Cochin Tourism Guide

Cochin Tourism Guide

Quick Guide

Electricity

Weather

JAN
27°C
FEB
28°C
MAR
29°C
APR
30°C
MAY
29°C
JUN
26°C
JUL
26°C
AUG
25°C
SEP
26°C
OCT
27°C
NOV
27°C
DEC
27°C

Language
Malayalam, English

Currency
Indian Rupee

Cost of a beer
INR90 (avg)

Cost of a Meal for two
INR500 (avg)

Average Room Rate
INR 1500–4000 per night (3* hotel)

With a population of over two million and fast becoming one of the top tourist destination in the country, Cochin is a true Indian success story. Also known as Kochi, this southwest Indian destination is nestled on gorgeous coastlines, offering visitors the best of its past, present and future. It’s a city that’s making bold new steps, while never forgetting its heritage and it’s all here, just waiting to be explored.

To help you uncover everything this Indian gem has to offer, we’ve put together this helpful travel guide. We’ll be taking you through the most popular tourist attractions, buzzing nightlife scenes, delectable dining options and comfortable hotels to suit every budget.

Top Attractions in Cochin

Dating back to the mid-16th century, the Mattancherry Palace is an absolute must on any visit to Cochin. Known as the Dutch Palace, this historic building is full of Hindu art and Kerala murals. Although there are many exhibits for tourists to enjoy, the building’s unique architecture is just as fascinating.

 

There are a number of fascinating museums in Cochin that visitors should visit. The Indo-Portuguese Museum is a great place to learn more about the history of the Portuguese people in India and the influence they have had on this area. Elsewhere, the Maritime Museum offers an incredible education on the amazing history, culture and heritage of the Indian Navy. Kochi has a long history of being a trading port, so there’s no place more apt to have a maritime museum.

 

Kochi is a centre for Keralan arts and one of the best places to see Kathakali and kalarippayat. The Kerala Kathakali Centre is an excellent location for anyone who wants to see first-hand an explosion of Eastern arts.

Things to do in Cochin

The city which is a home for migratory birds crossing the continents, has an amazing tourist spot called the Chinese Fishing Net. Its name is derived from the ancient China ruler who set it up for the people to earn livings and it is unique in a sense that this massive nets can only be found in Kochi, outside China. Visitors can experience themselves with fishing using these nets and have their fish cooked their style at nearby hawker stalls. Truly wonderful.

By Faizal, from FaizalFredley

Delve into the spiritual side of the city in one of its many temples, take a trip back in time at a museum or simply relax and unwind in tranquil settings. There’s so much to do in Cochin and here are some of our top picks.

Mattancherry Palace

Mattancherry Palace in Cochin

Image source: Mark Hills

Otherwise known as the Dutch Palace, the Mattancherry Palace was built in 1555 as a gift from the Portuguese, with renovations being taken out in 1663 and again throughout following centuries, giving it a rather distinctive traditional Kerala style. More importantly though, it’s a place of great importance in the Hindu religion, and includes many great example of Hindu art and Kerala murals. Its history comes from the landing of the Portuguese explorer Vasco de Gama in 1498. He was welcomed in the late fifteenth century, as were the Portuguese after their part in repelling the attacks by the Cochin Rajas and the Zamorians. The impact of these people is largely gone now but can still be felt within these palace walls. Architecturally, the palace is unusually built, featuring a quadrangular structure in a traditional Nalukettu style. The building is just as aesthetically interesting as the many murals and exhibits, and is generally a fascinating place historically, culturally and artistically.

