Ernakulam has rich traditions of dance, sculptures, temple architecture, martial arts, and handicraft items. Kochi is a cosmopolitan city and so people from all parts are living here. One can see the culture of people from all the caste and communities. The city is believed to have a colorful culture. There are many art and crafts industries here that sell handicraft items which include those items made in rosewood, bell metals etc.
An integral part of the culture of Ernakulam is the Malayalam literature of this district. It was Cherusseri Namboodiri who gave a new path for the Malayalam literature. A masterpiece created by him was the Krishna Gatha and was in pure Malayalam literature. The ancient Malayalam document written was Ramacharitham and this contribution is said to be a significant one. The linguistic origin of Malayalam literature of this area had originated from the Dravidian language.
An important dance form of Ernakulam is the Chavittu Natakam. It i s a traditional dance form of Christian community and was evolved from the Portuguese. The performer himself sings as well as dance and they make exaggerated gestures. The actor sings song and in addition to dancing, they tap their feet loudly on the wooden floor which produces resonant sounds.
Kochi and the surrounding areas are famous for the Panchavadyam in which numerous artists use percussion instruments to perform a concert especially during festivals. There are many festivals celebrated in Ernakulam. People from different caste and religions exist in harmony and participate in all festivals irrespective of caste. The fairs and festivals in Ernakulam are associated with the life of the people here. The main socio cultural festivals of this area include Onam, Vishu and Cochin Carnival. When Onam and Vishu are celebrated elsewhere, Cochin Carnival is the important festival in Kochi. It is not linked to its culture but derived from the New Year celebrations of the Portuguese during their rule in India. It is a weeklong carnival at the end of each year.