Situated on a magnificent estuary, Kochi has been attracting traders and explorers for more than 600 years. Nowhere else in India will you find this mix of old mosques, Chinese Fishing Nets, a 450-year-old synagogue, Portuguese and Dutch built houses, and relics of the British Raj.
A spice trading center in the 14th century now attracts tourists from all over the world and will surely take your breath away. The tropical Malabar Coast housing medieval Portugal and Holland and an English village are what you need to explore on your trip to Kochi. It is a charming place to explore, laze in artsy cafes, and relax at some of the most exceptional homestays and heritage hotels in India. Dive into this city and get an insight into traditional and contemporary Keralan arts. Also, do not forget to enjoy the Kathakali and Kalaripayattu performances while in Kochi.
Here is the detailed guide of Kochi to help you plan your vacation easily.
Best time to visit Kochi
Summer (March to June)
Kochi’s climate during summer is warm, dry, and humid. The weather is extremely hot and the temperature can reach up to 37 degrees Celsius. This is not the ideal time to visit and you can face dehydration.
Monsoon (July to September)
Kochi receives moderate rainfall and the humidity levels are high. The place is stunning in monsoon and you can enjoy water activities and several Ayurvedic treatments. You can visit during monsoon but it is also not the best time to visit Kochi.
Winter (October to February)
Due to pleasant weather and minimum rainfall, winter is the best time to visit Kochi. You can enjoy various water sports and rejuvenate with ayurvedic treatments. The city looks extremely stunning during this time and attracts a lot of tourists.
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How to reach Kochi
Kochi serves as the entrance to important places in Kerala like Eravikulam National Park and Munnar. The city has its own international airport and has good connectivity with major cities within India and around the world. Here is how to reach Kochi by air, rail, and road.
Situated about 25 km north of Kochi city at Nedumbassery, Cochin International Airport (code: CIAL) is the main airport in Kochi. It operates both domestic as well as international flights. This airport is well connected to major Indian cities with daily flights.
Traveling to Kochi is effortless thanks to the railway connectivity. Ernakulam Junction (code: ERS) is the main railway station in Kochi. There are frequent trains running from major cities to Kochi.
The city of Kochi has a great network of roads with neighboring cities and states. You can easily plan a short trip to Kochi from Bangalore via road. The Salem – Kanyakumari (NH47) passes through Kochi and connects it to Kozhikode, Bengaluru, Goa, Mangalore, Chennai, and Mumbai.
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Local Transport in Kochi
Traveling by taxi or cab in Kochi is one of the popular modes of transport. They are easily available all over the city. You can ask your hotel to arrange a taxi or hire by yourself. Depending upon your budget, you can choose from the most luxurious to the cheaper taxis.
It is one of the cheapest ways you can travel within Kochi. The auto Rickshaw drivers usually charge by the meter, but you can always fix a rate according to the number of tourist sites you want to visit.
For budget travelers, a bus is a great option. Local buses ply all over Kochi and are good on the pocket. Air-conditioned, comfy seater buses are also available, but they are usually on the expensive side.
Boats and Ships
Due to the 48 km long coastline, Kochi has boats and ships as a mode of transport. If you wish to enjoy the magnificent backwaters, boats are the best option.
Kochi metro is a fast transit system that runs in the city of Kochi. To avoid traffic congestion, take the Kochi metro, and save time.
Best Places to Visit in Kochi
There are innumerable places to visit in Kochi that cater to every kind of traveler. Be it nature, luxury, history, or adventure. Kochi has something for everyone. To make your trip more amazing, here are the best places to visit in Kochi.’
Chinese Fishing Nets
Also called Cheena wala, Chinese Fishing Nets are a popular attraction in Kochi. Introduced by Chinese traders in the 14 century, these fishing nets offer a perfect backdrop to the panoramic splendor of the skyline and sunsets across the backwaters.
The first-ever European township in India, Fort Kochi is a must-visit to know the history of Kochi. This magnificent fort beautifully represents the bygone era and looks divine during the sunset.
