The Chinese Fishing Nets, known as “Cheenavala” in Malayalam, are thought to have been brought to Kochi by the Chinese explorer Zheng He, who served in the court of Kubla Khan. These iconic fishing nets became a fixture on the shores of Kochi sometime between 1350 and 1450 AD.
Chinese fishing nets, also known as shore-operated lift nets, are traditional fishing devices widely employed in the Indian state of Kerala, particularly within the city of Kochi, often referred to as Cochin. These unique contraptions can also be spotted in various regions of China and throughout Southeast Asian countries, making them a distinctive and iconic draw for tourists.
Chinese Fishing Nets stand as one of the foremost tourist attractions in Fort Kochi, cementing their status as an iconic landmark of the area. Kochi, a captivating destination in its own right, beckons travelers from around the globe, inviting them to savor its stunning attractions and immerse themselves in the city’s rich heritage. A visit to Fort Cochin is incomplete without an excursion to the Chinese Fishing Nets.
Conclude your day in Fort Kochi with a leisurely stroll along the beach and the River Road promenade. The introduction of Chinese Fishing Nets to this locale can be traced back to the traders of Kublai Khan, and as you observe the fishermen skillfully employing the bamboo apparatus to ensnare their catch, you’ll be drawn into the allure of this unique spectacle. Numerous street vendors dot the area, offering an array of goods, from handicrafts and plastic icing guns to hair bands. The prospect of purchasing freshly caught fish for a local culinary experience is particularly enticing. Sit back with a cup of tea on the beach and bask in the ambiance as you watch the people and the breathtaking evening scenery. Witnessing the sun reluctantly dip behind the clouds is a mesmerizing sight.
Cochin, the second-largest city in Kerala, also serves as a bustling commercial hub. Countless tourists flock to this colonial city each year, enticed by its captivating attractions and business opportunities. Renowned for its high-quality aromatic spices, Kochi is a magnet for traders engaged in various commercial activities. Whether for leisure or professional purposes, visitors to this vibrant city consistently include a visit to its astonishing landmarks in their itineraries.
Kerala has historically played a pivotal role as a hub for the spice trade. Fondly referred to as the “Queen of the Arabian Sea,” Kochi is a cluster of picturesque islands nestled on the magnificent Vembanad Lake. For travelers, the sight of these colossal nets suspended above the water like enormous hammocks in Fort Cochin is nothing short of exhilarating.
Locally known as “Cheenavala” in Malayalam, these nets were introduced to the region by the renowned Chinese explorer Zheng He. Visitors will delight in the breathtaking views of the Chinese Fishing Nets silhouetted against the backdrop of the enchanting sunset, especially when they appear to be suspended in mid-air along the beaches. It’s no surprise that these sights are among the most photographed in the lively city of Kochi.
If you’re keen on capturing the essence of the Chinese Fishing Nets in your photographs, make your way to Vasco da Gama Square. This vantage point offers the best perspective on this enchanting attraction, as you stroll along the narrow pathway lining the beach.
An intriguing fact about these nets is that they are erected using bamboo poles and teak wood, with each structure towering at approximately 10 meters in height. The nets are meticulously balanced and anchored on the shoreline. Each structure features a cantilever arm and a net spanning an impressive 20-meter expanse.
Chinese Fishing Nets have earned Kochi a prominent spot on the international tourism map. What was once a humble fishing tool has evolved into a major draw for tourists from across the globe. The graceful, rhythmic operation of these nets is a mesmerizing experience for every visitor to the Chinese Fishing Nets in Kochi.
- Free Of Charge.
- Primarily Operational During The Early Morning And Late Evening.
- Photography And Videography Are Permitted.
- You Have The Chance To Purchase Fresh Fish And Prepare Them Live.
Activities To Enjoy At The Chinese Fishing Nets
They Are Not Only Visually Striking But You Will Be Amazed By The Fishing Techniques They Employ With These Tools.
The colossal cantilevered Chinese fishing nets, suspended over the water like gigantic hammocks, have evolved into a defining landmark sought by tourists when navigating a map of Fort Kochi’s attractions. Once merely utilitarian fishing tools, they have now transformed into a prominent draw for vacationers.
Most individuals generally approach these Chinese Fishing Nets primarily for photo opportunities.
Undoubtedly, this is one of the most photographed spots in Kochi. The best times to capture its beauty are either in the moments just before sunrise or just after sunset. During these hours, the lighting is absolutely perfect, and if you’re fortunate, you might witness a breathtaking Malayali sunset painted in a stunning array of colors!
When observed with the sun setting in the background, the sight of Chinese fishing nets suspended in the air and neatly arranged along the shoreline is breathtakingly beautiful.
A newcomer to this spectacle will become entranced by the unhurried cadence and precise equilibrium of the net.
The Chinese Fishing Nets are ingeniously crafted from a blend of teak wood and bamboo poles, meticulously designed to operate on the principles of equilibrium. Each structure stands at an impressive height of about ten meters, firmly anchored in the sand, and features a cantilever that extends approximately twenty meters, complete with an attached fishing net. These remarkable fishing nets are managed by a team of more than four skilled fishermen and are engineered in such a manner that even the weight of a single person stepping onto the main plank is adequate to submerge the equipment into the water. Subsequently, the nets are gently submerged in the water for a brief interval before being meticulously raised back into the air through the coordinated efforts of the fishermen pulling on the ropes.
Inquire whether the fishermen are interested in selling their fish.
Using these nets for fishing isn’t merely a local fisherman’s publicity stunt; it’s their daily practice. Most often, the catch is displayed on ice in the small cabin adjacent to the fishing net, and price negotiations are conducted based on the fish’s weight.
Once you’ve completed your purchase, feel free to take it to any of the nearby stalls situated in the vicinity of Vasco de Gama Square. The vendors at these stalls will be happy to prepare your meal for you and accompany it with rice or other delicious side dishes.