Steeped in colonial charm, Fort Kochi was among the first European townships in India. Located to the south of Fosse Street, Fort Kochi is a serene stopover boasting narrow streets lined with tall trees and colourful flowers peeking out of windows of old houses. Built by the Portuguese in 1506, the fort still reflects vestiges of its glorious past. Of particular interest are the streets of Fort Kochi that leave one in awe of the culture and heritage they so boldly display. Some of the popular haunts include Princess Street, Burger Street, Rose Street, Tower Road etc. You can enjoy a quiet stroll along Mattancherry roads like Jew Street, Palace Road and TD School Road that transport you to a different era. Fort Kochi Beach, lying nearby, is another attraction. A blanket of golden sand, skirted by tranquil waters, Fort Kochi Beach is one of the best natural retreats in the city. Lined with swaying palms and dense bushes, it offers a picturesque view of the surroundings. The beach also holds appeal for adventure-lovers, who can indulge in sports like snorkelling, windsurfing, canoeing, kayaking, scuba diving, catamaran sailing and parasailing. Perhaps the best attraction of the beach is the spectacular view of sunsets one can get from here. Gaze in awe as the burning orb of the sun dips into the serene waters, painting the sky in a canvas of red and orange. The Chinese fishing nets and the sailing ships add to the picturesque view. Many European-style bungalows dot the shoreline, and the coastline has many small stalls, where one can take one's fill of mouth-watering traditional dishes made using freshly caught fish.