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Bring your shades along with the caps and comfortable clothes. We are headed to some of the best places to visit in Kochi! Cochin is a part of the Ernakulam district and is the biggest seaport city. With the blooming heritages and cuisines, Kerala, aka Gods Own Country is an active tourist place since the 1980s. The state is filled vastly with hills, beaches, waterfalls, dams, mountains.

If you love to see the beaches, then Kerala has lots of beaches where you can just sit by the beachside to watch the magnificent view, or you can also engage in some water sports. And breathe. A romantic getaway is a perfect opportunity to relax and there are lots of ways to do that in India, whether you venture to the countryside or spend some time on one of the beautiful beaches of the west coast.

From wildlife sanctuaries to temples, tourists get to experience nature much better than most places around. The easy-going locals are always intrigued by the outsiders and the conversations that comes up along. One can rent a self-drive car in Kochi to visit from place to place along with a travel guide. So with less far ado and more coconut oil, here are the most exceptional places near Kochi.

places to visit in kochi

1. Athirapally Waterfalls

Just 70 km away from Kochi, Athirapally Waterfalls is one of the best places to see in Cochin, filled with many extravaganzas. Many tourists visit here often between September and January. Animal habitat doesn't hinder, so it's worth mentioning that Athirapally Waterfalls is home to many species such as the great hornbill, Malabar pied hornbill, leopard, bison, sambar lion-tailed macaque Malabar grey hornbill, Indian grey hornbill, Asiatic elephant, tiger, etc.

This is the biggest waterfall in Kerala, where multiple streams of running water join together. 31 km further, lies Sholayar Dam which the second biggest dam in the whole of Asia. This destination should evidently be on your list!

If you are looking for something more out of the ordinary or a one day trip in Kerala, why not take a cruise along a river in Kerala from Ernakulam? Houseboat Tour in the backwaters of Kerala is the most unique and incredible experience you can have. You will set off in a thatched bamboo boat called a kettuvallam, complete with your very own captain, guide, and cook.

Kettuvalams in Kerala is a houseboat which is a wooden boat and is tied with coir knots. Kettuvalam is constructed with embellished natural products. It was used earlier as a transport medium for carrying huge amounts of merchandise and grains. To promote tourism, Kettuvalam was converted into a tourist boat and put up with modern facilities.

It is the most exclusive and luxury experience for travellers who offer convenience and comforts. Sit back and as you navigate the waterways and watch the world go by in the tourist places in Kochi for one day. Visit the Athirapally waterfalls near Vazhachal. Vazhachaal waterfalls is a bit ahead of the Athirapally falls even though it is a smaller one high up the mountain. The spectacular and impressive waterfalls are located 7 km from Athirappilly and 75 km from Kochi. There is a park on the way to Vazhachaal Falls and the fence is very close to the falls so we have a close view of the falls.

Vazhachaal Falls has a lot of natural pools and rocks everywhere and make everything look beautiful. There are many benches to sit in the garden and this place is friendly children and elderly. Vazhachaal Falls has a lot of natural pools and rocks everywhere and make everything look beautiful.

The travel route to Vazhachaal is rich in flora and fauna and includes dense green forests too. The waterfall is 300 feet. Ideal for day trips, the best time to visit the Vazhachaal waterfalls during September, October, November, December, and January. You can proceed to Masinagudi, a small village located near the wildlife sanctuaries in Muthumalai and Bandipur.

Athirapally or Athirappilly is famous for the largest waterfall in the state. It is also called as the Niagara of India. It is located 1000 ft above sea level. The waterfalls are surrounded by forests. Apart from Athirapally falls, other attractions include Charpa falls, Thumpurmuzhi garden, forest garden, Sholayar dam, Peringalkuthu dam, Anakkayam and others.

It is the favorite place of some prominent film directors and many sequences of films such as Dil Se and Baahubali were filmed here. The best time to visit Athirapally is between June and December.

2. Idukki

Idukki is the perfect summer tourist destination in South India and place to visit in Kochi. Nestled in the hills of the Western Ghats, the city enjoys a healthy climate. How many places can really boast of forests, lakes, waterfalls, walks, picnic spots in one place? Hiking, backpacking and camping are some of the things to do in Idukki.

The reservoir of the Mattupetty dam, the reservoir of the Malankara dam and the Mullaperiyar dam make interesting outings. Idukki also has many beautiful waterfalls, a sandalwood forest naturally, and the first dam of the Indian arch. Go explore on foot or relax in your luxurious accommodation. The city of the hills has a way to calm their tired souls.

