The city of Kochi perfectly reflects the eclecticism of the state of Kerala. Here in historical Kochi, one can see winding streets with mosques, a 16th century Jewish synagogue, 500-year old Portuguese cottages, old churches and a palace built by the Portuguese and later renovated by in the Flemish style by the Dutch.
Long famed in the history books, Kochi (formerly known as Cochin) offered refuge to Jews more than 2,500 years ago. The Portuguese founded the first European colony in Kochi in the 16th century. The Dutch quickly followed and eventually, the British.
The cosmopolitan mix of cultures makes the city fascinating. This is particularly apparent in the old sections of Mattancherry and Fort Cochin, which are approached by regular ferry from Ernakulam (modern Kochi).
Fort Cochin boasts St Francis Church, India’s oldest European built church, constructed in 1503, the huge Santa Cruz RC Basilica that dates from 1902, fine homes built by the wealthy Europeans, Dutch cottages and elegant Chinese fishing nets that grace the northern shores. In the Mattancherry area is the 16th century Mattancherry Palace, also known as the Dutch Palace.
Nearby is the Pardesi Synagogue. The area around here is known as Jewtown and is one of the centres of the Kochi spice trade.
To get you started with planning your holiday to Kochi, we have showcased below some popular itineraries requested by our clients which we hope will inspire your visit to India
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