Located at the Eastern banks of the Hoogly, Kolkata is the capital of the Indian state of West Bengal. The city is home to the oldest functioning port in India and is the 3rd most populated metropolitan in India after Mumbai and Delhi.
The region came under the Suzerainty of the Nawabs of Bengal under the Mughals and eventually the British who took full control of the city in 1772. The city is also the center of the industrial revolution in India and the birthplace of modern Indian cultural, poetic, artistic and literary movement in between the 19th and the early 20th centuries.
The city was also the capital of India under the British and was the nucleus of the Indian Independence Movement. The various blends of cultures have garnered Kolkata as one of the major tourist destinations in India. Here's the list of the best places to visit in Kolkata.
Howrah Bridge also known as Rabindra Setu is a suspension type balanced cantilever bridge located in West Bengal, India. It connects Howrah and Kolkata. The Bridge is made over the river Hooghly (a branch of River Ganga). Constructed without nuts and bolts, the Howrah Bridge was formed by riveting the entire steel structure. The bridge officially opened in 1943 when it was the world’s third longest cantilever bridge. Today, it is the sixth longest bridge of its type in the world. With about 1 million vehicles and 1.5 pedestrians using it,Howrah bridge is busiest cantilever bridge in the world.
The Jorashanko Thakurbari was the ancestral home of the Tagore family. It was built in the 18th century by Prince Dwarkanath Tagore, Rabindranath Tagore’s grandfather. The Great Poet and Nobel Laureate, Rabindranath Tagore was born here. ‘Jorasanko Thakurbari’, is now a museum dedicated to the life and works of the Nobel Laureate. Built in 1785, the Jorasanko Thakur Bari is spread over 35000 square meters. Today the building houses Rabindra Bharati University. The museum offers a delightful and epic light and sound show depicting the story of Tagore’s family.
Birla Temple is a glowing structure that adorns the streets of Kolkata and is a shrine dedicated to Lord Krishna and Goddess Radha. The construction of this splendid edifice began in the year 1970 and after meticulous work spanning over 26 years, it reached its completion on 21st February 1996. Some artefacts in the temple are made up of silver and Belgian glass which impart a unique divinity to the shrine. As the dusk approaches, the beautiful Birla Mandir located at Ballygunge, Kolkata is a sight to behold adorned with electric diyas and gleaming chandeliers. The continuous chanting and the soft music adds to its spiritual environ.
The Indian Museum is the largest and oldest museum in India and has rare collections of antiques, armour and ornaments, fossils, skeletons, mummies, and Mughal paintings. It was founded by the Asiatic Society of Bengal in Kolkata (Calcutta), India, in 1814. The founder curator was Nathaniel Wallich, a Danish botanist.The year 1814 witnessed the formation of this incredible museum in the Park Street area of Kolkata. With over 100,000 exhibits in store, the India Museum becomes the country’s largest repository of antiques and artifacts. Website :
Website : https://indianmuseumkolkata.org/
The Victoria Memorial built between 1906 and 1921 is dedicated to the memory of Queen Victoria (1819–1901) and is now a museum and tourist destination under the auspices of the Ministry of Culture. The memorial lies on the maidan (grounds) by the bank of the Hooghly River, near Jawaharlal Nehru road. This grand and exquisite memorial not only stands as reminiscence to the rule of British Crown in the Indian subcontinent but also stands out as an excellent architectural gem in Indo-Saracenic revivalist style. It is a must visit tourist destination for first time visitors to experience the essence of Victorian era in the midst of the bustling metro city of Kolkata.
The Rajbari Bawali
Just over an hour away from Calcutta, lies the Rajbari Bawali. The former home to the Mondal family, whose history dates back to Akbar the Great, this palatial structure has been restored to recreate an extraordinary era; a time when the Zamindars, whose wealth was renowned, lived an extravagant, opulent life, yet one which also contained, music and dance, art and literature. This undertaking, eight years in the making, has produced the only one of its kind, a restoration project in West Bengal which has recreated the lifestyles of the Zamindar’s in both its’ aesthetics and experiences.
Website : http://www.therajbari.com/
The Sundarbans is a vast forest in the coastal region of the Bay of Bengal, considered one of the natural wonders of the world, it was recognised in 1997 as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Located at the South Eastern tip of the 24 Paraganas district in the state of West Bengal,the Sundarbans are a part of the world's largest delta formed by the rivers Ganges,Brahmaputra and Meghna. The main attractions of the Sunderbans are the Tiger, of which the delta harbor large reptiles like the Monitor Lizard, Estuarine Crocodile and the Olive Ridley Turtle, for which there is a conservation programme in the Indian park. The Leopard, Indian Rhinoceros, Javan Rhinoceros, Swamp Deer, Hog Deer and Water Buffalo have all become locally extinct from the delta in recent decades.
Website : http://www.sundarbans.net/
Itachuna Rajbari was built by the ancestors of Shri Safallya Narayan Kundu in 1766. The Govt.of India’s policy of abolishing the Raj-culture hindered flourishes of the Rajbari. It is the present inheritors of the family Shri. Rabindra Narayan, Shri. Dhruva Narayan and Shri. Basav Narayan Kundu along with Mylestones & Journeys who have decided to restore the glory and are making all efforts to maintain the royal heritage through regular upkeep.Just 2 hours away from Kolkata the Heritage Homestay is one such initiative through which village tourism may be promoted in this area.
Website : http://www.itachunarajbari.com/
Vedic Village Spa Resort is just 20 minutes away from the international airport in Kolkata, India. Built horizontally in the authentic architecture of Bengal villages, the world-class luxury resort blends in completely with the uniqueness of the landscape. It combines natural beauty and outdoor fun with unbeatable indoor luxury. A boutique getaway sprawling over 18 acres of fertile farmland greenery, sparkling lakes, coconut groves and a wealth of flora; it is a haven for migratory birds, butterflies, squirrels and exotic species of plants. A perfect destination for rejuvenating weekends and family vacations. Find Spa,Bonfires,Sunsets,boating,ATV Riding,Bowling,Zorbing,Segawayand Kayaking at Vedic Village.