Sree Vellat Puthur Shiva Temple
The Sree Vellat Puthur Shiva Temple is only an hour away from the famous Guruvayoor Temple in Kerala, yet very few people know about this very powerful Shiva temple nestled, almost hidden, in a tiny town called Perintalmanna, in the western ghats in Kerala.
(Note: "The Sree Vellat Puthur Shiva Temple is atleast 1,500 years old and is in urgent need of renovation and for expanding its facilities for the multitudes of people who now visiting the temple from all over the world for Lord Shiva's blessings.
The renovations are planned to be done in five phases at a total cost of approximately Rs. 1 crore.)
St. Francis Chruch
Situated at Parade Road, 2 Km west of Mattancherry in Fort Cochin, this church
was originally dedicated to Santo Antonio, the patron Saint of Portugal. It was
built by the Portuguese presumably by the Franciscan friars in 1503. It is the
first church to have been built in the new European influenced tradition. The
original structure in wood, was rebuilt in stone around the mid 6th century.
Vasco - Da - Gama the first European to reach India, died in Kochi in 1524 and
was originally buried in this church cemetery. After 14 years his remains were
removed to Lisbon in Portugal. The gravestone of Vasco - da - Gama can still be
seen here. The old rope operated fans in the church are still preserved.
In 1663, when the Dutch arrived in Kochi, they converted it to a protestant
church and substantially modified it. The church was under the control of the
Dutch until 1795. In 1804, they surrendered the church to the Anglican Communion
of the British. The congregation joined the Protestant Church of South India in
1949. The Sunday service is at 0800 hrs, except the 3rd Sunday of each month.
Open from sunrise to sunset. Read more details.
Santa Cruz Cathedral, Fort Kochi
This Roman Catholic Cathedral close to St. Francis Church, was built by the
Portuguese and elevated to a Cathedral by Pope Paul IV in 1558. In 1795, the
British demolished the original building. Nearly a hundred years later in 1887,
Bishop Dom Gomez Ferriera commissioned a new building which was proclaimed as a
Basilica in 1984 by Pope John Paul II. Built in the neo-classical style the
pulpit is carved on wood and has a fantastic pastel-coloured interior. This
church has some very beautiful paintings on the ceiling. Read more details.
St.George Ferona Church
Located in Edappally, 10 km from Kochi, this Roman Catholic church is one of the
oldest churches in Kerala. It was built in 594 AD in the land donated by the
Raja of Edappally. In 1080, a new church was built adjacent to the old church.
The deity is popular known for his powers of get rid of snakes.
The annual nine day festival is celebrated in the month of May. Vendors sell all
kinds of wares mainly mud vessels during this festival. The main offering here
is chicken and devotees cook and eat food.
This festival which is commemorated every year on the 4th of May is famous all
over Kerala. The main offering here is chicken and eggs. These chickens are
auctioned during the festival season which the devotees buy as a 'nercha'
(offering) which they cook in the church premises. The festival begins on 23rd
of April with solemn High Mass and Litany and on 25th flag is hoisted solemnly
and ceremoniously. On 4th the idol of the deity is taken out in a grand
procession when people throw 'Pori and beetle leaves as an offering. Band
orchestra, different varieties of 'Panchavadyams' etc accompanied this
procession along with the devotees.
The whole compound converts into a commercial venue with shops. Vendors sell all
kinds of wares mainly mud vessels during this festival.