Built facing the backwaters, Marine Drive is a beautiful and picturesque location in Kochi. You can shop at the malls, enjoy local food, catch the sunset, or walk along the Marine Drive with loved ones.
The Cheeyappara Waterfalls are one of the best trekking locations in the Idukki district. The dense growth of trees and rare plant species enhances the beauty of this waterfall. Cheeyappara Waterfalls pour down in seven layers and are a truly striking sight to behold.
A holy place for Christians, St. Francis Church in Kochi holds high historic relevance. It is the church where famous explorer Vasco Da Gama was buried. Visit to gaze at this architectural marvel that narrated many old-world tales.
Ernakulam Shiva Temple
Also known as the Ernakulathappan Temple, Ernakulam Temple is a place for Shiva worshippers. It is regarded as one of the seven royal temples of Kochi’s Maharaja and is located on the Durbar Hall ground.
Built-in 1744, Bolgatty Palace is a unique mansion with four palatial rooms. It is now converted into a luxury stay for travelers. Visit here to get pampered with ultimate comfort and luxury.
Mattancherry Palace is also called the Dutch Palace and is a popular attraction in Kochi. It is widely visited by historians and tourists due to its historic relevance. Visit here to admire its architecture including polished black marble.
Jewish Synagogue or Paradesi Synagogue, this place has to be entered barefoot as a way to pay respect. Antique lovers must visit here to see a hand-knotted oriental rug, Belgian glass chandelier, gold crowns, and more.
Veeranpuzha Lake and Backwaters
An extremely alluring lake with brackish lagoons, Veeranpuzha Lake is surrounded by lush green paddy fields. Spend time at serene Veeranpuzha Lake and witness the mystic beauty of Kochi.
Santa Cruz Basilica
One of Kerala’s eight basilicas, Santa Cruz Basilica is built in gothic style with architectural grandeur. If you love architecture, then do visit this basilica.
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Must-Try Food of Kochi
Go on Kochi’s gastronomic trails and uncover the local food on your trip. Here are some of the must-try foods of Kochi that will blow your mind with exquisite flavors.
- Puttu Kadala
- Pazham Pori and Beef curry
- Thattu Dosa
- Kulukki Sarbath
- Kappa Boti
- Ellum Kappayum
- Parotta and Beef Fry
- Erachi Pidi
- Beef Vindaloo
- Naadan Biryani
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Things to do in Kochi
Being a major tourist attraction in Kerala, Kochi offers new and unique experiences to its visitors. From enjoying the history on museum tours to experiencing its calming natural beauty, there are numerous things to do in Kochi on your trip.
- Enjoy with elephants at Elephant center
- Take a ferry ride
- Watch a Kathakali Performance
- Tour the World of Ayurveda
- Sit at beautiful cafes
- Explore the Jew Town
- Experience underwater through snorkeling
- Take a Muziris spice tour
- Know more about Kochi’s history in museums
- Enjoy a refreshing tour of village backwater
- Indulge in delicious street food
- Enjoy a Kalaripayattu performance
- Learn the South Indian culinary
Hotels in Kochi
Kochi offers top-notch accommodation options. From budget, mid-range to luxury, you can find a hotel, villa, or resort according to your budget. The hotels in Kochi provide comfortable stays with great views and services.
Here are some of the best places to stay in Kochi –
- The Villa Romantica
- Taj Malabar Hotel
- Gateway Hotel
- Grand Hotel
- Casino Hotel
- Abad Plaza
- Tea Bungalow
- Grand Residencia
- Dream Hotel
- Old Harbour Hotel
During your visit to Kochi, watch a Kathakali performance, take a boat ride, binge on local delicacies, or shop at Princess Street. There is a lot to do in Kochi! And if you’re fortunate enough, you might even spot a dolphin at Cherai Beach. Now go ahead and plan your trip to Kochi and have the best time of your life!