Today we decide to explore Fort Cochin with the traditional 'tuk tuk' tour...stopping at every shop so the driver can get a commission on anything we buy.
Our first stop is the Santa Cruz Cathederal Basilica built in 1505 by the Portugese (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Santa_Cruz_Basilica). Still used today for Mass and weddings, it is fairing better than most of the other ancient churches.
Onward to the local markets, where fresh fruit, fish chicken and goat abound all freshly killed. As usual, we have to stop off at some 'local' businesses, but you cannot buy everything and the $A is low against the Indian Rupee making most things expensive.
We stop off at the Jewish Synagogue (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paradesi_Synagogue) but it is closed as is the 'Dutch Palace'' (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mattancherry_Palace)
More fascinating is the old Portugese/Dutch Spice Stores on the harbour, still in use and a wealth of aromas and old world charm.
Dinner that night is "choose your own seafood" from the local fishing net stands....we settle on 10 giant prawns and a searfish (cost $A8). Then take them to the local outdoor restaurant and they arrived at our table grilled with spices, garlic and ginger....all up about $A20
A long hot tiring day with the humidity a bit on the high side and a blistering sun but tomorrow will bring another day's adventures in Fort Cochin.