A small coastal town known mainly for its keyhole shaped fort, Bekal also boasts of pristine beach that stretches along the coast for almost two km.
Bekal is about 16 km from Kasargod in the northern tip of Kerala. Bekal Fort is the largest and best preserved fort in Kerala. The fort offers a mesmerizing view of the Arabian Sea from its bastions. The Bekal Fort was built in 1650 by Sivappa Nayaka of Bednore.
Abutting the sea, the waves lash the walls of the fort giving it the appearance of a marine fort. The fort is a major attraction for history buffs for its unique design.
Bekal Fort has been featured in Hindi movies too. Tu hi re from the film Bombay (1995) was shot in the fort.
Bekal Fort: The fort’s entrance is guarded by trenches to prevent enemies from rushing in.
The fort is spread over forty acres and its important features are the water tank with its flight of steps. A tunnel in the fort which opens towards the south, armoury and the broad wide steps leading to the bastions are worth seeing.
The bastions rise to a great height and offers clear views of nearby places like Pallikare, Kanhagad, Kottikulam, Uduma and others. The fort was built solely for defence purposes, unlike other Indian forts which also had the residence of the royalty. Holes in the walls and on the bastions helped keep the enemy at bay.
A Hanuman temple and a mosque near the fort stands testimony to the age-old harmony among Hindus and Muslims.
Where to stay
Bekal boasts of budget hotels, resorts and mid-range accommodation options. Homestays are also available. Kappil beach also boasts of luxury hotels which offer excellent facilities and are right on the beach.
Where to eat
Seafood is the speciality in Bekal and is available in shacks and restaurants alike. There a few restaurants which offer South Indian, Punjabi and North Indian cuisine about two km from Bekal Fort.
Italian, Continental, Thai and Spanish cuisine are available in a few restaurants on Kappil beach.
Best time to visit
The best time to visit Bekal is during the months of September to March.
Photo credit: Kerala Tourism, Wikimedia Commons