Places to visit near Idukki are Eravikulam National Park, Anamudi, Mattupetty Dam, Malankara Dam, Mullaperiyar Dam, Parunthumpara, Meesapulimala. Full of spices and tea plantations, the place is about 150 km from Sabarimala that does not allow women in the age group of 10-60. You can find numerous animals with their cubs near the lakes in the wildlife park.

Having the best peaks of Kerala under its belt, Idukki is every locals favorite place to be. The hill stations have great weather to escape the humidity. Their peaks range as high as 2000 meters. The highest of them all is the Anamudi, which is 2695 meters. It has the most famous Idukki dam, as well the Pamba river, originates from here. This place offers a wide range of treks, species, and spice plantations.

3. Kottayam

This fantastic place is 63 kms away from Kochi and is known to have many things for tourists. From crafted stuff on the street to the plantations and selling commercial crops, Kottayam is the central part of Kerala. Apart from these, the place is home to the Kerala backwaters as well, prominently, the Kumarakom, the most famous backwater. Its cultural value is significant, as it is the gateway to Sabarimala.

4. Kumarakom

The village of Kumarakom is a group of small islands in Lake Vembanad, and is part of the Kuttanad region. The bird sanctuary here, which stretches across 14 acres, is a favorite haven for migratory birds and the paradise of ornithologists. Herons, darts, herons, trullos, aquatic birds, cuckoos, wild ducks and migratory birds like the Siberian stork visit here in flocks and fascinate all visitors.

A lovely recreational destination, Kumarakom offers visitors many other leisure options. At the Taj Garden Retreat, an old Bungalow-turned-Resort, you can go boating and fishing.

5. Thrissur

Thrissur has a vast history. Starting with its name, it is derived from Thiru – Shiva and Peru which means town of Shiva. It has some of the most famous temples and churches. Vadakkumnathan Temple, Thiruvambadi Sri Krishna Temple and Paramekkavu temple, Our Lady of Lourdes Syro-Malabar Catholic Metropolitan Cathedral are nice places near Thrissur. The most famous one is the Guruvayur Temple (Krishna temple), which is close by.

Thrissur is a Kerala's hub of culture and religion. Also, the biggest festival, Thrissur Pooram is held here. It is tagged by UNESCO as the worlds grandest festival, where colors, elephants, prayers, fireworks, locals, parties are combined for 36 hours. On the other hand, there are many famous rivers, waterfalls, dams, and sanctuaries here with places for couples to come and have fun.

6. Cherai Beach

This famous beach is only a couple kilometers away from Kochi, located in the Cherai village. The beach is a 15km stretch of sand, clean and pretty shallow waters. It also has a lagoon and a clear cut view of the ocean in the distance. There is a sideways and walkway for people to walk along the beachside, and the newly added lamps, that makes the beach more enjoyable at night.

The shores are filled with shells and other stunning things that the waves leave behind on the coast. Dolphins are a tourist attraction are, as well as the childrens park, and fishing, with Chinese fishing nets. The beach has a tourism festival every December.

7. Idamalayar Dam

Firstly, the place looks so good that tourists feel like staying there, and never think of leaving. It is a heaven for most people for its serenity hooks onto you. The dam is 76 kms away from Kochi and is one of the most vital reservoirs for Kerala. It has a majority of unique species there. This is built on the Idamalayar river, which connects to the Periyar river. There are many forests around, and for tourists, there is a bird – watching, trekking, biking activities, boating.

8. Fort Kochi

It is one of the best place to visit in Kochi and is about 17 kms away from Cochin. The place is a mix of British, Dutch, French, Portugal and Indian culture. Even just walking and looking around is fun at Fort Kochi. There are so many places to visit in here, like the Vasco da Gama square where the people come to see the locals fishing using Chinese fishing nets that are 10 m high.

At the heart of Kochi, there is a very famous church, called the St. Francis church, which is the first European church in Kerala. Legend has it that Vasco Da Gama was buried here and years later his son took his body to Lisbon. There’s always something to witness.

9. Alleppey

An ideal winter destination in India surrounded by numerous lagoons that are interconnected with large lakes, rivers and canals that run along the Arabian Sea. Board the House Boat (Kettuvallam). This type of boathouse in Kerala, traditionally a barge to transport rice, is today specially arranged to spend a pleasant cruise.

Discover the lives of locals at the edge of Kerala's backwaters, visit the villages or churches that line the canals and rivers and enjoy typical Kerala dishes with sweet spices.

