Kochi is popularly known as Cochin and is often referred to as the ‘Queen of the Arabian Sea’. Gifted with a stunning natural harbor, it was an important centre for trade through different dynasties. Today, it has been ranked among the top 10 tourist destinations in India. In and around Kochi are a few places that must be visited by every tourist.
The hub for spice trade, Jew town is severely scented with the aromas of various flavours. It is believed that Jews inhabited this part of the town as early as 700BC. Although there are very few Jews residing here, their culture and lifestyle has stayed on. With Jewish names on buildings and an authentic Paradesi Synagogue in the heart of the locality, it is also a tourist center today.
If you enjoy swimming, the Cherai beach is made for you. About 25kms from Kochi and located in the Vypin Islands, this beach is unique in the fact that it brings together both the ocean and the backwaters. The Chinese Fishing Nets at the riverfront adds to the unique experience. Built of bamboo and used since historical times, these 20-metre high nets are used by fishermen to catch you fresh fish that you can buy and have cooked, then and there!
Tucked away about 23kms from Kochi is the spirited little town of Chendamangalam. Its exclusivity lies in the fact that it comprises of 3 rivers, seven inlets, hillocks and green pastures. With a multitude of landscapes, this little town is home to the magnificent Paliam Palace and is a must visit!
Built facing the exquisite backwaters of Kochi, the Marine Drive is a popular hangout spot for locals and tourists visiting here. An economic and shopping hub, the Marine Drive has malls and eateries that make your visit all the more pleasant and fulfilling. Be it witnessing heavenly sunrise and sunset views or be it for shopping, Marine Drive can be relaxing and useful, all at once!
Opposing the impression created by its name, Kochi Fort refers to an entire region that constitutes present day Kochi City. This part of the city is known for its architecture and pleasant ambience. So if you are looking for a well-paced and relaxing stroll, Fort Kochi is you destination. Originally a fishing village, this region was gifted to the Portugese in 1503. It has changed hands through several rulers and dynasties, the influence of which remains till date.
Church visit atop Malayatoor Mountain
Literally translated to mean the meeting point of mountain, river and land, Malayatoor is a warm village to the north east of Ernakulam. A church established by St Thomas atop the Malayatoor Mountain is visited by scores of people during the Easter weekend. An hour’s drive from Kochi city and a 45-minute trek gives you the uncommon thrill of a trek, breathtaking views and the serenity of a church, all at once!
Stay at Backwater Home Stay
Backwaters have defined Kerala and there can be no better way to explore this state than by staying in a home stay along its banks. About 2 hours from Kochi and 10 steps away from the lake is your home amidst stunning green forests and calming backwaters. Relax on the hammocks as you read your favourite book or row your way through the lake. Good food and pure joy are a part of the package!