15 Best Places to Visit near Kochi - 2020 (Photos & Reviews)
97 Activities
27 Tours
11 Stays
8 Rentals

The fact that there are literally so many places to visit near Kochi makes it one of the most popular travel destinations. Also known as the financial capital of Kerala, Kochi is a beautiful amalgamation of culture, modernization, beaches, waterfalls, and so much more.

It serves as one of the biggest commercial ports of India. 
Kochi is influenced highly by the European, especially British culture and Portuguese-Dutch architecture. Besides the cultural attraction, Kochi also has various other amazing attractions.

Be it the various waterfalls like Athirapally or Vazhachal Falls or the natural beauty at Cherai beach or the man-made wonder like the Idamalayar dams, there are all kinds of exciting places near Kochi.

You can enjoy the relaxation and serenity of the beach resorts in Thrissur or the excitement of the bird watching in the sanctuaries. You can visit the temple at Guruvayur or experience city life at Kottayam. All these places are quite easily accessible from the main Kochi city and make for perfect vacation destinations.

Here are the best places to visit near Kochi:

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01

Kumarakom

Kumarakom

Kumarakom is a small village island located on the largest lake in Kerala i.e. the Vembanad Lake. It is one of the most picturesque places to visit near Kochi with its lush green sceneries, the backwaters, the bird sanctuaries and the houseboats.

Attractions & Activities: 
Kumarakom has a lot of attractions to offer such as the Vembanad lake itself which provides breathtaking views. It also has the Kumarakom bird sanctuary which is home to various migratory birds and you can hire houseboats or motorboats for bird watching and can also do fishing, skiing, wind sailing, etc. It also has various spots around it like the Juma Masjid, a 1000 years old mosque and the Bay Island Driftwood Museum.

Distance from Kochi: 
52 kms

How to reach from Kochi: 
Book a cab or taxi from Kochi to Kumarakom or take a ferry boat ride from marine drive.

Best time to visit: 
September to February.

02

Alleppey

Alleppey
Image Credit : medium.com

Alleppey is a beautiful city in Kerala famous for its backwaters. It is also called the Venice of India with its beautiful backwaters, beaches, lagoons, etc. It is one of the most popular places to visit near Kochi due to the beautiful canals and various activities.

Attractions & Activities: 
The major attraction in Alleppey is the houseboat experience in the backwaters which one can hire. Another major attraction is the Alappuzha or the Alleppey beach. Alleppey also hosts various snake boat races and games seasonally. You can also visit the Krishnapuram Palace and the Poomkavu church. Moreover, there happens a 10-day temple festival in March which you can experience.

Distance from Kochi: 
53 kms.

How to reach from Kochi: 
You can take a taxi or bus or train to Alleppey.

Best time to visit: 
June to March.

03

Cherai Beach

Cherai Beach
Image Credit : pinimg.com

Cherai beach is located on the north side of the Vypeen Island. It is the longest beach in Kerala at 10kms and is also one of the cleanest beaches in India. Cherai beach offers you a relaxing and picturesque amalgamation of the backwaters and the beach.

Attractions & Activities: 
Cherai beaches offers you stunning views from the beach and you can even experience dolphin watching here. It also has a dedicated children’s park for the kids. Besides, you can experience various beach resorts there. Speedboats and water-scooters are also available on rents for tourists.

Distance from Kochi: 
40 kms.

How to reach from Kochi: 
You can drive, take a taxi, bus or a train.

Best time to visit: 
September to March.

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04

Athirapally Waterfall

Athirapally Waterfall
Image Credit : pinimg.com

Athirapally Waterfall is one of the most popular places to visit near Kochi and hosts the biggest waterfall in Kerala at a height of about 80 metres. It drains into the Chalakudy river and offers a stunning view for the tourists.

Attractions & Activities: 
The waterfall itself provides a great scene in itself. A 10-15-minute walk can also take you to the top of the waterfall. You can experience the beautiful view of the Sholayar Hills and the waterfall itself from there.You can also enjoy the adventure of trekking or river rafting here. Though it is generally a one-day trip, but you can also stay in a resort in the rainforests.

Distance from Kochi: 
70 kms.

How to reach from Kochi: 
Drive from Kochi to Athirapally Waterfall.

Best time to visit: 
September to January.

05

Thrissur

Thrissur
Image Credit : wikimedia.org

Thrissur is also known as the cultural capital of Kerala. It is home to various temples and temple festivals along with various beaches and beach resorts for both kinds of experiences. It is located centrally in Kerala and is a popular tourist destination.

