Kochi, also known as Cochin (KO-chin), is a major port city on the south-west coast of India by the Arabian Sea and is part of the district of Ernakulam in the state of Kerala. It is often called Ernakulam, which refers to the mainland part of the city. With a total metropolitan population of 2.1 million. It is the largest city in Kerala.
The city of Kochi gained importance as a port in 1341 AD, when the port at Kodungallur was ruined by flooding of the
Periyar River. In the 15th century, this port city began prospering, as the Portuguese penetrated the Indian Ocean. The
first Portuguese factory was established by Vasco da Gama, while the first European fort in India was built by the
Portuguese Viceroy, Afonso de Albuquerque. In 1635, the British settled in Kochi; however, the Dutch forced them out
People & Culture of Kochi
Eleven years later, the Corporation of Kochi was formed by the unification of Fort Kochi, Mattancherry and Ernakulam
along with some nearby villages. From then on, Kochi became a major commercial and industrial centre of India.
Over the course of time, successive waves of migration of Malayalis, Konkanis, Gujaratis, Punjabis, Tamilians and Jews
have made Kochi a cultural melting pot. Home to the Cochin Stock Exchange, Cochin Special Economic Zone and
Infopark and International Container Transshipment Terminal, Kochi is referred to as the commercial capital of Kerala.
Renowned as one of the fastest growing second-tier metros in India, Kochi is a booming centre of information
technology, tourism and international trade.