Address: Palace Road, Kochi (Cochin), India

Price: Adult – INR 5, Children – Free

Paradesi Synagogue

Paradesi Synagogue in Cochin

Image source Jean-Pierre Dalbera

Built in 1567, the Paradesi Synagogue is the oldest one of its kind within the Commonwealth of Nations. It is located at the heart of a traditionally Jewish area, in Old Cochin. Historically, this place is of great cultural and religious significance, standing as a spiritual son of the original synagogue that was built many centuries before in Kodungallur. Originally founded in the 14th century, it was rebuilt in the 16th century following its destruction by the Portuguese during the persecution of Jewish communities at the time. On the outside, it might not look like the most awe-inspiring spot, but inside is a very different story, decorated with bright hand painted tiles, Marana glass features and several interesting pieces of pottery and antiques. A greater understanding of the history of the Paradesi Synagogue is fully available inside and is well worth a look.

Address: Synagogue in Kochi, India • Jew Town, Kappalandimukku, Mattancherry

Price: Free

Cochin is a bustling city with colonial charm. As a major historical trading centre, Cochin is a multicultural city influenced by its trading partners. There are many palaces and places of worship to discover, as well as museums, restaurants, and places to shop. Plan your visit to attend one of several festivals in the city, like the Cochin Carnival celebrating the New Year.

Lauren, owner of http://justinpluslauren.com/

Indo-Portuguese Museum

Indo-Portuguese Museum

Image Source: Daniel Villafruela

If you’re interested in the history of the Portuguese people in this part of India, then there’s no better place to educate yourself on the fascinating background of this unique corner of the world than at the Indo-Portuguese Museum. Established by Dr Joseph Kureethra in 1910, it’s a great way to look at an often forgotten part of Indian history and it does so in an incredibly intricate fashion, with five separate sections all dedicated to different parts of their heritage. The five section are Alter, Treasure, Procession, Civil Life and Cathedral. This format really helps give the visitor a complete, easy to digest understanding of the material available. There’s a ton to see here and it’s all very well presented and preserved. Do be aware though that no photography is permitted.

Address: Bishop’s House, Fort Kochi, Kerala- 682001, India

Price: 1st Thursday of each month – Free, Adult – INR 10, Child – INR 5

Kerala Kathakali Centre

Kerala Kathakali Centre in Cochin

Image source: Arian Zwegers

An explosion of Eastern arts, the Kerala Kathakali Centre is a wonderful celebration of these disciplines. The offerings here vary from more modern examples to those which originate in the ancient rituals first found in Hindu Temples and the surrounding Kerala area. These incredible displays of dance, martial and performance arts are world famous, having been shown on everything from the BBC to the Discovery channels. These are incredibly skilled performers who are well worth shelling out your money to see. This is one of the best places for honing, developing and showcasing truly independent art anywhere in the world. It’s an intimate experience, far from the larger theatres seen elsewhere across the continent, meaning you get up close and personal with this incredible visual showcase.

Address: K.B. Jacob Road, Fort Kochi – 682 001, Kerala, India

Price: Kathakali – INR 350 per person, Indian Classical Dance – INR 350 per person, Indian Classical Music – INR 300 per person, Martial Art (Kalariapayattu) – INR 300 per person, Meditation – INR 250 per person, Yoga – INR 400 per person

Maritime Museum

Maritime Museum

Image source: Aruna

Education is the aim of the Maritime Museum, which is focused on helping visitors from around the world get to grips with the amazing history, culture and heritage of the Indian Navy and their impact, not just on the country, but internationally. This is a truly historical experience, beginning with the birth of the Indian Navy in Indus Valley, through colonisation, across the two World Wars and up to the present day. Each one of these periods are beautifully brought to life with a great selection of paintings, sculptures and historical artefacts. It’s a great journey that shows off the importance of the naval history of India as well as the impact of India in general on the world stage. Special praise goes to the tour guides, who are all incredibly passionate and knowledgeable about their subject. This attraction is as fun and interesting as it is historically important.

