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Cochin Travel Guide
SIGHT SEEING PLACES OF COCHIN
This long narrow palm-fringed island is easily accessible from
the mainland and is where youll need to go to see the Bolghatty Palace.
situated on Boghatty Island, a narrow palm-fringed island
easily accessible from the mainland. The Palace was built by the Dutch in 1744
and later became the seat of the British Resident. Today this has been converted
into a hotel and is a popular place to stay.
About 4km from Parur, houses the oldest synagogue in Kerala.
There is also a Jesuit Church and ruins of a Jesuit College. One can also walk
to the Hindu Temple overlooking river Periyar, a 16th-century mosque, as well
as burial grounds.
Chinese Fishing Nets
The Chinese fishing nets that line the sea-front
and exhibit a mechanical method of catching fish by local fishermen in Fort
Kochi are said to have been brought from China by traders of Kubalai Khan's
Court, many years ago and are still used today at high tide.
Numerous stories attest to the early history of this 10th century
temple, where tormented devotees found solace in the diety, Bhagavathi. Today
it remains one of the most popular pilgrim sites in Kerala, devotees still flock
here seeking liberation from torment. Sometimes they dance themselves into a
flenzy in their battle between the demons and the deities. The Goddess at Chottanikkara
is revered here in three forms; she is Saraswathi (goddess of learning) in the
morning, Bhagavathi (fierce and destructive) at noon and Durga (divine mother)
in the evening.
Coonan Kurishu Shrine
Located in the heart of the busy Mattancherry is
the Coonan Kurishu Shrine which was the venue for about 25,000 Syrian Christians
who in 1653, assembled at the ancient cross in Mattancherry and tied long ropes
to it. Pulling the ropes they took a solemn oath that they would never obey
the Latin Archbishops or be under the Jesuits.
located a short distance from St. Francis Church, near the
entrance to the beach is supposedly maintained by the CSI, but is very badly
kept. There is no information available on this cemetery, (if travellers have
any, please forward it to us so that we may be able to inform others via these
web pages) although it is of historical importance having many famous persons
buried here. Most of the grave stones have been removed, but the few that are
here are in fairly good condition, however because of the overgrowth of plants
and shrubs, it takes a bit of real exploring to discover whose grave stone is
is a modern city nearby where shopping markets, bazaar setc are located. From
time immemorial, Arab, Chinese, Dutch and British and Portuguese seafarers followed
the sea route to Kochi and left their impression on the town. The Chinese fishing
nets swaying in the breeze over backwaters, the Jewish Synagogue, Dutch Palace,
Portuguese architecture, Boghatty Palace in Kochi enrich the heritage of Kerala.
Founded in 1503, this Portuguese fort is now in ruins. With
its European heritage, its air of genteel decay, and stubborn self-absorption,
it is a place where history, still stalks the lonely streets and one can see
the remains of Indo-European architecture that still exist here.
Fort Kochi Beach
Easily the best part of the city, the beach at Fort Kochi
extends from Kamalakada to the harbour entrance. A stroll along the beach at
sunset with the Chinese fishing nets and sailing ships in the background is
an experience to cherish.
Hill Palace The palace of Rajas of Kochi in the 19th century, the palace has
been converted into a museum displaying a fine collection of articles used by
the Rajas of Kochi besides many archaeological findings. It is located at Tripunittura,
6 km from the city.
Jewish Synagogue or the (Paradeshi Synagogue)
was built in 1568 AD. The
Great Scrolls of the Old Testment, the copper plates in which the grants of
privilege made by the Cochin rulers were recorded and the exquisite Chinese
hand-painted tiles are of interest here. One of the oldest synagogues in the
world, it is a jewel of incomparable beauty with its brass columns, Belgian
hanging lamps, and exquisite hand-painted, blue-and-white Chinese porcelain
tiles of which no two are alike.It is open from 10.00 hrs to 12.00 hrs and 15.00
hrs to 17.00 hrs and is closed on Sundays and Jewish holidays.
The origins of India's most spectacular dance drama go back
500 years to a time when open -air performances were held in temple courtyards
or in villages. There are more than 100 different arrangements, all of them
based on stories from the Ramayana and Mahabharatha. The Kerala Kathakali Centre
stage performances at the Cochin Aquatic Club on River Rd, Fort Cochin, near
the bus stand. Ask at your hotel on arrival for more information and opening
is the biggest ship building yard in India, and is situated
in the southern part of Ernakulam on the way to Willington Island. Set up with
Japanese collaboration, this shipyard has a building dock for ships up to 85,000
DWT and a repair dock that can accommodate ships up to 1,00,000 DWT. Motilal
Nehru, the first oil tanker made in India, was built here. It's an interesting
spot and if you like boats shouldn't be missed.
