Kochi ( Malayalam കൊച്ചി Kocci [ kotʃi ] ), formerly Cochin, a city in the state of Kerala, is located in southern India on a natural harbor in the Malabar Coast. The city has around 600,000 inhabitants ( 2011 census ), the metropolitan area has a total of around 2.1 million. So Kochi is only a second- largest city in Kerala, but the center of the largest metropolitan area in the state.

  • 4.1 Religion
  • 4.2 languages
  • 4.3 Attractions
  • 4.4 Kochi in the literature
  • 5.1 Economics
  • 5.2 infrastructure


Geographical Location

Kochi is located in southwest India on the coast of the Arabian Sea, about 186 kilometers north of Thiruvananthapuram, capital of Kerala, and 361 km south-west of Bangalore. It belongs to the district of Ernakulam of the State of Kerala.


The urban area extends both on the mainland and on several of the coastal barrier islands and peninsulas. The main parts of the city on the mainland Ernakulam, Fort Kochi, Mattancherry (both are located on a peninsula also called Fort Kochi ), the man-made Willingdon Island and the islands Bolghatty, Vallarpadam and Vypeen.


The climate is tropical in Kochi. The average annual temperature is 27.5 ° C. Due to its location by the sea temperatures vary only slightly. The main rainy season is during the southwest monsoons from May to August it also brings the northeast monsoon from September to December rather heavy rainfall. The rest of the year it is dry. The total annual rainfall is 2949 mm a year.


The rise Kochis began with the destruction of the port of about 38 km from the ancient city of Muziris (now Kodungallur ) by a flood in the year 1341st however Precisely the flood also created the harbor of Kochi. From then on, the city developed into the most important port on the west coast of India for the spice trade with China and the Middle East.

In 1500, two years after the arrival of the Portuguese explorer Vasco da Gama in Calicut (modern Kozhikode ), who landed with his fellow countryman Pedro Álvares Cabral in the lagoon of Kochi. 1502 founded the Portuguese their first commercial establishment in the city. A year later, they built a fort (Fort Manuel ) - the first European fort on the Indian subcontinent. Vasco da Gama died in Kochi in 1524 and was buried there until his remains were transferred to Lisbon in 1539. During Portuguese colonial rule, the local rulers were ousted more and eventually made ​​vassals of the Europeans.

From 1653, the Dutch made ​​the Portuguese serious competition and finally conquered the city in the year 1663rd Among the new rulers the heyday Kochis began. The extensive trading network of the Dutch East India Company contributed greatly to the economic recovery.

1776 Kochi was later devastated by his son Tipu Sultan again from the south Indian commander Hyder Ali. Under the latter, the city came temporarily to Mysore.

1790 came Kochi under British influence. Through the English- Dutch Treaty of 1814, it became the Madras Presidency affiliated and thus finally a part of the British colonial empire. The British poured on in the 1920s Willingdon Iceland to expand the port for ocean shipping.

From 1947 until the integration into the language barriers by newly created state of Kerala 1956 Kochi was the capital of the Union State of Cochin, as well as the city itself at that time was officially called. In 1996 she received a name in Malayalam and has since been Kochi.


The origin of the name " Kochi " is not clear, the most common theory is that the name of " kochazhi " derives meaning in Malayalam " small lagoon ". Other theories suggest that the city owes its name to Chinese merchants, or that the name of " kaci " ( Malayalam: ' port') is coming. Basically, all the derivatives have synonymous with the meaning of "land on water" or " Marsh, Swamp " or " boiler " is derived from the sound tribe " koc " or " kac ", which is an original word of the Indo-European languages ​​, see Latin coquo ( boiler, cooking, baking ), friesian " polder " ( march )



The population is predominantly Hindu, but there also live many Christians ( Catholics and Protestants Thomas Christians ) and Muslims, to a lesser extent Jains and Sikhs in the city. Famous is the Jewish community of the city, but by the strong emigration to Israel only has a few members (see Cochin Jews ).

Kochi is the seat of the Roman Catholic Diocese of Cochin.


The main spoken language is Malayalam. English is understood and spoken by many. There are also speakers of Tamil and many more, especially Dravidian, languages ​​.


Fort Kochi: The Franciscan church (St. Francis Church ) is the oldest church built by Europeans in India. It was built of wood in 1503, but renewed the mid-16th century as a stone. Here Vasco da Gama was buried in 1524. His grave stone can still be seen there today, although his remains were transferred to Lisbon in 1539.

More recently, the Santa Cruz Basilica, also built in 1902 as a Catholic church.

Are the famous Chinese fishing nets on the northern tip of the peninsula Fort Kochi. They should have been introduced in the 13th century by Chinese traders from the court of Kublai Khan. The heavy wooden structures where hang nets are mainly used at high tide. To their handling at least four men are needed.

Mattancherry: This district was built in the mid 16th century by the Portuguese, Mattancherry Palace, which was the then Raja of Cochin handed over as a gift is. In turn, this granted the Portuguese extensive trading privileges. The palace is built around a Hindu temple. The Dutch renovated and enlarged the building in the 17th century, which is why he is also known as the Dutch Palace (Dutch Palace ). In Matta Cherry's Jewish quarter is the 1568 built synagogue that was in 1662, although partially destroyed by the Portuguese, was two years later, but rebuilt by the more tolerant Dutch. The interior is decorated with some Chinese floor tiles.

Bolghatty Iceland: The main attraction of the island is the Dutch Bolghatty Palace of 1744 Confusingly, he is just like the Mattancherry Palace, also often called the Dutch Palace (Dutch Palace ) refers. .

Vypeen Iceland: Here stands the Portuguese fort Palliport from the 16th century.

Kochi in the literature

The novel The Moor's Last Sigh by Salman Rushdie plays largely in Kochi.

Economy and Transport


The main industries of the city are textile industry, shipbuilding, timber, fishing and the processing of coconuts. Tourism plays an increasingly important role. Of great importance is also the export economy. On Willingdon Iceland are extensive port facilities that make the most important port city of Kochi Kerala. In the city there is also a base for the Indian Navy. The Government of the United Arab Emirates ( UAE) is the contracting authority for the establishment of technology parks Smart City Kochi. Kochi is the headquarters of Joyalukkas.


The main mode of transport between the islands and peninsulas are ferries. Willingdon Iceland, however, is connected via the Venduruthy Bridge with Ernakulam and the Palluruth Bridge with the peninsula Fort Kochi. From Ernakulam there is a good rail links to the rest of the country. There are two railway stations in Ernakulam: Ernakulam Junction and Ernakulam Town. For freight trains, there is also a connection to the Cochin Harbour Station on Willingdon Iceland. About 30 km outside the town is the international airport Kochi. A subway is under construction and expected to be completed by 2016.

Sons and daughters of the town

  • Asin Thottumkal ( born 1985 ), actress