yatra to kochi
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DESCRIPTIONa short trip to Kochi, the historical city and Port Cochin. what i saw there in two three days stay.
Yatra to Kochi, Kerala, India-
A Travelogue Trip to Kochi, Kerala, India
A chance visit to historical city of Kerala, India, Now Kochi, once that was famous Port city of Cochin, vied for by European powers-Portuguese and Dutch then landed in hands of British. This has impacted the city, culture, Architecture, Psyche, and thinking process By Gaurang Katyayan Mishra @kamlesm
@ k a m l e s m
When I came to know that I have to go to Kochi to attend a workshop, I was
very excited. Since childhood, I have heard a lot about Cochin. It was INS
Cochin which I heard first that too from my father. He was in Indian Navy.
It was a historical place. The Portuguese and Dutch people landed here
centuries ago i.e. about 14th century. Portuguese had occupied it for about
160 years. In 1683 the Dutch caught this area and ruled for 112 years, later
it became a British colony. That was the time all the colonial powers were
eyeing for our India. They were all dreaming of looting immense wealth. They
had heard about this land through travellers and thought to occupy it and
make it their slave. Thus European countries wanted to become wealthy just
by looting this land. Now they are wealthy countries, if I may say so, they
have become so after taking away wealth of our countries- those who were
I mean it was a historical PORT CITY, since people landed here coming by
sea route. The name lingered. When we went on LTC tour in 1976 that time
we could not see much of that part of Keral.
I searched in google. I came to know there are so many words. Kochi,
Cochin. Kozhikode etc., I was confused, as to which Airport I should select
for ticket? since the name of my destination was Kochi, I took ticket for
Kochi. In kochi itself there were two airports, thanx to the google earth.
Other was naval area. Why they renamed it as Kochi instead of Cochin?
On reaching I tried to get the feel of air of Kochi. It was a busy city, bustling
with lot of activities. It is growing with high pace. Infrastructural projects are
on rise. The ride from airport to the city is bit long, but adventurous, as I
felt. So much greenery around, but it was being occupied by concrete. Few
new roads and high rise buildings are coming up. So it was different from
image of a historical
city, it is now a
commercial city. I
were low lying fields
lined by high mud
bunds & symbol of
all around the field.
At airport I saw lots
@ k a m l e s m
of newly wedded couples disembarking from many private airlines. Thus it is
becoming as a tourist spot also, mostly as a honeymoon spot. In my flight
few fellow passengers were wearing black cloths. Small kids were also there.
Later I learnt that they were visiting Sabarimala. That means if I am correct
it is en-route to a pilgrimage.
We were put in Abad hotel. Abad means well settled. Road seemed busy
during evening & night. It has cinema halls, eatery, many shops- garments,
utility, electronics, utensils, medicines
and most prominently jewellery shops.
Towards one end there was an Ayurveda
clinic, I think of kotakal warrior
I was desperate to see the sea as my
father told about his navy days. I was
thinking to see palaces, temples or fort
or any such historical thing. Which, I
came to know through reading books.
Walking in street in evening I found
these were busy. We reached at a place
from where many boats were leaving for
various destinations. I had read that
Keral is country of backwater, thus I
could easily guess people traveling
through sea route also. This picture
of a board tells distances of various
places from that jetty. At first I
could not believe that people may
be visiting to such far off places as
Kolam. But his board tells that it
was 155 Km from Kochi Or
Astamudi which was 147 Km and
people may be visiting?
Since it was a workshop organised
by a Ministry. People from all over
country came to attend workshop.
A boat was there to carry whole
team. We boarded the boat.
@ k a m l e s m
While walking at jetty, I got sight of a tall
statue. It looked very much pleasing to me.
I thought this as a pious soul, may be the
Mother Mary. Only that name I knew?. It
looks as if saying keep marching ahead
and do your duty. I clicked few photos of
this tall statue. The famous words Ekla
chalo came to mind. See how the Bengali
words came to mind while I was in Keral.
At jetty there was a big shopping complex.
On one side was this jetty and other side
was a busy road. By now I came to know
that city has quite a deep influence of
Christianity. Almost on every road you can
find either church like signs, or structures,
or some church affiliated school or hospitals
etc. another influence is that people speak English. Keral is one of the state
having highest literacy rates in country.
Signs of modernity were evident through these high rise buildings. I could
see lot of experimentation also in architecture. I have observed that in cities
people do not get influenced by
religious aspects while choosing a
flat in multi-storeyed buildings.
See that building in pic here have
houses in inclined slope. They
might be projecting these
apartments as having sun light or
separate terrace. On that road
there were many multi-storeyed
buildings. I had always dreamt of
sleeping in terrace under open
With so many people living there
then there must be some
attraction in it? As our boat
started moving more symbols of
developments came in sight.
There was this huge flyover. It
takes people from one shore to
@ k a m l e s m
another. There were many such
bridges at multilevel.
A succesfull Port should have good
connectivity. That can be achieved
through big roads, for cargo
When boat reached further little
inside the sea I saw some resort
like structures along the shore.
Since it is a Port City it
population, either for
commercial activity or
tourist. The green and
big shoreline offers
great opportunity for
such tourism related
endeavours. Kochi is
making full use of its
But we cannot say full,
but yes it is bubbling
with such activities, as
I saw. With global exposure it is
now becoming a global hub of
activities. Recently it was
famous for a controversy on Art
activist related activity (Biennale
Many Boats full of people
started emerging on both sides
of sea creek. The guide
accompanying our team pointed
towards a large structure having
several high cranes, stacked
containers, few ships being
loaded with those containers
and few were being unloaded,
and He said that this is the largest container port in India? Our boat
travelled past that ship container port. On the other side at far end many
@ k a m l e s m
ships were there. The boat slightly took a turn towards left and at that point
I could see one of the largest Naval
ship. It was there for repairs. In that
area many big or small ships were
sailing. Many of them were of Navy,
coast guard etc.
On One boat LOTS Bridge was written
on the body. Was it for making bridge
across sea channel.
Suddenly on the right
side I saw a beautiful
boat. That was truly a
boat. It must be a tourist
boat. It was in kind of round shape. It had eco-friendly material. Bamboo
thatched mats. It was a fine example of why tourists are attracted to Kerala.
They always dream to have a boat ride in the back water.
@ k a m l e s m
On the way there were other boats in the sea, shipping, fishing & tourist?
We travelled towards a place called the Mattanchery. This word sounded like
mutton to me. The place is famous in history of Keral. The Dutch connection
When the boat enters a canal,
on left side I saw naval ships
lining on the port side and on
the right side there were many
houses. Each of these building
was with architecture of old
type. I guessed may be that is
influence of Dutch. Designs of
old type of inclined and sloping
roofs are there. This indicates
the heavy rains in that area.
We reached the jetty of Mattancherry. Few
steps ahead just in front was a gate. This
was gate of that very historical place for