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Dutch Palace in Kerala

For travelers, the state of Kerala has countless surprises in store historical, religious and ancient. Since most of the seaside cities in the state were a regular haunt of colonial traders including the Portuguese, the Dutch and the French. Many of the colonial structures built centuries ago stand even today as a testimony to the glorious era of the past. One such historical attraction in the Ernakulam district of Kerala is the Dutch Palace. Also called the Mattancherry Palace, the Dutch Palace owes its credit of construction to the Portuguese. In the year 1555, the Portuguese offered the exquisite palace as a gift to Veera Kerala Verma, the king of Cochin. Later, the Dutch took control of the palace and it was from then onwards that it became known as the Dutch Palace.

Visit Timings
Travellers can make a visit to Dutch Palace in Ernakulam anytime between 1000 hours and 1700 hours. On Fridays and national holidays, the palace remains closed. Please also note that photography is not allowed inside the palace.

Attractions
The architecture of the palace follows oriental design. The elegant palatial building stands in two stories. There is a huge courtyard in the central area of the building. In this courtyard stands a temple which remains dedicated to Palayannur Bhagavati, a royal deity. One of the main attractions in Dutch Palace is the Coronation Hall, once used by the rulers of Cochin. Murals dating back to the 17th century decorate the walls of the rooms located here. The wall paintings cover a variety of religious themes, some erotic ones too. One of the murals in the palace room shows a bedchamber where Lord Krishna makes love with eight gopis together. Other historical relics exhibited inside the palace include royal costumes, turbans, arms etc.

Outside the Dutch Palace stand two other temples. These stand on either side of Dutch Palace, being dedicated to Lord Krishna and Lord Shiva.

Kerala truly boasts a rich architectural and cultural legacy. A tour to Dutch Palace will prove a window to the vibrant heritage of the state. Not only this, if you continue your sightseeing tour in and around Ernakulam and Kochi, you are going to visit more and more historical attractions.

Do remember to have a closer look at the exquisitely carved ceilings in rooms which are located adjacent to the Coronation Hall. The mythological paintings (which depict themes from Ramayana and Mahabharata) on the wall and the elegant artwork on ceilings are the major attractions in Dutch Palace of Kerala.

Reaching the Palace
The Nedumbassery International Airport is just at 20 km from Kochi city. After your arrival at the airport, you can hire a taxi to reach the port city. The international airport has regular flights to all the major cities of India and gulf countries. Well connected road routes link Kochi with popular cities like Chennai, Bangalore, Trivandrum, Mumbai, Hyderabad etc. Ernakulam Junction remains linked with all key destinations in the country via express trains.