Earlier, trade in the Kodungallur region flourished through the waterways. Anappuzha, one such waterway in the village of Methala held a position of great significance. It was the chief trade route between Cochin and Travancore and part of their common boundary. The Canal House at Thiruvanchikulam stands on the banks of the Anappuzha.
A toll collection centre was established at this Canal House by the Cochin government to regulate the trading boats plying the Anappuzha route. Dutch records mark a ‘Tol Hys’ in this area. But the present building, which has been taken over for conservation by the Muziris Heritage Project, does not indicate any signs of Dutch architecture, and was probably built by the kings of Cochin in the place of ‘Tol Hys’.
Near the Canal House is situated the ancient Thiruvanchikulam Siva temple which is believed to have been built in the 8th century.