The southern state of Kerala has a network of serene backwater canals that extend more than 550 miles (900 km) and offer a glimpse of an India that’s more relaxed than the India you’ll see in big cities. Here are some options for exploring them.
Dutch Cemetery Road, Fort Kochi, Kochi, Kerala, India
A popular stop on Fort Cochin historical tours, this old gated cemetery is distinctly Dutch. Many of the tombs are made of granite, and the epitaphs on each show the records of those of both Dutch and British origin etched out in old Dutch script. The last person laid to rest in the Dutch Cemetery in Kochi was Captain Joseph Ethelbert Winckler in 1913.
Things to Know Before You Go
The Dutch cemetery is a must-visit for history buffs.
Wear sunscreen, bug repellent, and good footwear.
The gates of the cemetery are often locked; those wishing to access it should ask at nearby St. Francis Church.
How to Get There
The Dutch Cemetery is located in the historic Fort Cochin area, about a half hour drive west of the main city of Ernakulam. The cemetery is on the road that runs parallel to Fort Kochi Beach, south of the Chinese fishing nets and about a 10-minute walk from the Santa Cruz Basilica.
When to Get There
The cemetery can be visited throughout the year, but travelers should note that weather might make the experience less than comfortable. The best time to visit is during the cooler, drier winter months of December through February. March through May can get really hot, while heavy rains can put a literal damper on your visit June through October.
From 1661 through 1795, the Dutch East India Company had a stronghold in the Malabar Coast area, in alliance with the Kingdom of Kochi. Fort Cochin was originally established by the Portuguese, captured by the Dutch in 1663, and then surrendered to the British in 1795. The influences of all three colonial powers can be seen in the area to this day, particularly in local architecture.
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