In use since 1350. Built in teak and bamboo they work on the principle
of level. It-s impressive to observe the spectacle as the fishermen let down the net into the sea and as they pull it back up.
Usually fishing net is of property of 5/10 families who share the fish. You can buy the fresh fish on the spot and have it cooked
The Santa Cruz Basilica is a historic church that was built by the
Portuguese. The church was elevated to a cathedral by Pope Paul IV in 1558 AD. In 1795 AD, it fell into the hands of the British
when they took over Cochin and was demolished.
About a hundred years later, Bishop Dom Gomez Ferreira commissioned a new building at the same site in 1887 AD. The church was proclaimed a Basilica in 1984 by Pope John Paul II.
SAN FRANCIS CHURCH
St. Francis Church is a granite church set on quiet lawns amidst the
bustle of Fort Kochi, 10 kms from Ernakulam. Originally named as Santo Antonio, this protestant church was originally built by the
Europeans in India.
Vasco da Gama was buried here in 1524 AD. Though 14 years later his mortal remains were taken to Portugal, the carved gravestone can still be seen in the church.
It also has crypts of Portugese nobles. St. Francis Church was the first church to have been built in the new European influenced style and tradition. The original wooden building of 1510 AD was replaced by the present building around 1546 AD.
Under the Dutch, the church was renovated and became protestant in 1663
AD. Inside the church, various tombstone inscriptions have been placed in the walls, the earliest of which dates back to 1562 AD.
The impressive façade with multi curved sides became the model for most of the churches in India. Now a protected monument, the Church is presently owned by the Church of South India (CSI).
A cenotaph erected in 1920 AD, in memory of the residents of Cochin who fell in the First Great War was unveiled by the Governor of Madras. The boundary walls were erected in 1924 AD.
There are regular worship meetings in the church every Sunday and commemorative days. The church remains open on week days for visitors and tourists.
Built by the Portuguese in 1557 and presented to Raja Veera Kerala
Varma of Kochi, the palace was renovated in 1663 by the Dutch. On display here are beautiful murals depicting scenes from the
epics, Ramayana and Mahabharata and some of the puranic Hindu legends. The palace is open for public viewing from 10:00 am to 6:00
pm. all week days except Fridays
The Jewish Synagogue, the oldest Synagogue in the common wealth
countries was built in 1568 AD. Located at Mattancherry, the Synanogue still has the scrolls of the Old Testament and the copper
plates, which recorded the grants of privilege, bequeathed by the Kochi rulers.
Rebuilt by Dutch after having been partially destroyed in the war of 1662 AD, the exquisite hand painted blue Chinese tiles offer an interesting sight. In mid-18th century, the clock tower was added.
Not one of the nearly two hundred year old tiles resembles another. There are several finely wrought gold and silver crowns gifted to the synanogue by the various patrons.
The Synagogue is open to public from 10 am to 12 noon and 3 pm to 5 pm on all days except Saturdays and Jewish holidays.
Kerala owes its transnational fame to the nearly 300-year-old classical dance form of Kathakali, which combines facets of ballet, opera, masque and pantomime. It is said to have evolved from other performing arts like Kootiyattam and Ramanattam.
Kathakali explicates events and stories from the Indian Epics and
'Puranas', ancient scriptures. Presented in the temple precincts after dusk falls, Kathakali is heralded by the Kelikottu or the
beating of drums in accompaniment of the Chengila (gong).
The dancers adorn themselves with huge skirts and head-dress, wearing a most intricate style of make-up. The richness of this riveting mix of colour, expression, music, drama and dance is unparalleled in any other art form.
The dance form requires lengthy and rigorous training to attain complete control of the body and sensitivity to emotion so as to be able to render all its nuances through facial expressions and hand gestures. Themes revolve around the two great epics, the Ramayana and the Mahabharatha.
Kathakali lays great emphasis on complex body movements and facial expressions. It is an exacting art form, which demands years of rigorous training. Until the beginning of this century, Kathakali aspirants stayed with the Guru or teacher, right from a young age and underwent a twelve-year course.
With the advent of formal training centres, this 'Gurukula' system has virtually disappeared. As in Kalarippayattu, massage forms an integral part of Kathakali training. The massage aims at acquiring body suppleness.
Students of Kathakali have to undergo rigorous training replete with oil massages and separate exercises for the eyes, lips, cheeks and the neck. 'Abhinaya' or expression is of as prime importance as 'nritya' or dance and 'geetham' or song.
Complementing highly evocative facial expressions, the 'mudras', and the music- both vocal and instrumental, Kathakali unfolds stories from a bygone era with finesse reminiscent of the Greek plays.
The accompanying instruments of the orchestra consist in two drums- the 'Maddalam' and 'Chenda', the 'Chengila', which is a bell metal gong and the 'Ilathalam' or cymbals.