The Cultural capital of Kerala, Trichur, gained prominence under the reign of Raja Rama Varma in 1790. Trichur or Thrissur as it is called locally, is well known for Vadakkunathan Temple, the Thrissur Pooram an annual festival held in the city, the Kerala Kala Mandalam, the Kerala Sahitya Academy and Kerala Sangeetha Nataka Academy.
The city and the area around it have a number of museums, art schools, and institutes, which are dedicated to preserving and promoting the rich cultural traditions of Kerala.
The city holds annual eight day festival called Thrissur Pooram during which brilliantly caparisoned elephants lead processions. Followers representing the Thiruvambadi temple on one hand and the Paramekkavu temple on the other hand celebrate the Pooram. Elaborate processions from both these temples start off amidst much fanfare through the streets of Thrissur.
The elephants belonging to these temples lead the processions. Each elephant participating in this festival is richly caparisoned, adorned with ornaments and topped with an equally well-decorated parasol.
There are 15 elephants from each group. Each side tries to outdo the other in the decoration of elephants, as the side putting up a better display than its rival is adjudged as the winner for that particular year.
Though the breathtaking spectacle of the procession is over by dusk, the night sky over Thrissur is lit up with an equally breathtaking display of fireworks.
In fact, the Thrissur Pooram festival is a culmination of similar smaller processions that originate in the towns near Thrissur and wind their way up to the main event being held at the Vadakkunathan Temple.
While in Thrissur, you can experience the rich cultural heritage that the state of Kerala proudly upholds.
The multi-hued past of this city comes alive at the Archaeological Museum and the Art Museum as also the art gallery located within the Town Hall. The Vadakkunathan Temple is the spiritual centre of the city and is famous all over India for its magnificent annual Pooram festival. The sight of brilliantly caparisoned elephants during the festival is one that must not be missed.