2 Nov 2013

Our Arrival In India: Fort Cochin & Cherai Beach

Two flights, a taxi ride and 13 hours later we arrived safely at Cherai Beach Resort, on Vypeen Island. It's a very narrow island, to the front of our resort is a golden sandy beach and the back sits right on the river aka backwaters.  Our home for three days was a traditional Keralan style fisherman's hut set amongst tropical landscaped gardens and lagoons. A relaxing, picturesque setting to begin our Indian adventure…

Not bad for our first stop.

After a few hours napping we set out with high expectations for a tasty Keralan lunch and were not disappointed. To our delight we were served huge king prawns in a delicious yellow, onion sauce and a spicy Keralan fish curry with paratha bread - it was so delicious we forget to take a pic (a first for Vicky?). The seafood here is so fresh - always caught that morning - prawns, crabs and local fish are on every menu. Prawns vary in size a LOT - the bigger the prawn the more important the guest - the hotel serves the smallest (cocktail size) and are the most expensive! Our first lunch for two cost just 400 rupees (£4) inclusive of three cokes - bargain.

Love these puppets for sale in Fort Cochin.

The main attraction in this part of Kerala is Fort Cochin - a rather bumpy 40 minute rickshaw ride to the other end of the island and a very quick hop on the car/passenger ferry for 2 rupees (2P) and you're there. It's a pretty port town of small alleys and streets with Portugese and Dutch influences. We stumbled across Teapot (a cafe decorated with over 200 teapots) and popped in for a cuppa, we sipped chai and jasmine green tea to the sound of um, jingle bells! To be honest there is not a lot to see in terms of attractions in Cochin but its a pleasant setting for a few hours stroll and shopping - we found an amazing furniture shop and were very tempted to ship a beautiful bedstead, giant horse and ornate wardrobe home. Next time. Upon the sound of thunder we made a dash for the ferry for our wet, bumpy rickshaw home. 

Street Graffiti in Fort Cochin - nice antlers dear!

That evening the rain was bordering on torrential but we wanted more culinary delights from the local restaurants so located our mini brolly and set off for the T junction which serves as the resort hub. To our despair all lights were off. Sob. Fear not though - we were saved by generous Indian hospitality! Manoj, a guy we bought trousers from the day before offered to cook for us at the his home stay/restaurant. Phew! His mum actually did the cooking - amazing fresh crab masala - it was so good and we learnt how to crack crab shell with our teeth, well, kind of we made quite a mess but at least we didn't crack a tooth! His mate also popped the shop and returned with cold beer, stomachs full we were escorted home via rickshaw to save us the wet walk home.

Waiting to board the 2 rupees ferry back to Vypeen Island.

For our final day at Cherai Beach it would be rude not to spend it at the beach, right? It was lovely, we even spied a dolphin enjoying a midday swim in the surf (sorry, no pic - too slow). Unfortunately, Friday is a 'dry day' in Kerala so no beer - NO BEER - a Friday first for Steve! Instead we gauged on seafood and lots of ice cream - the Keralan version of rock and roll!

The weather? We guess its around 30 degrees with hazy sunshine and very humid - its actually their 'second Monsoon' season right now so it clouds over late afternoon then rains and thunders.  Given the lack of bars around and 'dry Fridays' we're very grateful for our Mac in the evenings. Cherai Beach is an ideal place to chill out and three days was the perfect amount of time for us.

On a totally separate note as its Movember and almost every man in India has one, should Steve grow a moustache? Please vote below.


  1. Steve should totally gro a mo (see what I did there?)

    Also, I think he should come back without a haircut - steve with a ponytail would be priceless

  2. Yes, Steve should definitely grow a moustache. Daily ste-mo photos on the blog please!

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  4. Loving the first blog hun. Yes steve should, its rude not to fit in with the locals!

  5. Yes Steve should join in Movember

  6. Steve is ON the case for a mo' - not sure on the ponytail idea though...