South India  >  Kerala  >  Kochi
Kochi (colonial name Cochin) is a vibrant city situated on the south-west coast of the Indian peninsula in the breathtakingly scenic and prosperous state of Kerala, hailed as 'God's Own Country'. Its strategic importance over the centuries is underlined by the sobriquet Queen of the Arabian Sea. Informally, Cochin is also referred to as the Gateway to Kerala.

Kochi formerly known as Cochin, is a city in the Indian state of Kerala. The city is one of the principal seaports of the country and is located in the district of Ernakulam, about 220 kilometres (137 mi) north of the state capital, Thiruvananthapuram. It has an estimated population of 600,000, with an extended metropolitan population of about 1.5 million, making it the largest urban agglomeration and the second largest city in Kerala after the capital.

History of Kochi


There have been controversies about the origin of the name 'Cochin'. Some people attribute the name to the Malayalam word 'Kochazhi' or 'Small Sea', while others think Cochin was named after China when traders from the court of Kublai Khan of China, visited Cochin and gave it the name of their homeland.

Over the centuries, the princely state of Kochi came under numerous empires. Over time, the original local rulers were controlled by the Portuguese, Dutch , British and even the Zamorin of Kozhikode (Calicut). Around 1530 AD, under the Portuguese, Kochi grew into a prosperous town. The ruler of Kochi gave the Portuguese permission to build a fort at Kochi called 'Manuel Kotta' (Fort Emmanuel) - which is the first European fort in Kochi.

The Dutch invasion began around 1653 and by 1663 they emerged victorious over the Portuguese. The Dutch then built Fort Williams here. The Dutch were defeated by the great rulers of Mysore - Hyder Ali and Tipu Sultan. Finally, when the whole nation lost to the British, Kochi too became a part of the British empire in 1814. The magnificent forts built here were destroyed by the British. Under the supervision of Sir Robert Bristow, Kochi was developed into a major harbour and Willingdon Island was created. Willingdon Island now accommodates the Cochin Port, Naval Airport and the headquarters of the Southern Naval Command apart from a host of other trading and commercial establishments.

How to reach Kochi


Air
Airport at Kochi is Nedumbassery International airport which is about 20 km away from Kochi. Taxi charge from Nedumbassery to Kochi is about Rs 300. This airport is well connected to all airports in India and also to many cities in abroad, including gulf countries and Singapore.
Rail
Kochi has three important railheads, namely, Harbour Terminus on Willingdon Island, Ernakulam town and Ernakulam Junction. Ernakulam Junction is well connected to all cities in India. There are frequent rail services between Harbor Terminus to Junction.
Road
Kochi is well connected by bus services. KSRTC connects Koch with all major cities in Kerala and with many cities in Tamil Nadu and Karnataka. Deluxe Volvo buses are available in plenty at any time to Chennai, Bangalore, Trivandrum, Hyderabad and Mumbai from Kochi. These buses charge about Rs 3 - Rs 4 per km.

Distance from Kochi to major cities
Cities Distance in KM
Kochi to Munnar : 130
Kochi to Idukki : 132
Kochi to Kottayam : 77
Kochi to Kannur : 317
Kochi to Kovalam : 235

Best time to visit Kochi
December February

Climate of Kochi
Summers: Temperature rises to a maximum of 35 C
Winters: Temperature reaches around 25 C.

STD Code of Kochi
0484

Languages
Malyalam and English

Festivals of Kochi
Vishu
Onam
Cochin Carnival

 
 
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