Address: INS Dronacharya, K.J. Herschel Road, Veli, Fort Kochi, Kochi 682001

Price: INR 25

Eco Tourism Villages

Eco Tourism Villages

Image source fraboof

One of the most beautiful places in all of Cochin, these beautifully picturesque eco tourist villages have been preserved by a determination to maintain strong environmental practises. These include coir making, mat making, local fishing and canoeing around mangroves. All these activities are available for tourists to enjoy while they learn about living this sustainable lifestyle, and all that entails. Not only is this a wonderful way to get back in touch with a simpler way of life, but it is perhaps the purest way to appreciate the local culture and the natural beauty of these stunningly scenic villages.

Address: Kumbalangi Integrated Tourism Village -15 kilometres away from Cochin | Mastyafed Milky-way Aqua-Tourist Village -12 kilometres away from Cochin

Price: The Kumbalangi Integrated Tourism Village: Adult – INR 900, Mastyafed Mily-way Aqua-Tourist Village: Adult – INR 150, Child – INR 100

Kochi also known as the Queen of the Arabian Sea is the perfect weekend destination for any traveler. Walk around the buzzing bazaar’s of the city and collect memorabilia or explore the many churches and synagogues that have been a part of the city’s culture for centuries. Immerse yourself learning a bit history by exploring the many museums or witness the graceful Kathakali dance. Learn the art of fishing using traditional Chinese net or unwind at the picturesque Cherai beach.

By Swati & Sam from http://thetalesofatraveler.com

Ernakulam Shiva Temple

Ernakulam Shiva Temple

Image source Dileep Kumar

A major temple in Kerala, the Ernakulam Shive Temple might not look much from the outside, but it comes with an incredible history: one which is tied to Ernakulam, where it is found at the heart of. Originally one of seven royal temples of Kochi Maharagas, it was built in 1846 under Diwan Sri Rdakkunni Sankara Warrier and is steeped in the legend of Mahabharata. This Hindu epic narrative depicts the Kurukshetra War, as well as being a source of great philosophical importance. The full story associated with this temple is far too extensive to put here, but it is more than worth looking up before checking out the temple if you want to really appreciate its magnitude, both in this area and within Hindu culture. The deity that presides over the temple is Lord Shiva, which is found in the main sanctum, facing west to the Arabian sea. There’s also a small shrine for Lord Ganesha, as well as shrines for Lord Ayyapa and Nagaraja.

Address: Kaloor – Kadavanthara Rd, Jawahar Nagar, Kadavanthara, Ernakulam, Kerala 682019, India

Price: Free

Sree Poornathrayeesa Temple

Sree Poornathrayeesa Temple

Image source: Challiyan

Another member of the eight royal temples of the former Kochi Kingdom, this is widely considered one of the most beautiful, important and greatest temples in Kerala. The Sree Poornathraveesa Temple is also famous for being the only spot in South India that contains the unusual pose of Lord Vishnu, who is seen sitting beneath the divine serpent Anathan, who acts as the god’s throne. Legend has it that the idol was given by Lord Vishnu to Arjuna, who had sought assistance for the rebirth of the ten children of the Brahmin. The temple was destroyed in 1920 and then rebuilt in 1921 by the iconic architect Sri Eachara Warrier, further adding to its legacy. The destruction left the west gopuram still standing, which many believe to be an indication of divine intervention. The temple is home to the Vrishchika Ulsavam festival, which takes place between the months of November and December, lasting for 8 days. Events run here during that period 24/7, making it a wonderful time to visit.

Address: Kottakakom, Thrippunithura, Kochi, Kerala 682301, India

Price: Free

Marine Drive

Marine Drive

Image source: Gopal Vijayaraghavan

Usually, long concrete roads aren’t considered a tourist attraction, but then again, most roads don’t have the stunning scenic backdrop of Marine Drive. Covering 1.75 kilometres, this tranquil place really shows off the beauty of the city. The best time to go is at night, when the skyline of the city shines like a series of high rise diamonds across its crisp waters. It includes several important landmarks, such as The Rainbow Bridge, The Houseboat Bridge, The China Net Bridge, The Asoka- Tharangina Apartments and The Marine Walkway. Originally a simple marine drive with little to see, this changed through the eighties when additional construction created this energetic spot that is so popular with locals and tourists today. Economically booming since then, there’s a wide array of things to enjoy here, including plenty of shopping options, from malls to independent stores and great places to eat and drink.

