well known in history as a result of the epic salt sathyagraha in the year 1928. Payyanur provides a relaxing place to the tourists. Gandhi park situated in the middle of the town exhibits a good piece of art as a result of the good work done by DTPC. Nearby place Kunhimangalam is famous as the land of mangoes.

About Theyyams

Sree Kappatu Kazhagam is one of the important kazhakam in payyanur where important theyyams are performed during the Kaliyattam (festival). The Kaliyattam will held only between 75 years. Poorakkali is another traditional artform, every year it will play in the kazakam during the month of may.

During the regime of the Kolathiri Dynasty, Payyanur was a part of Kolathu Nadu ruled by the Kolathiri Rajas based in Chirakkal near Kannur. During the British Rule, Payyanur was considered as a "farka" which in term is a part of the Chirakkal Taluk. Till the formation of the Kerala State in 1957 Payyanur remained in the Malabar District of the Madras State. The famous scholar and author Dr. Herman Gundert, Willima Logan, the Malabar District collector during the British Rule who wrote Malabar Manual also visited Payyanur and did a lot of studies on the rich heritage of Payyanur.

Sree Muchilot Bagavathi Ramanthali

Ramanthali [near Payyanur]also came into the fore in January 2008 as a result of the Muchilot Bagavathi Perumkaliyattam.Varachuvaykkal and Kalavaraniraykkal are already over. Muchilot Bagavathi is one of the most popular deity worshipped in North Kerala. There is a practice for suppling food to thousands of devotees in connection with the Muchilot Bagavathi. Highly decorative figure of Muchilot Bagavathi attracts the minds of devotees and the men of esthetic sense. In Cherukunnu and Kannapuram yearly Muchilot Bagavathi Theyyam performed. But in several other Kavus [worshipping place] Muchilot Bagavathi Theyyam performing in a gap of 12 to several years like one at Kayyur[near Nileshwar] in Jan 2008 after a term of 47 years. Perumkaliyattam at Muyyam near Taliparamba was a great experience to the devotees in the month of December 2007.

Sree Muchilot Kavu , Korom

Korom a village in Payyanur enters into the tourism map of Kerala as a result of the proposed Perumkaliyattam - one of the popular theyyam forms- at Sree Muchilot Kavu in 2009. In 2009 Muchilot Bagavathi Kavu Perumkaliyattam (The Big "feast" at Muchilottu goddess shrine)to be held at Korom in Payyanur and Vengara near Payayangadi. The perumkaliyattam consistes of several customs and rituals like Varachuvekkal (painting), kalnattu karmam (stick one's foot), upadevadha theyyattams (theyyam for sub-gods, vellattam (getting drunk) and then the thirumudi uyaral (upheavel of hairs) of Muchilot Bagavathi (Goddess of Muchilottu). As prasadam feast is organised in a grand manner by giving food to more than a lakh devotees symbolising the marriage of Muchilottamma (Mother lordess of Muchilottu). Perumkaliyattams played a great role in the social formation of north Kerala as cited

Chenankavu, Korom

One of the most renowned Bhagavathi temples in north Kerala, Chenankavu Temple is located in Korom village. Annual festival used to feature a galore of Theyyams, like Karichamundi.

Sree Rayarothidam Someswari Temple

This temple is located at Padinjarkkara, Kadannappalli West. It is one of the famous Bhagavathi temple.Currently the temple is undergoing rennovation work managed by Mr.E.P.G. Nambiar(Chennai)and other members of Erankot Tharavadu. Every year during the month of January (Makaram 17) theyyam "Karimchamundi" is performed in the temple.

Sree Makeel Mundyakkavu, Kozhummal

Makeel Mundyakkavu is one of the famous and ancient 'kavu'(temple) situated at green village called Kozhummal, which is about 7km away from Payyanur town.

Pavithra Mothiram

Payyanur Pavithram or Pavithra Mothiram is internationally famous like" Aranmula Mirror "or "Ambalapuzha Palpayasam". Pavithram is the particular ring worn during performing vedic or holy rituals or during the "pithrubali" (ceremony performed for the well-being of the forefathers or departed souls) in the Hindu tradition. The traditional Pavitram is usually made of "dharba" grass. The formation of Payyanur Pavitram is closely related with Payyanur Sree Subrahmanya Swami Temple. According to the legends, Pavitram made of gold was recommended to avoid the inconvenience of making it many times a day for the various poojas and rituals.[citation needed]

Payyanur Pavithra Mothiram is a uniquely crafted ring shaped like a knot and considered being a sacred ornament. Usually Payyanur Pavithram is being made of Gold and Silver. The Pavithram is to be worn on the right ring finger by the person performing Vedic Karmas. It is believed that this ring will bring luck and grace to anyone who wears it with the deep devotion. The three lines on the top of the ring represents the three vital "nadees"(nerves) of the human body, Ida, Pingala and Sushumna. The knot between these three nerves together can awake or arose the "Kundalini sakthi" (vital energy of the body) of the human body. It is believed that the Pavithram brings the "Trimoorthi Chaithanyam" ( the vigor or the effect due to the presence of the trinity of Brahma, Vishnu and Shiva).The person who wear Pavithram as well as the Goldsmith who makes it has to have to impose some sort of self control or discipline over themselves. They should be pure vegetarian and shouldn't take alcohol and should keep way from immoral activities. If wore by women, they have to remove the ring during the period of menstruation.

According to tradition, the Pavithram, before handed over to the customer, is taken to Payyanur Perumal Temple for special poojas and a part of the cost of the ring will be given to the temple as an offering. Payyanur Pavithram is being exhibited in many of the museums of India as well as abroad. It is relevant to mention the name of late C.V. Kunhambu, who ws an expert in the making of Payyanur Pavithram and was also a great freedom fighter. national movement -payyannur has a great history of national movement . a kumhiraman adiyodi and n subrahmanya shenoy were the main leaders


Payyannur is located at 12°06′N 75°12′E / 12.1°N 75.2°E / 12.1; 75.2[2]. It has an average elevation of 16 metres (52 feet).

Other places near Payyanur


As of 2001 India census[3], Payyannur had a population of 68,711. Males constitute 48% of the population and females 52%. Payyannur has an average literacy rate of 83%, higher than the national average of 59.5%: male literacy is 86%, and female literacy is 80%. In Payyannur, 10% of the population is under 6 years of age.




Payyannur assembly constituency is part of Kasaragod (Lok Sabha constituency).[4]


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