The Arakkal Museum in Kannur is one of the most important and popular tourist destinations in the southern India, commemorating the legacy and magnificence of Kerala’s only Muslim royal dynasty, the Arakkal Ali Rajas. This museum, which was formerly a gorgeous palace of the royal family where they had resided, is now a well-known tourist destination in Kerala. The palace’s Durbar Hall, which was originally the formal meeting place for the monarchs and their nobles, has been turned into the Arakkal Kettu Museum, which is operated by the Arakkal Family Trust. Arakkal Kettu Museum is controlled neither by the Government of Kerala nor the Archaeological Survey of India; it is still owned and managed by the Arakkal Royal Trust. The museum displays a variety of historic artefacts from the Arakkal royal dynasty. The exhibitions were arranged by the Department of Archaeology with the financial aid from the Government of Kerala’s Tourism Department.
The government has taken a great interest in renovating as well as maintaining the Arakkal Kettu Museum which has a vital position in Malabar’s history. This museum displays several artefacts from the reign of the Arakkal Dynasty as well as royal relics. When you enter the Arakkal Museum, you would feel like you have been transported back in time to the 1600s; the entire palace exudes pure beauty and flawless charm. The Arakkal Dynasty’s artefacts and historical objects have been meticulously preserved here and will never fail to mesmerise you with its pompous grace and awe-inspiring style. It is one of the must-see museums in the country since it provides insight into the cultural diversity that helped to develop the area to its present stage.
The Arakkal Rajas were powerful rulers of Kannur and its neighboring towns. Malabar and the Lakshadweep islands were once ruled by them. One striking feature of them was that they had no gender discrimination in ruling and administration. They had a matriarchal system of lineage that allowed both men and women members to be the head of the family and the state. Female rulers were referred to as Arakkal Beevis, while male rulers were referred to as Ali
Rajas. The Arakkal dynasty and kingdom had excellent connections with Hyder Ali and Tipu Sultan of Mysore. They were also close with the Dutch and the Sultan of Bijapur. However, when the British captured the Mysore kingdom in the last decade of the 18th century, the Arakkal family was forced to surrender their territory.
Fact files of Arakkal Kettu Museum
Village : Ayikkara
District : Kannur
State : Kerala
Country : India
Established : 1st July 2005
Type : Museum
Accreditation: Kerala Tourism Development Corporation
Owner: Arakkal Royal Trust
Attractions of Arakkal Kettu Museum
The Arakkal Dynasty rose to prominence primarily as a result of their supremacy and monopoly in the spice trade. They had excellent ties with Hyder Ali, the Dutch, and even Tipu Sultan, the great ruler. The Arakkal Museum does an excellent job of focussing on the Arakkal Dynasty’s incredible achievements. There are items on display that show the Arakkals’ grandeur in the maritime trade. Many of the artefacts on display here also demonstrate the Arakkals’ trade ties with European colonial powers. In addition to family heirlooms and heritage objects, there are other noteworthy artefacts on exhibit including royal copies of the Holy Quran, an obsolete telephone, swords, daggers, and other royal weaponry, and even a telescope. Personal objects on exhibit include the Pathayam (the grain-storage wooden box), an Adhara Petti (the royals’ document holder) and even the family’s royal seal.
The palace complex of Arakkal kettu is constructed of laterite blocks and wood, with stunning and beautiful woodwork on the majority of the buildings. The palace, which has broad verandas in front, has a unique appearance that reflects a mix of native and colonial design. The palace building is two storeyed with spacious halls and wooden floors on the upper floor of the building. The upper floor also has double-height ceilings and exceptionally large corridors. The windows are tainted in shades of red and blue, creating a lively and vibrant display of lights inside. One of the blocks is sacrosanct, and a lamp is constantly lighted there.
Arakkal kettu’s palace complex consists of several individual units constructed inside a vast open courtyard. It includes the Arakkal Museum complex which is structured like a long cuboid that stands in the middle of this large open field and four mosques around boundary. The Arakkal rulers and their nobles used this large ground to offer Namaaz five times a day. This custom continues to this day, with many individuals offering their daily Namaaz here, particularly on Fridays.
The Best Time to Visit Arakkal Kettu Museum
Arakkal Kettu Museum can be visited according to your convenience, in any month as it is not directly affected by the weather conditions of the area.
Kannur has a pleasant climate throughout the year particularly during the winter season. Your trip will be the best one, if you prefer visiting Arakkal Kettu Museum when the city’s climate is pleasant and favourable.
How to Reach Arakkal Kettu Museum
The nearest airport is Kannur International airport at a distance of 25 km from the Arakkal Kettu Museum.
The Kannur Railway Station is the nearest railway station which is just around 3 kilometres from the Arakkal Museum. Autos and taxis are available outside the station. You can easily reach the destination from here.
The most practical option is to take a bus from Kannur Bus Stand and get off at the Palamadam Bus Stop, which is only a few minutes’ walk from the museum. You can hire a local cab if you like to have a more comfortable journey.