Kochi is situated in the seaside part of south-western Kochi– the place that
has so many things to show, that forms its colonial and cultural heritage.
Kochi has witnessed many changes, be it cultural or traditional, and it still
holds on to those changes. While most parts of India were under British rule,
Kochi was mostly governed by other European colonies like Portuguese or Dutch.
That’s one of the reasons why many tourists come here to see how this place is
different than the rest of India. Due to being colonised by a different
European colony, you can see some differences and the surrounding and
structures will take you back to those pages of colonial history.
to the easy access through the sea route, it used to be the entry point of
foreign travellers and colonies. This place is a mute spectator of the rise and
fall of colonial powers, mainly the Portuguese, Dutch and Chinese before most
parts of India came under the British rule in the 18th centuries. Fort Kochi,
which is influenced by the European structures and architecture along with many
churches and buildings, will make you feel as if you have gone back in time.
astounding architecture and pleasant surroundings attract tourists and give
them a chance to experience the diversity of India. Fort Kochi is quite
different than other forts that are in other parts of India, such as in
Rajasthan. Unlike other forts, It has no historical fortification or any kind
of artillery setup of canons or remnants of ruined buildings. Up until today,
it has that charm and uniqueness of those colonial cities with colorful and
alluring buildings, toy-town like streets and an amazing view of sea beaches.
More on Fort Kochi
Things to Do in Fort
1. Fort Kochi Beach
you want to experience the extraordinary view of Arabian sea sitting on one
of the beaches of Mambar coast,
especially during the sunset, then Fort town of Kochi is the place you should
consider visiting. It is a great experience for tourists to enjoy and relax in
a pleasant atmosphere along with spending some fun time with friends or family.
While making your way to the beach, you can notice all those beautiful
historical structures and the remains of the Emmanuel Fort which was the first
fort built by the Portuguse colonists at the shore of Arabian Sea.
can spot many historical structures like Chinese nets and fort while walking
along the Fort Kochi beach. Apart from that, you can go for some recreation
activities like fishing, beach photography, dolphin sightings and many more.You
can also have some see food like grilled fish, shrimp/prawn, crab along with
tender and refreshing coconut water.
2. The Chinese Fishing Nets
nets are one of the distinct identifications of Fort Kochi. Talking about the
history, it is said that these fishing nets were set up by the Chinese
explorer, Zheng who was sent by Kubla Khan in between 1350 AD and 1450 AD.
These fishing nets are called Cheenavala in Malayalam, and each net has a
height and width of 10 meters and 20 meters respectively with counterweight
stones and a cantilever. These nets are still being used and are one of the
important tourist attractions.
you want to watch the local fishermen using these chinese nets to catch fish
from the sea, then you should be on the beach in the morning time. Up around 11
AM, you can see those Chinese nets standing and making wave due to the cool and
roaring wind of beach which provides a scenic beauty at the time of sunset to
click some marvelous pictures.
3. St Francis Church
Francis Church is the first church made by the Portuguese. It was originally
made using wood and mud. Even though it was revamped and restructured by Dutch
and British later, still it has not lost its antique beauty. This church is
located in the premises of the Emmanuel Fort and due to its history and unique
architecture, it grabs the attention of many tourists.
cenotaph, in the middle of the lawn of St. Francis Church, is also an
attraction here. It is a memorial ground for all those Great War martyrs of
Kochi and the burial ground of the first Portuguese sailor, Vasco da Gama (now
it has been taken to Portugal).
4. Kerala Kathakali Centre
is the ground well-known for the popular classical dance form called Kathakali. Apart from Kathakali, you
can also know about another form of art and dance of Kerala which have been
performed by people for centuries. Kathakali Centre is located near the Santa Cruz Cathedral
Basilica, and the timing of the performance is from 6:00 PM to 9:00 PM. You
have already booked your seat for the show, then you should reach the spot at
least one and a half hour earlier to have a glance at the makeup and costumes
used by the artists.
6. Kashi Art Café
Whether you are a foreigner travelling to
Kochi for the first time, or someone from the other parts of India and looking
for some place to have some delicious meals and breakfast, then this a must go
place in Fort Kochi. Kerala is known as the land of spices, so if you want to
try the real taste and fusion of spices, you should order some best continental
cuisines. For non-vegetarians or eggetarians, there are lots of options to
choose from. Beef burger, mushroom burger,
chicken sandwich, and lemonade are quite famous food items here.
7. Teapot Café
If you want to try a variety of teas and
coffees along with some succulent breakfast, then you must go to this cafe.
This place has an old and antique touch from outside to inside. The old tea pot
and a serene ambience will make you feel relaxed and great.
8. Pepper House Café
If you are looking for a quaint place to
spend some time and have some European or South Indian delicacies, then this
cafe is the most recommended option. Due to being featured in the Malayalam
movie, it draws a lot of attention from the locals and even the tourists. With
those wooden benches and green garden, you get a pleasant and serene ambience
to have your food at. You can also buy souvenirs from the store located there.
Other popular tourist places in the
vicinity of Fort Kochi are the Dutch Cemetery, the Indo-Portuguese Museum,
Santa Cruz Basilica, Vasco da Gama’s house the Bishop’s House, and the Maritime
Museum inside INS Dronacharya.
Tips For Visiting Fort Kochi
Get your hand
around in some popular local dessert and cushions. And never miss the sunset at
the beach and don’t forget to take a look at those fishermen using chinese nets
in the morning.
History of Fort Kochi
Kochi is derived
from the Chinese name “Cochin”.. The translation of Co-Chin in English is “like
China”. Kochi, rich in different types of spices, had a long and strong trade
relations with China and Arabs.
The entire region
of fort Kochi was a fishing village until the King of Kochi granted it to the Portuguese
for their trading hub. Slowly, the portuguese traders established their many
trading hubs and constructed churches and fort to show their dominance. Many of
the buildings and architecture of that time are now popular tourist
How to Reach Fort Kochi
from Ernakulam’s main jetty start early in the morning at 5 PM and go on till
9:50 PM. They connect with Mattancherry and Fort Kochi- Custom, making
travellig convenient. You can also opt for a bus service or an auto rickshaw.