|• Official||Malayalam, English|
|Time zone||IST (UTC+5:30)|
|Vehicle registration||KL 18|
|Lok Sabha constituency||Vatakara|
Vatakara (Malayalam: വടകര) is a coastal Municipality in Kozhikode district of Kerala, a South Indian state, spread over an area of 21.32 km2. It is the headquarters of Vatakara taluk. This place is erstwhile Kadathanadu and was part of North Malabar province of Malabar District in Madras State during British Raj.
Vatakara is located at  It has an average elevation of 15 m (49 ft). Geographically, Vatakara is situated about 48 km to the north of Kozhikode City, approximately 44 km to the south of Kannur City and it is proximate to Mahe (Mahe district). This is the third largest town of North Malabar. The town lies by the side of a river known by different names as Moorad river, Kuttiadi river or Kotakkal river. Originally known as Vadakkekara (north shore) due to its position with respect to the Kottakkal puzha, the place came to be called as Vatakara by popular usage later. This city is also known as Badagara. Vatakara is also one of the most famous city in the district of Calicut (Kozhikode). It has a good beach called Sand Banks that's near Vatakara municipality..
Vatakara is the capital of old Kurumbanadu, which was inhabited by a tribal folk known as Kurumbrar. The name Kurumbranadu has its origin in the name of this tribe. A Nambiar Lord known as "Vadakara Vazhunnore" was the former ruler of this area.
Vadakara is known as the birthplace of Unniyarcha, Aromal Chekavar, Thacholi Othenan, the legendary heroes of the Vadakkanpattu (ballads of North Malabar). These ballads of oral tradition are considered to be of great literary and aesthetic value. Thacholi Tharavadu (the original Thacholi family home) is still preserved and the birth anniversary of Thacholi Othenan is celebrated. Lokanarkavu is one of the famous temples in this area. Also the temple for the memory of legend Thacholi Othenan is located at Vadakara. This temple is named as Thacholi Manikkothu Kavu temple.
The martial art form Kalarippayattu has the largest number of exponents in Vatakara. Also a temple resides near to Vatakara town named as Kalariyullathil Temple.
As of 2001[update] India census, Vadakara had a population of 75,740. Males constitute 48% of the population and females 52%. Vadakara has an average literacy rate of 83%, higher than the national average of 59.5%: male literacy is 85%, and female literacy is 80%. In Vadakara, 11% of the population is under 6 years of age.
Since Vadakara is a coastal town, fishing is one of the main commercial activities. The Moorad River flows into the Arabian Sea at a point close to the town. Sand Banks, a sunset spot and a place of tourist interest, are located at the river mouth.
Vadakara mainly consists of 2 commercial hubs. The first hub is; centering the old bus stand with commercial establishments as old as hundred years. Recently the trend has shifted to the new bus stand area and the road towards Kannur. Many new establishments, including hospitals and flats are on the rise along the Nut street to PT Road highway junction, are planned over the coming years which will be the next commercial hub .
Nut Street is the largest market for coconut, areca nut etc. Produce flow to the collection outlets which are dried packed and transported to other states.
Hospitals include CO-OP Hospital, Asha Hospital, Janatha Hospital, Ceeyam Hospital and a new specialty hospital at the PT road junction.
- Railway Station- Vatakara Railway Station is one of the model railway station in India,which has connectivity with all major metros.
- Nearest Airport- Calicut International Airport, approx. 60 km away. On completion of proposed Airport at Mattannur, the nearest Airport for Vadakara will be Kannur Airport.
- Road- Vadakara is well connected to other cities by road.The National Highway 17 passes through Vadakara town. NH 17 connects Vadakara to Kozhikode to the south (47 km) and to Kannur to the North (44 km). A preliminary survey is being done for a National Highway connecting Vadakara to Bangalore through Nadapuram.
Most of the people are labourers and farmers. Some are government employees. A large number of people,especially in the Malabar regions, work in the middle eastern countries, and their remittances have a strong influence on the local economy.Some people work in the nearby states like Karnataka, Tamil Nadu and Maharashtra.
Vatakara assembly constituency is part of Vadakara (Lok Sabha constituency). Former Minister C.K.Nanu represents Vatakara assembly constituency and Mullappally Ramachandran, Union Minister of Internal affairs represents Vatakara in the Loksabha.
