An all time tourist
favourite, kochi is the commercial capital of Kerala.
It has to offer Palaces, Forts, Beaches, old Churches,
Snake boat races, Kathakali, Museums and the convenience
of a big city. Kochi is just about the center of Kerala.
It is basically a collection of islands and narrow peninsulas.
Ernakulam is the commercial center and forms the main
From time immemorial Arabs, Dutch, Chinese, Portuguese
and British followed the sea route to Kochi and left
their impression on the town. Kochi's maritime history
goes back to the ancient days when India carried out
trade with far and Middle East countries.
The Traditional shopping favorites of Kerala are handicrafts
and antiques. Kairali is a Govt. Owned chain of handicraft
stores. Jew town in Cochin is a popular haunt of antique
collectors. Coir carpets are another interesting item.
Various assortments of spices can be bought in Mattancherry.
Good quality cotton ready to wear garments and footwear
(even international brands) are quite cheap in India
Since India is a major sourcing point for many of the
"See India Foundation" is Located at Kalathiparambu
road, Near the Ernakulam Junction railway station. The
daily show begins at 6.45 p.m. "The Cochin Culture
Centre" is Situated on the Manikath road, behind
medical trust Hospital. The daily show begins at 7 p.m.
"Art Kerala", the third one is situated at
Kannanthodathu lane, Valanjambalam. Kerala Kathakali
Centre functions at Fort Cochin near the Chinese Fishing
Tourist Desk operates half day Kochi
backwaters-village tour on a country boat at 9 a.m and
2 p.m. The cruise takes 3 hrs and starts from the main
boat jetty Ernakulam, Fare Rs. 250. Alappuzha- Kollam
back waters tours tickets are also available at the
Tourist Desk Information Counter. Main boat jetty.
The KTDC conducts a boat cruise daily at 9 a.m and at
2 p.m. The trips starts from Sea lord boat jetty, one
furlong away from KTDC Reception Centre. The trip covers
the Dutch Palace, Synagogue, Chinese Fishing Nets, St.
Francies Church and the Bolgatty Palace. This cruise
takes 3 1/2 hrs. and the charges is Rs. 50 per person.
KTDC also operates 3 hrs Cochin village canal tour every
day morning 8.30 a.m and afternoon 2.30 p.m on a country
boat. Fare Rs.300
Periyar wild life tour
KTDC operates a two day trip by coach
on every Saturday. The Tour starts at 7.30 a.m and returns
at 8 p.m on Sunday. It covers Kadamattom church, Idukki
dam and the Periyar wild life sanctuary. The fare is
Rs. 250 for transportation. Accommodation will be provides
at the KTDC Hotels on request.
There is a Power Boat Rally by Kochi
Aquatic Club in October, from Kochi to Kollam. It is
of international standards.
It is situated 10 km. away from Ernakulam and there
are frequent buses and ferry services.
This palace was built by the Portuguese and presented
to Raj of Cochin in 1555 A.D. Though build by the Portuguese,
it is popularly know as the 'Dutch Palace' as the Dutch
renovated it during their short lived reign here. The
Palace is well know for its mural paintings representing
scenes from the epics "Ramayana" and "Mahabharatha".
The paintings cover a wide range of themes from the
'Puthra Kameshtiyagam' to Ram's return to Ayodya after
vanquishing king Ravana of Lanka. They cover nearly
300 sq. feet of wall surface. In the central courtyard
of the palace is the temple dedicated to Pazzhayannur
Bhagavathi. In the Coronation hall, there is a display
of dresses and palanquins used by the rulers of Kochi.
The Palace is open from 10 a.m to 5 p.m on all days
except Fridays and national holidays.
Koonan Kurishu Shrine:
This small chapel is in the heart of the busy commercial
centre of mattancherry in which the Holy Cross stands.
It was on this cross the famous "Oath of Koonan
Kurishu" had taken place on 3rd January, 1653.
This synagogue built in 1568 A. D, was destroyed by
the Portuguese in 1662 and rebuilt by the Dutch two
years after. Scrolls of Old Testament and a number of
Copper Plates inscribed in the Hebrew scripts are preserved
in this synagogue. The synagogue is open from 10 am
to 12 noon and from 3 p.m to 5 p.m except on Saturdays
and Jewish holidays.
Fort Kochi is situated 10 km. away from Ernakulam. There
are frequent buses and ferry services to this place
This is the oldest church constructed by the Europeans
in India. This protestant church was originally built
by the Portuguese in 1510 A.D Vasco da Gama who died
in 1524 was buried here. Fourteen years later his mortal
remains were taken to Portugal.
Santa Cruz Basilica:
This Roman Catholic Church is situated close to St.Francis
Church and has some very beautiful paintings on its
It is situated near entrance to the beach, a short distance
away from St. Franics Church.
At the entrance of the Kochi harbor, these nets are
a fascinating sight. They can be seen all along the
backwaters of Kerala. They were first brought to Kerala
by the Chinese traders from Kublai Khan's court.
This is a man made island created from the materials
dredged while deeping the Kochi Port. Lord Bristow was
the architect of this island. There are frequent ferry
and bus services to this place from Ernakulam. The Harbour,
Naval Air base and Harbour Railway Terminus are in this
This is a beautiful island lying close to Ernakulam.
The Bolgatty Palace built by the Dutch in 1744 is situated
here. The palace was formerly the residence of the British
Resident of Kochi. Now KTDC has converted it into a
hotel. This island is connected by frequent ferry services
with the mainland Ernakulam. Boats to this island start
from High Court Jetty. Country boats (Machuvas) can
also be hired near the Jetty.
Ernakulam Siva Temple:
This temple is situated in the centre of the town, near
the Durbar hall Ground. The presenting deity is lord
Siva and the annual festival of the temple is celebrated
for 8 days during January-February every year. The festival
is rounded up with the Arattu procession when the image
of the deity is taken for a sacred bath in the temple
pool. A cultural festival is also held with a variety
of programmes like music concert, Kathakali, etc., as
part of the celebrations.
and Art Galleries
Parishith Thampuran museum:
This is situated on the Durbar Hall Grounds on D.H Road,
Ernakulam. Collection of 19th century oil paintings,
old coins, sculptures in stone and plaster of paris
and copies of mural paintings are exhibited here. It
is open from 9.30 am to 12 noon and from 3 p.m to 5
p.m on all days except Mondays and national holidays.
An Art Gallery is also functioning at the museum building.
Museum of kerala history:
Located at Edappally, 10Km. away from Ernakulam on the
Ernakulam-Aluva route, this museum is the only one of
its kind in Kerala. The speciality of this museum is
that the History of Kerala for the last 2000 years is
exhibited and narrated with the help of light and sound.
There are frequent private buses passing through Edappally
(Pathadipalam bus stop) where the museum is located.
Hill Palace Museum:
This is situated 12 Km. away from Ernakulam on the Ernakulam-Chottanikara
route. It is an archeological museum. Different types
of sculptures, Collection of rare coins, Old weapons,
manuscripts in ancient lipis and collections from the
Kochi Royal family are exhibited here. The museum is
open from 10am to 4p.m on all days except Mondays and
National holidays. There are frequent private buses
from Ernakulam to this place.
Chaitram Art Gallery is located opposite Air India office
on M.G Road. Kerala Kalapeedom is located at Chavra
Cultural centre road.