Greetings, fellow travelers! Journeying Jack here, back with another exciting edition of Suitcase Stories. Today, we’re diving into the vibrant and bustling city of Kolkata, a place that has captured the hearts of many wanderers like myself. With its rich history, diverse culture, and mouth-watering cuisine, there’s no shortage of things to do at Kolkata. In this blog post, I’ll be sharing my top picks for the best things to do at Kolkata, so you can make the most of your time in this incredible city.
From exploring the architectural marvels to indulging in the local street food, there are countless things to do at Kolkata that cater to every traveler’s taste. So, buckle up and join me as we embark on this thrilling journey through the City of Joy, discovering the must-see attractions and hidden gems that make Kolkata a destination worth visiting. Whether you’re a history buff, a foodie, or simply looking for a memorable adventure, you’ll find plenty of things to do at Kolkata that will leave you longing for more.
Cultural Exploration: Museums and Heritage Sites
Kolkata is a city steeped in history and culture, and there’s no better way to experience it than by visiting its museums and heritage sites. Here are some of the top things to do at Kolkata for cultural exploration:
The Victoria Memorial is a stunning white marble building that was built in memory of Queen Victoria. It houses a museum that showcases the history of Kolkata and the British Raj. The museum has a vast collection of paintings, sculptures, and artifacts that give visitors a glimpse into the city’s past. The Victoria Memorial is one of the most popular things to do at Kolkata, and it’s a must-visit for anyone interested in history and culture.
The Indian Museum is the oldest and largest museum in India, and it’s a treasure trove of artifacts and exhibits. The museum has a vast collection of art, archaeology, and natural history exhibits that are sure to fascinate visitors. The Indian Museum is one of the top things to do at Kolkata for anyone interested in learning about India’s rich cultural heritage.
St. Paul’s Cathedral
St. Paul’s Cathedral is a beautiful Anglican cathedral that was built in the 19th century. It’s one of the most iconic landmarks in Kolkata and is a must-visit for anyone interested in architecture and history. The cathedral has stunning stained glass windows and intricate carvings that are sure to leave visitors in awe.
The Howrah Bridge is an iconic landmark in Kolkata and is one of the busiest bridges in the world. It’s a cantilever bridge that spans the Hooghly River and connects Kolkata to Howrah. The bridge is a marvel of engineering and is a must-visit for anyone interested in architecture and history.
The Marble Palace is a stunning mansion that was built in the 19th century. It’s a beautiful example of neoclassical architecture and is home to a vast collection of art and artifacts. The Marble Palace is one of the top things to do at Kolkata for anyone interested in art and history.
Visiting these museums and heritage sites is one of the best things to do at Kolkata for cultural exploration. They offer a glimpse into the city’s rich history and culture and are sure to leave visitors with a deeper appreciation for Kolkata’s past.
Culinary Delights: Street Food and Fine Dining
Kolkata is a food lover’s paradise, with a rich culinary heritage that is reflected in its street food and fine dining options. Here are some of the best things to do at Kolkata for foodies:
Phuchka: No visit to Kolkata is complete without trying the famous phuchka, a crispy hollow ball filled with spicy mashed potatoes and tamarind water. You can find phuchka vendors on almost every street corner in Kolkata.
Kathi Rolls: Another popular street food in Kolkata is the kathi roll, a wrap filled with skewered meat or vegetables, onions, and spices. Nizam’s and Kusum Rolls are two of the most famous places to try kathi rolls.
Chow Mein: Kolkata-style chow mein is a must-try for noodle lovers. The noodles are stir-fried with vegetables and meat, and served with a spicy sauce.
Oh! Calcutta: This restaurant is a must-visit for anyone looking to try traditional Bengali cuisine. The menu includes dishes like fish curry, prawn malai curry, and kosha mangsho (slow-cooked mutton).
6 Ballygunge Place: Another great option for Bengali cuisine, 6 Ballygunge Place is known for its thalis (platters) that include a variety of dishes like fish fry, chholar dal, and aloo posto.
Bohemian: For a fusion of Bengali and European cuisine, head to Bohemian. The menu includes dishes like prawn malai curry risotto and chicken liver pate with luchi (a type of bread).
Whether you’re a street food lover or a fine dining enthusiast, Kolkata has something to offer everyone. Don’t miss out on these culinary delights when exploring things to do at Kolkata.
Shop ’til You Drop: Markets and Malls
Kolkata is a shopper’s paradise, with a wide range of markets and malls to choose from. Here are some of the best places to shop ’til you drop in Kolkata:
Located in the heart of the city, New Market is a must-visit for anyone looking for a unique shopping experience. This historic market has been around for over a century and is home to over 2,000 stalls selling everything from clothing and accessories to electronics and souvenirs. Don’t forget to bargain for the best prices!
South City Mall
If you’re looking for a more modern shopping experience, head to South City Mall. This upscale mall has over 160 stores, including international brands like Zara and H&M. You can also catch a movie at the multiplex cinema or grab a bite to eat at one of the many restaurants.
Gariahat Market is a bustling street market that’s perfect for bargain hunters. Here you’ll find a wide range of items, including clothing, jewelry, and handicrafts. It’s also a great place to try some local street food.
Quest Mall is another high-end shopping destination in Kolkata. With over 100 stores, including luxury brands like Gucci and Louis Vuitton, this mall is a great place to splurge on designer items. You can also enjoy a meal at one of the many restaurants or catch a movie at the cinema.
Whether you’re looking for traditional markets or modern malls, Kolkata has something for everyone. So, add these places to your list of “things to do at Kolkata” and get ready to shop ’til you drop!