Mangalavana Bird Sanctuary
is situated right in the heart of Kochi city
and is the transit home of many exotic and rare varieties of migratory birds
throughout the year. This gives visitors an opportunity to see migratory birds
on the move and perhaps the opportunity to spot some that have flown all the
way from the visitor's homeland.
also known as Dutch Palace was built the Portuguese
and presented to the Raja of Kochi in 1555 AD. It acquired the present name
after 1663 when the Dutch carried out extensions and repairs in the palace,
although they never resided here. Its interiors are decorated with murals from
the Ramayana and there are some lively displays of royal costumes and palanquins.
The place is open from:10.00 hrs to 17.00 hrs and is closed on Fridays and national
was buiIt in 1503, and is the oldest European fort in
India. It is located outside the city limits on the northern end of the island.
, 35km north of Kochi (Cochin), encapsulates the cultural and religious
medley of this region. There is a synagogue, place of Brahmins, a Syrian Orthodox
Church, a Krishna Temple, and a Temple of goddess Mookambic worth seeing here.
Place of Brahmins
This agraharam (place of Brahmins) is a small street of
closely packed houses that was settled by Tamil Brahmins and worth a wander
through. St. Francis Church This Protestant church was originally built by the
Portuguese in 1510 AD and is believed to be the oldest church built by the Europeans
in India. It is here that the remains of the inveterate traveller, Vasco da
Gamma were initially buried and 14 years later were exhumed and taken to Portugal.
Santa Cruz Baslica
This Roman Catholic Church situated close to St. Francis
Church is worth visiting for the beautiful paintings that can be seen here.
is a man-made island created from the material dredged
while deepening Kochin Port. Situated between the main land Ernakulam and the
old town Mattancherry and separated by the backwaters. Willingdon Island is
an important part of Kochin. The Government of India Tourist Office, the Southern
Naval Command Headquarters, the Seaport, Naval Airport, Railway terminus, Customs
House, Cochin Port Office etc are all located in this island.
Vypeen and Gundu Islands
Ferries shuttle across the narrow strait from
Fort Cochin to Vypeen Island where visitors can see a lighthouse at Ochunthuruth
(open from 3 to 5pm daily), good beaches and the early 16th century Palliport
Fort (open Thursdays). Gundu, the smallest island in the harbour, is close to
Vypeen. It has a coir factory making doormats from coconut fibre worth stopping
at too. .Chitram Art Galley can be found opposite Air India, on M.G.Road, Eranakulam
This gallery regularly exhibits changing collections of paintings by local artists
worth seeing. For more information call: 351295
Hill Palace Museum
situated 12 km from Eranakulam on the Eranakulam Chotanikkara
route houses different types of sculptures, collections of rare coins, old weapons,
manuscripts in ancient lipis and collection from Cochin Royal Family. The Parishith
Thampuran Museum situated at the Durbar Hall Ground together with its collection
were transferred to Hill Palace Museum in 1997. For more information contact
the place on: 781113 and if you want to visit, the place is open from 9.00 hrs
to 12.30 hrs. and 14.00 hrs to 16.30 hrs respectively. The museum is closed
on Mondays and national holidays. Note: Horse riding facilities are also available
Lalita Kala Academy Gallery of Contemporary Art
Located in the Durbar
Hall of the Kochi Rajas at D.H. Road, the gallery is open from 10.00 hrs to
Museum of Kerala
History Situated at Edappally 10 km along the National
Highway from Eranakulam on the Alwaye route, presents on hour long light and
sound spectacle of life-size sculptures in concrete, together with the background
music and complemented with displays of the vastness and diversity of Kerala's
history over the centuries. Viewing times are from 10.00, 10.30, 11.00, 11.30
12.00, 14.00, 14.30, 15.00, 15.30, 16.00 and the place is closed on Mondays
and Public holidays. Telephone: 558296 for more information. If you are travelling
with children, they will thoroughly enjoy visiting this museum.
M.N.F. Gallery of Paintings and Sculptures
is situated at Edappally about
10km from Ernakulam and located next to Museum of Kerala History. It houses
about two hundred original paintings of recognised Indian masters, both contemporary
and of the past. There is also a large collection of modern sculptures in marble,
bronze, granite etc. The place is open from 10.00 hrs. to 17.00 hrs. Telephone,
Edappally 682024 for more information.
Pareekshit Thampuran Museum
This sprawling, traditional Kerala style
building previously called the Durbar Hall, houses 19th century oil paintings,
a collection of old coins, sculptures and Mughal paintings. Lighthouse at Ochanthuruthu
is open from 3:00 to 5:00 pm daily.
Parishath Thampuram Museum in Ernakulam
has a large collection of 19th-century
oil paintings, old coins, sculptures, Mughal paintings, and temple models worth
seeing while in the area. It's open Tuesday to Sunday from 10.00 hrs to 16.30
Cochin Travel Guide, Travel Guides of Kerala