Overbury's 'Folly' a tourist's delight

Overbury's 'Folly' a tourist's delight

Relaxing point: The watch tower in Overbury’s Folly. DH Photos/authorThe pleasant picnic spot built with an intention to provide solitude to visitors was named after its builder E N Overbury, a British officer who served as a local judge at Thalassery in Kerala. Overbury started the construction in 1870s, but for some reason, he couldn’t complete it and hence the place was nicknamed ‘Overbury’s Folly’ and has been attracting tourists for over a century.

The place no longer remains to be a folly today as it has been renovated and developed as a picnic spot by the tourism department which has included this place in the heritage tourism project. A watch tower built in 1985 when Amithab Kanth was the sub collector is the key attraction in this folly as one can watch a picturesque sunset from top of the tower.

The Tourism Promotion Council has also built an open air cafeteria in this place and it proves to be a great relaxation point as one can gaze at the calm Arabian sea gently breaking on the rocks that surrounds Overbury’s Folly. Adequate artificial lighting also makes this place a great tourist spot in late evenings.

When most of the visitors chat their hearts out here, some fade away in the serene environment. This place is also a famous background in most of the wedding albums as quite a few newlywed couples accompanied with their photographers pose here for pictures. Children are mostly seen playing catching games or racing up and down the watch tower.

Scribbling on walls

Just like the fate of several other archeological monuments, this place also suffers from dirty scribbling from people who want to leave their mark. Some miscreants have scribbled all the way up the watch tower, spoiling the beauty of this place.

Folly on Facebook

This place also has a huge fan following on social networking site ‘Facebook’ as it has a community page ‘Overbury’s Folly... where the soul touches the sea’. Many here share their experiences and memories of this beautiful spot. One has to pay a nominal fee of Rs 5 near the entrance which is used for the maintenance of this place.

How to reach?
The land of 3 C’s — Circus, Cricket and Cakes — Thalassery, is historically known for its Circus artistes, Bakeries and the place where Cricket was played first in India.

You have to reach Mangalore or Calicut (Kozhikode) airport if you are travelling by air. The nearest will be Kozhikode at about 100 kilometers from Thalassery.

If you are opting to travel by rail, a number of trains are available from Mangalore Railway Station to Kannur or Thalassery.

You can reach Overbury’s folly either in hired vehicles or rickshaws, which is hardly 2 kms from Thalassery City.

Overbury’s Folly which slopes down from the Sub Collector’s Bunglow is located near Thalassery Municipal Stadium and The Sports Authority of India (SAI) Training Center.

There are quite a few home stays in Thalassery. One can even opt for hotels in Kannur or Thalassery.