Tourist Places in Ernakulam
Ernakulam is a fantastic location for both modern and historic tourist attractions. There is no place in India where massive trading hubs can coexist with 400-year-old synagogues, historic mosques, Portuguese homes, and the deteriorating remains of the corporate empire. Aside from these, Ernakulam's most popular tourist attractions are the Keralan art exhibitions. Did you know that a bag of Indian pepper was formerly considered fit for human life? Spices were traded by traders in Kerala for precious stones and money centuries ago. The thriving spice trade established India, mainly the Malabar Coast.
At that time, Ernakulam was the hub of a well-traveled spice route that drew well-known explorers like Vasco da Gama and Pedro Alvarez Cabral. The art, architecture, food, and communities of Ernakulam today reflect the influence of several cultures, including Persian, Chinese, Dutch, Portuguese, Jewish, French, and English. Let's look at the tourist attractions in Ernakulam that will allow you to experience its history.
1. Vallarpadam Church
One of Ernakulam's top tourist destinations is the Vallarpadam Church. It also goes by the name Our Lady of Ransom. Mary, Jesus' mother, was lovingly referred to as Vallarpadathamma by the locals. Visitors to this church come not just from the state of Kerala but also other states. In the year 1524, the Portuguese missionaries constructed this church.
A significant flood destroyed the church in 1676, but the Portuguese built and placed a statue of the Virgin Mary within that same year. The 13th Pope designated this church as a unique church in 1884, making it a popular destination for Christian leaders. A major feast is conducted here every year on 24th September in which people from various countries besides India come and obtain the graces of Mother Mary. The locals here believe that Mother Mary protects them from natural disasters.
2. The Museum of Mattancherry
The quaint and traditional suburb of Mattancherry will undoubtedly lure you if you take a stroll through Fort Kochi's streets. According to legend, the street used to be bordered by mutton butchers, which is how it got the name "Mattoncherry," which eventually changed to "Mattancherry." The location now exhibits historic structures and other social and cultural legacies brought by visitors. Mattancherry, which the government designated as a historic site, has served as an inspiration to historians, filmmakers, tourists, and artists alike. This museum is one of the most well-known sights among Ernakulam's tourist attractions.
3. Thattekkad Bird Sanctuary
One of Kerala's original bird sanctuaries and a refuge for outdoor enthusiasts. Thattekkad, home to hundreds of various endangered species of migratory birds, has been dubbed "the richest bird sanctuary in India" by Salim Ali, a noted naturalist. This is a deep deciduous forest where you may find mahogany, teak, rosewood, and rubber plantations. The months of November through March would be ideal for travel. Binoculars should be brought along if you want to see the birds.
4. Hill Palace museum
While making travel arrangements to Ernakulam, you may visit the renowned Hill Palace Museum. The Hill Palace Museum, widely regarded as Kerala's first historical and largest archaeological museum, draws both local and foreign visitors with its exquisite beauty and excellent design. The Maharaja of Cochin constructed the palace in 1865. This covers a region of around 52 acres. There are roughly 49 structures of Kerala's traditional architecture in this area. There are around 14 types of exhibits at the museum, including crowns, jewelry, weapons, coins, inscriptions, sculptures, etc. The palace serves as a location for Malayalam movie shoots.
Here, several movies have been filmed. The palace complex also has a deer park, a kids' park, and an incredible collection of rare medicinal plants in addition to the museum. It's wonderful to wander around the palace's base and experience the greenery. Except for Monday, the museum is open every day. Additionally, there is a charge to enter the museum. The distance between the palace and Ernakulam is around 12 kilometers. And is conveniently reachable by public and private transportation.
5. Cherai Beach
There is a beautiful beach in Cherai stretches from Cochin to Vypeen Island. It is roughly 30 kilometers from Kochi International Airport and 25 kilometers from Kochi. This beach is a well-liked vacation spot, particularly for international visitors. Compared to many other beaches in the Ernakulam area, the beach is less crowded and cleaner. This gorgeous beach Cherai has paddy farms, coconut palms, and Chinese fishing nets.
