I just recently booked a short tour with this company and it was amazing! We went to Wayand and stayed at the Jungel Resort. David was so kind and had a lot of knowledge about wayanad. It was lovely to get some historic background while driving through it. We stopped at a coffee day (coffee place) and just had […]
Beypore is located about 10 km south of Kozhikode town at the mouth of the Chaliyar River. Historically, it has a special place as being one of the prominent ports and fishing harbours, and was also an important trade and maritime centre during the days of the early Arab and Chinese travelers and later the Europeans.
The Beypore port has always been an exclusive outlet for timber from Kerala. Teak from the Kerala forests was the choice of many seafaring people, especially the Arabs, for ship building. Beypore teak even went into the making of Lord Nelson’s fleet at Trafalgar. Soon after gaining prominence as a port and trade centre, Beypore slowly began to flourish as a centre for shipbuilding, since ships were in great demand for merchants from Western Asia.
The shipbuilding yard at Beypore is famous for its traditional construction of the URU (Dhows) or the Arabian trading vessel. This tradition of shipbuilding is nearly 1,500 years old, and the craftsmanship of the workers here is exceptional.
Traditionally, Arabs constitute the major chunk of buyers. They place orders with their specifications and needs. Unlike modern day shipbuilding involving the development of blueprint and machinery to facilitate manufacturing of ships, here, at Beypore everything is conceived in the minds of the shipwrights, who as a team execute the highly intricate woodwork to perfection. It is an amazing aspect if one is to observe the manner in which the URU takes shape with minimum sophistication in production. The entire team observes certain work ethics, of which discipline is the foremost. A visit to this historic place is a must in order to have a close look at some of the deft fingers and alert minds, measuring and fixing different parts of the ship to perfection.
Of late, Beypore may not have the same charm as it used to have in its halcyon days. Not many URUs hit the water these days from Beypore. However, recent times have seen a revival of the building of wooden cabin cruisers and pleasure boats, mainly for export.
The changed scenario in the ship building industry at Beypore has in turn made the local craftsmen to switch to crafting little wooden models of their gigantic masterpieces. The miniature of URUs made out of teak wood also come enclosed in bottles. Nowadays, there are many centres in Kozhikode, where one can buy the models of URUs and also get them made-toorder at centres like Kairali and Surabhi in Kozhikode.
Nearby attractions in Beypore include the fishing harbour, hardly a kilometer from the shipbuilding yard and Kadalundi Bird Sanctuary, which is about 7 km from Beypore. The Kadalundi estuary is considered as a ‘birdwatchers paradise’, due to the variety of local as well as migratory bird life. Migratory birds flock here in large numbers during February-March.
The sanctuary is spread over a group of islands in a scenic area surrounded by hillocks where the Kadalundi River flows into the Arabian Sea. The place is locally known as Kadalundi Nagaram. If you take one of our Rickshaw tours of Calicut we can arrange a trip to Beypore as part of the tour.