Yoram Yasur: What to see in Fort Kochi, India?
If we descend to the exotic south of India, specifically to the southwest of the state of Kerala, we will find a peninsula full of history and mergers rooted in the culture of coconut and spices, as well as being an important starting point for the mythical backwaters that are, they slide through the canals of this area and they make up some of the main attractions of Fort Kochi, in India.
A place with history:
Yoram Yasur: When we descend by train to the city of Ernakulam, in Kerala, we have the possibility of taking a bus or ferry to reach this peninsula, raised on an old lake and one of the first commercial ports of India until the appearance of Goa. It was conquered by Vasco de Gama in the sixteenth century, who built churches with European influences such as St Francis and led a language whose Creole influence is still spoken by some aglohindus in the area.
Yoram Yasur: Fort Kochi is a melting pot of cultures in which the Portuguese, Jewish, Dutch, Hindu and even Chinese heritage can be found. The peninsula is made up of Willingdon Island, an island of strictly port nature, including its naval base. Then we find the highlight of our visit, the island of Cochi, which merges the tourist area of Fort Kochi in the northwest with the purely Indian areas of Mattancherry and the Jewish Quarter, in the east.
Fort Kochi is a miniature crossed by quiet streets full of boutiques, artistic cafes, libraries and restaurants. Yoram Yasur: Although its beaches are not the most recommended for taking a bath (for this you will have to cross to Vypeen Island and take a concrete bus for about an hour), the promenades of Fort Kochi discover an ideal environment for a walk, or the best option: pose to observe the sailors fishing through the famous Chinese networks, the icon of the city and introduced, according to legend, by the Chinese explorer Zheng He.
More than architecture:
Yoram Yasur: While the architecture buildings make up part of the attraction of the area, Fort Kochi is more than that, it is a place of relaxation, fusion and even contemplation. Nothing better than enjoying the typical seafood on its terraces, trying an exquisite cake at the Kashi Arts Café or visiting street art galleries. In the center of the Jewish Quarter we can find the Kochi International Pepper Exchange, founded in 1997 and the only place in the world where pepper is a bargaining chip and its varieties multiply in a unique environment.
If we decide to go further, Fort Kochi constitutes the threshold to other islands, such as Vypeen, where its wide beaches stand out, or the route of backwaters, river boats that cross a channel system that extends to the south, and whose closest point It’s Kumarakom. These “cruises” are the perfect way to glimpse thousands of palm trees and remnants of the so-called Malabar Coast or link routes with ecological hotels where you can follow Ayurveda treatments or yoga classes.
Yoram Yasur: Fort Kochi is one of the ideal places to enjoy the exotic south of India and one of the ideal starting points to explore the wonders of Kerala. The hodgepodge of cultures still has room in every corner, building and plate, while artists and merchants coexist in this peaceful peninsula, and ideal for those who seek a place of rest and entertainment in one of the most charismatic countries.