Address: Marine Drive, Kochi, Kerala, India

Price: Free

Cherai Beach

Cherai Beach

Image source: Sudheesh S

A little out from Kochi but well worth the trip, Cherai Beach is one of the most loved tourist spots in all of Kerala, with its stunning silky beaches stretching out over 15 kilometres. As a beach, it’s very clean and perfect for a relaxing swim or, if you’re looking for something a little more pulse racing, there’s also several water activities available. There’s plenty of great restaurants and bars around too, but best of all has to be watching the sunset fold beneath its stunning sands.

Address: Cherai Beach Rd, Kochi (Cochin), Vypin Island, India

Price: Free

Cochin has been the spice supermarket for the world since Roman times. Ships from as far as Egypt, Mesopotamia, China have docked here to carry back the fragrant spices grown in hills of Kerala. I highly suggest you walk around in fragrant by lanes of Fort Kochi, where you can still buy the best spices in the world.

By Prasad Np aka desi Traveler

Shopping in Cochin

Whether you’re looking for a bargain, the best in high-end brands or just a bite to eat, Cochin has a vast selection of shopping destinations to suit everyone.

Shopping in Cochin

Image source: Lian Chang

LuLu Mall

Measuring a whopping 2.5 million square feet (when you include the entire built up area), LuLu Mall is the biggest shopping mall in India. That’s no small feat in a country filled with many fantastic malls. It’s also one of the largest in the world, featuring over 200 different outlets with everything you could want out of a shopping experience. Whether you’re looking for upmarket international brands or something cheap and cheerful, you’ll find it here, alongside a cinema, bowling alley and a ton of food options.

Address: 34/1000 | N.H 47, Kochi (Cochin) 682 024, India

MG Road

Mahatma Gandhi Road, often shortened to MG Road, is a bustling high street found at the heart of the cit. Measuring in at 4km, it’s best known for its much loved jewellery stores, which offer some of the finest pieces available. Do expect to spend a little more for the quality however, as this is considered to be one of the most expensive spots in all of Kerala. It’s also known for its enormous textile shops. If you’re willing to pay a little more, there’s plenty to enjoy here.

Address: MG Road, Cochin

Broadway

Broadway Market CochinImage source: NEED TO UPDATE

Despite what its name might suggest, Broadway is in fact a rather small one-way street, which nonetheless, is one of the hottest places in the city for an authentic shopping experience. It includes a well-known book store, melting shops and the best in cutting edge fashion, as well as top jewellery and furnishing shops. Also available are nearby ferry rides, which add an extra dimension to this wonderland of local food and culture.

Address: Broadway market, Cochin

Fun Facts

  • Kochi’s Spice Exchange deals with over 90% of the pepper and spice trade in India and has had a significant role in being the spice trading centre on the west coast of India since the 14th century.
  • Despite jaw-dropping beaches and wonderful climates, Kochi has rain for about half of the year. The city experiences rain on an average of 132 days, so be wary of this lengthy monsoon season and plan your visit between November and March to avoid getting stuck out in the rain!

Food in Cochin

Fort Kochi can excite even the most jaded traveller with its colourful offerings. Go shutter crazy watching the Kathakali dancers paint their face, learn fishing with the local fishermen by using the Chinese fishing nets, shop for antiques at the Jew Street, treat your taste buds to some authentic home cooked food or simply unwind and experience the magic of Ayurveda – Fort Kochi has something for everyone!

By Sonia Sahni from Ticking the Bucketlist

Take your taste buds on a global adventure, courtesy of the delicious dishes and mouth-watering menus being served up in restaurants across Cochin. Here are some of the best places to eat during your visit.