The Venice of India, Alleppey is a popular tourist spot in South India. Enjoy cruising in the backwaters on a houseboat. It doesn't matter how tired you feel after exploring Kerala but, a houseboat cruise through the backwaters will surely rejuvenate you. Kerala has hundreds of luxurious houseboats that cruise over the backwaters while offering you an amazing stay experience for a lifetime. You can sail and have meals throughout the day and rest in the stationary houseboat at night.

Take time to be pampered with Ayurvedic therapies and treatments. Savor the delicious cuisine. Go bird watching, visit the villages in the Reagua or explore the incredible architectural wonders of the reeds. Heal your weary spirits in the blessed surroundings of Alleppey. Places to visit Alleppey are Alappuzha Beach, Krishnapuram Palace, Kumarakom Bird Sanctuary, Marari Beach, Karunakaran Museum revival, Marari Beach, Punnamada Lake, Pathiramanal, and Sri Krishna Temple in Ambalappuzha.

Pathiramanal is a beautiful uninhabuted island in the middle of backwaters on Muhamma-Kumarakom water route that can be accessed only by boat. It is surrounded by Lake Vembanad on one side and Lake Kayamkulam on the other side and is home to thousands of migratory birds from different parts of the world.

10. Thommankuthu Waterfalls

Located 20 km from Thodupuzha, 48 km from Munnar and 25 km from Idukki, Thommankuthu waterfalls is a magnificent and wonderful 300-foot waterfall. The view of the waterfall is impressive and the hiking in the surrounding mountainous area is also an important point when visiting Thommankuthu Waterfalls. The best time to visit the Thommankuthu waterfalls is during the monsoon season.

The best places to visit while the waterfalls are Thommankuthu Varambetta Mosque, Karalad Lake, Banasura Hill, and Kakkayam Dam.

11. Valara Waterfalls

Valara Waterfalls is on the way to Munnar and is located next to the Cheeyappara waterfalls and is adorned with dense forests. The waterfalls are 1000 feet high and provide a great view of the visitors. The region is also well known for hiking. The Valara Waterfalls is ideal for a day trip and the best time to visit the falls is during the monsoon season. The Valara Waterfalls is located in the middle Adimali and Neriamangalam.

During the rainy season the flow will be thick and during the summer season, the flow of water will also be less. Valara Waterfalls is on the way to Munnar and is located next to the Cheeyappara waterfalls and is adorned by dense forests.

Cheeyappara Waterfalls is located next to the Valara waterfalls and is quite a lovely waterfall. The Cheeyappara waterfalls are located between lush dense forests and are a chain of waterfalls of the Deviyar River. It is an ideal place for hiking, climbing and exploring. The Cheeyappara Waterfalls has located 42 km from Munnar and is a main destination in Kerala ideal for a day trip and when you travel to Munnar you can stop at Cheeyapara and Valara waterfalls for a quick getaway.

12. Munnar

Munnar is one of the most unique hill stations in South India and an ideal honeymoon pleasure spot. Known as the land of the three rivers, due to the convergence of the Mudhirapuzha, Nallathanni and Kundaly rivers here, Munnar is a great escape from the hustle and bustle of the city. The atmosphere is a romantic and dreamy, with fresh air and green to add to it.

Although there are many activities to do in Munnar, strolling in tea plantations and lush green forests will definitely get in touch with your inner being in the midst of nature. There are many wildlife sanctuaries in the surrounding forests, where you can go and spot exotic animals such as the Nilgiri Tahr, Gaur, Greylag Giant Squirrel and Nilgiri Langur, as well as the elephants.

The most unique thing about this hill station is that every 12 years the blue hills with Neelakurinji flower in full bloom. This phenomenon is the reason why these hills are known as Nilgiris. While it's cold here all the time, the best time to visit Munnar is during the summers from March to May, to beat the heat of the city.

Munnar has tea gardens and colonial heritage, and is also a popular destination for travelers from Delhi, Mumbai, Bangalore, Hyderabad and Chennai. You can explore this hill town and savor its irresistible scenic treats.

13. Vagamon

To witness and feel the best of Vagamon, a famous hill station located on the border of the Idukki and Kottayam districts of Kerala, choose summer. The place is nice at that time of year. Summer highlights all the beautiful features of the mountain station.

The pleasant climate and the cold sea air are discarded by the climate of Vagamon from March to May. The clear sky pleasant sun and the fresh fragrance of tea leaves refresh the mind and soul and make the summer a better choice for tourists who are looking for a visit to Vagamon. Vagamon is famous for green valleys, photography, green hills, crevices and majestic pine forests.

