Kerala is a wonderful destination to relax and rejuvenate yourselves. Each and everything about Kerala intrigues and excites me. The land is so unique and beautiful. If you are a person who is so involved in a busy work life then you should definitely take a vacation to Kerala, God’s own Country. Once you reach this stunning destination you will forget every worries and tension haunting you. Such is the power of this tiny coastal state of India, Kerala. Well, this destination is a true enchantress in every aspect. As heath of greenery surrounds this state and is absolutely pleasing to the eyes. This time I took my family along with me to Kerala and guess what they were extremely happy with the entire trip. They literally fell in love with Kerala. In such a short period of time, we were taken to almost all the popular tourist destinations of Kerala like Munnar, Ernakulam, Thekkady, Alleppey, Wagamon, Fort Kochi, Trivandrum etc. Thanks to our travel operator, Gogeo Holidays for making our trip so beautiful. They have a remarkable range of family tour packages to Kerala that comes at very reasonable prices. We did have our doubts first about the quality of our deal due to such low prices but our travel operators proved us wrong and we are so glad that we choose a package from Gogeo.
Of all the places that we visited, Ernakulam was our personal favorite. The place is a complete package in itself. A traveled is provided with everything. Be it dance bars where you get to party all through the night, the heavenly lush green landscapes where you can unwind yourselves and relax amidst the serenity offered or even the historical forts narrating intense tales of history, Ernakulam has everything that you desire. You should not miss visiting Ernakulam while in Kerala. Here are some of the places that you ought to visit in Ernakulam:
Mattancherry Palace: Often called the Dutch Palace, the Mattancherry palace is one of the most intriguing tourist spots of Fort Kochi. The Mattancherry Palace was built by the Portuguese in 1557 and was presented to the erstwhile ruler of Cochin. Till to this date, the Palace attracts a large number of travelers. The Mattancherry Palace depicts a great blend of Portuguese, Dutch and Keralite architecture. Though the mansion is styled in Portuguese, the interiors architecture is done in the Keralite manner. The Dutch influence in the architecture is a result of renovation done by the Dutch a few decades after building the palace in the 16th century. The courtyard of Mattancherry Palace is extremely attractive. A temple for the Goddess Bhagavathy, which is considered as the protective deity of Kochi can be seen on the beautiful courtyard. Moreover, there are temples for Lord Siva and Lord Krishna inside the palace. The biggest attraction of the Mattancherry Palace is definitely the mural paintings depicting the Hindu Mythological tales. The paintings arouse your curiosity as every painting is narrates a tale in the most beautiful manner. The Mattancherry Palace is open for visitors on all days except on Friday from 10 am to 5 pm.
Indo-Portuguese Museum: The Indo-Portuguese Museum displays a wonderful blend of both Indian and Portuguese architecture. Even the relics and artifacts housed by the museum is an amalgamation of both the cultures. The museum is located near Fort Kochi. It is said to have been built by the former Bishop of Kochi, Joseph Urethra. When you visit the museum you will be able to see that the museum is divided into 5 wings namely, Cathedral, Altar of Furniture, Treasure, Civil Life and Procession. The most priced and attractive possessions of the Indo-Portuguese Museum include the Coat of Arms of the Francis, Indo-Portuguese Monstrance and the Processional Cross made from precious metals like silver and gold. The museum is open for visitors from Tuesdays to Saturdays from 10 am to 5 pm. The museum remains closed on all the public holidays. The entry fee is Rs 10 for the natives and Rs.25 for foreigners. Well, if you are planning to visit on Thursday, you don’t have to carry any money to the museum, as the entry is free!
Jewish Synagogue: The Jewish Synagogue is one of the most famous attractions of Kochi. The Jewish Synagogue also called the Paradesi Synagogue, was built in 1568 and is considered as one of the oldest Jewish Synagogues in India. The Synagogue was built by the Malabar Yehudan People (the Jewish Community of Kochi) and is situated in the Jew Town of Kochi. The synagogue is home to some very important and sacred relics and artifacts like the teak ark which consists of four scrolls of Torah, chandeliers made using Belgian glass, ancient copper plates, crowns made of gold and silver, a clock tower and carpets which are hand woven. Jewish Synagogue still stands as a mesmerizing wonder. The synagogue is open all days of the week from 10 am to 5 pm. It will be closed from 12 to 3 in the noon. There is no entry fee to the Synagogue. Due to its popularity, most of the tour packages to Kerala both the cheapest and the best include the Jewish Synagogue in it.
Hill Palace: Hill Palace, situated in Tripunitura, is also an important tourist attraction of Kochi. Hill Palace is an archaeological wonder. It is a heritage museum that houses many important relics and artifacts that belonged to the Maharaja of Kochi. The splendid palace was constructed in 1869 and houses almost 49 rooms. The artifacts of the museum have a significant history to it. The gardens and the ponds of the Palace is a major attraction in the region. The museum houses an art gallery which is a hub of art lovers and painters. The major attractions of the Palace include Kudakkallu which is the tombstone, Thoppikkallu and various prototypes of objects that are believed to be from Mohenjodaro and Harappa of the Indus Valley Civilisation. Historians and history lovers are going to find this place extremely interesting. Children are also going to love Hill Palace as it houses a children’s park and zoo as well. It is indeed a good place for families to tour. The palace will be open on all days except on Mondays. The entry fee is Rs.30 per person.