Kochi is a cosmopolitan city in Kerala with a bustling commercial port. Kochi is the financial and commercial capital of Kerala and, with a population of more than 2 million, the biggest conurbation in the state.
Kochi merchants began trading in spices such as black pepper and cardamom with the Arabs, Dutch, Phoenicians, Portuguese and Chinese more than 600 years ago. This helped Kochi to prosper and to become the gateway to old India. It was from Kochi that the colonization of India started.
Kochi has a cosmopolitan culture, highly influenced by historical trading partners, Portuguese, Dutch, Arab, Chinese, and Japanese. Kochi is the seat of the Latin church of Kerala and has many Catholic churches and followers.