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China Week
Kerala’s most densely populated city, Kochi (once Cochin) is a fascinating place. Set on an estuary and nicknamed the ‘Queen of the Arabian Sea’, from the 14th century it was an important spice trading centre. Thanks to this time as a port, it has a diverse cultural mix, both in terms of population and of attractions. Here, you can visit Chinese fishing nets, a mosque and a synagogue, colonial architecture from the Portuguese, Dutch and British Raj before settling down to enjoy a display of Keralan arts, of which it is a centre.

Boasting an old world charm that contrasts beautifully with the surroundings of the tropical Malabar Coast, this city is a delight to explore. Wander the streets of Fort Kochi and soak up the quaint ambiance. Portuguese from 1500, Dutch from 1663 and British from the 18th century, this area has a mix of interesting buildings to admire. Close by Mattancherry was at the very centre of the spice trade, so it was much invaded. Over the ages, many migrants found there way here and settled, and it remained a wonderfully diverse neighbourhood to this day.

Kochi also gives access to a huge stretch of coastline with incredible beaches lapped by the waters of the Arabian Sea. A stroll along one, or some, of them is something not to be missed!

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