Food in Cochin

Image source: Carol Mitchell

Cassava

One of the best examples of traditional local Kerala cuisine you’ll find anywhere in Cochin, there’s a terrific selection of dishes at Cassava, from fish to kappa and everything in between. Wonderfully fresh produce prepared beautifully at great prices make this a winner for locals and tourists alike. It’s not the biggest, fanciest restaurant in the world but there’s a homely charm here, which makes its ambience very much its own.

Address: Lulu International Shopping Mall, 34/1111 N. H. 47, Edappally, Kochi 682024, India

Type of dining: Fine dining / Indian

Sky Grill

Loved as much for the scenery as it is for the incredible food, Sky Grill, as its name would suggest, offers stunning sky-high views of the natural surroundings, which stretch out into the clouds like a great green sea interspersed with tranquil lakes. The food is just as good, with a terrific selection of great international dishes. The menu here features everything from American to Indian and European cuisine, all pulled off with a dazzling style worthy of its location.

Address: XI/641A Kundanoor Junction NH-47 Bypass, Maradu, PO Ernakulam, Kochi, Kerala – 682 304, India

Type of dining: American, Indian, European

Sky Grill

Image source: Vegim Zhitija

Trilogi

At Trilogi, you’ll discover great Kerala cuisine with a focus on world-class seafood dishes. There’s also wonderful vegan options and even some western dishes to sample too. However, it’s their Indian selection that steals the show. They’re also known for straying from the old recipes from time to time, with a few truly creative dishes that bring a modern twist to much loved flavours. The staff, service and ambience are also all excellent.

Address: XI/641A Kundanoor Junction NH-47 Bypass, Maradu, PO Ernakulam, Kochi, Kerala – 682 304, India

Type of dining: Seafood, Indian

Masala

Dedicated to great north Indian cuisine, this is a buffet based restaurant, which manages to keep its food standards up to that of a fine dining experience. The proof is in the pudding, so to speak, with stunningly delicious dishes cooked masterfully in a traditional style by their world class chefs, all leading to a rather incredible spread. The staff here also deserve high praise for their attentive and friendly service. That, coupled with the amount of variety on offer, means you’ll find yourself coming back to Masala again and again.

Address: Holiday Inn, Cochin | 33/1739 A, Chakkaraparambu

Type of dining: Chinese, Indian, Halal

Nightlife in Cochin

Nightlife in Cochin

Image source: Siraj Thyagarajan

Experience the finest nightlife, loudest tunes and most delectable drinks menus that Cochin has to offer in the city’s choice of pubs and clubs.

Ava Lounge Bar and Discotheque

Found at the equally stunning Radisson Blu Hotel, Ava Lounge Bar and Discotheque offers some of the finest cocktails in one of the coolest environments in town. A tale of two night spots, the lounge bar is a super relaxed environment where you can enjoy a quiet drink or even take a bite or two from their delicious bar menu. In contrast, at weekends it turns into a lively spot where you can dance off those finger food calories.

Address: Dream Hotel, SA Road, Kadavanthara, Cochin

Entry Fee: INR 1,500 for stag entry on club nights

Ava Lounge Bar and Discotheque

Image source: Chrisjtse

Glow

Amongst the finest party spots in the city, Glow is renowned for its themed nights, great cocktails and energetic atmosphere. These events run for three nights a week: on Wednesday, there’s a Bollywood themed night, so make sure to dress up for a blockbuster evening, Friday is Ladies Night, where the fairer sex can enjoy free drinks between 8pm and 11pm, while Saturday is left open for another themed night, which changes throughout the year. No matter when you visit though, this high octane venue is sure to deliver good times.

