Kerala | KeralaTourism | Ernakulam Attractions

The Queen of the Arabian Sea is the synonym for Kochi. Ernakulam district is bordered by the Arabian Sea in the West, Alappuzha district in the South, Kottayam and Idukki districts in the East and Thrissur district in the North. The district stands out from the rest of Kerala on many accounts. This is the commercial capital of Kerala and 60% of the total revenue of the state is yielded from Ernakulam. All the major industries of Kerala in the central and state public sector and private sector are concentrated here. One of the special economic development zones of the country is located here. Ernakulam is one of the finest natural harbours in the world. All the export commodities from the state like marine products, cashew, coir, spices etc are shipped from Cochin through International Container Transshipment Terminal. Three old towns of Ernakulam district, namely Fort Cochin, Mattanchery and Willington Islands put together into Corporation of Cochin. Sir Robert Bristow was the architect of Cochin. Mattanchery is an important centre of spice trade.

Ernakulam Tourism Destinations | Ernakulam Hotels and Resorts

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Fact Sheet
Area: 3,068 sq km
Population (2011): 32, 79,860
Male: 16, 17,602
Female: 16, 62,258
Altitude: Sea Level
Clothing: Tropical
Tourist Season: September to May
Telephone Access Codes
Ernakulam ++ 91 484
Kolencherry ++ 91 484
Kothamangalam ++ 91 485
Muvattupuzha ++ 91 485
Perumbavoor ++ 91 484
Sea: Cochin Harbour
Air: Cochin International Airport (20 km from the town), Ph: 0484 2610115.
Rail: Ernakulam Junction (South), Ph: 0484 2375131. Ernakulam Town (North) Ph: 0484 2390920, 2395198. Kochi Harbour Terminus, Ph: 0484 2666050.
Road: KSRTC Bus Station, Ph: 0484 2372033.
Department of Tourism, Ph: 2351015
Info Kerala Communications, Ph: 4051532
Govt. of India Tourism Office, Ph: 2668352
Tourist Reception Centre, KTDC, Ph: 2353234
DTPC Tourist Information Centre, Ph: 2367334