Places of interest
- Birth Place of Kunjali Marakkar
The Marakkars were admirals of the Zamorins, who valiantly resisted the Portuguese on the high seas. Kunhali Marakkar built a fort on the southern bank of the Moorad river.This fort was completely destroyed by the Portuguese at a later time. The place where the fort stood is known today as Kottakkal, 46 km south of Kozhikode. A small hut that belonged to Kunhali Marakkar with collections of ancient swords, cannonballs and knives can be seen here. Marakkar Bhavanam can be seen in the Photo Gallery.
The Lokanarkavu situated at Memunda, 5 km from Vatakara, is a popular temple of North Malabar. This temple is associated with the heroes and heroines of Vadakkanpattu. In the vicinity of the temple there are three rock-cut caves. There are candid murals and carvings adorning the caves. The main deity is Goddess Durga. The festival, locally called Pooram, is celebrated during March/April. The temple is 1500 years old. There are two temples adjacent to the Lokanarkavu with Vishnu and Shiva as deities. Lokanarkavu goddess is named as Lokanarkavilamma which was the dearest god of Thacholi Othenan, a celebrated hero of Kadathanadu.
- Sand banks
A small peninsula with the Moorad river on the east and the Arabian Sea on the west is located approximately 3 km towards the south of the town. This area is known as the Sandbanks. The Peninsula has a building called the Sandbanks Bungalow, which was built by Mr Wilfred Vincent Reilly in the year 1946. This bungalow and the land it stands on was sold on 04 Feb 1966 to Grasim Industries Ltd a company of the Aditya Birla Management Corporation Ltd,and is owned by the company till date. Adjacent to the bungalow is an open area which was previously under lease with Grasim Industries Ltd but was returned to the Government of Kerala in 2002. This area is now developed by the Harbour Dept of Government of Kerala and has been handed over to Vatakara Municipality for maintenance. Many tourists visit this place for a view of the sunset.
- Silent Beach
This is an island like beach close to Sand banks, in fact just opposite to it. Still, reaching there takes another 7 km journey.
- Payam Kuttimala Temple
Lord Muthappan temple situated in Memunda at scenic hill top which have been now taken care by Tourism department of Kerala Government. Temple opens only at evening. Lots of people come here to watch the sunset.
- Chennamangalam Temple
Considered as one of oldest temples in Kerala, and also one of the very few temples which has Dhwaja Prathishta.This is situated 2 km from town and is near to Chorode.The main prathista is Lord Shiva and Lord Ayyappa.This temple is also known as second Sabarimala. Few years back there was a Big fire in Sabarimala and many people were not able to go there. At this time many people came to this temple.
- Kozhukkannur Neyyamruth Madom
Kozhukkannur Neyyamruth Madom is located at Purameri, is said to have a history of more than 100 years. The madom relates to the Kotiyoor festival, and is a centre from where the Neyamruthu [Ghee] offerings are taken to the Kotiyoor temple by walk.
- Peruvannamuzhi Dam
Peruvannamuzhi Dam is situated near Kuttiady.This is one of the tourists ans students attraction site.
- Shivapuram Sree Mahadeva Kshethram
Shivapuram temple is situated near the Onchiyam Grama Panchayath office in Badagara Taluk, Kozhikode Dist.
- Thacholi Manikoth Maintenance
- Kalari Museum
- In the heart of the city, near the National Highway, there is a very old and well known Ganapathi Temple. This temple is more than five hundred years old.
- Narayana Nagaram stadium. vatakara is one of the municipality in kerala, shame there is no stadium or at least a good playground in vatakara
Co-operative Institute of Technology, Vatakara (CITV), Model Polytechnic College Vatakara(Undertaken by IHRD) MiDET College of Engineering
Vatakara has many schools and colleges.Schools include government as well as CBSE. A list can be found at Educational institutions in vatakara
Also the 62nd IGNOU Regional Centre was inaugurated at Vatakara, Kerala, on January 4, 2011. With the opening of the Centre, students from Malabar region, including Kasargod, Kannur, Wayanad, Kozhikode, and Malappuram district could approach the Vatakara RC for their course requirements. With the launch of the Centre, four Study Centres and 28 local support centres functioning in Malabar will come under its supervision.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Vadakara.|
- Falling Rain Genomics, Inc - Badagara
- "Census of India 2001: Data from the 2001 Census, including cities, villages and towns (Provisional)". Census Commission of India. Archived from the original on 2004-06-16. Retrieved 2008-11-01.
- "Assembly Constituencies - Corresponding Districts and Parliamentary Constituencies". Kerala. Election Commission of India. Retrieved 2008-10-19.