Attractions & Activities: 
You can visit the Vadakkumnathan temple here that is one of the most prominent temples here. You can also experience the Thrissur Puram which is called the festival of festivals. You can also visit various beaches like the Nattika beach and relax and refresh yourself in ayurvedic resorts or indulge in water sports like boating, swimming, etc.

Distance from Kochi: 
85 kms.

How to reach from Kochi: 
You can drive or book a cab or taxi.

Best time to visit: 
October to April.

06

Thattekad Bird Sanctuary

Thattekad Bird Sanctuary
Image Credit : t2india.com

The Thattekad Bird Sanctuary was the first bird sanctuary that was built in Kerala. It is definitely one of the most popular places to visit near Kochi. It was also described as the richest bird habitat on peninsular India by Salim Ali, a popular ornithologist. It is located in a forest between the Periyar river’s branches and offers stunning greenery to experience.

Attractions & Activities: 
The best thing to do here is bird watching, of course. You will be able to witness a huge number of different species here that include ashy wood swallow, bronzed drongo, emerald dove, Red kingfisher and so many more. You will need a guide though to fully experience it because they know the best spots for bird watching. You can also take boat rides in the backwaters for an even better experience.

Distance from Kochi: 
50 kms.

How to reach from Kochi: 
You can drive or book a cab or taxi.

Best time to visit: 
November to February.

07

Vazhachal Falls

Vazhachal Falls
Image Credit : pinimg.com

Vazhachal Falls is located in Thrissur near the Athirappally waterfall over the Chalakudy river. It is just 5 kms away from the Athirappally waterfall and descends into the eastern path of the Chalakudy river. It is one of the most beautiful places to visit near Kochi with the Sholayar ranges and lush green forests around it.

Attractions & Activities: 
You can enjoy the thrill of the waterfall itself of course. You can also go nearby to the Athirappally falls where you can trek to the top and enjoy the breathtaking views of the Sholayar range. You can even indulge in some sports like river rafting, etc. The forests near the Vazhachal fall are also home to various endemic species.

Distance from Kochi: 
Around 65 kms.

How to reach from Kochi: 
You can drive or take a cab.

Best time to visit: 
September to January.

08

Idamalayar Dam

Idamalayar Dam
Image Credit : malayalam.samayam.com

It is a multipurpose dam located on the Idamalayar river near Bhoothathankettu. It is a concrete gravity dam at the height of 373 metres. It also acts as a reservoir and helps in creating electricity. It also benefits the irrigation facilities in the area.

Attractions & Activities: 
The dam in itself is a big attraction with its huge build. Also, the area surrounding it has beautiful greenery through the forests and makes for a picturesque area with the Idamalayar river flowing alongside. There are a lot of endemic species of birds and animals around as well. You can explore the forest and the tribal area even further with permission from the authorities there.

Distance from Kochi: 
35 kms.

How to reach from Kochi: 
Drive, take a cab or bus.

Best time to visit: 
October to March.

09

Guruvayur

Guruvayur
Image Credit : wp.com

Guruvayur is also called as the home of Lord Krishna and is home to India’s fourth largest temple in terms of the number of devotees. It is located in Thrissur and besides this temple has a lot of other tourist attractions as well.

Attractions & Activities: 
You can of course visit the Guruvayur temple which hosts more than 7 million devotees annually. During February-March, an annual Guruvayur festival is held that starts with an elephant race. Besides the Guruvayur temple, there are various other temples in the area and the Palayur church as well. Another major attraction includes one of the largest elephants sanitarium in the world in Punnathur Kotta and the relaxing Chowallur beach.

Distance from Kochi: 
77 kms.

How to reach from Kochi: 
You can take a train or a taxi.

Best time to visit: 
October to February.

10

Kottayam

Kottayam
Image Credit : hiqcdn.com

Kottayam is a town located near Kochi and is known to be the first town to have 100% literacy rate in India. It is also known as the Letter capital of India as it is home to various newspaper companies and publishing houses. Moreover, it is known for its spices and rubber trade industries.

Attractions & Activities: 
You can visit Bharananganam which is an important pilgrim centre in south India. It is home to St. Mary’s Syro Malabar Catholic church. Kottayam is well connected to the backwaters and the mountains so it works as a hub for tourists. You can visit various other churches and temples and also hills and beaches from here. It features a food and flower festival in February that is a must see and you can also experience various boat races.

Distance from Kochi: 
60 kms.

How to reach from Kochi: 
You can take a train or a taxi.

Best time to visit: 
October to February.

11

Thommankutthu Falls

Thommankutthu Falls
Image Credit : movingshoe.com

Thommankutthu Falls is located in Idukki district of Kerala. It is one of the most popular attractions for the tourists in Kerala. It is a seven-step waterfall and offers a great view to the tourists. Also, it has a pool at every step and has a height of around 1500m.

