The city of Kochi perfectly reflects the eclecticism of the state of Kerala - mosques stand beside 16th century Jewish synagogues with 500-year-old Portuguese and Dutch cottages lining the winding streets. Off the coast giant Chinese fishing nets hover over the waters, a legacy of Kochi's importance as a port and centre of Indian spice trade for a number of centuries that attracted Arab, Chinese and European traders. The Portuguese founded the first European colony in Kochi, formerly known as Cochin in the 16th century and the Dutch quickly followed as did the British later on.Read More
The cosmopolitan mix of cultures makes the city a fascinating place to visit. This is particularly apparent in the old sections of Mattancherry and Fort Cochin, which are approached by regular ferry from Ernakulam, the modern city section of Kochi. In Fort Cochin you'll find St. Francis Church, India’s oldest European-built church constructed in 1503, as well as the huge Santa Cruz RC Basilica that dates from 1902. In the Mattancherry area is the 16th century Mattancherry Palace, also known as the Dutch Palace, which features wonderfully preserved Hindu murals with scenes from Sanskrit epic poems. Nearby is the Pardesi Synagogue, the oldest active synagogue in the Commonwealth of Nations.
Kochi makes a fantastic base for visiting the surrounding backwaters or alternatively makes for a worthy day trip for those basing themselves in the backwaters. A number of islands dot the waters between mainland Ernakulam and historical Fort Cochin including Willingdon Island, the largest artificial man-made island in India, linked by a network of ferries and bridges.
Here are some popular itineraries that include a visit to Kochi
If you are planning a Kochi holiday, have a look at some of the accommodation that we recommend. 'Our Rating' indicates how we feel each property rates according to normal Western hotel standards. 'Local Rating' indicates how the property is categorised/rated locally:
Cherai Beach Resorts Kochi
Cherai Beach Resorts is exquisitely landscaped with lagoons and canals meandering in and around a number of cottages (heritage & modern) built around picturesque greenery overlooking the clean long beach at the front and serene backwaters behind. There are traditional heritage Fishermen villas facing backwaters and the Modern villas fully air-conditioned and with all modern facilities.
Malabar House Kochi
Step into history at Malabar House, a property that dates back to 1755 and since 1996 has seamlessly combined tradition and contemporary design as Fort Cochin's first boutique heritage hotel. A carefully curated collection of art that displays Kerala's rich culture decorates the public areas of the hotel as well as the individually designed guestrooms. Modern in-room amenities include air-conditioning, cable TV and WiFi. The property also features a swimming pool, bicycle hire and Ayurvedic treatments. The Malabar House is ideally located in the heart of historical Fort Cochin, minutes from the coast and the giant fishing next that line the waters.
Kochi Tailor made suggestions
Here are some of the recent tailor made itineraries we have created for our clients which include a visit to Kochi.