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Kochin Tourism

Gateway to Kerala
State : Kerala
District : Ernakulam
Type of Tourism : Heritage Tourismm
Area : 94.88 sq. km.
Population : 601,574 (As per Indian census- 2011)
Altitude : O meters
Best Tourist Season : October to April
Languages spoken : Malayalam, English, Tamil, Hindi.
Telephone Code : India (0484), International (+91)
Pin Code : 682001
Clothing recommended: Light Cotton in summer. Carry sunglasses, hats and sunscreen along. Light woolen in winter.
What to buy : Handicrafts made from coconut shells, cane and bamboo, wood carvings, camel bone carvings, carpets, ethnic jewellery, gems, beads, bangles, spices, hand made soaps, metal ware, coir mats, screw pine mats, Kerala T – shirts, Ladies Salwars and Kurtis, silk saris, traditional Kerala sari, purses, Ayurvedic products, cotton and khadi clothes.
Food Specialties : Pachadi, Kaalan, Thoran, Pulisherry, Puttu, Rice, Bananas, Banana Chips, Coconut, Tapioca Dishes, Appams, Kallappams or Vellayappams, Pootu, Meen Vevichathu and other sea food, Idly, Dosa, MeduVada, Sambar, Theeyal, Injipully, Stew, Aviyal, Kerala Parantha, etc.
Local transportation : Taxis, Auto Rickshaws, State Transport Buses, Boats, Ships

About Kochin

Kochin, recently renamed as ‘Kochi’, is a leading cosmopolitan city of Kerala and the commercial and financial capital of the state. Enclosed by the Western Ghats on the East and the great Arabian Sea on the west, Kochin is a very important port city of Kerala – The God’s Own Country. Located about 220 kilometers from Thiruvananthapuram in Ernakulam district, Kochin – the second largest city of the state is entitled as the ‘Queen of the Arabian Sea’.
The name Kochin or Kochi is believed to have derived from a Malayalam word Kochu Azhi – which means 'small lagoon'. As per the other theory, the word Kochi has been coined from another Malayalam word ‘Kaci’ which means Harbor. Kochin, a developing center of IT, health services, ship manufacturing, international trade and tourism industry is regarded to be one of the fastest growing metros in India. Kochin is also a home to the Southern Naval Command of Indian Navy, the High Court of Kerala & Lakshadweep and Kochin University of Science and Technology.
Endowed with a long coast line of 48 kilometers, Kochi is blessed with peerless natural beauty augmented by various beaches.
Kochin, a melting pot of diverse cultures and heritage legacy attracts myriads of local and international tourists every year. Originally a small town, Kochin has today developed into a metropolitan due to the amalgamation of nearby towns like Fort Kochi, Ernakulam, Mattanchery and many others. Kochi, reckoned as the ‘Gateway to Kerala’ is considered by the World Travel & Tourism Council amongst the top 3 tourists destinations. Adding to this, Kochin is also rated in 50 greatest places of a lifetime by National Geographic Traveler.
Mumbai is one of the most affluent and industrialized megapolis and is often hailed as the ‘Commercial capital of India’. The subcontinent’s ‘City of gold’, Mumbai houses the principal stock exchange in the country, the BSE , which in fact is the third most important stock exchange in the country after New York and Tokyo.

History Of Kochin

The prehistory of Kochi is still not unraveled as the Stone Age inhabitants; if they existed here, have left no clear marks or traces behind. Though Kochi forms a part of the megalithic girdle of Kerala, the only evidence of Stone Age Life found here is a Menhir (A huge upright standing stone) discovered at Tripunithura; a suburb of Kochi.
Whether they are the Dabbawalas (a team of people who reach packed lunch boxes from the households to the offices) or the suburban railway system, on which 6 million commuters depend, Mumbai always pulsates with life and passion. It has earned a name for playing a surrogate mother to whoever comes to live by her
Post Stone Age period records Kochi or Kochin as the spice trade center of India and since ancient epoch, this natural harbor was known to Greek and Roman (Yavanas), Jew, Arab and Chinese merchants and tradesmen. Kochin’s commercial links with Arabs and Chinese are believed to be as old as 2000 years. It is also reported that Thomas, one of the twelve apostles of Jesus Christ landed in this part of India in 54 AD to preach the Gospel. Evidences also support the existence of Jews at Kochin since 388 AD.
Kochi acquired a significant stature on the international trading rout after the massive Periyar Flood of 1341 AD when the world famous Kodungallur Port (Cranganore) was destroyed. The books written by Ma Huan – a Chinese Voyager produce the earliest documental testimony of Kochi. He had visited Kochin in 15th century as a part of a treasure fleet of a Chinese Fleet Admiral and Mariner Zheng He. Niccolo Da Conti, an Italian traveler also records his experiences of his visit to Kochin in 1440 AD.
Princely rule of Kochin is dated back to 1102 AD when the Kochin State was formed after it broke free from the domination of Kulasekhara Empire. Unni Ramman Koyil – 11 is recorded to be the first ruler of the newly built Kochin State. He was succeeded by more than 40 kings, Maharaja Kerala Varma being the last.
Talking about the foreign rule, Kochi was reined by several foreign powers simultaneously with the Princely Rule by rendering the local Maharaja a mere titular head. They include Portuguese, Dutch and British. Vasco da Gama, who discovered the sea rout to India when Kochin was under the dominion of King Zamorin of Kozikode, established here the first Portuguese Trading Station in 1502 and pioneered the colonization of Kochin, as well as India.
During the foreign invasions, Kochin retained its status as the major spice trading center and also flourished fast. Portuguese called Kochi ‘Little Lisbon’ while Dutch called it ‘Homely Holland’ and for British, Kochi was a ‘Mini England’. As written by Nicolas Conti – an Italian traveler, “China is where you make your money, then Kochin is surely the place to spend it”.
After Independence, the Kerala State was formed in 1956 AD and the Kochi Corporation was formed in the year 1967 by merging Ernakulam, Mattanchery, Fort Kochi, and many nearby villages to Kochi Province.