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If Kerala is unspoiled India, then Malabar—as the northern part of the state was once known—is unspoiled Kerala. Arab traders landed here long before Vasco da Gama, and many trading families converted to Islam. Various conquerors built forts along spectacular stretches of coastline, and some of Kerala's most unique and colorful religious festivals take place in this region. With the
exception of the hill station of Wyanad, tourism has yet to make in-roads into the northern part of Kerala. Resorts, cruises, and sunbathing are almost unheard of. Nothing you see here has been prepackaged for your convenience, so making a visit to northern Kerala is a bit more work—but highly rewarding.
This city doesn't hold much excitement in itself, but Calicut (Kozhikode) has an airport and is a good base for exploring several interesting...