Calcutta, a city to discover

Calcutta, the city to discover

Kolkata is a city to discover. It is one of the most popular and well-known cities in India, and without a doubt it cannot be missed on your trip to this huge, interesting and attractive country. You dare?

In our article today we will know its main attractions and we will give you all the information you need to get to know her and fall in love with her.

Calcutta

Calcutta, India

It is the largest city and the capital of the Bengali state and rests on the east bank of the river Ganga, a tributary of the Ganges, on the border with Bangadlesh. It is the seventh most populous city in the country, with around four and a half million inhabitants.

Calcutta is considered to be It is the cultural capital of India and it has always had its own brilliance and importance in this part of the country. The region has been inhabited for thousands of years, but it was the English who put it on the western map with the arrival of the East India Company, in 1690. Job Charnock is considered to have been the founder of the city, off the record.

The city has a humid and dry tropical climate, with cyclone seasons. The average annual temperature is about 27ºC, but summers are hot and very humid, with more than 30ºC or 40ºC. If you can avoid arriving in May, much better. January is the cool month, with temperatures between 12 and 23ºC. Be careful that between April and June is the heavy rain season.

What to see in Kolkata

Writers Building, Calcutta

I think that being a city with so much history we have to start with that and refer to the colonial past in the first instance. The city was founded in 1698 and it was the capital of British India until 1911, when it became Delhi. In 2001 it was officially renamed Kolkata and one of its iconic buildings in the Howrath Bridge.

The colonial passage of Calcutta is seen in its architecture. For example, him Raj Bhavan, Writers Building, or the Victoria Memorial. Both are two constructions that top our list of what to see in Calcutta, a city to discover.

Writers Building

The Raj Bhavan is a place of 150 meters long built in a Greco Roman style, with 13 original blocks and six more that were added after the country's independence. There are many Greek statues, of Greek gods, and even a sculpture of Minera, who is a Roman goddess. The building is located in the BBD Bagh area, one of the most active in the city.

Legend says that this area of ​​Calcutta has many ghosts. The thing is that during the British occupation a shooting took place here that ended the life of Lieutenant Colonel NS Simpson, then Inspector General of Prisons, famous for his brutality. It was here that three revolutionaries disguised as Europeans killed him.

Victoria Memorial Hall, Calcutta

El Victory Memorial It is a huge structure from the British era, built in marble, in an Indian revival style, mixing British and Mughal, Venetian, Islamic, Egyptian and other elements. Obvious, It is dedicated to Queen Victoria of England and was built between 1906 and 1921 by the then Prince of Wales, later King George V.

Today the site is a museum with 25 galleries which exhibit paintings, manuscripts and other memorabilia such as weapons, sculptures, maps, coins, stamps and textiles. There is also a bronze statue, the Angel of Victory, under the central dome of the building which, it must be said, was built with the financial support of the Indian states and individuals who wanted some favor from the British.

Victory memorial

Around it there are huge gardens, on the banks of the Hooghly River too, and nearby you can find Chowringhee Street or Jawaharlal Street. Today the Victoria Memorial is maintained by the Ministry of Culture. It's interesting that you can ride a horse-drawn carriage around the front of the building, feeling a bit in the colonial era. Maybe there you will also come across another interesting place in Calcutta: the Star Theater.

Star Theater

The Star Theater is the cultural heart of the city with ten works a month, especially between January and December. The interior has been modernized but the façade is the same as always. The building is near the junction between Gray Street or Aurobindo Saranee, and Cornwallis or Bidhan Saranee. It was built in 1883 on Beadon Street and was nationalized in 2012.

You have surely heard of or read about the Mother Teres of Calcutta. Maybe you are even over 40 years old and saw it once on television when you were little. The nun spent 45 years here, treating the poor and sick, for which she won the Nobel Peace Prize winner in 1979. In fact, His grave is here, in the so-called Mother House, the headquarters of the Missionaries of Charity, the order she founded.

Mother Teresa of Calcutta House

El Khali Temple It is also a place to visit since it is one of the most important places of worship in the city. Khali is a Hindu goddess and her temple is a must tourist. The site is famous for its very old paintings, as well as for the goat sacrifices that are made in its honor.

Sovabazar Rajbari is one of oldest royal houses in Kolkata. It was built by a prominent local aristocrat and today Durga Puja is celebrated here between October and November. It has a beautiful, large central courtyard with columbas adorned with arches, once a place where special functions and royal celebrations took place. The wings have two stories on each side and everything goes back to the 18th century, with Hindu, Moorish and colonial style.

Kali Temple, Calcutta

A bridge, the longest cable bridge in the country, hangs over the Hooghly River., with its little more than 457 meters long and a deck of 35 meters. The bridge has six lanes and 85 thousand cars can cross it per day. The truth is that from here you have a nice view of the city, especially at sunset.

La San Pablo's cathedral It is a Christian place that you can visit, headquarters of the diocese of Calcutta. It was built in 1847 and it was the heart of English Anglicans for a long time. Another iconic site of the city is the Eden Gardens, for fans of cricket, the national sport. With game or without game you can visit every day, except Sundays.

St. Paul's Cathedral, Calcutta

Finally you can walk through the streets of Calcutta with the help of a local guide. It will surely take you for a walk around the Booksellers Street or to walk in a old tram or shopping, to get good souvenirs of local crafts or textiles. However you decide to visit Calcutta, the city to discover, you will surely be delighted.

It is true that India is not for everyone so if you manage to overcome the initial shock you will surely have a good time.


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