Once the capital of British India, Kolkata is the bustling capital of West Bengal and often referred to as the cultural heart of India. Colonial landmarks battle for space with colorful temples and lively markets present a sensory overload. Public gardens offer a respite from this hot and crowded, yet ultimately rewarding destination.
Many attractions are in and around the Maidan, a huge public park where locals relax and play cricket or soccer. Marvel at the marble Victoria Memorial before tracing Kolkata’s colonial-era history at the Calcutta Gallery. Visit British-built monuments such as Fort William and St. Paul’s Cathedral. Find archaeological relics, including centuries-old Hindu sculptures, at the Indian Museum.
Walk or take a rickshaw to the BBD Bagh district, or Dalhousie Square, to see more examples of the city’s past, such as the Raj Bhavan and the neo-Gothic High Court. Watch a cricket match at the Eden Gardens and sample street food cooked by vendors at nearby Fairlie Place.
Take a taxi or rickshaw across the River Hooghly via the impressive Howrah Bridge. Visit the flower market at Mullick Ghat and see devotees offer prayers at shrines. Admire giant lilies and a centuries-old banyan tree at the picturesque Indian Botanic Garden, a 15-minute drive from Howrah Bridge.
Shop and bargain for fabrics and leather goods in New Market. Explore the chaotic streets of Barabazar Market while browsing textile shops and spotting religious sights. Stroll down Phears Lane in Old Chinatown, famous for sweetshops, teahouses and kebab stores. Along Park Street, elegant restaurants present Kolkata’s tangy Bengali cuisine.
Kolkata proudly showcases Bengali and Hindu art, dance and music. A popular festival is the 5-day Durga Puja, a flamboyant event with music, parades and performances at pop-up temples.
Kolkata is close to the border with Bangladesh and you can reach it via India’s excellent network of long-distance buses and trains. The city’s international airport has connections to major destinations around the world.
Museum, Monument and Temple
See photographs and paintings charting Kolkata’s history at this marble palace dedicated to England’s Queen Victoria, the former Empress of India.
Admire architectural beauty and see important religious icons at this sacred temple complex on the banks of the Hooghly River.
Hunt for bargains at one of Kolkata’s oldest markets, an indoor arcade with food, clothing and handicraft stalls that’s been serving the city for over 135 years.
Known for its diverse ecological landscapes, man-made lake, children’s play area and musical fountain show, this ecological park is fun for all the family.
Set foot on or glide under a famous Kolkata landmark, a colossal engineering feat that’s inspired many movie-makers.
Explore a vast natural expanse where a popular type of Indian tea was cultivated. It is also home to one of the world’s widest trees.
Pay respects to the incredible humanitarian work that Mother Teresa dedicated her whole life to on this visit to her home and place of work. With a private guide accompanying you, learn all about the historical significance of her impact and the many lives that she touched.
Greet your guide outside Esplanade metro station at 5:00pm and catch the train up to a district little visited by foreigners and known for its cuisine.
The tour kicks off 12:00pm from outside Chandni Chowk Metro Gate 5 where you'll be greeted by your foodie guide. You can't do anything without a blessing, so the first stop at a Hindu temple gets you set for the day.
Pick up at 0900hrs from hotel in Kolkata to take you to a journey through the annals of Kolkata’s rich history, from ancient artifacts and colonial monuments to modern-day sporting venues.
Follow a path trodden by many Hindu pilgrims and journey to Sagar Island in the Ganges Delta for a full-day private tour. See several temples, including the illustrious Kapil Muni Temple, as you encounter traditional villages and communities while taking in the pristine natural environment.
Feast on the delectable flavors of Bengali cuisine as a local TV celebrity chef shares her favorite dishes with you. Head to her private home for a traditional meal consisting of 3 mouthwatering and artfully prepared courses.