Kochi

Location :   Ernakulam, Kerala
Languages :  Malayalam, Hindi, English
Known As : Cochin
Best Time To Visit  : September To May

Kochi stands majestically between the Arabian Sea and Backwaters.  As the finest natural harbour in the world built along saltwater lagoon, Kochi was once a fishing village.  Now it is an important trade centre for India. A fair blending Hindu, Muslim and British architecture on the beaches of Kochi is eye catching. Visit during September and May when the downpour of the rain floods the river.

Tourist Spots
Kochi is replete with heritage sites and cultural centers besides the beautiful beaches offering water sports. Kerala State Tourism arranges exclusive tours for Kochi.

Forts and Palaces
Fort Kochi, a European legacy, is the top tourist attraction. The Dutch Palace at Mattancherry is an exquisite palace with wall murals in tempera process of painting.

Religious places
Christianity being a dominant faith in Kochi, there exist monumental churches. Visit Santa Cruz Basilica dating back to 1558 with beautiful paintings on its ceiling.  Church of St. Francis, India's oldest church, is a tourist attraction. . The Tombstone of Vasco De gama in Kochi is also a popular tourist attraction.

Beaches in Kochi
Cherai beach is ideal for swimming. Dolphins here are an added attraction.

Other Attractions of Kochi
Hill Palace museum,10 kms from Kochi,  is palace complex consisting of 49 buildings built in the Traditional Architectural Style of Kerala. The complex  is surrounded by 52 acres of terraced land with a Deer Park.  Facilitiy for horse riding is available here. Palace Museum exhibits Paintings, murals, manuscripts and sculptures. Man made island of Willingdon and Jewish synagogues are other popular places to visit in Kochi.

Other places to visit around Cochi
From Kochi, you can go to Alpuzzha beach (70 kms), Periyar wildlife sanctuary (190 kms),  Kumarakom bird sanctuary (88 kms)  and  hill station of Munnar( 130 kms ).
Articles for Shopping Kochi  is known for cane, bamboo and jute handicrafts. In Mattancherry, you can pick up quaint antique items, spices, coffee and tea. For gold and silver jewellery, the main road running through the heart of Ernakulam is the right choice.

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