My first solo trip! I never thought I had the courage to this but here I am writing this down on completion of my trip! This trip was a spontaneous decision to take a break from my frustrations.
I called up Zostel 022 4896 2270 on a Friday evening, asked them if they have a room available, they said yes, for INR 500. I booked it over a phone call followed by bus tickets from Bangalore to Kochi on Goibibo for INR 2000 return. You can get it for much cheaper also if you book in advance.
This is the second time I visited Kochi. First was in 2016 and next one is now, 2019.
One way journey takes 10 hours to travel. So I left Bangalore on Friday evening, reached Kochi on Saturday morning around 8:30. I was planning to take an auto from my bus stand to Zostel Kochi but they were charging INR 500 so decided to take a local bus. The local bus stand was right opposite where I got down. Locals said all the buses will go to Fort Kochi. I got in one of the buses ( INR 10) with the help of local. The conductor turned out good and I had to change a bus which no one but the conductor told me. I asked the locals about the bus for Fort Kochi and they helped me get into another bus ( INR 17 ). I had kept Google Maps on and got down at the nearest spot to Zostel.
I reached Zostel at 10 am. Check in was at 12 noon. They have amazing policies. They let you hand around the property before check in and after check out. They let you have free filtered water.
I took a shower in a common bathroom! I never thought I would do this but humidity forced me to.
I was planning for Kochi Muziris Biennale. I was dreaming about it for almost 12 hours! I had thought of all the pictures I wanted to click but bam! Turns out March 31st was the last day. I altered my plans and after check in around 11, I left for Kashi Art Café for brunch.
Post-brunch I wandered around the streets aimlessly. Revisited St Francis Church.
Returned to Zostel for a nap in the afternoon.
Around 4:45 pm, I left for a Kathakali performance. Lonely Planet recommended Kerala Kathakali Centre was just 350 meters away from Zostel. I booked the tickets from Zostel in the morning itself. Since the cost was the same INR 350 and I would get better seats.
I reached the auditorium at 5 and I was handed over a paper with the story of that day’s performance.
Kathakali show started at 6 with them explaining about natural ingredients of makeup, mudras, etc. The beautiful cultural show ended at 7:30 pm.
I went to Loafer’s Corner Café for dinner and had Sprouts salad and hot milk ( INE 280)! It was delicious!
I started walking home. It was dark and I saw a foreigner walking ahead of me. I was getting frightened in walking alone so I asked her if she was headed towards Zostel. Thankfully she was and turned out to be my roommate! Beth was from England and we made plans for breakfast the next day.
Our 3rd solo traveler roommate also joined us for breakfast today. We left for Pepper Café ( 1.5km ) from Zostel in an auto ( INR 80 – you can try to bargain )
After a sumptuous brunch and spending amazing time, we left for Jewish Synagogue. We learnt about its history by listening to a guide which was rich in history. It is shut on Saturdays so plan accordingly. Entry fee is INR 5.
We aimlessly wandered around the streets. Shopped a little around Kochi Fishing Nets shopping market. We reached this beautiful property. I do not know what is the name of this place, but it is a beautiful restaurant. We purchased spices and perfumes.
I headed to Zostel post this while Vidya and Beth continued the tour. It was 3 when I reached Zostel, I spent some time reading and left to catch my bus at 4:30 pm for Bangalore.