My passion of traveling this time took me to Fort Kochi to away from daily routine, to relax, to see the picturesque view out at the beach, to see the settlement full of old dutch and Portuguese houses, To see old churches, to see Jewish Synagogue, to enjoy the smell of spices all over the small streets, to enjoy Kathakali performances, to eat at beautiful cafes full of paintings, to pass the days in museums, to hear stories of Vasco Da Gama and the list goes on.
Where is Fort Kochi?
Fort Kochi is nowhere but in the state known as “Gods’s own country” aka Kerala, India. It is also known as Old Kochi and is a beautiful beach located in the western coast of India. It has lot more to offer just than the beach. Fort Kochi is also the first European township in India.
My experience in Fort Kochi
I reached here at night as my flight got delayed due to fog and now i had no option other than having dinner and sleep. So I went to this restaurant called “Upstairs” which has colorful steps led to this restaurant and had an amazing Italian food served with live music. There I met MAK who was performing in the restaurant, I asked him about Kochi, about it’s history, about Jews settlement.
He was also very keen to tell me about his city, as per known history back in 1300’s Chinese settlers came here and set up famous Chinese nets and from there the city was named as Cochin meaning “Like china”. Some People also says that the city looks alike a street in china from where these settlers were. He also told How emigrant came to india during the fall of Jerusalem and settled down in the state of Kerala, majorly in cochin and later were called as “Malabari Jews”. Following the expulsion of Iberia, few families made their way to the city and were known as “Pardesi Jews” i.e. White Jews. It was nice time talking to him and getting to know the city from the people living there instead of reading some Wikipedia page on History of Kochi.
Where I stayed :
I took his leave and head to my Hotel “RASA hotel” and felt asleep. You can book this hotel from makemytrip.com. It was simple, yet comfortable and less expensive. It also has small art space to offer.
What I did :
Next morning, I woke up early and called my friend. We both decided to hire a Bicycle to take a city tour. Bicycle cost Rs 20 per hour. We went to see Chinese nets and I must tell you it is over hyped. There you can buy fresh fish. Fisherman catch fish and sell then and there only, So it’s the best place where you can get fresh fish.
Next we went to Jewish Synagogue. The entry fee was Rs 5 for Indians and It remains close on Fridays. The street is known as Jew street. It looks more like an European alley, lot of European tourists visit the synagogue. It was filled with vibrant colors. All the shops around there was full of colorful artifacts, clothes, handcrafts, statues and antiques.
After 4-5hrs of bicycle ride, we went back to my hotel, freshen up and now we were super hungry. As we both were from north india, so craving for north indian food landed us to “DAL ROTI”. It is one of the most famous restaurant at Fort Kochi. It serves delicious north indian food. After food we decided to take a break and rest.
In the evening, we went on a bike ride to explore the country side of the city. There we found a boat tied with a small rope. Then and there we decided to jump into the beautiful backwaters with this boat. As I am aqua phobic so I decided to remain out. He enjoyed kayaking and I just gave a pose with kayak. Now, we head back to the city and had some brunch @ Loafer’s café.
Next day I decided to discover inland waterways and villages of Kerala in Alleppey aka Alappuzha. About Alleppey, You can read it in my another Blog –How I fell in love with backwaters – Alleppey (Alappuzha) .
Tips from Tripflings:
- Kerala is famous for Ayurveda massage so go for either Four hand massage or Shirodhara massage.
- Don’t miss out the Kerala Kathakali Centre and enjoy Kathakali dance form. It is performed by trained artists on Sarasvati Veena. Timings are 1700 to 1930 hrs and it cost around 350 rs per head.
- If you enjoy sea food or want to enjoy the Keralan specialty. Go eat at Fusion bay. My recommendation would be Fish fry.
Recommended Restaurant’s or café here:
- Dal Roti : This is my favorite. It is value for money, one who is having craving for north Indian food go try out. We ordered one veg thali and it was delicious. We also had plain Lassi as well as flavored, Don’t go for flavored lassi, Go for plain only. You can also Try out Kathi roll it was super delicious.
- Kashi Art Studio : Don’t go for tempted food but go for overall experience. They have a beautiful Art gallery. I was mesmerized. They serve perfect Cold coffee. You can also have basic Chocolate cake and Meat lovers omelet. They serve omelet with toast, cut fruits and beans.
- Loafer’s Café: It offers beautiful windows, seating arrangements surround by lush green plants all over. If you love reading, you can sit and read from books from there collection with Hot coffee. I would recommend Hot coffee and chicken sandwich or veg sandwich. Do not try Ice tea. It was the worst Ice tea I ever had till date.
- Fusion Bay : It is ideal for traveler to experience sea food. They serve food in homely setup. I am not a sea food lover so I just tried Fry fish which was yummy. Try out Fry fish.