Address: Hotel Harbour View Residency, Ravipuram, Cochin

Entry Fee: Couple entry – Free with a cover charge of INR 500, Stag entry – INR 1,000 with a cover charge of INR 500

Velocity

Located near High Court Junction, this bar and restaurant has earned itself a reputation as quite possibly the hippest spot in all of Cochin. It has found fans from around the globe, as well as staying immensely popular with locals. Its ambience is both youthful and stylish, with movie posters, a techni-colour floor and ultra modern décor. There’s good food here too. While it may be a little expensive, the drinks, dishes and dancing are well worth the price.

Address: Near High Court Junction, Cochin

Entry Fee: N/A

Velocity Cocktails in Cochin

Image source: Simon Doggett

Longevity

Longevity takes the title as the oldest pub in Kerala and remains to this day one of the best places to enjoy a night on the town. Whether you’re looking for something to eat or just a quick drink, there’s something for everyone here. Great European pub grub and a terrific cocktails mean it’s no surprise that Longevity doesn’t look to be going anywhere. Later on in the evening, things turn up a notch with a selection of tunes, including everything from Bollywood ad house to hip hop.

Address: Hotel Avenue Regent, Cochin

Entry Fee: Cover charge of INR 750 per person on Wednesdays and Saturdays

Top Tips for Travelling to Cochin

  • High season is from November to March though those travelling outside of these months should be wary. Although you can expect higher prices for hotels and travel expenses, you may gain in being able to enjoy its beautiful coastlines and many historical sites, some of which close during monsoon season.
  • Tipping is expected in Kochi at around ten percent the service charge.
  • Kerala is considered safe to travel for tourists, though be aware that security checks on cars and bags are common when entering sites, including before entry to any of the major tourist spots, shopping malls and some hotels.

Hotels in Cochin

Budget Hotels in Cochin

Budget Hotels in Cochin

No, not that Four Seasons hotel. The Four Seasons Hotels found in Cochin are not quite up to the level of luxury made famous by that much loved hotel franchise. It is however, very good for this price range, with rooms costing around INR 5,500 a night. There’s a great sense of lightness and space to the décor here, with bright colours, traditional style and comfortable furnishings. The service provided here is terrific and the response they get from their customers is testament to that. Plenty who stay here go out of their way to heap special praise on the staff, who make guests feel very welcome. There’s an almost homely feel to The Four Seasons. So high is the level of hospitality, that it’s almost like staying at a good friend’s house. Best of all is the food, which goes far beyond what you’d expect for a hotel of this price.

Within walking distance from several local hotspots, including the Greenix Cultural Centre and the Dutch Palace, the Madeleine Hotel is known for spotless rooms and a service that is just as pristine. With great, hospitable hosts earning them fans from across the globe, this is a hotel that makes an extra effort to keep their guests happy. The rooms are a decent size for the price, which comes in around the INR 1,391 mark. While modestly decorated, they are nonetheless very comfortable and pleasant to stay in. The cheap price includes air conditioning and Wi-Fi in a great location, mere steps away from both the local market and the beach. So you won’t have to venture far to find somewhere new to explore or something great to eat. In fact, for the latter, you won’t have to go anywhere at all, with a very good local breakfast to set you up for the day.

A true nature lover’s paradise, Fisherman’s Nest is a wonderful place if you want to get away from the hustle and bustle of the big city and surround yourself with greenery and fresh air. As the name would suggest, one of the main attractions here is their specialisation in some of the most delicious seafood available anywhere. There’s nowhere else you will find this quality of seafood at this price range, which truly is akin to a very high level restaurant. You’re also nearby the beach, with tons of stunning local sights to enjoy. This is truly a wonderful find, a diamond in the rough and a magically serene experience. It’s a wonderful place to stay, as long as you like fish!

