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Ernakulam Travel

A prime tourist destination and also the commercial capital the district represent the modern facet of Kerala. The most cosmopolitan of the state's cities, Kochi has been long eulogized in tourist literature as the `Queen of the Arabian Sea'. The beauty of the place is stunningly different and has long-standing maritime importance.Kochi is Kerala's major port, which is strategically located on the East-West trade route. Boasting of one of the finest natural harbours in the world, the city forms the hub around which the city revolves. Most of the city's commercial centers and shops are located in the town called Ernakulam, which also lends its name to the district. The Backwaters extend east and south of the harbour and contain tiny islands formed naturally over a long time by alluvial deposits from the rivers that empty into them.

Location: Kerala
Also known As: Kochi, Cochin
Main Attractions: Fort Cochin, Santa Cruz Cathedral
Best Season: September to May

PRIME ATTRACTIONS
Fort Cochin:

The St. Francis Church is located in Fort Cochin, which was built in 1510 AD, by five Portuguese priests who arrived with Albuquerque. The church, the burial site for Vasco da Gama in 1524 AD is said to be the oldest European church built in India.

Chottanikkara Temple:
Chottanikkara temple, located near Ernakulam enshrines Bhagawati - the mother Goddess, one of the most popular deities in Kerala. Enroute is the Poornatrayesa temple at Tripunitura. The Devi is worshipped along with Lord Vishnu. Together, they are known as Lakshmi-narayana.

Santa Cruz Cathedral:
Close to the St. Francis church, it is Roman Catholic Church, which was also built by Portuguese. It has a beautiful collection of paintings and a decorative ceiling, despite having suffered severe damage when the British fought with the Dutch to take control of Kochi.

Dutch Palace:
Originally built by the Portuguese in the mid-16th century, the Dutch Palace or Mattancherry Palace is located at Mattancherry. It was presented to the Kochi Maharaja in 1555 AD and later taken over by the Dutch who carried out repairs and extended it further.

Jewish Synagogue:
The oldest synagogue in India, the prosperous Jewish community whose links with Kerala began in Kodungalloor in northern Kerala built it in 1586 AD. It was partially destroyed in the war of 1662 and was rebuilt by the Dutch. In the mid-18th century, the clock tower was added and the floor paved with exquisite hand-painted blue willow tiles from China.

Wellington Islands:
Named after Lord Wellington, one of the British Viceroys, Wellington Islands are Kochi's famous islands. Situated between Ernakulam and Mattancherry and separated from both by the Backwaters, it is a man-made island created by using the soil obtained while dredging the Kochi harbour to allow vessels with deeper draughts to dock.

Koonankurissu:
Located in Mattancherry, the place is famous for the oath taken in front of it by the Malankara Syrian Christians, which paved the path for the division of Christians in Kerala into Roman Catholics and Malankara Syrian Christians. Before the split, the Christians were united under the fold of the Catholic Bava of the East.

Hill Palace Museum:
(13 kms from Kochi) the museum At Tripunithura, displays the erstwhile wealth and prosperity of the Kochi royal family, including the King's throne and crown. Also on show are other trappings of royalty like majestic beds, paintings, carvings, and samples of epigraph. Tripunithura is also well known for the nearby Chottanikkara Temple and the Tripunithura temple.

Museum Of Kerala History:
(8 kms from Ernakulam) the museum of Kerala History And Its Makers, is the best place for a quick trip down the ancient lanes of Kerala's history. A statue of Parasuram, the mythological sage who's said to create Kerala by throwing his axe into the sea, greets the visitors outside the museum.

Chennamangalam:
42 kms from Ernakulam. It was one of the chief’s Jewish centers in Kerala. There is an oriental Jewish synagogue in the old Jewish colony. In its vicinity, lie the ruins of the Vypeenkotta seminary built by the Portuguese and an ancient Syrian Catholic Church. Bastion Bungalow Built in the Indo-European style way back in 1667 AD, Bastion Bungalow get its name from its location on the site of the Stromberg Bastion of the old, Dutch fort. Thakur House Thakur House, the graceful building holds within itself a reflection of the colonial era. The Bungalow was built on the site of the Gelderland Bastion, one of the seven bastions of the Old Dutch fort. Pierce Leslie Bungalow Pierce Leslie Bungalow the charming Mansion was once the office of Pierce Leslie & Co., the famous coffee merchants. Founded in 1862 AD, this building, a representative of Fort Cochin Colonial Bungalow reflects Portuguese, Dutch and local influences. Bishops House Built in 1506 as the residence of the Portuguese Governor, the Bishop's House stands on a little hillock near Parade Ground. The facade of the house is characterized by large Gothic Arches and has a circular garden path, winding upto the main entrance. Vasco House Believed to have been the residence of Vasco da Gama; this is one of the oldest Portuguese residences in Fort Cochin. Koder House Koder House, the magnificent building constructed by Samuel. S. Koder of the Cochin Electric Company in 1808 AD is a supreme example of transition from colonial to Indo-European architecture. Pallippuram Fort Situated on the northern fringe of the Vypeen Island, the Portuguese built Pallippuram Fort in 1507 AD. It is considered to be the first fort built in India by the Europeans. Fort Kochi Beach A leisurely walk through the lanes of the city is the best way to discover historic Fort Kochi. An obscure fishing village that became the first European Township in India, Kochi has an eventful and colourful history.

Kodungalloor:
(32 kms away) Formerly called Muziris, it was a famed sea-port on the west coast in ancient tomes, where St. Thomas is supposed to have landed in 52 AD. It was also the capital of Cheraman Perumal, a King of Kerala, whose famous palace Allal Perumkovilakam was situated near the great pagoda at Thiruvanchikulam.

Bhoothathankettu:
63 kms from Kochi, it's a beautiful spot replete with a dam and boating facilities. Trekking through the forests here is an exhilarating experience.

Kodanad:
45 kms from Kochi, it is one of the largest elephant capturing camps and training centers in India. It is on the southern banks of Periyar River amidst the beautiful high ranges near Perumbadoor. Even though elephant capture was banned in 1977, the training center continues to function.

HOW TO GET THERE
Air: Kochi is linked by direct air services.
Rail: Ernakulam junction and Ernakulam town stations are connected by rail with many important cities.
Road: Cochin is connected by road with several tourist centers and cities.

GENERAL INFORMATION
Area: 2807 sq. km.
Population: 2,817,236.
Temperature:
Summer: Max: 35 °C, Min: 22.5°C
Winter: Max: 32.3°C, Min: 20 °C
Rainfall: 254 CMS.
Clothing: Tropical.

 
Kerala Alappuzha Ernakulam Idukki Kannur Kasargod Kochi Kollam
Kottayam Kozhikode Malappuram Palakkad Pathanamithitta Periyar Wildlife Thekkady
Thiruvananthapuram Trichur Wayanad        
   
 
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