Fort Kochi cultural melange in Kerala
Fort Kochi is a melting pot of cultures. Portuguese, Dutch Jewish and English influences have helped mould the city. It is also a major port and home to Vembanad Lake, the largest in Kerala. Visitors can shop for spices, jewellery, handicrafts, textiles and antiques. The place has incredible art cafes too.
The Jewish Synagogue in Fort Kochi is the oldest existing synagogue of all the 53 member countries of the Commonwealth of Nations. It is known by various other names such asCochin Jewish Synagogue and the Mattancherry Synagogue. When the Jews settled in Mattancherry after their expulsion from Iberia, they built this imposing structure in 1568. The structure on Jew street is remarkable and the highly decorative interiors have huge Belgian Chandeliers and hand painted floor tiles. They added the synagogue’s three-story clock tower two centuries later. Ezekial Rahabi, a leading businessman, directed the construction in 1761. …