Kolkata, otherwise known as “City of Joy,“ is the epicenter of art, heritage, and history in India. For over a century, it was the capital of British India and hosted the British East India Company headquarters. Under the British Raj, it became the territorial capital in the subcontinent region. Home to diverse cultures and ethnicities, the huge population of immigrant communities contributed to Kolkata’s architecture, history, and cuisine. Though very cosmopolitan, Kolkata is rich in rural cultural traditions and called the unofficial literary capital of India for its wealth of publications. In a country obsessed with cricket, it is the only city that founded the Calcutta Football League, one of the oldest football league associations in Asia and the world. With so much to see, check out our list of the top 10 days trips from Kolkata, West Bengal.
1. Go on a picnic with family at Bawali Farmhouse
Spend a day with family and friends at Bawali Farmhouse by having a picnic. Reconnect with nature and experience the local village life at the farmhouse. It features a pond, lush green field, meeting space, and play area for the kids. Everyone is allowed to have a picnic here from 10 am to 6:30 pm only. The farmhouse also offers cottages, cave rooms, and treehouse rooms for rent with an attached bathroom.
Address: Bawali, Bawali - Rania Rd, Hasnecha, Raypur, West Bengal 700137, India
Website: Bawali Farmhouse
Opening hours: 10am - 6:30pm (daily)
2. Ride a boat and explore the Sundarbans (from USD 189.0)
Sundarbans is the world’s largest mangrove area located on the delta of Meghna, Brahmaputra, and Ganges rivers. Home to Bengal tigers, this lush forest stretches from Bangladesh’s Baleshwari River to India’s Hooghly River. Explore this Amazon-like forest by taking a half or full-day tour of Sundarban. The half-day tour involves riding a boat and exploring the jungle, watch tower, and Sajnakhali Wildlife Sanctuary. Meals are provided when you book an overnight accommodation in this resort. The full-day tour involves a trip to Sundarban National Park and Sudhanyakhali Watch Tower where you can watch wild animals from a distance.
Exploring the beauty of Sunderban
Duration: 3 days
3. Admire the amazing arched galleries of Rasmancha Temple (from USD 161.0)
This guided day trip starts in Bishnupur at 10 am where tourists get to see the ancient 17th-century terracotta temples of Malla Kingdom. These shrines are dedicated to Malla Kingdom’s patron god, Lord Krishna. Your guide will fill you in on how terracotta art flourished during the 16th to the 17th century under the rule of the tyrant Malla King and the conversion of the city to Gaudiya Vaishnavism. Pay a visit to Rasmancha Temple, a historical building that was built by King Bir Hambir. The next stops also include interacting with Baluchuri sari weavers and learning more about the art of pottery at Panchmura.
Kolkata to Terracotta Temples, Bishnupur, Panchmura Craft Tour
Duration: 12 hours
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4. Take in the refreshing air at Mangal Pandey Park
Barrackpur, formerly called Barbuckpur or Chanak, is a town in Kolkata and the first oldest British cantonment in 1772. Aside from being a military base and administrative center, it was also a popular vacation destination for British people. Its park called Mangal Pandey Park features colonial-style cottages with gardens and awesome river views. While here, never miss a chance to have a picnic with your loved ones while being surrounded by a lush greenery, a pond, and huge sculptures. The river nearby is also ideal for boating.
Mangal Pandey Park
Address: Barrackpur Cantonment, beside Surrendarnath College, Barrackpore, West Bengal 700120, India
Website: Mangal Pandey Park
Opening hours: Sun: 5am – 6pm; Mon - Sat: 5am – 6:30pm
5. Stroll along the riverbanks in Deulti
Deulti is a small village that is about 48 km (30 mi) from Kolkata and 6 km (4 mi) to Western Bagnan in Howrah district. Located on the riverbanks of Rupnaraya, it’s ideal for a city break with its lovely surroundings. It is accessible via Vidyasagar Setu, Kona Highway, and National Highway 6. Enjoy panoramic views while listening to sound of birds. Stroll along the riverbanks and visit the terracotta temples of Madan Gopal and Radha.
