A Weekend In Kochi
My weekend trip to Kerala was much needed in more ways than one. First, after a spate of client meetings I was looking for a beach destination to unwind. And secondly, the kids had been pestering me for a trip to the backwaters. Since, I could only spare a single weekend from my crazy schedule, we zeroed in on Kochi, the cultural capital of Kerala. Another fact contributing to our decision was the fact that we live in Coimbatore and Kochi is only a 4 hour drive away. So my little tribe set sail on Friday morning and reached Kochi by afternoon.
I had made prior reservations in La Dame Rouge and we were duly escorted to our rooms without delay. The hotel looked quaint and subdued, just like we wanted it. More on the hotel later! Now, once we had reached we took a break of a couple of hours and set forth for the first major tourist attraction there. Fort Kochi justified the reviews I had read in its favor. The imperial fort was gifted to the Portuguese army by the Rajah ok Kochi, so our guide related to us. We were impressed by the architecture of the Fort Kochi, though I must admit the roads were not to my liking. We continued on our sojourn and proceeded towards St. Francis Church, a beautiful Portuguese edifice that replaced the original wooden structure. We were told that Vasco da Gama was first buried here after his death for fourteen years after which his remnants were shipped back to Portugal.
We returned to our rooms and retired for the night. After a quick breakfast on Saturday morning, our party ensued its visit to most popular attractions in the vicinity. We visited the Jain Temple and Palace in Mattancherry, St. Antony’s Shrine at Kaloor, Pallipuram Fort in the Vypeen Island, the Jewish Synagogue and took a stroll along the Marine Drive near Bolgatty Island in the evening. Needless to say, we were completely drained out by the day’s end and did not even venture out for dinner and had the same served in our rooms.
I had intentionally scheduled our trip to the backwaters on the final day of our stay. I always knew that the best should be saved for the last. After a heavy breakfast, we made way for the beach. The kids ran amok as the saw the first signs for the lovely ocean from a distance. The missus was equally elated and spread out her picnic sheets on which the choicest assortments of seafood was laid, not homemade though. There were plenty of food and handicrafts vendors on the beach and solicited the missus’ attention to my misfortune. After spending a couple of hours on the beach, we started on our drive back to Coimbatore, all refreshed and looking forward to another spate of meetings.
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