Kochi, a prominent place worth a visit in Kerala, ‘the God’s Own Country’, is the commercial capital of the state. It has rightly earned the name, ‘the Queen of the Arabian Sea’ due to a host of factors. Since time immemorial this city had trade ties with scores of other destinations in the world. This long maritime history and the natural charm of the city have made it very popular with investors and also the frequent travelers. When on a tour Kerala is the best choice in South India and Kochi, a major transit point, is an unavoidable destination for the international tourist.

Kochi is home to one of the biggest natural harbors in India. Its strategic location along the East-West trade route has made it a major refueling point for scores of cargo ships. Port calls and trade visits at this harbor was rather frequent especially from the Middle East and even from Europe according to the historical records unearthed in recent times. The present busy Kochi port was frequented by scores of merchant ships in earlier times. A booming trade in spices and other materials existed in those times. While some cargo ships anchored off the Kochi port for trade and commercial purposes, other vessels made port calls to replenish their essential supplies.

The first European church in India can be seen in Kochi. Built in 1510 by the Portuguese, Vasco da Gama the first European explorer to India is buried here. Occupied by the Dutch in later times, it finally passed on to the hands of the British. Today it is jointly managed by the government of Kerala and the Church of South India.

Built during the late 15th century, the only remaining Jewish synagogue at Kochi provides ample evidence to the presence of the Jewish community in the state. Destroyed partially in a fire, the Dutch took great pains to rebuild it. The blue willow tiles sourced from China and the mid 18th century clock tower are unique features of this synagogue. The Hill Palace Museum, the Parikshith Thampuran Museum, the age-old Chinese fishing nets and the islands of Willingdon, Gundu and Vypeen are other places worth a visit in Kochi.