Address: West Bengal 711303, India
Website: Deulti Village
6. Marvel at the stunning ancient walls of Hooghly Imambara
Hooghly Imambara in Chinsurah, West Bengal is a mosque frequented by Muslims of the Shiah Asna-Ashari sect. The two-level building was built in 1841 and finished in 1861 by Muhammad Mohsin. Its entrance features a clock tower, while its ancient walls have intricate Quran etchings. The lavish interiors are adorned with hanging lanterns and candles. A generous donation by the rich Muhammad Mohsin, it is considered the most important building in the entire complex.
Address: Imambara road Hooghly, near D.M Banglw, Chowk Bazar, Chinsurah, West Bengal 712103, India
Website: Hooghly Imambara
Opening hours: 8am - 5:30pm (daily)
7. See an impressive display of saris at Dhaniakhali Saree Museum
Dhaniakhali is a small village in the community block of Hooghly district’s Chinsurah subdivision in West Bengal. It is also home to Dhaniakhali Saree Museum. A sari is a high-quality garment traditionally worn by aristocratic women in India. During your trip here, you can visit the museum and see an impressive display of saris in their wonderful colors and patterns. Witness how the townspeople weave the cloth using centuries-old handloom.
Dhaniakhali Saree Museum
Address: Beside Rupbani Cinemahall, Dhaniakhali, West Bengal 712302, India
Website: Dhaniakhali Saree Museum
Opening hours: Mon - Sat: 9am - 8:30pm; Sun: 9am - 3am
8. Join a full-day pilgrimage tour of Sagar Island (from USD 100.0)
Gangasagar or Sagar Island is a sacred island where Hindus go on a yearly pilgrimage. Every 14th of January, Hindus celebrate Makar Sankranti by taking a dip in the holy waters of Bay of Bengal and Ganges River. They also perform puja (ceremonial worship) in the temple of Kapil Muni. Take a tour of the island and savor the panoramic views of the beaches. You will ride a boat to the island and take an air-conditioned car with your guide to the popular landmarks of town. You will then have lunch at a restaurant of your choice.
Private Full-Day Tour of Ganga Sagar from Kolkata
Duration: 10 hours
9. Enjoy a 14-hour day trip around Sri Krishna’s holy land (from USD 188.0)
Mayapur is a village located in close proximity to Nabadwip, where Ganga and Jalangi rivers meet. Also called the holy place of Sri Krishna, this village is home to Radha Krishna Temple, local artisans, and International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON). A tour of the village will give you a sense of calm and peace. It’s magical temples, believed to have just appeared on the island, are the main tourist attractions. Sonar Gouranga Temple features Sri Chaitanya’s golden statue, while ISKCON temple boasts delicious bhog and other food items.
Private Full Day Trip to Mayapur from Kolkata with Guide
Duration: 14 hours
10. Tour the university town of Santiniketan (from USD 180.0)
About 165 km (102 mi) from Kolkata is the serene and peaceful Santiniketan town of Bolpur City, West Bengal. Also known as a university town, it was founded by Maharshi Debendranath Tagore as a learning center that is free from regional and religious boundaries. In 1921, Rabindranath Tagore (his son and a popular Indian writer) established Visva- Bharati University. It was declared a nationally important institution in 1951. With this tour, you get to explore the town in a private air-conditioned vehicle with a professional tour guide. See the old buildings that started the academe like Santiniketan which was originally built as a guesthouse. Around the university, you will see function halls, Upasana Mandir prayer hall, a museum, and the old residence of Tagore. The complex has impressive landscaping and architecture worth seeing.
Private Full Day Tour of Shantiniketan from Kolkata
Duration: 10 hours
A soul searcher’s paradise
With its serene atmosphere, lush natural surroundings, amazing culture, and awesome architecture, Kolkata is indeed one of the best places to go for some peace and quiet. It’s also great for family outings and bonding with friends. Be sure to include these day trips when visiting Kolkata for an enriching trip to India.
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