Kochi (Cochin) Tourism
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The Land of Chinese Fishing Nets, Forts & Museums
Still we managed to experience the Best of its Heritage - St Francis Church at Fort Kochi. This is where Vasco Do Gama's tomb is there. It is still preserved. It is said that he passed away here and his tomb was made in this church and later his remains were taken to Portugal. It is now a live church and during prayer timings travellers are not allowed. But after prayer timings you could explore the church understand its heritage and have a dose of the Portuguese era in Kochi.
Later we visited the Chinese Fishing Nets which is a unique way of laying fishing nets overnight and get the catches next morning. This style of fishing nets is unique to this spot at Fort Kochi, you wont find it elsewhere. The old charm of these has faded away due to non-maintenance and the area is not kept clean at all. There would be tons of eating stalls all over the promenade and that has destroyed the charm of this unique beauty of Fort Kochi. Very sad.
Then we proceeded to Greenix Village in Fort Kochi. Greenix Village is a cultural art centre promoting Kerala's varied art forms under a single roof.
Every evening they showcase Kerala's best known dance drama Kathakali, its martial art form Kalaripayattu, a daily cultural audiovisual history at their in-house museum, classical indian music in the late evening & yoga training classes every morning.
This cultural art centre also houses an art gallery restaurant, a curio shop, book shop & vignettes of Kerala's cottage & craft industry. The village opens at 06. 00 am & closes by 10. 00pm. A Must Experience.
We also explored the Muziris Heritage Project, the dream project of Kerala Tourism for preserving India's ancient trade port and its heritage. Muziris, located in between Kodungallur-Paravur, is the largest heritage conservation project in India. They take you in boats to the various Ports that were build during Portuguese and Dutch Era in Kochi. The Government of Kerala has initiated the Muziris Heritage Project to reinstate the historical and cultural significance of the legendary port of Muziris. The region is dotted with numerous monuments of a bygone era that conjure up a vast and vivid past. A nice Tour understanding the history and cultural significance of the Portuguese and Dutch Era. I liked this tour and one should try and cover this when near Fort Kochi.
Nearest airport is Cochin International Airport. The nearest airport to reach Fort Kochi is the Nedumbassery (also known as Cochin International Airport) International airport which lies at a convenient distance of 20 Kms from Cochin city. The international airport of Cochin is well connected to all the major cities of India along with several international cities in abroad including Singapore and gulf countries. On arriving at the Cochin airport one can either hire a private taxi and board a bus to reach the heart of Cochin city.
Try local delicacies on the seafood side such as Fish Mappas, Appams, Stew and the traditional Sadya on a plantain leaf here.
The Cultural & Experiential Hub of Kerala
Kochi is one of my favourite cities. The Portuguese influence on the architecture, the churches & synagogues - as well as museums, the fabulous restaurants near Chinese fishing nets, boutique hotels, arts & craft exhibits as well as tangential performances - there is something for all.
Must-do activities :
1. Chinese fishing nets (beware of touts, and 100-200 Rs as tips is okay for a group of 2-8)
2. Kerala Performances - Mohiniattam dance performance, Kathakali & Kalaripayattam martial art showcase.
3. Boutique hotels around the Chinese fishing nets are a great place for some post-sunset drinks.
4. Muziris Heritage Protect - a hop on hop off boat tour is perfect for getting to the history of the town.
5. Ayurvedic massage & relaxation - after sightseeing - a full day to relax and unwind will be the perfect way to end your tour of Kochi.
Other popular sightseeing locations : Cherai beach, Paradesi Synagogue, Church of Saint Francis, Bhagavati Temple, Folklore Museum & Kashi art gallery.
I am heading to Kochi (Cochin)
Kochi (Cochin) Overview
History of Kochi
Kochi is a well-established commercial port having a long history rooted back to the 13th century. It has been attracting traders and travellers from as long as 600 years. Famous for giant fishnets, Portuguese houses and ancient mosques. It came into being after its separation from the Kulashekhara Empire. Between the Arabian sea and the Western Ghats in the Ernakulum District of God's own country Kerala, it has been ruled by a number of rulers including Portuguese and the British.
People and Culture of Kochi
The South Indian culture is totally reflected in the city formerly called Cochin. The port is busy with a number of fishermen and traders. The majority of the people here talk in Malayalam, however, there is a complete mix of Hindus, Christians, Muslims who live here. The art and literature are deeply rooted in this culturally rich city. The famous Mollywood cinema has also its base in this city.
Things to Do in Kochi
There are a number of places to visit in Kochi. The historical Kochi Attractions include the Fort Kochi which itself is a hub of various Kochi tourist places like palaces and famous churches. Also, during the Kochi tour, you will be able to confront a number of Museums showcasing art galleries. The sightseeing in Kochi can be enthralling with a visit to the Backwaters of Kochi and Fort Kochi beach. The lakes and lagoons are fascinating. One can also enjoy the ride and stay in their beautiful houseboats. Also, one of the best places to visit in Kochi is the Marine Drive where one can relax near the Vembanad Lake and witness the picturesque sunset and the Chinese Fishing Net Bridge. This place is like a picnic spot in Kochi. The people who like sports like Football and Cricket can also visit the Jawaharlal Nehru Stadium. The list of places to see in Kochi are many, but many people prefer spending idle time watching the serene lakes and lagoons on this beautiful island.
Food and Shopping in Kochi
The delightful aroma of South Indian Dishes served in the traditional manner will definitely mesmerize the tourists after a long day Kochi sightseeing. Every mall has a food court, hence every shopper can definitely hang out there and try some delicacies and desserts which are special in Kochi. There are a number of fashion stores for the people to shop outfits. Besides Kochi being a spice hub, there are special streets which sell these commodities each spice market is marked with a very pleasant aroma of these spices. The spices act like best souvenirs to carry back home. Shopping for spices is one of the best things to do in Kochi.
Accommodation in Kochi
There are a number of hotels, villas and resorts available near Kochi places to visit, which have all the facilities required for the tourist’s convenience. Some of the good ranking hotels include Vivanta by Taj, which delights the customers with an awesome view of the Cochin Harbour. Besides, even there are many budget hotels for lodging purposes. For travellers wondering how to reach Kochi, transport options like bus, train and flight can be chosen.