A 3-day Kolkata Itinerary: Exploring the Charms of Kolkata

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Kolkata, often known as the “City of Joy “, is where history, culture and art come together to form a lively atmosphere. Located in northern India, this city has a wealth of experiences waiting to be explored.

Whether you are passionate about history, enjoy food or appreciate art, Kolkata has something for everyone. Here, we will describe the best Kolkata itinerary and guide you through the enchanting streets of Kolkata, highlighting the places to visit in Kolkata and memorable experiences.

Where to stay

Our recommendations for hotels in Kolkata,

  • Oyo 67194 Hotel Paradise ($26 per night**)
  • Oyo 9543 Rajarhat ($29 per night**)
  • Hotel Park Victoria ($32.44 per night**)

Book for two nights and get one night free with “FREENIGHT”.[ T & C apply]

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Day 1: Exploring Heritage and History

Morning

  1. Start at Victoria Memorial

It is one of the most memorable and best places to visit in Kolkata.

Begin your Kolkata adventure at the Victoria Memorial—a structure made of white marble that serves as a tribute to Queen Victoria. Lord Curzon, the Viceroy of India, commissioned this memorial between 1906 and 1921 for 10 million rupees—a considerable amount during that era.

The renowned architect Sir William Emerson skillfully blended Indo-British styles to create this stunning edifice. While the exterior of the Victoria Memorial leaves one awestruck, its interior is equally captivating.

Kolkata adventure at the Victoria Memorial

The memorial houses a museum that has a collection of artifacts, paintings and historical exhibits. Inside the museum, you will find galleries, taking visitors on a journey through India’s history from the era of colonialism to the time of independence.

Surrounding the memorial is a garden, providing a retreat amid the bustling city. The garden has fountains, pathways and a charming water body, creating an ideal leisurely walk and relaxation setting.

The museum is open from 10 am to 5 pm every day except Mondays and national holidays.

Entry fee: 20 cents for Indians and $2.5 for foreigners.

Pro tip: Though photography is allowed in the garden area, it is restricted within the museum premises.

What are the must-see exhibits at Victoria Memorial?

Some of the highlights include the Royal Gallery, which displays portraits of Queen Victoria and Prince Albert, and the Calcutta Gallery, showcasing the history of Kolkata.

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  1. Walk through Maidan

Adjacent to Victoria Memorial is Maidan, a space perfect for enjoying a leisurely morning stroll. You can soak in the beauty of nature while also capturing views of the memorial and Kolkata’s skyline.

Kolkatta

Maidan is adorned with monuments and statues that offer glimpses into Kolkata’s rich past. Some noteworthy landmarks include;

Shaheed Minar: This impressive monument was originally called the Ochterlony Monument and served as a homage to Sir David Ochterlony, a military officer. From its observation deck, you can enjoy views of the city.

Maidan Obelisk: A known red sandstone obelisk at the centre of the Maidan acts as a landmark for both locals and visitors.

You should definitely check out the bronze statue of Colonel James Outram, a general who played a significant role during the Indian Rebellion of 1857.

Lunch

For lunch, you should visit Flurys, a legendary tearoom on Park Street that serves the best foods in Kolkata. They serve cakes, pastries and English-style sandwiches.

Afternoon

  1. Indian Museum

In the afternoon, you can visit the Indian Museum, one of Asia’s oldest museums. Located in the heart of Kolkata, the Indian Museum is housed in a stunning colonial-era building that seamlessly blends Indo-Saracenic and neoclassical architectural styles.

The museum’s grand façade features carvings and columns that give you a glimpse of the treasures inside.

Indian Museum - Kolkatta

The museum has galleries dedicated to themes and eras, such as The Egyptian Gallery, The Bharhut Gallery, The Art Gallery, and The Anthropological Gallery.

Opening time: 10 am to 5 pm

Entry fee: 90 cents for Indians and $6 for foreigners.

What nearby attractions can I visit in conjunction with the Indian Museum?

You can explore nearby attractions like the Victoria Memorial, Maidan, and St. Paul’s Cathedral for a comprehensive Kolkata experience.

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  1. Marble Palace

Marble Palace should be on our list while preparing the top Kolkata itinerary.

The Marble Palace, built in 1835 by Raja Rajendra Mullick, is a fusion of Neoclassical and traditional Bengali architectural styles.

The palace’s exterior is a dazzling display of white Carrara marble, imported from Italy, which glistens in the sunlight, giving the mansion its name. As you step through the ornate wrought-iron gates, you are transported into a world of opulence and refinement.

Pro tip: Don’t forget to arrange a guided tour when visiting Marble Palace.

Evening

  1. Prinsep Ghat

Consider visiting Prinsep Ghat for some relaxation or scenic views in the evening. As the sun starts to go, you can enjoy a walk along the Hooghly River at Prinsep Ghat.

The tranquil ambience and breathtaking view of the Vidyasagar Setu Bridge make it an ideal spot for an evening.

One remarkable feature of Prinsep Ghat is its Greco architecture. The ghat showcases a collonaded structure inspired by temples and monuments reminiscent of the Greek style. This structure’s pristine white columns and intricate details create a backdrop against the waters of the Hooghly River.

Photographers consider Prinsep Ghat a paradise due to its captivating architecture, flowing river and the interplay of light during sunrise or sunset. It offers opportunities to capture photographs.

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Day 2: Art and Culture

Morning

  1. Dakshineswar Temple

It is the 2nd day of your Kolkata trip, and you should start your day with a visit to Dakshineswar Kali Temple, which is dedicated to Goddess Kali. The temple complex is not only spiritually significant but also architecturally beautiful.

