Wednesday, 29 October 2014

Long drive to Delhi - 12 - Around Fort Kochi, Kerala

Kochi or Cochin or 'Queen of Arabian Sea' is a part of Ernakulam district & a major port on south-west coast by the Arabian Sea. Average annual temperatures fluctuate between 22 to 32 degrees. This region enjoys summer as well as winter monsoon & as a result of which annual rainfall is over 3200 mm compared to 700 mm annually in Delhi. Fort Kochi is water bound area or one can say it is floating in 'backwaters'. Kochi is only 2600 km away from Delhi!

Kochi is well connected by rail, roads, air & sea routes. It has hotels, guest houses to fit in all types of budgets. Variety of food is available & people are friendly & easy to talk to. Hindi is understood. Wear light cotton clothes & be prepared for mosquitoes. Roads are narrow & congested & need patient driving. Enjoy speed boat rides in backwaters preferably in the mornings.

In ancient times Kochi was a trading centre of spices & was known to Greeks & Romans. Jews are said to have settled here in 12th century. Kochi was a fishing village granted to Portuguese in 1503 by Raja of Kochi in return for their help in fighting his enemies. They built Fort Emmanuel here. It remained in their possession for 160 years. In 1683 Dutch captured the Fort & remained there for 112 years. In 1795 British captured the Fort & of course they left in 1947. 

How does it feel - Firangis fighting between themselves on Indian soil for supremacy over Indians?

Fort Kochi, Kochi, Arabian Sea, Ernakulam & NH 47 - sea water enters in to the land or land extends in to the sea water?

Green routes - heading towards Kochi on NH 47. I would love to drive again only to view greenery!

Green routes - near Fort Kochi

Chinese Fishing Net near Fort Kochi 

Chinese fishing net. The net is submerged in the sea water with the help of bamboo tripod. Ropes having stones tied up hold the net at desired depth. Ropes are pulled down manually & the submerged net comes up with the catch
Memorial of the freedom struggle

Park in the night in Fort area 
Cafes & restaurants in Fort area. Enjoy international cuisine
Sea food dominates the menu here
An antique shop in equally antique Jew Town!

Old wholesale spice market on weekly off day. Kochi as spice trading centre was known to Romans & Greeks in ancient times. Then came Jews, Portuguese, Chinese, Dutch & English. Kochi absorbed them all.
One of the shops in wholesale spice market

Candles on sale near the gate of St Francis Church built in 1503. Said to be oldest European Church in India

Clock Tower of Pardesi Synagogue. Entrance of the Jew Temple is on left with an entry fee of Rs 10. It was built in 1344. Clock Tower is a subsequent addition
Bazaar in Jew Town, shops selling garments, trinkets & antiques 
Cathedral church in Fort Kochi
Dutch Cemetery
Backwaters near Fort Kochi
Island in backwaters

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