Kochi Heritage Walk covers Mattancherry

The second heritage walk organized by the India Heritage and Museum Field School on Sunday, covered the heritage structures of Mattancherry, which was once the seat of Kochi’s royal family, and a twin town of Fort Kochi.

Participants of the first Heritage Walk covered Fort Kochi a week ago.

Mattancherry was the seat of the Cochin Royals, a twin town with Fort Kochi. The city is more than just a microcosm of a bygone era – traders, travelers, culture and culinary traditions from more than three dozen communities with roots in every corner of the country. Members of these communities coexist peacefully within a small radius of 5 km in the city, a perfect model of unity in diversity.

The month-long Heritage Walk series was organized to highlight the importance of creating experiential awareness through heritage trails through significant parts of the city. Highlighting its impact on the local climate and environment, the event combines traditional history with unique stories to bring people closer to their local heritage and culture.

During the walk, the more than two dozen participants, including children, took a look at the origins of the Perumpadappu Swaroopam, and how they came to rule Kochi, how Mattancherry became the kingdom’s capital of Kochi and also how Konkanis has influenced businesses in Kochi. They then followed the same path taken by the Maharajas during their coronation and then took a look at the enterprising Gujaratis and how they called Kochi home, the Tamil Brahmins Agraharams and the Jews. The heritage walk ended at Mattancherry Palace.

The march was led by Johann Binny Kuruvilla, a Kochi-based travel entrepreneur and heritage evangelist. He is the founder of the Kochi Heritage Project and Forum, an initiative to document the history, heritage, art, culture and its people of Kochi. He also runs an adventure travel agency.

Similar heritage walks will take place on the next two Sundays – in Ernakulam and Thripunithura.

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