Situated on the western bank of the Hooghly River in the state of West Bengal, Howrah is the twin city of Kolkata. The two cities are connected by bridges over the River Gange and ferry services between various jetties. Howrah is a popular tourist destination and home to the famed Belur Math, the headquarters of Swami Vivekananda’s Ramakrishna Math, which attracts tourists from across the globe. The various tourist attractions like Howrah Bridge, Indian Botanical Gardens, Anand Niketan Kirtishala, and many others lure domestic and foreign travelers to the city. October to March is the best time to visit Howrah when the city remains alive and colorful, due to festivals galore. Durga Puja, the main festival of the city, is celebrated for nine days in the month of October. Read ahead for our picks of the best things to do while visiting Howrah.
1. Howrah Bridge
One of the famous architectures of the British era, the Howrah Bridge still continues to be amongst the longest cantilever bridges in the world. Built in the 1940s, it is the 6th largest suspension bridge in the world, devoid of nuts and bolts. No doubt, it is still a wonderful architecture carrying thousands of pedestrians and traffic daily. It connects Kolkata and Howrah and is one of the busiest bridges in the world. A walk over this bridge reveals the story of Kolkata, the city, and its people. You could also take a ferry across the Ganges and enjoy the beautiful view of the river, the bathing ghats on the edge of the river, and this outstanding cantilever bridge. The Hooghly Ferry provides a good angle for pictures, as it passes parallel to the bridge.
Address: Near Howrah Station
Website: Howrah Bridge
2. Belur Math
Belur Mutt (in Kolkata, India) is the headquarters of the Ramakrishna Math and Mission, founded by Swami Vivekananda. It...Posted by Incredible India on Saturday, 14 February 2015
Located on the banks of River Hooghly, Belur Math, the head Quarter of Ramakrishna mission, was founded by Swami Vivekananda in 1897. Tourists flock to this spiritual, exotic location to view the architectural grandeur of this Hindu Monastery. The architecture, symbolizing a temple, church, and a mosque when viewed from different corners, highlights the principle of ‘Unity in Diversity’ in India. Along the Math, there is also a museum. The entire area signifies calmness and peace and the Math is an abode for people looking for peace and tranquillity. There is a huge tree which is supposed to be the place where Swami used to interact with people and there is also a small 2-floor building, which houses his bedroom. Several pictorial teachings are there as well, on the entrance/exit walls towards the main road.
Opening hours: Monday - Friday: 5.30 am - 7.30 pm, Saturday: 5.30 am - 7.30 pm, Sunday: 5.30 am - 7.30 pm, Public Holidays: 5.30 am - 7.30 pm
Website: Belur Math
3. Dakshineswar Kali Temple
Dakshineswar Kali Temple, Kolkata <3Posted by Amazing India on Sunday, 7 August 2016
Situated on the banks of Hooghly River, Kali Temple is a famous landmark in Kolkata. It’s a Siddheswari temple of Goddess Kali, with the ancient story that Goddess Kali’s presence was there. It carries the legacy of Ramakrishna Paramhansa Dev. The Bengali architecture style temple is quite beautiful and clean. During the morning and evening prayer times, long queues are there and you may have to wait for about an hour to offer prayers to the Goddess Kali. The crowd is larger on Saturdays, Sundays, Holy days and other holidays. For those looking for a divine experience, the temple is a must-visit place. Apart from the main temple, there are temples dedicated to Lord Shiva as well as shrines dedicated to Sarada Devi and Ramakrishna. From Dakshineshwar Temple one can go to Belur Math by boat.
Dakshineswar Kali Temple
Website: Dakshineswar Kali Temple
4. Acharya Jagadish Chandra Bose Indian Botanic Garden
The great banyan tree. P.S. The image is a panoramic view of one single tree. <3Posted by Anmol Anand on Saturday, 21 November 2015
Founded by Col. Robert Kyd in 1787, the botanical garden spanning over 2,500 acres (1,012 hectares) has a rich history over 230 years. The garden is home to some rare species of trees like Brazil, Sumatra, Penang, Sicily Java, and Nepal trees. The 250 year old Giant Banyan tree spreads over 4 acres (1.6 ha) and is the center of attraction. It is so huge that you can’t see it from one spot, so you have to walk around it. There is also a double coconut tree, producing the biggest seeds known to the plant family. There are many ponds and water bodies, hosting ducks, rare yellow-footed green pigeons, dozens of drongos, jacanas, and noisy jungle babblers. A walk through the green canopy paths of the garden is quite exciting. Those who can’t walk can hire electric golf carts. It is a favorite destination for students and researchers in botany and the ideal place for a picnic, as it is located on the banks of River Hooghly.
