Fort William Kolkata – A Place You Must Visit


Fort William was another place that we went, which is also close to the hotel that we stayed. We reached the fort within minutes, after taking permission from the Commanding officer to visit the fort. It is built on the banks of the rivet Hoogly and in front of it is the Maidan, the largest park in the city. It was named after the King of England, William III. Now the fort is under the control of the Indian Army and you need special permission to enter the fort. It is open from 10.00 am to 5.30 pm on all days of the week.

Fort William Kolkata

Fort William Kolkata | Image Resource : veethi.com

On reaching the fort, I could see nothing from outside. There was greenery all around and the fort was an octagonal structure with its three sides facing the river. The fort is surrounded by a moat which is 9 m deep and 15 m broad. So nobody could enter it unnoticed. The fort has six massive gates, which are Chowringhee, Treasury Gate, Plassey Kolkata, Water Gate and St. George. Once we got inside the gate, we were awe struck by the splendor inside. We felt that we were transferred to an era of the British-raj with old European style buildings and splendor. The fort covered an area of 5 sq km and can hold about 10,000 troops..

The place is very well maintained and has a swimming pool, restaurant, shopping mall, outdoor play ground, telephone office, cinema hall, canteen, recreation club ad many more facilities for the military officials. We were escorted inside and as we walked on we saw the military engaged in their duties. They were very courteous to all the visitors but very alert and watching if anybody misbehaved or broke the rules.

There was a museum inside the fort, which contained arms and armors, machine guns, muskets, swords and so on. In another section we saw photographs showing Burma Campaign and Bangladesh Liberation War. You are not allowed to take any photographs inside the fort. The visit to the fort was really educative and it teaches you how disciplined and well-trained the Indian Army is.

Destination Of The Week : Birla Mandir Kolkata


Birla Mandir Kolkata

Birla Mandir Kolkata | Image Resource : panoramio.com

Description : There are Birla Mandirs in diverse corners of India. They are known for their unique construction and air of serenity. I felt great visiting the temple. I love the unique construction of all Birla temples in India. THe main deity in the Kolkata temple is an idol of Radha and Krishna.

Delicious Bhapa Ilish at Kolkata – Try It Once and You Will Love It


Good food is something that everyone loves. Whichever place I go, I make it a point to taste the local cuisines and if possible, get some new recipes, so that I can make my mother cook it for me. Kolkata is known for its fish curry, which is made in different styles. Bengali people are very fond of fish and they have their own ways to make it. Rice with fish curry is the favorite food of the people in West Bengal. So one day we decided to have rice with fish curry. We were served rice with bhapa ilish. The curry was so delicious that we ate more rice than we ever had. Ilish is the Hilsa fish, which is considered a delicacy here. Bhapa ilish fish curry is something special, served to the guests.

Delicious Bhapa Ilish Kolkata

Delicious Bhapa Ilish Kolkata | Image Resource : blogspot.com

It is very simple to make and very tasty also. To make Bhapa Ilish you need 500 gm Hilsa, 1 table spoon each of black and yellow mustard, cumin seed and turmeric powder, 2 table spoon each of coarsely ground coconut and coconut milk, salt to taste and 2 table spoon mustard oil.

First you have to cut the fish and wash the fish and marinate it with turmeric salt for about 30 minutes. Also soak the yellow and black mustard seed in water for 30 minutes. After 30 minutes grind the soaked mustard seed with one green chili, cumin seeds, turmeric and salt and make it in to a fine paste. Now mix it with the coconut and coconut milk. Next you have to put the marinated fish in a single layer in a steel tiffin box and cover the fish pieces with the paste you have prepared. Cover the box and steam it for about 15 minutes and your bhapa ilish is ready. When you take it out and open the lid, the rich aroma of the fish curry stimulates your taste buds and makes you hungry.

We also tasted other delicacies prepared here and especially the Bengali sweets. We even bought some sweets to distribute among our friends and family. But the fish curry was the tastiest of all.

Destination Of The Week : Rabindra Sarobar Lake Kolkata


Rabindra Sarobar Lake Kolkata

Rabindra Sarobar Lake Kolkata | Image Resource : panoramio.com

Description : I enjoyed the visit to Rabindra Sarobar Lake. It is an artificial lake of Kolkata. I is suurounded by a few major landmarks. The lake Dhakuria Lake. THe places is an ideal place for tourists. There are several major tourist locations in the vicinity. It is easy to plan a trip to the lake during your Kolkata visit. I loved the trip.