Mid-Range Hotels in Cochin

Mid-Range Hotels in Cochin

The Bright Heritage hotel offers guests everything they need for a comfortable and relaxing stay. Its glass-clad exterior welcomes visitors in to enjoy the 15 generously sized guest rooms, all boasting fireplaces, plush beds, TVs and refrigerators, as well as cooling ceiling fans and a warming room service. Onsite amenities also include a restaurant, with a complimentary continental breakfast being served each morning. Once you’ve filled up your stomachs, you can head out of the hotel and into the surrounding Fort Cochin area, where you’ll find an abundance of attractions and activities nearby.

Tissa’s Inn, located in Fort Cochin has an exceptional reputation amongst its guests. This is in no small part thanks to its abundance of indulgent amenities, including a glistening outdoor swimming pool, inviting rooftop terrace and onsite restaurant, serving up fabulously fresh seafood dishes. Guests will also be treated to complimentary Wi-Fi, free parking and outstanding bathroom facilities in their handsomely decorated rooms. All this, coupled with a fabulous location and reasonable price tag, means it’s no surprise this hotel has proved such a hit.

Surrounded by bright azure waters, the Saj Earth Resort invites you to take a dip and unwind. Located conveniently close to the airport, this hotel has an unwavering focus on relaxation, complete with a full service spa, indoor pool, health club and a poolside bar, so you can wash down delicious cocktails without ever needing to leave the tranquil setting. This mantra of calm carries through to each of the 36 guest rooms, which all offer superior bedding, deep soaking tubs and fireplaces, with some featuring balconies or patios too.

Luxury Hotels in Cochin

Luxury Hotels in Cochin

If there’s one thing that you’ll remember from a stay at the Vivanta by Taj, it’s the incredible views of the Indian ocean, which you can enjoy from everywhere from their gym to their restaurants, the pool and your rooms. It’s no mystery why they make such magical sights available wherever you go: we can’t imagine that you’d ever want to stop marvelling at that crisp blue water falling off into the sunset. The hotel itself is quite the looker as well, with rooms that feel lighter than air in their bright colours and décor, coupled with a luxurious but earthy exterior. The hotel offers you everything you could want from your luxury accommodation, such as an excellent spa service, a fully stocked fitness centre and incredible dining options. These include the 24 hour international Palms restaurant, traditional Chinese cuisine at the Oriental Pavilion, fine sea food dining and two great hotel bars.

World famous for their incredible levels of service and luxury, the Marriott Hotels are considered some of the best around and their Cochin residence is no exception to their stellar reputation. Their classically stunning high-rise building is instantly recognisable and inside, this tried and tested take on high-class hospitality proves that if it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. The rooms look terrific: classy, elegant and expensive looking without ever being overbearing. This style is met with a stunning pool area, a spa and wellness centre, as well as great dining options, which offer a wide range of delicacies from Arabian to Indian. The service is wonderful and it’s located at the heart of the city, a mere stone’s throw away from the best that Cochin has to offer.

The towering and colourfully lit exterior of the Radisson Blue Kochi is just one of the many ways this resort makes a grand impression. The reception area is lustrous in a high shine cream, while the guest rooms boast contemporary charm that is as cool as it is comfortable. From its sleek outdoor pool area to its glamorous rooftop terrace, cutting edge health club to the enormous spread offered daily in the buffet breakfast, this hotel aims to impress at every opportunity.

Luxury may not be the first thing that springs to your mind when you think of airport accommodation, but the Courtyard Kochi Airport hotel is set to challenge your expectations. This 5-star establishment will pamper you to within an inch of your life, with a full-service spa, a crisp outdoor pool and indulgent spa tub. Work up a sweat at the fully equipped, 24-hour fitness centre or dine in style at the onsite restaurant before retiring to your elegantly styled room, where Wi-Fi, iPod docks and coffee makers highlight this hotel’s unrivalled attention to detail.

Getting Around Cochin

Cochin is where many Indian tourists go in December…it’s a true melting pot of dozens of cultures in Kerala, India’s far southern tip. Rent a bike and discover Fort Kochi, one of the few places in Cochin where it’s safe to ride, with dedicated bike trails.

