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Did you know that in ancient times, a sack of Indian black pepper was considered to be worth a man’s life? Centuries ago, merchants in Kerala were trading spices in exchange for gold and precious stones. In fact, it was the bustling spice trade that put India, especially the Malabar Coast, on the world map. In those days, Ernakulam was the centre of a historic spice route that attracted the likes of popular explorers like Vasco Da Gama and Pedro Álvares Cabral. Today, the influence of various civilizations such as Persian, Chinese, Dutch, Portuguese, Jews, French and English are evident in the art, architecture, cuisine and communities of Ernakulam. Check out the places to visit in Ernakulam that’ll let you live its history.

10 Places in Ernakulam you must explore

Boasting a white-sandy beach, captivating island, heritage museums, and so much more, Ernakulam encompasses an array of magnificent attractions. Visit this wondrous city in God’s own country – Kerala and have a wholesome excursion. But, before beginning your expedition make sure to check out these stunning places to visit in Ernakulam and remain spellbound.

  • The Museum of Mattancherry
  • Vypeen Island
  • Thattekkad Bird Sanctuary
  • Cherai Beach
  • MG Road
  • Hill Palace
  • David Hall Art Gallery
  • Folklore Museum
  • Princess Street
  • Santa Cruz Basilica

1. The Museum of Mattancherry

Visit the Museum of Mattancherry, one of the must-explore places to visit in Ernakulam

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A stroll through the lanes of Fort Kochi will definitely attract you to the rustic and old-fashioned neighbourhood of Mattancherry. It is said that back in the days, this cheri (street), was lined with mutton butchers, and so it ended up being called “Muttoncherry” which over the years evolved into “Mattancherry”. Today the place exhibits centuries-old architectures and various social and cultural imprints left behind by foreigners. Declared as a heritage site by the government, Mattancherry has been an inspiration to historians, film-makers, travellers and artistes alike. Amongst all the Ernakulam tourist places, this museum is one of the most prominent places to visit in Ernakulam in 1 day.

Location: Mattancherry, Kochi, Kerala 682002

Must Read: 8 Best Beaches Near Ernakulam Which One Must Visit For A Perfect Beach Vacation

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2. Vypeen Island

Witness the stunning scenic view of the Vypeen Island in Ernakulam,

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Vypeen is one of the popular places to visit in Ernakulam in one day and certainly one of the best islands in Kerala. A short and beautiful ferry ride from the city will take to this serene island which is dotted with beaches, backwaters and an array of restaurants and hotels. A desktop worthy scenery away from the bustling environment is what makes Vypeen island one of the best places to visit in Ernakulam for lovers.

Location: Kochi, Kerala

3. Thattekkad Bird Sanctuary

Visit the richest bird sanctuary at Thattekkad Bird Sanctuary and witness the endangered species of birds in Ernakulam

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One of the first bird sanctuaries in Kerala and undeniably a haven for nature enthusiasts. In the words of Salim Ali (world famous ornithologist), Thattekkad is the “richest bird sanctuary in India” since it is home to hundreds of different endangered species of migratory birds. This thick deciduous forest has plantations of mahogany, teak, rosewood and rubber running through it. Make sure to bring along a pair of binoculars to get a glimpse of the birdlife. The best time to visit would be between November and March.

Location: Kothamangalam-Pooyamkutty Road, Nyayapally PO, Thattekad, Kerala 686681

Suggested Read: 37 Amazing Things To Do In Kerala For An Incredible Holiday

4. Cherai Beach

Cherai Beach is one of the gorgeous places to visit in Ernakulam.

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Located on the north end of Vypin island in Kochi, Cherai beach is a 15 km stretch of wild and rugged beauty. Although not overwhelmed by hotels or major restaurants, the beach is dotted with small shacks selling local snacks like pakoras and chips. Stunning lagoons, wide paddy fields and coconut grooves adorn the road to the beach. Ernakulam sightseeing is not complete without a visit to Cherai beach.

Location: Ernakulam, Kerala

5. MG Road

Grab the unique and quality stuffs from Mahatma Gandhi Road in Ernakulam

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The Mahatma Gandhi Road could be called the Times Square of Ernakulam. Grand clothing stores, expansive jewellery stores and fabulous eateries serving multi-cuisines, flank the road of both sides. Visited mostly by the young and hip crowd, MG road is a shopaholic’s paradise and undoubtedly the best place to enjoy shopping in Kerala.

Location: Mahatma Gandhi Rd, Kochi, Kerala

Suggested Read: 9 Holy Temples In Ernakulam You Can Visit For A Spiritual Detox

6. Hill Palace

Hill Palace is a heritage museum  that exhibits numerous unique artifacts

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Hill Palace is a prominent Heritage museum, which exhibits countless archaeological relics and belongings of the Maharaja of Kochi. This famous palace, which was built in 1865, comprises forty-nine buildings with enchanting gardens and a children’s park. It is opened to the public from 9 AM to 12 noon and from 2 PM to 4: 30 PM. Of all the majestic Ernakulam tourist places, Hill Palace is certainly one of the top attractions.

