Ernakulam is one of the most urbanized places in Kerala. Some of the places that should not be missed out while here are the Hill palace at Thripunithura which is the largest archaeological museum in Kerala. Fort Kochi is quite a scenic beauty to explore the past and the marine life. Fort Kochi is the first European township in India. The Chinese fishing nets are famous which can be seen here. Fort kochi also houses the 16th century Santa Cruz Baisilica which is one of the eight Baisilicas in India. Willingdon island is the largest artificial man-made island in India. Mattanchery was once trade centre of the district. It is now famous for the Mattanchery palace and the paradesi synagogue. The place is inhabited by different communities of people from India and abroad.The place has high historical significance. Cherai beach is an ideal place to take a sunbath or see the Chinese nets and enjoy the waves. Bhoothathankettu dam and forest reserve is a must see for all those who love nature.
Ernakulum is famous for its Penta Menaka duty free shops where all types of foreign goods are available in Marine drive and Spices Street in Mattanchery famous for home made spices.
Ernakulum is known as the gate way to gods own country and tourists who visit this place go back with life long memories. The beautiful Cherai beach with its shallow waters is ideal for swimming and sunbathing and offers adventure sports like water scooter and speed boat rides in the sea and backwaters and entertainments like beach volley for sport lovers. Most of the big hotels and resorts in Ernakulum offer their own forms of entertainments for tourists.
Locals here mainly prefer Keralite cuisines with lots of coconut and spices. Tourists have the option to have all kinds of cuisines like North Indian, South Indian, continental and Chinese cuisines in restaurants across the city. Most of the fast food giants like Pizza hut, Chic King, Marry brown and dominos have a good presence here. The Beach restaurants in fort Kochi and Cherai offer all kinds of sea food cuisines.
Ernakulum district has a mixed population of people from all parts of Kerala and India. So the culture here is entirely different from other parts of Kerala. Some of the prominent personalities of Malayalam Literature like Changampuzha Krishna Pillai; G Sankara Kurup and so on belong to this district. The biggest archaeological and heritage national museum is situated here in Hill Palace.
Ernakulam derive its name from the Tamil word 'Erayanarkulam' meaning the abode of Lord Shiva. The district was formed on 1 April 1958 including some areas from the former Travancore-Kochi-Malabar Kingdoms and mainly consist of the twin cities of Kochin and Ernakulam. Cochin, also called as Queen of the Arabian sea has been a port of interest during the periods of colonialisation and has influenced many aspects of the area.