By Max, https://www.gonomad.com

One of the things people love about Cochin is that, in many ways, it feels like going back to a simpler time. Luckily however, this does not extend to its transport, which is both modern and convenient. Picturesque beaches and perfectly preserved temples may look amazing, but they don’t move very fast.

Car Taxi Dashboard

Image source: LiquidCrash

One of the easiest ways to get around is by radio taxi. These are pre-booked taxis that can be booked via phone (which are generally of no charge) or mobile apps. This means that, no matter where you are, you can always find a comfortable means of transportation.

Alternatively, regular taxis can be found at taxi stands around transport links, such as bus stations, railway stations and the airport. These do not need to be pre-booked. They generally have standard tariffs of INR 50 for the first 3 kilometres, and INR 8 for a kilometre after. It is always advised that you agree a rate with your driver before you start your journey. You should also be aware that there are additional night fees.

Unfortunately, the subway in Cochin is currently under construction. Nonetheless, you can still take a train through many areas in the city, with a clear route between Ernakulam and Aluva being the most popular. There are generally plenty of stops no matter which train you get but do make sure you’re heading to the right destination before boarding. Trains usually stop at Edapally, Kumbalam, Angamally and Aroor, with long distance trains operating further out.

Getting Round Cochin By Public Bus

Image source: Connie Ma

The most popular mode of public transport in Cochin is bus. This is a city with very good bus links that are easy to find, cheap to use and simple to understand. There’s different coloured busses depending on how you wish to travel. These include red busses, which are cheap and cheerful with waiting times up to ten minutes. There’s orange busses, which are a higher-end option. These generally take between 10 and 30 minutes. Finally, there’s green busses, which focus on connecting the suburban parts of Cochin to the city centre. These are ideal if you’ve chosen a hotel a little further out from the norm. Together, these transport services cover most of the city, so you shouldn’t land too far from your destination, regardless of where you’re headed.

Found at almost all bus stops, auto rickshaws are a cheap method of transport, but it is important to agree on a price beforehand. Standard prices begin at INR 10 for the first 1.25 km and INR 6 per km after. Just like taxis, there are also additional charges for night time travel.

Getting Round Cochin By Rickshaw

Image source: Mattjkelley

Very similar to auto rickshaws, auto taxis are a hybrid between the two. These are four wheeled hatch-back vehicles, however in terms of their operation, they act pretty much identical to the auto rickshaw, ignoring taxi rates with a standard amount of INR 15 per km. However, there are no additional charges, such as minimum fares or night time charges.

They are generally found around major destinations, especially large shopping venues and railway stations.

Travelling by foot long distances is generally not recommend, as the walkways are often in a state of disrepair. However, Fort Kochi is considered to be much more pedestrian friendly. Similarly, hiring a private car is unpopular with tourists due to an undisciplined roads system and little respect for safety by other drivers. Cycling is an issue for similar reasons, although Fort Kochi has many dedicated cycle lanes.

Best Time to Visit Cochin

Sunset Red Sky in Cochin

Image source: Tim Moffatt

Summer in Cochin falls between March to June. This season presents a fantastic time to visit the south western city, with temperatures averaging around 20°C and highs of 37°C. It’s usually less crowded during this period too, so you can enjoy the unique attractions in peace.

If you want to avoid the heat and humidity though, opt for a Cochin adventure between October to February. These are the winter months, with cooler conditions seeing the mercury hover around the 17°C mark. You’ll also be able to experience the vibrant 8-day Vrishchika Ulsavam festival too, which takes place between November to December at the Sree Poornathraveesa Temple.

Flights to Cochin

Flights to Cochin

Image source: Daily Sublime

Now you’re well versed in everything the city of Cochin has to offer, you’re ready to start planning your Indian adventure. First thing’s first, you’ll need to book your flights and you won’t find cheaper prices than with Expedia.