Location: Hill Palace Rd, Irumpanam, Thrippunithura, Ernakulam, Kerala 682301

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7. David Hall Art Gallery

David Hall Art Gallery kb6592

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A Dutch bungalow near the Dutch cemetery in Fort Kochi got renovated to become a major attraction for art lovers. One of the best places to visit in Ernakulam, the gallery exhibits works by prominent and local artists. Travellers will also be delighted to find a cosy garden restaurant which serves a variety of cakes and snacks; however the café is known for its fresh and crispy pizzas.

Location: 1/264, Napier Street Opp. Parade Ground, Fort Kochi, Kochi, Kerala 682001

Suggested Read: 7 Gorgeous Villas In Ernakulam Where You Can Plan A Lavish Stay

8. Folklore Museum

Experience the rare exhibits at Folklore Museum in Ernakulam

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Folklore Museum is one of the popular tourist spots in the city. It is a three storied complex that showcases cultural exhibits and tribal artefacts. The Museum design was greatly inspired by the Malabar architecture. The museum is opened to the public from 9: 30 Am to 7 PM on a regular basis.

Location: Near, 2059C No 26 Pandit Karuppan Road, Thevara Ferry Road, Junction, Kochi, Kerala 682013

9. Princess Street

Discover the lifestyle of locals while exploring the Princess Street

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Vasco Da Gama is believed to have lived in the building at the end of this street. The road is now lined with eateries, bookstores, cafes and small hotels. Similar to MG road, Princess Street too is a shopper’s delight. Hands down, this vibrant attraction is one of the best places to visit in Ernakulam. If you are looking for places to visit in Ernakulam for couples who bond over shopping, Princess Street is the place to explore.

Location: Princess St, Fort Kochi, Kochi, Kerala 682001

Suggested Read: 18 Waterfalls Near Ernakulam That Will Leave You Enthralled With Their Splendour

10. Santa Cruz Basilica

Feel the positive energy at one of the religious places to visit near Ernakulam,the Santa Cruz Basilica

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It is deemed as one of the oldest cathedrals across the nation and is one of the finest architectural marvels in India. The spectacular historical painting inscribed on the walls of the building is the unique feature of this cathedral.

Location: Bastian St, Fort Nagar, Fort Kochi, Kochi, Kerala 682001

Further Read: 6 Unusual Yet Exciting Things To Do In Ernakulam On Your Next Kerala Trip!

Ernakulam is a social hub where travellers and locals get together to exchange ideas and have fun. Plan a trip to this gorgeous city with our Kerala Tour Packages and experience the untouched beauty of South India. Travellers with a sense of adventure and curiosity will have a great time in Ernakulam.

Frequently Asked Questions About Places To Visit in Ernakulam

Is it safe to visit Ernakulam during COVID times?

You need to follow all the mandatory guidelines mentioned by the government such as maintaining social distance, wearing a mask at public places, washing or sanitizing hands after entry & exit, etc.

What is Ernakulam special?

The Marine Drive of Ernakulam is a busy waterfront promenade in Kerala where boats offer backwater cruises. Kerala Folklore and Hill Palace museums are the iconic tourist attractions to know local heritage of art and antiquities. Broadway and MG Road markets are popular places to check out the collections of fabrics, crafts, and spices. It is an amazing place to enjoy South Indian cuisine.

How do I spend a day in Ernakulam?

The following are the best places to spend a day in Ernakulam:
1. Marine Drive
2. Gallery Of Contemporary Art
3. Cochin Jewish Synagogue
4. Dutch Palace
5. Indo Portuguese Museum
6. Santa Cruz Basilica
7. Chinese Fishing Nets

Which is the richest district in Kerala?

Ernakulam district in Kerala is the richest district in Kerala. It is the biggest commercial centre in the state and a hub of visitors and travelers from across the world.

Which are some of the best places to visit in Ernakulam?

Some of the best places to visit in Ernakulam include:
1. Cherai Beach
2. Vypeen Island
3. MG Road
4. Thattekkad Bird Sanctuary
5. The Museum of Mattancherry

Where can I go shopping in Ernakulam?

If you are visiting Ernakulam, you must head to MG Road for shopping. The place houses a multitude of clothing stores, jewellery stores, famous eateries, and so much more. One can also visit Princess Street for shopping in Ernakulam.

Which are the most fun places to visit with family in Ernakulam?

Some of the most fun places to visit in Ernakulam with family and friends are as follows:
1. Cherai Beach
2. Folklore Museum
3. Princess Street
4. MG Road
5. Thattekkad Bird Sanctuary

Which are the best museums to visit in Ernakulam?

The Museum of Mattancherry and Hill Palace are prominent museums located in Ernakulam. Both the museums are heritage sites and house a number of prominent artefacts, archaeological relics, and antiques.

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