Kochi (Cochin), overlooking the Arabian Sea and once a strategic port on the spice route, is an enchanting blend of east meets west. Walking tours through the narrow lanes of Fort Kochi visit grand buildings, which serve as reminders of the colonial past, when the Dutch, Portuguese and British all vied for control of the lucrative spice trade. Kochi’s highlights include a visit to the local market, where the air is filled with the aroma of exotic spices; taking a sunset boat cruise around the busy harbour, watching fishermen work Chinese fishing nets; and seeing a Kathakali dance performance.
Explore Kochi (Cochin)
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Top things to do in Kochi (Cochin)
Visit St Francis Church School, which provides 20 local children with food and a basic education. Jew Town houses a number of dying arts such as exquisite French lace embroidery; local artisanswill be happy to demonstrate their artistry. Be sure to visit Kochi’s dhobi wallah wash-house, where a sea of white hotel sheets and clothing are slathered on the washing stones. Finish with a stop at Kochi’s foremost art gallery-cum-cafe, Kashi, or feast on a seafood dinner at the renowned Oceanos Restaurant.
Kochi at Dawn
Explore Kochi in the changing light of the rising sun, a magical time to experience the city. Watch the sun rise majestically over the iconic Chinese fishing nets, a perfect time to witness the fresh catch being brought to and sold on the shore. After a morning chai at a local tea shop, wander through the streets in the early-morning light. Hop on a ferry to visit a local market and visit a prominent temple in time for prayers. Afterwards, savour a fresh south Indian breakfast before returning to your hotel.
Local Flavors of Kochi
Kerala is a tiny state rich in natural beauty with plantations growing many of the exotic spices indigenous to India. From cardamom to saffron, to turmeric, they can all be found in abundance in Kochi. Discover the secrets of Indian cuisine and its mouth-watering flavours using locally grown ingredients. After a visit to the local market with Nimmi Paul, choosing the ingredients for the dishes you will be preparing, return to the kitchen at her home in Kochi. Following a cooking demonstration, try your hand at cooking under her expert guidance. Nimmi Paul is a well-known professional chef and cooking instructor specialising in local Keralan cuisine. She also has a local television program in Kochi and has written several cook books.
Village experience at Kumbalanghi
Spend your morning in the rural village of Kumbalanghi and experience a traditional way of life, unchanged for generations. Travel along pristine backwaters in a country boat; visit a crab farm; watch coir yarn making and coconut leaf weaving; visit a farm and see various plantations, water harvesting ponds and biogas plants; and discover ancient Chinese fishing techniques. After witnessing the local way of life, enjoy a traditional lunch at the village before returning to your hotel.
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