54 Bose Road is one of the most famous addresses in Kolkata and an important stopover for every tourist visiting the city. The building aptly called Mother House is the headquarters of the Missionaries of Charity, Mother Teresa's vision to spread hope and love to the despair. Even today, Mother Teresa’s sisters of charity, clad in their trademark blue-bordered saris, continue to carry forward her legacy. Visitors can pay their respects at the Mother's tomb and visit the museum displaying objects from her routine life – sandals and a worn-out bowl that stand as true reflections of her simplicity. Invoking peace and a range of different emotions, this place allows you to catch a glimpse into the life of one of the finest human beings to have ever lived.
Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose, known popularly as Netaji (meaning leader in Hindi), was one of the most prominent reformists in the Indian Independence Movement. The building that is known as Netaji Bhavan today was once the residence of the reformist. Managed by the Netaji Research Bureau, the old bungalow-style structure houses a museum and the bureau's archives and library. The museum is divided into various rooms, each detailing certain phases in the leader's life. The top-most floor has photographs and documents from the life and works of Subhash Chandra Bose, arranged in chronological order. The library and archives include comprehensive collections detailing the Indian Independence Movement. Netaji Bhavan also has an auditorium called the Sarat Bose Hall which is used for events like lectures and seminars. Located on Elgin Road, opposite Forum Mall, this is the place is a must-visit if you're interested in learning about India's Freedom Struggle.
An angelic-white canopy crafted purely from Makrana marble, the iconic Victoria Memorial buildings lies nestled amid rolling lawns and groves of swaying palms. Built as a tribute to Queen Victoria of England, this magnificent edifice is one of the best landmarks that grace the city of Kolkata. This majestic building is steeped in a long-standing history - Lord Curzon, the Viceroy of India, decided to set up a memorial as grand and royal as the Queen herself. Nestled along the banks of the Hooghly River, the memorial comprises beautiful gardens, emerald pools, a museum, statues and busts of Britishers and Indians as well. An important fact to be noted is that Indian princes and citizens contributed generously to the Victoria Memorial funds and the total construction cost was approximately INR 1,05,00,000. Huge, carved pillars, intricately-patterned marble domes and tall towers speak volumes about the craftsmanship of the Indian artisans who played an integral role in executing the building to reality. The galleries and museum house British memorabilia including paintings, sculptures and artifacts that chronicle important events of the Queen's life; right from her coronation ceremony to her residence. Apart from that, it has the sword of the brave prince and warrior Tipu Sultan and cannons reminiscent of the Battle of Plassey. Words or a camera frame do not do justice to the sheer opulence and grandeur of Victoria Memorial, a site which has captured the hearts, souls and imaginations of many.
Built-in the 18th Century, Jorasanko Thakur Bari was where the famous writer Gurudev Rabindranath Tagore was born. The building is located on the Rabindra Bharti University campus premises, therefore the college organizes cultural programs and events on the birthday of the poet, as well as the light and sound shows that depict the life of the Tagore family in the house. The beautiful red color house has been restored to its original form and converted into a museum where visitors can learn about the lifestyle of the Tagore family in the 19th and 20th Century.
Park Street is a very famous and one of the most important streets in Kolkata. It has a number of notable buildings, colleges, showrooms and even the cemetery. Some important buildings include the Asiatic Society, St Xavier’s College and an Adventist Church. This is where party lovers can find the vibrant nightlife of the city. It has a number of restaurants and pubs and is also known as the ‘Food Street’ or ‘The Street that Never Sleeps’. Park Street is illuminated with lights on Diwali, Christmas and New Year’s Eve. A visit to Park Street is a must when you plan a visit to Kolkata.
St. Paul's Cathedral is one of the 'first Episcopal Church of the Orient' in Kolkata. Bishop Daniel Wilson initiated the construction of the cathedral in 1839 and it was completed in 1847. Designed by Major William Nairn Forbes, it is similar to the Bell Harry Tower in Canterbury Cathedral in Kent. The pristine white walls, the stained glass windows, carved wooden pieces and frescoes remind you of the Renaissance period. Though the church was completely destroyed twice, it was eventually restored and regained it's original grandeur. While you are visiting St.Paul's Cathedral, you can also check-out the nearby attractions like Victoria Memorial, Nandan, Mahanagar Peace Park and the Birla Planetarium.
Capital of the state of West Bengal, Kolkata rises from the banks of the River Hooghly and has historically been an important trade hub. The British East India Company chose the city precisely for this reason and it served as the capital of India during the British Raj until 1911, after which the capital shifted to Delhi. Few places are the remnants of British colonialism more evident than in Kolkata's wide boulevards and imposing public buildings. As the seat of 'Bengal Renaissance' during the British Raj, Kolkata produced many gurus such as Rabindranath Tagore. Master filmmaker Satyajit Ray is another notable figure who catapulted the city into the spotlight. This artistic legacy continues at venues like Nandan and Rabindra Sadan, that organize various events spanning music, art, literature, dance, and film. Kolkata is also widely known for the amazing range of food offered, both fine dining and street food. Landmarks include attractions like Victoria Memorial, Indian Museum, Dakshineswar Kali Temple and Belur Math, markets like New Market and detail Kumartuli and landmarks like Vidyasagar Setu and Howrah Bridge.
Known for its its uncanny yet strikingly beautiful works of art, Aakriti Art Gallery is one of the front-runners when it contemporary art. Appealing works by artists such as Bikash Bhattacharjee, Indra Dugar and Gopal Ghose grace the space of this gallery, along with works by a number of young local artists. From canvas paintings to sculptures, this gallery showcases a various forms of art that perfectly depict the evolving culture of the nation.
Built on a hillock, Swabhumi uses the natural terrain and greenery of the site to create a unique space that is dedicated to showcasing artistic and cultural nuances of India, and particularly Bengal. The large space is divided into three zones. In the urban zone, the most interesting shops include: Karuja for dokra and shola craft items, Vikalp Art Shop for sculptures and paintings by contemporary Indian artists and Suryabarta for handicrafts from Shantiniketan. Marked by little clusters of huts, the traditional zone known as 'Shilpagram' is the most interesting part of the establishment. Here, you will find 'Karigarer Haat' (Craftsman's House) where artisans sell their own creations and also answer any questions you have about origin of the art forms and methods used to create them. Of special note is the Music Courtyard which has a number of Indian and Bengali instruments like the ektara, sitar and tabla; the craftsmen, who also tend to be musicians, perform live demonstrations for the discerning customer. The colorful Meena Bazaar is an amazing place to buy all kinds of jewelery. Everything here is reasonably priced, but you can try bargaining (it works sometimes). Another zone is entirely dedicated to serving you various cuisines from different parts of India. Hosting a number of events every year, Swabhumi has four event spaces; Rang Manch at 8000 square feet and Urban Courtyard at 12000 square feet are the biggest and most popular. Swabhumi, literally 'my land', is a veritable paradise for souvenir hunters!