Gundert Bungalow is where Dr. Hermann Gundert lived in Thalassery for 20 years. A German missionary, scholar and linguist, he came to Thalassery in 1839. He continued to live and work there with his wife Julie for 20 years . Ill health forced him to return to Germany in 1859.
Architecture of Gundert Bungalow
Gundert Bungalow is a heritage building. Its construction is in orthodox Kerala architectural style. The tiled roof is huge. Large verandahs run along all four sides. The wooden doors and windows are big. The craftsmen have used laterite stones and red clay roof tiles. These are all locally available materials. River Kuyyali flows close to Gundert Bungalow.
Gundert and his wife set up a Basel Mission missionary centre in Thalassery in 1839. He studied Malayalam diligently. Subsequently he organised a Malayalam school in the veranda of the bungalow. Later he opened five more Malayalam schools in Thalassery and nearby areas.
Hermann Gundert created the first English-Malayalam dictionary. He also took up the translation of many books into Malayalam. Moreover he started the first Malayalam newspaper, Paschimodayam.
The bungalow in Thalassery is now in the hands of NTTF (Nettur Technical Training Foundation). NTTF imparts technical training in many streams of engineering. They operate more than 20 training centres in India, including Thalassery
From Thalassery railway station, it is 4.6 km to Gundert Bungalow. If you take a bus, get down at Venus Corner (on the Kannur route) in Koduvally. From there, it is a short auto ride. The bungalow is n top of a hill called Illikkunnu.
Alternatively, you could hire an autorickshaw from Thalassery. The fare will be around Rs. 60. There is no entry fee. When we went there, NTTF students were writing exams in the bungalow. The class rooms are spread across the verandas and rooms. Photography is permitted.
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