Located on the bank of the Hooghly River, this iconic temple represents not only a place for worship but also serves as a spiritual sanctuary that encapsulates Kolkata’s rich spiritual heritage.

Dakshineswar Temple

Established in 1855, this temple venerates Goddess Kali, who embodies both fierceness and compassion, as the Divine Mother.

Sri Ramakrishna, who later achieved enlightenment at this place, played a significant role in establishing Dakshineswar as a revered pilgrimage site.

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  1. Belur Math

It is one of the best places to visit in Kolkata, and you shouldn’t miss it at any cost.

Located on the banks of the River Hoogly, this math serves as the headquarters of the Ramakrishna Mission. This peaceful location promotes harmony among religions and offers a serene retreat from the hustle and bustle of the city.

Belur Math

At the heart of Belur Math lies the Swami Vivekananda Temple, where you can find relics of Swami Vivekananda. The temple’s tranquil ambience and breathtaking architecture make it an ideal spot for meditation and self-reflection.

The main hall is adorned with symbols representing world religions emphasizing a message of harmony.

Next to the temple, you will find the Ramakrishna Museum, housing a collection of artifacts and exhibits related to Sri Ramakrishna, Swami Vivekananda and the Ramakrishna Movement.

The expansive grounds of Belur Math feature gardens and peaceful pathways. It’s a setting for walks or moments of quiet contemplation. The serene backdrop of the Hooghly River further enhances the tranquillity in this area.

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Lunch

Treat yourself to a traditional Bengali meal at Oh! Calcutta, where you can savor dishes like macher jhol (fish curry), shorshe ilish (hilsa fish in mustard sauce), and roshogolla (a Bengali sweet).

Afternoon

  1. Mother House

Visit Mother House to pay your respects to Mother Teresa, who lived and dedicated her life to work. Discover her journey and the incredible impact she made.

Mother House

  1. Kala Mandir

Explore Kolkata’s vibrant art scene by visiting Kala Mandir, an art gallery that frequently hosts exhibitions featuring traditional artworks.

Explore Kolkata's vibrant art scene by visiting Kala Mandir

Throughout the year, Kala Mandir also showcases a range of performances. Whether you are passionate about music, captivated by dance forms or a theatre enthusiast, there will be something that catches your interest. You can witness artists and emerging talents create experiences on stage.

Evening

  1. Academy of Fine Arts

If you are fond of performing arts, visit the Academy of Fine Arts. It is another noteworthy place to visit in Kolkata, which offers an array of events, including theatre plays, captivating dance performances and melodious musical shows.

Don’t forget to check their schedule for any shows that might capture your attention.

Day 3: Exploring Food and Local Treasures

Morning

  1. South Park Street Cemetery

Start your day by visiting the South Park Street Cemetery, a burial ground dating back to the century. It’s a place where you can delve into the city’s history.

  1. Indian Coffee House

For a delicious breakfast, head over to the Indian Coffee House. This renowned establishment isn’t about coffee; it also serves as a gathering spot for intellectuals and artists.

Originally established in Kolkata as a response to clubs, it has since become a vibrant hub for students, writers, artists and thinkers.

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Lunch

Indulge in a dining experience with a boat ride on the Hooghly River. Several operators offer river cruises with lunch options, allowing you to enjoy views of Kolkata’s riverside landmarks.

Afternoon

  1. New Market

Stroll through New Market, one of Kolkata’s liveliest shopping areas. You will find everything here, from clothing and accessories to spices and sweets.

  1. College Street

Don’t miss out on College Street, famously known as “Boi Para” (Book Market) in Kolkata. It’s a haven where book lovers can immerse themselves in literary treasures.

Discover the bookstores. Immerse yourself in the intellectual atmosphere of this street.

Evening

  1. Park Street

End your Kolkata adventure by visiting Park Street. As night falls, this famous street comes alive with a range of restaurants, cafes and bars offering various delights and entertainment options.

Park Street is often celebrated as Kolkata’s paradise for food enthusiasts. It is adorned with various restaurants, cafes and eateries serving various cuisines.

Whether you crave Bengali dishes, international flavors or delectable street food delicacies, Park Street has something to satisfy every taste bud.

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Conclusion

With its rooted history, vibrant culture and mouth-watering cuisine, Kolkata leaves a lasting impression on anyone who enters the city.

This top Kolkata itinerary provides a glimpse into the attractions and experiences that Kolkata has to offer. Whether captivated by its heritage, enchanted by its soul, or simply enamored with its gastronomy scene, Kolkata caters to all.

So pack your bags and prepare to explore the City of Joy – a city that will undoubtedly fill your heart with happiness and create memories for a lifetime.

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FAQs

How many days do I need for a Kolkata itinerary?

A 3 to 4-day itinerary is ideal to explore Kolkata’s top attractions, indulge in its culinary delights, and immerse yourself in its culture.

What is the best time to visit Kolkata?

The best time to visit Kolkata is during the winter months, from October to March when the weather is pleasant and festivals like Durga Puja are celebrated.

Is Kolkata safe for tourists?

Kolkata is generally considered safe for tourists. However, like any major city, it’s important to exercise common-sense precautions and be mindful of your belongings.

What are the famous dishes to try in Kolkata?

Kolkata is famous for its street food and sweets. Don’t miss trying dishes like roshogolla, sandesh, phuchka (pani puri), kathi rolls, and biryani.