Attractions & Activities: 
Thommankutthu Falls offers a stunning view with the seven-step waterfall and multiple smaller falls as well. It is surrounded by forests that can be explored with the help of a guide. You can also do trekking, camping or rock climbing. There is a pool at each step so you can also do swimming. Boating and fishing activities are also available.

Distance from Kochi: 
74 kms.

How to reach from Kochi: 
Take a cab or a bus.

Best time to visit: 
October to March.

12

Bhoothathankettu Dam

Bhoothathankettu Dam
Image Credit : ytimg.com

Bhoothathankettu Dam is one of the most popular places to visit near Kochi and is located in Ernakulam district. It is a picturesque and beautiful dam that is home to some great trekking trails and temples nearby.

Attractions & Activities: 
It is home to a beautiful trekking trails so you can experience different treks here. It offers stunning views of the forests and the sea. You can also do a boat ride here to experience the area even better. Also, you can visit the nearby Salim Ali bird sanctuary and Idamalayar. You can visit the Trikkayoor temple nearby as well.

Distance from Kochi: 
65 kms.

How to reach from Kochi: 
Drive or take a cab.

Best time to visit: 
October to April.

13

Keezharkuthu Falls

Keezharkuthu Falls
Image Credit : blueblindfold.org

Keezharkuthu Falls is another beautiful and popular waterfall near Kochi. It is located in Idukki district and is also known as the rainbow falls. It is at a height of 200 feet and has lush green forest surroundings with some lovely tea gardens.

Attractions & Activities: 
The waterfall provides some stunning views as it cascades from 200 feet and the lighting as well. The surroundings are lush green with beautiful tea gardens as well and makes for a perfect setting for photo enthusiasts. You can also experience rock climbing, mountaineering, etc. Trekking is also an option to explore the forests and the tribal area nearby.

Distance from Kochi: 
87 kms.

How to reach from Kochi: 
Take a bus or book a cab.

Best time to visit: 
September to March.

14

Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary

Salim Ali Bird Sanctuary
Image Credit : wilderhood.com

The Salim Ali bird sanctuary is named after Dr Salim Ali, a famous ornithologist who is also known as the ‘Birdman of India’. This sanctuary is located on the western Ghats and was formed after Dr. Salim Ali’s survey of Travancore.

Attractions & Activities: 
You can do bird watching here amongst the lush greenery. There is a homestay named as the Bird Song Homestay where you can stay and enjoy the environment and chirping of the birds around you. You can enjoy experiences like bonfire, boating, fishing, etc.

Distance from Kochi: 
50 kms.

How to reach from Kochi: 
You can drive or book a cab or taxi.

Best time to visit: 
October to February.

15

Kanjirappally

Kanjirappally is a small town in the Western Ghats of Kerala which is also referred to as the ‘Queen of Malanad’ or ‘Gateway of Malanad’ that means ‘The Land of Mountains’. It is home to numerous rubber plantations and other plantations as well. It offered a great junction for trade because of its location.

Attractions & Activities: 
Kanjirappally is one of the most culturally rich places to visit near Kochi. It has various churches, temples and mosques that you can visit to experience communal harmony and serenity. You can also enjoy the rich plantations and the greenery all along the town. Another popular attraction here are the St Thomas Benedictine Monastery and St Mary’s Church.

Distance from Kochi: 
104 kms.

How to reach from Kochi: 
You can drive your own car or book a cab or taxi.

Best time to visit: 
December to March.

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The trip to Kerala was one of the best trips ever. We had so much fun there. With so much greenery everywhere it was so beautiful and captivating. We enjoyed at waterfalls, beaches. Houseboat stay was a new experience, the trip was well organized, the hotel room was comfortable and cozy, the food provided during the trip was nice, the car given to us was well maintained with an amazing driver. I would love to go again.
03 October 2016
Superb
At the outset i would like to thank you guys for organizing this wonderful trip to Norther Kerala. Apart from a few drawbacks, which obviously happens in any trip, the whole experience has been awesome. I would particularly recommend the resorts in Wayanad and Thekkadi to your future customers also. The stay at Thekkadi was mind soothing and I must say the services and facilities are above par. You and your team have played a very good role in putting together a package to suit my very needs. Since I was looking to travel and see more places than staying in resorts, this trip has given me the opportunity to do so. Nelliyampathi in Palakkad was an absolute gem of a place one must visit. The places all over Wayanad and Munnar gives you the feeling of being in another world altogether. Nature - raw and undisturbed. I am adding few photographs which will tell you the tale themselves.

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