Fort Kochi in Ernakulum district is one of the major tourist attractions in Kerala. Before the colonial era fort Kochi was just a small fishing village and the name came into existence when Portuguese built a fort near the waterfront in the 16th century. Fort Kochi was known for its commercial activities far and wide during the colonial days and it was famous as a trade centre, military base, cultural centre, ship building activities and centre for Christianity. Today after all these century’s fort Kochi is home to nearly thirteen communities. Fort Cochin is a blend of medieval villages of Portuguese, Dutch and British blended into the traditional Kerala style. This is the only place in India where you can see a fascinating mix of giant Chinese fishing nets, centuries old synagogue, ancient mosques and old houses built by the Portuguese, Dutch and British. It is an ideal holiday destination to spend your time in some of the finest home stays and heritage accommodations. Some of the hallmarks of Fort Kochi are the Chinese fishing nets dotting along the beach which is the legacy of the first visitors to this spot. The clean beach here is a popular attraction for locals as well as tourists to hangout in small seafood restaurants selling fresh sea foods. There is a beautiful lighthouse situated at one end of the beach. The best way to explore this historic town filled with tales of seafaring visitors is by foot organized by the Kochi Corporation as part of the Kerala tour packages. Some of the interesting spots included in this tour are Vasco Da Gama Square, St.Francis Church, Santa Cruz Basilica, VOC Gate and Bastion Bungalow.