Ernakulam Destinations
Old Harbour House: This charming old Bungalow built in the early 19th century is in the possession of Carritt Moran and Company, the renowned tea brokers who now use it as their residence. It was once a boat club.
Parade Ground: The four acre parade ground was where once the Portuguese, the Dutch and the British colonists conducted their military parades and drills. The buildings around ground house their defense establishments.
Pierce Leslie Bungalow: This elegant mansion is the office of Pierce Leslie India Limited, a British Trading Company engaged in the trade of various commodities apart from tourism and travel. Pierce Leslie Bungalow which is a representative of colonialism reflects Portuguese, Dutch and local influences.
Bastion Bungalow: This European style building was built in 1667.  With marvelous building structure the Bastion Bungalow attracts many visitors. Today Bastion Bungalow is the official residence of the sub collector.
Fort Kochi: One can experience the pulse of Fort Kochi with leisurely walk through the city. It was the first European township in India. This old obscure fishing village has sweet memories of history. The town was shaped by the Portuguese, the Dutch and the British. The result of these cultural influences is seen in the many examples of Indo-European Architecture that still exist here.
Chinese Fishing Net: The legacy of one of the first visitors to the Malabar Coast is this huge cantilevered fishing net, erected here between AD 1350 and AD 1450 by traders from the court of Kublai Khan. These nets are set up one teak wood and bamboo poles.
St. Francis Church: This is India’s oldest European church built in 1503 by Portuguese Franciscan friars. St. Francis Church was restored in 1779 by the protestant Dutch converted into an Anglican Church by the British in 1795 and at present governed by the Church of South India (CSI). Vasco da Gama was buried here in 1524 before his remains were moved to Portugal.
Vasco House: This is one of the oldest Portuguese residences in Fort Kochi, believed to have been the residence of Vasco Da Gama. Built in the early 16th century, Vasco house sports the typical European glass paneled windows and balcony cum verandahs characteristics of the times.
The Dutch Cemetery: The tomb stones here are the most authentic record of the hundreds of Europeans who left their homeland on a mission to expand their colonial empires and changed the course of history of this land. The cemetery was consecrated in 1724 and is today managed by the CSI.
Koder House: This wonderful building constructed by S.S. Koder of the Cochin Electric Company is the best example of the transition from colonial to Indo-European Architecture.
Jewish Synagogue: This is the oldest synagogue in the Commonwealth, constructed in 1568. Partially destroyed in a shelling during the Portuguese raid in 1662 it was rebuilt two years later by the Dutch.
Vasco da Gama Square: The best place to watch the Chinese fishing nets being lowered into the sea and catch being brought in, is the Vasco-Da-Gama square a narrow promenade that runs along the beach. The square is the best place for leisure and has stalls serving fresh sea foods.
Santa Cruz Basilica: This historic church was built by the Portuguese and was elevated to the cathedral by Pope Paul IV in 1558.  In 1795 it fell into the hands of the British, when they took over Kochi and was demolished. About 100 years later Bishop Dom Gomes Ferreira commissioned a new building at the same site. The church was proclaimed a Basilica in 1984 by Pope John Paul II.
The Bishops’ House: Built by the Portuguese governor as his residence in 1506, the Bishop’s house stands on a little hillock near the parade ground. The facade of the house is characterized by large Gothic Arches and has a circular garden path winding up to the main entrance.
Fort Immanuel: This bastion of the Portuguese in Kochi was a symbol of strategic alliance between the Maharaja of Kochi and the Monarch of Portugal, after whom it was named. Built in 1503 the fort was reinforced in 1538. By 1806 the Dutch and later the British destroyed it.
Mattancherry Palace (Dutch Palace): Built by the Portuguese in 1557 and presented to Raja Veera Kerala Varma of Kochi, the palace was renovated in 1669 by the Dutch. Beautiful murals depicting scenes from the epics like Ramayana and Mahabharata are displayed here.
Ernakulathappan Temple: Situated in the heart of the city, adjoining D.H. Hall, the benefactor God Siva, eradicator of all evils is worshipped here.
Princess Street: Princess Street is the one of the earliest streets which was constructed in Fort Kochi. The European style buildings keep its old charm.
Musical Walk-way: An exceptionally new and beautiful concept in Kerala, Next to Subhash Bose Park in the centrifuge of city. The beauty of the Sunset can be seen from this place.
Bolgatty Island: Bolgatty Island is famous because of the palace built in 1744 by the Dutch and later taken over by the British. Today it is run as a hotel by the KTDC.
Willingdon Island: Surrounded by beautiful backwaters this island was named after Lord Willingdon, a former British Viceroy of India. This island is an important trade centre, the head quarters of Kochi port trust and the southern naval command.
Adi Sankara Janmabhumi Temple: The Adi Sankara Sharadamba Temple complex draws a great number of pilgrims and is open to all religion. Peoples from all parts of the world visit this Temples for spiritual solace and peace of mind.
Bhoothathankettu: (50 km from Ernakulam) A picturesque haven situates in a vast virgin forest, this mythological popular picnic spot lies close to the Salim Ali bird Sanctuary at Thattekkadu. Trekking through the lovely wilderness to the old Bhoothathankettu holds promises of excitement to adventure lovers.
The Hill Palace: The official residence of the erstwhile Maharajas of Kochi, Hill Palace was built in 1865. Spread over to 52 acres of terraced land, the palace complex houses consists of 49 buildings, a deer park and facilities for horse riding.
Museum of Kerala History: Situated at Edappally, hardly 8 km from Ernakulam this museum reveals historical episodes from the Neolithic to the modern era through life size figures. There are two art galleries. One displays paintings by contemporary Indian artists while the other is the centre for visual arts, the authentic reproduction of selected world masters.
Poornathrayeeshan Temple:Located in Tripunitura, the presiding deity of the temple is Poornathrayeeshan and was the patron deity of the rulers of erstwhile Cochin kingdom. Poornathrayeeshan means, Lord who is having authority over Wrik, Yajus, and Sama Vedas.
Parikshith Thampuran Museum: A treasure house of Coins, bronzes, murals and megalithic relics of Kerala, this museum attracts a huge crowd.
Chendamangalam:  (42 km from Ernakulam) This is a rare geographical combination of three rivers, seven inlets, hillocks and vast expanses of green plane. The Paliam palace abode of Paliath Achans, the hereditary prime ministers of erstwhile Maharajas of Kochi represents the architectural splendour of Kerala
Chottanikkara Bhagvati Temple : (20 km from Ernakulam) This is a very famous temple of the Goddess, one of the 108 popular and important Devi temples of India.
Kodanad: (40 km from Ernakulam and 30 km from Kottayam Town) Situated in the high ranges on the South bank of  Periyar, Kodanad is one of the largest elephant training centers in South India. Elephants specially trained for Safari are provided with saddles for riding.
Malayattoor: Malayattoor is the International Christian pilgrim centre and famous for the Catholic Church dedicated to St. Thomas. The apostle who landed in Kerala to propagate his gospel in 7th century is the main attraction. The shrine is on the 609 metre high hill. Thousands of devotees undertake the pilgrimage to the shrine to participate in the annual festival.
Kalady: (35 km from Ernakulam) Kaladi now famed being the head quarters of the only Sanskrit University in Kerala, is the birth place of Sree Sanakaracharya the founder of Advaita Philosophy, who lived during the 8th century.
Kanjiramattom Mosque: (18 km from Ernakulam) The mosque retains the antique beauty of Mazhars and Dargahs. Honouring the Saint Sheikh Fariduddin, at the Chandanakudam festival, pilgrims carry pots covered with sandalwood paste in a procession to the mosque.
Kumbalangi Tourist Village: (25 km from Ernakulam) Essentially a fishing hamlet, this tiny village facing the Kochi backwaters in the western part of the city is the first ecotourism village in India. Kalagramam, an artist’s village, displays handicrafts and fishing equipments.
Thattekkad Bird Sanctuary: Birding is a unique program inside the Thattekkad Birds Sanctuary. For eager bird watchers, the ample number of watch towers built in the forest should provide an ideal opportunity to see those feathered beauties from close. Thattekkad bird sanctuary was discovered by the renowned ornithologist of India, Dr. Salim Ali at Kochi-Munnar root and is named after him.
Cherai Beach: One of the loveliest of beaches in India. Sandwiched between backwaters and the Arabian Sea, it is the ideal spot for tourists. Cherai is located at 20 km away from the city of Eranakulam and 25 km from the International Airport.