Nature Escapes: Parks and Gardens
Kolkata, the cultural capital of India, is not just about its rich history and heritage. The city is also home to some of the most beautiful parks and gardens that offer a refreshing escape from the hustle and bustle of city life. Here are some of the best nature escapes that you can explore as part of your things to do at Kolkata itinerary.
Victoria Memorial is a stunning white marble building that is surrounded by lush green gardens. The memorial was built in memory of Queen Victoria and is now a museum that houses a vast collection of artifacts and paintings from the British era. The gardens surrounding the memorial are perfect for a leisurely stroll or a picnic with family and friends.
Spread over 270 acres, the Botanical Gardens in Kolkata is a paradise for nature lovers. The garden is home to over 12,000 species of plants and trees, including the famous Great Banyan Tree, which is over 250 years old. The garden also has a beautiful lake, a palm house, and a cactus house that are worth exploring.
Eco Park is a relatively new addition to Kolkata’s list of parks and gardens, but it has quickly become a popular destination for locals and tourists alike. The park is spread over 480 acres and has a beautiful lake, a butterfly garden, and several themed gardens, including a rose garden and a tea garden. The park also has a range of activities, including boating, cycling, and zorbing.
Rabindra Sarobar is a man-made lake that is surrounded by a beautiful park. The park is a popular spot for morning walks, jogging, and yoga. The lake is also a great place for boating and fishing. The park has several walking trails, and you can also spot several species of birds and butterflies here.
These are some of the best parks and gardens that you can explore as part of your things to do at Kolkata itinerary. Whether you want to take a leisurely stroll, have a picnic, or indulge in some outdoor activities, these nature escapes offer something for everyone.
Spiritual Retreats: Temples and Shrines
Kolkata is a city that is steeped in spirituality and religion. There are numerous temples and shrines that are worth visiting for those who are interested in exploring the spiritual side of the city. Here are some of the top spiritual retreats that you can visit as part of your things to do at Kolkata itinerary:
Dakshineswar Kali Temple
The Dakshineswar Kali Temple is one of the most famous temples in Kolkata. It is dedicated to the Hindu goddess Kali and is located on the banks of the Hooghly River. The temple is known for its stunning architecture and is a must-visit for anyone interested in Hinduism.
Kalighat Kali Temple
The Kalighat Kali Temple is another famous temple in Kolkata that is dedicated to the goddess Kali. It is believed to be one of the 51 Shakti Peethas and is visited by thousands of devotees every day. The temple is located in the heart of the city and is easily accessible.
Belur Math is a temple complex that is located on the banks of the Hooghly River. It is the headquarters of the Ramakrishna Math and Mission and is dedicated to the teachings of Sri Ramakrishna. The temple complex is known for its serene atmosphere and beautiful architecture.
The Birla Mandir is a modern temple that is located in the heart of Kolkata. It is dedicated to Lord Krishna and is known for its stunning architecture and beautiful surroundings. The temple is a popular spot for tourists and locals alike.
The Nakhoda Mosque is one of the largest mosques in Kolkata. It is located in the heart of the city and is known for its stunning architecture and beautiful surroundings. The mosque is a must-visit for anyone interested in Islamic architecture and culture.
These are just a few of the many spiritual retreats that you can visit as part of your things to do at Kolkata itinerary. Whether you are interested in Hinduism, Islam, or any other religion, Kolkata has something to offer for everyone.
Nightlife and Entertainment: Clubs, Bars, and Performances
Kolkata is a city that never sleeps, and the nightlife scene is a testament to that. There are plenty of things to do at Kolkata after the sun goes down. From clubs and bars to live performances, the city has something for everyone. Here are some of the best places to experience Kolkata’s nightlife and entertainment scene.
If you’re looking for a place to dance the night away, Kolkata has a variety of clubs to choose from. One of the most popular clubs in the city is Roxy, located in the Park Hotel. With its chic decor and lively atmosphere, Roxy is the perfect place to let loose and have fun. Another great option is Shisha Reincarnated, which offers a unique blend of music, food, and drinks.
Kolkata has a thriving bar scene, with a range of options to suit every taste. For a sophisticated night out, head to The Grid, a rooftop bar with stunning views of the city. If you’re in the mood for something more laid-back, check out Monkey Bar, a quirky gastropub with a fun atmosphere and delicious food.
Kolkata is known for its vibrant arts and culture scene, and there are plenty of performances to enjoy after dark. One of the most popular venues is Nandan, a cultural center that hosts film screenings, theater performances, and live music events. For a more intimate experience, check out Someplace Else, a cozy bar that features live music every night.
No matter what your idea of a good time is, there are plenty of things to do at Kolkata after dark. Whether you’re looking to dance the night away, enjoy a few drinks with friends, or take in a live performance, the city has something for everyone. So why not explore Kolkata’s nightlife and entertainment scene and see what all the fuss is about?
In conclusion, the vibrant city of Kolkata offers a plethora of experiences that cater to every traveler’s taste. From exploring the rich history and culture to indulging in mouth-watering street food, there’s no shortage of things to do at Kolkata. As Journeying Jack, I’ve had the pleasure of uncovering some of the city’s hidden gems, and I hope that my Suitcase Stories have inspired you to embark on your own adventure in this captivating city.
So, whether you’re a history buff, a foodie, or simply looking for a unique experience, the list of things to do at Kolkata is endless. As you wander through the bustling streets, take a moment to appreciate the city’s charm and immerse yourself in its diverse offerings. And remember, the best way to truly experience Kolkata is to embrace its chaos and let it lead you to unforgettable memories.
As I pack my suitcase and bid farewell to this enchanting city, I’m already looking forward to my next visit and discovering even more things to do at Kolkata. Until then, happy travels and may your Suitcase Stories be filled with unforgettable experiences and cherished memories.