Shahid Minar Kolkata is a Place that You Must Visit in Kolkata


Shahid Minar is only about 2 km from our hotel and we went to visit on our first day at Kolkata. It is a monument built in 1828, the memory of the commander of British East India Company, named Sir David Ochteriony. It was to commemorate his victory in the Nepal War that took place during the period from 1814 to 1816. Then it was known as Ochteriony Monument. Later, in 1969, it was rededicated to those who died in the struggle for Independence and renamed Shahid Minar.

Shahid Minar Kolkata

Shahid Minar Kolkata | Image Resource : flickr.com

We reached the place at 4.30 in the evening and saw that it was tall, about 48 meters in height. The base of the skyscraper was built in the Egyptian style, and the upper portion of the column reflects Syrian architecture. The dome of the tower is built according to the Turkish architecture. It has two balconies on the top floor. The vast space to the south of Shahid Minar is known as Shahid Minar Maidan or the Brigade Ground. A number of political rallies and meetings were held here in the past. The first political meeting was held in 1931, presided over by Rabindranath Tagore. The central bus terminus of the city is also around the monument.

We had got a special pass from the Deputy Commissioner of Police to climb to the top of the tower, as we were advised at the travel desk in the hotel. So we went in and climbed the steps leading to the top of the tower. We had to climb about 218 steps to reach the top. But once we reached the top, all our fatigue was forgotten. The view from there was superb. The sight was so fantastic that we stood there for a long time, feeling the cool evening breeze on our face and admiring the surrounding view.

We got down and wandered in the Brigade Ground for about 1 hour, enjoying the surroundings and having a cup of hot tea from the local vendor. As darkness fell, the tower got illuminated with bright lights from all its corners, which looked very beautiful. We stood there admiring it for some time and then left to the hotel.

Birla Planetarium Kolkata Teaches You a Lot about Heavenly Bodies


I used to watch the sky and the stars in the sky when I was a kid and often worded about them. Even now I have a curiosity regarding the stars and the planets. So I never missed visiting Birla Planetarium when I was at Kolkata. It was situated close to Victoria Memorial, in Chowringhee Road. It is popularly known as Taramandal in Kolkata. Since it was very close to our hotel, we had no difficulty in going to the place. It conducts shows relating to stars, space, galaxy, heavenly bodies and other such subjects daily from 12.00 noon to 7.00 pm. these shows are conducted in English, Hindi and Bengali, and sometimes in Gujarati, Oriya and Tamil as well.

Birla Planetarium Kolkata

Birla Planetarium Kolkata | Image Resource : panoramio.com

As we reached the place, I saw that it was a spherical structure, somewhat similar to the Sanchi Stupa. There were already many visitors ready to go inside and we were lucky to get tickets for the next show. We got in and took our seats and found that it was full with the visitors. It had a capacity to accommodate about 500 people at a time.

Soon the lights went off and the show began. It was in English, and first of all we all were welcomed to witness the show. It was dark inside and slowly we could see the sky above lighting up with various stars and other heavenly bodies in it. It felt as if I was lying down looking up the sky at night and watching the stars. We were offered a brief explanation of how the stars were formed, the names of stars, and their importance and so on. We were so immersed in the show that we did not notice that one hour has passed. Soon the show came to an end and we got out, feeling the bright light of the sun on our face.

We also visited the astronomy gallery and the Celestron C-14 Telescope with ST6 CCD camera, solar filter and other accessories. It is the largest planetarium in Asia and the second largest in the world and we were happy that we had the opportunity to visit it and learn about the celestial bodies.

Destination Of The Week : Eden Gardens Kolkata


Eden Gardens Kolkata

Eden Gardens Kolkata | Image Resource : wikimedia.org

Description : I have seen the Eden Gardens cricket ground in Kolkata only on the small screen while IPL matches are telecast on TV. It is a place yu can visit. Traveller are sure to enjoy the view of the cricket stadium. You can also witness some good matches here if you have the tickets.

