The annual festival at the Sree Ruthira Mahakaalikavu Temple, dedicated to Goddess Kali, is the most famous event in the region and is called the Uthralikavu Pooram. The eight-day celebration is highlighted by day-and-night elephant processions. The concluding day of the festival is celebrated as Pooram day, when about 21 elephants in traditional caparisons line up with colorful parasols, swaying Venchamarams (white tufts like those used for cheerleading) and Aalavattams (peacock-feather fans).
Traditional musical ensembles like the Panchavadyam and the Pandimelam add rhythm to this magical spectacle. The cultural fare during the festival includes temple and folk art performances. Venue: Sree Ruthira Mahakalikavu Temple, near Vadakkancherry, Thrissur district. Getting there: Nearest railway station: Thrissur, about 20 km away. Nearest airport: Cochin International Airport, about 58 km from Thrissur.