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Cochin, India

Kochi (colonial name Cochin) is a vibrant city situated on the southwest coast of the Indian peninsula, in the spectacularly scenic and prosperous state of Kerala. Flanked by the Western Ghats on the east and the Arabian Sea on the west, Cochin has one of the finest natural harbors in the world and for centuries was the center of the spice trade. Ancient mariners from the Middle East, China and Europe all left their mark on this beautiful city, and its diverse past is reflected in its steep-roofed bungalows, colonial buildings, spice and antique shops, its cathedral, palaces and synagogue.