We went to Kochi for a long weekend last year. While we would have loved to spend at least a week travelling around the state of Kerala, three days is all we had to explore Kochi, a city that represents this state on many accounts. We made Fort Kochi our home and explored most of it on foot.
Three days well spent! Here are our top 10 picks in Fort Kochi…
1. Stay with a local in a guest house. Guest house accommodation can be as low as USD 30 per night, inclusive of breakfast. Most locals know English and are happy to help and make friends
2. Get on a food trail. Vegetarians, do not despair. …there is plenty to keep you happy! You can try the local curries of feast on some fresh pasta. Whatever your choice maybe, Fort Kochi will offer plenty of options to keep you happy.
3. If you loved the spicy, coconut based curries and want to recreate the magic at home, spend an afternoon learning to create the magic potion at a local cookery school.
4. Attend a Kathakali and Mohiniyattam performance. We would highly recommend arriving early to marvel at the Kathakali make up session.
5. Try your hand at fishing! Not with the fishing rods, but with the Chinese fishing nets that dot the coastline.
The local fishermen will happy to take you through the entire process for a mere USD 3.
6. Try varieties of tender coconut, ideal to beat the heat and humidity. They taste different! The yellow one is my favourite… perfect low calorie refresher.
7. A visit to the Jewish street is a must. The synagogue tells tales of how the Jews landed on the Indian shores.
This is one of the best places to shop for antiques …or other souvenirs that look like antiques; remember to use your bargaining skills though.
8. Relax your body and mind with some authentic Ayurvedic massage at one of the many Ayurveda centres. I love the the ‘shirodara’ experience and would highly recommend trying it at least once.
9. Make some time to visit the churches, especially St.Francis Catherdral and Santa Cruz Basilica. The architecture takes you back to an era when Kochi was ruled by the Portuguese and then the Dutch.
10. Spend at least half a day on a house boat in Alleppey. The clam backwaters will sure put your mind at ease. The day trip to Alleppey was the highlight of our vacation!
Have you been to Fort Kochi? Do you have anything to add to this list? We would love to hear it!