The Mattancherry palace or Dutch palace is situated barely 10 km from Kochi. This grand and beautiful palace was built in 1555 by the Portuguese and presented to the King of Kochi, Shree Veera Kerala Varma. Later the kingdom was taken over by the Dutch. When the Dutch made some renovations in the palace, it was renamed as Dutch Palace in 1663. Today, the Dutch Palace is not merely a historical monument but a renowned portrait gallery of the Kings of Kochi and murals (paintings) revealing Hindu art.
There are beautiful paintings (frescoes) on the walls of the Coronation Hall on the second floor. These paintings are based on the scenes from the ancient epics of Ramayana and Mahabharata. Apart from this, an area of 1000 sq ft is devoted to paintings based on the themes of Tretayug, (from “Putra Kameshthi Yagya” to Rama's return to Ayodhya after Lanka's war). These are the best examples of Kerala's mural paintings, which are world famous for their unique styles. Various articles used by the royal kings like turbans, dresses and palanquin lined with ivory are also exhibited in the palace.
The entrance to the palace is typically Portuguese in design. At some places, you can observe the traditional Kerala style of architecture known as 'nalukettus'. In the palace, there is a small temple of ‘Pazhayannur Bhagavati’, the goddess of the Kochi Royal family. Two more temples are situated on either side of the Palace dedicated to Lord Krishna and Lord Siva.