Vagamon hill station has three charming hills such as Thangal Hill, Murugan Hill, and Kurisumala. Vagamon enjoys a healthy temperature throughout the year, compared to other hill stations in Kerala. Visitors can enjoy elephant rides without problems during the summer.

Vagamon is also a sought after place for adventure lovers and secret places to visit in Kerala. With paragliding, hiking and trekking opportunities, Vagamon serves the purpose of sporting activities and gives the much needed adventure option for visitors. If you like adventure, take days off in the summer, get yourself to Vagamon and enjoy the fun-filled hiking and trekking experience. Vagamon is also best known for kayaking, canoeing and boating. The Lakes in Vagamon are very famous and attractive.

5 Things To Do in Kochi

1. Viewing the Chinese Fishing Nets

Without a doubt, Kochi's most popular sight is that of the Chinese fishing nets. These were introduced to the fishermen of Kerala in the 14th century and they bought them out from the court of the then Chinese emperor. You can purchase the fresh morning catch from the fishmongers and have it cooked. You can also enjoy a lavish seafood meal in the nearby shacks while taking in the breath-taking sunset.

2. Visiting the Mattancherry Palace

A fine mix of Kerala and colonial style of architecture, the Mattancherry Palace is set on the backwaters of Kochi. It speaks the tales of the lifestyle and grandeur of the royals in the bygone era. It also houses a temple that is dedicated to goddess Bhagwati and a famous museum that holds intricately detailed, ancient and exquisite Kerala murals for all visitors to see.

3. Enjoying a Kathakali Performance

Kerala has given birth to some of the most popular dance forms in India. One of them is Kathakali. It is a classical dance form of Kerala and has today become an iconic cultural symbol. While visiting Kerala, you must attend a Kathakali performance, in which performers do not sing or speak but enact the stories through graceful gestures, postures, and facial expressions. Other cultural performances including Bharatnatyam, Koothu, and Mohiniyattam you must need to see in Kerala.

In the evening, enjoy a kathakali dance show. Devikulam is nothing less than a call for those who want to know why Kerala is called God's Own Country. Your trip to Kerala is incomplete without attending a cultural show and enjoying a dance show. The elaborate makeup, intricate eye and body details and bright costumes makes the performance even more lively.

4. Shopping at Princess Street

This pulsating street is the hangout place for all the social party-loving people and is one of the best places to visit in Kochi on the way to Munnar. It gives a European feel to the by-passers owing to the small houses built with French and Portuguese sensibilities. It is also dotted with coffee shops and quaint eateries that serve lip-smacking food and beverages.

5. Trying the Varied Cuisine

The cuisine of Kochi is influenced by different ethnicities from across the world. Banana makes an integral part in its preparations and Pazham Pori, Kurukku kaalan, Appam and freshly fried banana chips in coconut oil are must-haves.

There's one thing in common, all of these places have the best foods to experience the Kerala cuisine! So, what are you waiting for? Pack your bags! Your summer vacation is here.
Kalyan Kalyan Author


  1. Holiii !!
    I love visiting all the places where there are waterfalls. I love photographing them.
    Good day!!

  2. I would love to visit the Athirapaly waterfalls. I've always found waterfalls very therapeutic. And by the fact that a lot of animal species can be found there, I'm impressed. No wonder tourists love the place!

  3. So many waterfalls! I love seeing them - it's an amazing natural thing!

  4. We recently visited there. I loved the munnar hills stay. Kerala is so beautiful. I didn't know about Kochi fort.

  5. i think this is a great place to be this summer. thanks for sharing.

  6. I've never been here but I would love to visit. It looks like such a beautiful place.

  7. I have many colleagues from Kerala and they have encouraged me to visit their beautiful state. This is a fantastic guide to assist in the trip planning.

  8. These all look like really pretty places to visit! I especially love the waterfalls!

  9. There are a few places on the list that I hadn't heard of. Clearly India has a lot to offer to the tourist. I particularly liked the section on the Athirapally Waterfalls.

  10. i'd love to go to Kochi one day! the pictures from there always look amazing! Truly a bucket list material.

  11. This is truly a wonderful work of nature, Kochi really has lots to offer for us traveler. This is definitely a place we must include in our bucket list.

  12. I'm always so intrigued and impressed by the gorgeous views around our world! What a beautiful place to visit!

  13. They all do sound like some pretty great places. And i like you enjoy some of the places based on how good the cuisine is and the restaurants they have.


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