Hotel Bawa Walson Kolkata Provides You Excellent Service


While making plans for our visit to Kolkata, I searched for budget hotels in Kolkata that provides excellent services and accommodation and finally decided upon Hotel Bawa Walson Kolkata, which was located at Sudder Street in Kolkata. It was about 19 km from Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose International airport and 11 km from Howrah railway station. After we reached the Kolkata Railway station, we got in to the cab sent from the hotel and reached the hotel within 20 minutes. The hotel was impressive from outside and as we got in, it was equally beautiful. It was a contemporary 3 star hotel with all facilities for the customers.

Hotel Bawa Walson Kolkata

Hotel Bawa Walson Kolkata | Image Resource : cloudfront.net

The room that I booked was spacious, well-decorated and furnished, equipped with all modern amenities. All the rooms in the hotel were air-conditioned and equipped with mini bar, refrigerator, telephone, safe, LCD TV with cable connection, hair dryer, daily news paper and internet connection. The attached bathroom was neat and provided with all facilities including toiletries, bath towel and 24 hour hot/cold running water. On the ground floor there were special rooms for senior citizens and physically challenged people.

Hotel Bawa Walson Kolkata

Hotel Bawa Walson Kolkata | Image Resource : i1.bookcdn.com

After getting refreshed, we had our lunch from the multi cuisine restaurant in the hotel called Bombay Bru, which served Indian, Continental, Chinese and other international dishes. It is open 24 hours a day. There was also an open air restaurant in the hotel named Bar & Bistro Grill, which served traditional Arabic dishes. We were also served complimentary breakfast in the hotel including Indian as well as Continental.

Other facilities offered at the hotel include parking area, laundry service, doctor on call, daily housekeeping, 24 hours room service and front desk. There is also a /business Centre for the business men who need to conduct any meetings or conference.

Asking at the travel desk, we learnt that it was located close to Victoria Memorial, St. Paul’s Cathedral, Shahid Minar, Fort William and many other important tourist places. Our stay at Hotel Bawa Walson Kolkata was really memorable and the staff at the hotel was well-experienced and well- trained, ready to help you in any difficult situation.

Alipore Zoological Garden Kolkata – The Garden which Always Fills Your Heart with Joy


The Alipore Zoological Garden Kolkata is one of the major attractions in Kolkata and is visited every day by thousands of tourists and the local people. During the weekends the zoo is filled with children and grown up people. It is one of the oldest zoological parks in India and was open to the public from 1876. It was home to the Aldabra Giant Tortoise Adwaita, which was over 250 years, and died in the year 2006. The zoo was not very far from our hotel and we took a cab to reach the zoo. We reached the zoo within 10 minutes and after taking the ticket, got in through the electronic gate.

The zoo is open to the visitors from 9.00 am to 5.00 pm on all days of the week, except for Thursdays. The entry fee is Rs.20 per visitor and if you wish to take video inside, it is Rs.250 per hour. It was a large zoo covering an area of 46.5 acres and there was greenery all around. First we went to see the birds, and saw different species of birds, which included some endangered species also. We saw large parrots, Touracos and Hornbills, flightless birds like Emu, Cassowary and Ostrich, and many more.

The Mammals included Bengal Tiger, Asiatic Lion, Leopard, Jaguar, African Lion, Jungle Cat, various species of deer, porcupine, Himalayan Black Bear, Red Kangaroo, Indian Elephant, Nilgai etc. The tigers are now placed in a new glass walled enclosure, so that the visitors can view then clearly without disturbing them. The aviary for birds is also newly built.

The Reptile House inhabited crocodiles, Gharials, Giant Tortoise, Indian Python. King Cobra and many other poisonous and non poisonous snakes, Indian starred Tortoise, Marsh Crocodile and many more. We also saw various species of monkeys, Chimpanzee, Slender, Slow Loris, Common Marmoset, Hamadryas Baboon, Olive Baboon and many other species of Primates. We were told that the water bodies in the zoo attracted a lot of migratory birds in the winter season. After spending about 4 hours in the zoo, we came out and visited the Aquarium near the zoo. We had an enjoyable time at the zoo.

Destination Of The Week : Victoria Memorial Kolkata


Victoria Memorial Kolkata

Victoria Memorial Kolkata | Image Resource : wikimedia.org

Description : I enjoyed this the most. The visit to Victoria Memorial of Kolkata was really fun. The building has a truly amazing construction. I loved clicking pictures in its vicinity. I specially loved the unique idol of the Angel of Victory atop the building. The building was built way back in 1906.