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Formerly Cochin, the charming city of Kochi unfurls along India’s southwest coast in the state of Kerala. Known as the ‘Gateway to Kerala’ this is a wonderful starting point for an Indian adventure. From sea-facing restaurants to splendid historical architecture, there’s much to explore on a Cochin holiday.

Cochin has been shaped by a host of eclectic influences, reflected in the medley of buildings and architectural styles found across the city. With one of the world’s finest natural harbours, Cochin was a hub of the global spice trade for centuries. During that time, the Dutch, British, Arabs, Chinese and Portuguese all made an imprint on the city.

Explore Cochin’s most iconic landmarks to get a sense of the city’s varied history. Think huge Chinese Fishing Nets, set against the Arabian Sea. A blend of Dutch, Portuguese and British colonial architecture in the spread of Fort Kochi. White-washed Mattancherry Palace, built by Portuguese in traditional Keralan style. The sweeping staircases and painted collonades of the Hill Palace Museum, once the residence of the Kochi royal family.

A captivating fusion of cultures and histories

As well as discovering the plethora of mosques, palaces and churches, you’ll spend your holiday in Cochin spotting dolphins in the waters off Cherai Beach; exploring the antique shops of Mantacherry; and feasting on the state’s most sumptuous dishes at local restaurants. While you’re in Cochin, make sure you watch a demonstration of Kathakali (traditional Indian dance) and Kalarippayattu (Indian martial arts).

Vibrant and diverse cities abound in India. Whether you’re dreaming of spiritual experiences in Varanasi, discovering the real India in Delhi or living like royalty in Udaipur, we’ve got the expertise and inspiration to craft you a truly magical Indian adventure. Get in touch with one of our Destination Specialists today to embark on this epic exploration.

Destination Highlights

  • Wander Fort Kochi harbour, observing the evening’s activity at the iconic Chinese Fishing Nets
  • Explore Mattancherry - the Dutch Palace - and its intriguing combination of colonial and Keralan architecture
  • Watch a vibrant Kathakali Dance, a traditional Indian art form
  • Experience Kerala’s cultural melting pot at the Jewish Synagogue

Great sample itineraries


Browse some of our popular Indian itineraries below. From Kochi tours to wider Keralan adventures, there’s an array of experiences available. Looking for something else? Get in touch so we can create you a bespoke itinerary.

Jodphur

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a small boat in a body of water

Kerala South India Tour

  • 10 Days
  • Guide Price £1,699 PP
Our Kerala and the Tropical South tours are one of the most wonderful ways to experience India for the first...
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A Tea Plantation on the hill station of Munnar, in Kerala, India

Kerala Tea Tour

  • 15 Days
  • Guide Price £2,899 PP
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Escorted tours holidays

Explore Cochin

Time Zone

GMT +5.5 hours

Currency

INR - Indian Rupee

Visa Information

British citizens are required to obtain a visa from the Indian embassy prior to arrival.

Language

Hindi and English are widely spoken

Health Info

Some vaccinations are recommended when travelling to certain areas in India. Please contact your GP for vaccination requirements.

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George, Destination Specialist

“Take a boat to the fishermen village, Kumbalanghi. Set in Kochi’s backwaters, this picturesque island provides visitors with the opportunity to see Kerala’s Chinese fishing nets, take part in rural activities and experience traditional Keralan village life.”

George
Destination Specialist
Harriet, Destination Specialist

“For an enchanting evening activity, join an Old Harbour cruise from Cochin Harbour for sunset. Enjoy spectacular views of the ocean, Chinese fishing nets and Bolgatty Island.” 

Harriet
Destination Specialist

Events & Festivals

Festivals in India are a vibrant, colourful affair. The perfect way to immerse yourself in local traditions and have some fun, plan your Cochin holiday to coincide with an event or festival.

Onam

Onam is an annual Hindu festival in Kerala, occurring in August and September. It is Kerala’s most significant yearly event; a ten-day harvest celebration that marks the homecoming of the mythical King Mahabali. Festivities include elephant street parades, music and dance performances and snake boat races.

Local Cuisine

Like the rest of Kerala, Cochin is known for its seafood specialities and scrumptious fish curry. While you’re in Kerala, make sure you hunt down and sample some of the best authentic dishes.

Keralan Fish Curry

Originating in Kerala’s south coast, Keralan fish curry is widely popular and a must-try when you’re in the region. Coconut infused and spicy, flavoured with local fish, shallots, tamarind and tomato, this curry is one of the region’s ultimate authentic dishes. Enjoy with a serving of rice.

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