Acharya Jagadish Chandra Bose Indian Botanic Garden
Address: Shibpur, Howrah, West Bengal 711 103
Website: Acharya Jagadish Chandra Bose Indian Botanic Garden
5. Santragachhi Jheel (Lake)
Northern Pintail, Santragachi Jheel,25.12.2016.Please view fullscreen.Posted by Saumitra Chatterjee on Sunday, 25 December 2016
Spanning an area of 32 acres (13 ha) the Jheel is located just beside the Santragachi Railway Station, around 14 km (8.6 miles) from Kolkata. The lake is a safe haven for migratory winter birds, arriving from Siberia and many other places, especially during December and January. It becomes a birdwatchers paradise in winter. Visitors can view birds like the goose, cotton pygmy goose, and comb duke, and bitterns and jacanas are the endemic and resident breeders. The rare Fulvous Whistling-duck, Ferruginous Pochard, Swinhoe’s Snipe, Gadwall, Garganey, Northern Shovelers and Northern Pintail, among others, are regular winter arrivals. The Little Whistling-duck is a big attraction of the lake.
Santragachhi Jheel (Lake)
Address: 14 km (8.6 miles) from Kolkata
Website: Santragachhi Jheel (Lake)
6. Millennium Park
Group pics at Millineum park,Howrah (22/12/16)Posted by Hero Jidung on Thursday, 22 December 2016
The beautiful and huge park is located on the bank of Hooghly River, between Howrah Bridge and Vidyasagar Setu. It is an ideal place for a family get together, friend circle hangout and also for the bird lover. The best time to reach this place is the evening, when you can enjoy the sunset and the 2nd Hooghly Bridge. The beauty of the River Ganges from this park is mesmerizing. During the afternoon, there is also a special boat ride.
Address: Between Howrah Bridge and Vidyasagar Setu
7. Victoria Memorial Hall
The palace of Queen Victoria and now a museum of the British era, Victoria Memorial is a spectacular building with a huge dome and tall entryway, centered on a large green space. It is a reminder of the British Raj in all of India, and there are various interesting exhibits on the history of India and Kolkata. There is a huge royal statue of Queen Victoria outside the building and inside there are photographs, statues, and documents. There is also a nice lake and garden for spending time.
Victoria Memorial Hall
Address: Queen’s Way, Kolkata 700071
Website: Victoria Memorial Hall
8. Ananda Niketan Kirtishala
This is a museum, located in the Bagnan area of Howrah District. The museum has a collection of ancient Terra cotta figures, temple terra cotta plaques, stone sculptures, potteries, paintings, wooden & bronze items, manuscripts, and coins, etc. The library in the museum maintains a card index of the medieval temples of Bengal and nearby historical locations.
Anand Niketan Kirtishala
Opening times: Monday - Friday: 11.00 am - 5.00 pm, Saturday: 11.00 am -5.00 pm, Sunday: 11.00 am - 5.00 pm, Public Holidays: 11.00 am - 5.00 pm
Address: 40/1, Ram Charan Sett Rd, Santragachi, Shibpur, Howrah,
9. Sundarban Houseboat
Sundarban is an abode of luscious flora and fauna and dwelling habitat of the Royal Bengal tigers, wild boars, spotted deers, giant monitor lizards, monkeys, otters, turtles and several birds. Although tigers are elusive, you can see tiger tracks on the riverbank. This boat sails on the River Matla slowly, giving an opportunity to enjoy the serene beauty on either side. Humidity might be irritating in the day time when the boat halts at various spots. The houseboat has all the modern facilities like a fridge, TV, AC, binoculars, books, and movies on wildlife. The living rooms are well furnished with attached toilets. The crew entertains each evening with music, videos, and a local dance troupe (for a reasonable extra charge). It really is a memorable experience.
Address: Houseboat Holidays Pvt. Ltd. 7, Surendra Mohan Ghosh Sarani (Alias-Mangoe Lane), 1st Floor, Room No.106, Kolkata 700 001
Website: Sundarban Houseboat
The various tourist attractions, famed Kolkata sweets, colorful festivals, coupled with the unique living style of the Kolkata people, makes Howrah/Kolkata not only a unique destination, but also a place to learn about the arts and culture of Bengal. It also happens to be the only city in India where a tram system is operational. So there is no better time to plan your visit!
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