Cherai Beach is a beautiful location with a rare combination of the sea, backwaters, and beaches covered with seaweed of various colors. You could even see some dolphins if you're lucky. It is a popular tourist spot in the Ernakulam region.
6. Vypeen Island
One of the main tourist destinations in Ernakulam for couples is Vypeen Island, which offers a desktop-worthy vista away from the busy surroundings. One of the most well-liked tourist destinations in Ernakulam, Vypeen is unquestionably the most elegant island in Kerala. You can reach this peaceful island, which is filled with beaches, backwaters, and various restaurants and hotels, by taking a quick and beautiful ferry journey from the city.
7. David Hall Art Gallery
A Dutch villa in Fort Kochi was rebuilt and transformed into a popular destination for art enthusiasts. The gallery features pieces by well-known and local artists, making it one of the greatest tourist destinations in Ernakulam. While the café is renowned for its fresh and crispy pizzas, visitors will also be happy to discover a peaceful garden restaurant that provides a range of cakes and snacks.
8. Willingdon Island
A beautiful artificial island in Kochi's backwaters is called Willingdon Island. The island was developed in 1936 as a component of the current Kochi port's development. To make room for the new port, Vembanad Lake was deepened. Resulting in the creation of the stunning island. The project was commissioned by Lord Willingdon, the Viceroy of India at the time, thus the name Willingdon. The great island now serves as a connection between Kochi and other seaports throughout the globe.
You can view the Southern Navy's headquarters on this island, which also houses some of Kochi's top hotels and business buildings. Through the less crowded alleys of the island, you may take in the beauty of the backwaters. You can choose between using the available boat service to Willingdon Island or taking the road to get there. The distance between Cochin International Airport and Ernakulam Junction Railway Station is around 41 kilometers and 9 km, respectively. It is a popular tourist location in Ernakulam.
9. Andhkarnajhi Beach
Located 4 kilometers from Pattanakkad is a coastal town. The ongoing filming of Malayalam movies at Andhunazhi Beach has increased public awareness of the location. This beach is popular with visitors. While helping seamen navigate nighttime, the large white and red lighthouse grabs attention.
10. Mahatma Gandhi Road
The Times Square of Ernakulam might be compared to the Mahatma Gandhi Road. Huge apparel stores, huge jewelry stores, and magnificent restaurants provide a variety of cuisines line both sides of the road. The finest area to enjoy shopping in Kerala is MG Road, which young, trendy people primarily frequent. MG Road is a shopaholic's delight.
11. Santa Cruz Basilica Church
The nearby Santa Cruz Basilica Church is definitely worth a visit; it is situated next to St. Francis Church. You may view some lovely images here. This church, which blends Kerala and Portuguese architectural styles, is regarded as the most beautiful and oldest in the city of Ernakulam. Additionally, Ernakulam is a well-known and attractive tourist destination.
How to reach Ernakulam
Ernakulam can be reached by Cochin International Airport, situated around 27 kilometers from the city center. The Middle East and other South Asian nations have strong flight connections to Cochin. From important locations, including Mumbai, Kolkata, Delhi, and Hyderabad, among others, travelers can take direct flights as well as stopover flights.
One of Kerala's busiest rail junctions, Ernakulam Junction can handle the arrival of numerous passenger and express trains from all over India and adjacent locations. Travelers may board direct trains from important cities like Bangalore, Mumbai, Mangalore, Delhi, etc. The second station where many intercity and long-distance trains stop is Ernakulam Town Station.
State highways link Ernakulam to neighboring towns and suburbs. Buses operated by the state government travel frequently from Rameshwaram, Mysore, Bangalore, and Mysore. There are also private buses accessible for Ernakulam.
Local Food in Ernakulam
The best variety of sea foods is the main cuisine for Ernakulam residents. Sardines, tuna, mackerel, shark, rays, and even oysters, crab, and mussels are some popular species eaten here. They specialize in creative fish curry dishes, which they often serve over a serving of hot rice.
Best time to visit Ernakulam
The ideal months to visit Ernakulam are October through February. Although Ernakulam is often fairly hot all year round, the winters are more pleasant. The possibility of temperatures exceeding 30°C at other times of the year might make travel or exploration unpleasant.