All About Kolkata

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Travelling to Kolkata and wondering where to stay, what to eat, how to go around? It can be quite overwhelming if you don’t know the city. T

Accomodation

in kolkata
What are the top 3 easy on the pocket accommodation options in Kolkata?

a. Georgian Inn 

The 2-star hotel is ideally located in Central Kolkata, next to 3 major streets: A.P.C Roy Road, S.N Banerjee Road and Lenin Sarani

Address: Market, 1, Doctor Lane, Janbazar, Taltala, Kolkata, West Bengal-700014.

Rooms: The hotel has thirty AC and non-AC rooms.

Tariff: Prices range from INR 1200 - 1950. 


b. Vinayak Guest House:

This is a 3-star budget business hotel, located near the modern office hub, Sector-V. 

The property is very close to the City Centre Metro Station. 

Address: EC 279, Sector 1, Salt Lake Near EC Park, EC Market, City Centre I, Kolkata, West Bengal-700064.

Rooms: There 3 room categories - Standard Room with a shared bathroom, Deluxe Room and Super Deluxe Room with attached bathrooms.

Tariff: Prices range from INR 1200 - 1900. 


c. Hotel Victerrace:

This 2-star hotel is located in the heart of the City of Joy. What makes the hotel highly attractive is its proximity to the office hub and attractions, and the fully operational bar-cum-restaurant.

Address: Camac Street, 1B, Victoria Terrace, opposite to Industry House, Kolkata, West Bengal-700017

Rooms: There are 3 room categories available: Standard, Deluxe and Super Deluxe. 

Tariff: The tariff ranges from INR 1500 - 3000.

What are the top 3 mid-range accommodation options in Kolkata?

a. The Middleton Inn:

This 3-star hotel is only 600 metres from the food hub, Park Street and at a close distance from the city centre and points of interest like Victoria Memorial and the Indian Museum.

Address: 8, Middleton Street, Kankaria Estates, Park Street Area, Kolkata, West Bengal–700071.

Rooms: The hotel has Economy Rooms that are business travel friendly.

Tariff: Rooms are priced at INR 5500 and upwards.

b. The Lindsay:

This 3-star hotel is at the heart of Esplanade. The restaurant on the roof, Blue and Beyond, offers the best panoramic and aerial view of central Kolkata.

Address: 80A and 80B, Lindsay Street, opposite to New Market, Kolkata, West Bengal- 700087.

Rooms: From Deluxe Rooms to Suites, the hotel has 70 well-furnished rooms.

Tariff: The prices are INR 6000 & 7000 for Deluxe and Heritage Rooms, respectively.   

c. The Opus: A Boutique Hotel

This 3-star hotel might not be in the city centre, but it is not very far. It is well placed at the Bhowanipore area. The rooms come with a contemporary decor; you can enjoy a good meal at the in-house multi-cuisine restaurant, The Royal Courtyard and Conference Hall.

Address: 1, Shyama Prasad Mukherjee Road, Ghadi More, Opposite to Purna Cinema Hall, Kolkata, West Bengal-700025.

Rooms: There are 3 room categories – Classic, Executive and Premium.

Tariff: The rent ranges from INR 2900 – 3600.

What are the top luxury accommodation options in Kolkata?

a. ITC Royal Bengal- A Luxury Collection Hotel in Kolkata:

The magnificence of this luxurious property on EM Bypass is beyond any explanation. This hotel was constructed keeping aristocracy in mind, need we say more?

Address: 1, JBS Haldane Avenue, Tangra, Kolkata, West Bengal-700046.

Rooms: A total of 456 hotel rooms and suites, and 82 serviced apartments.

Tariff: The tariff starts at INR 7100.


b. Hyatt Regency Kolkata

This 5-star luxury business hotel is only 10 Km from the international airport. This elegant place is suitable for both leisure and business travellers alike.

Hyatt is also known for its state-of-art spa.

Address: JA-1 Sector-III, Salt Lake City, Kolkata, West Bengal-700098

Rooms: There are a total of 234 rooms in the luxury collection, including the Regency Club Rooms, and 13 Suites.

Tariff: Prices start at INR 6500.


c. Taj Bengal Kolkata: 

This 5-star hotel is ideally in the city centre and close to all the major attractions. Taj is known amongst tourists not only for its luxury but also for its heritage.

Address: 34B, Belvedere Road, Alipore, Kolkata, West Bengal-700027.

Rooms: There are 228 luxury rooms in this property.

Tariff: The tariff ranges from INR 8,400-INR 1,00,000

Tip: This property is pet-friendly.

Attractions

in kolkata
What are the top 3 Instagram/selfie spots in Kolkata?
  • Victoria Memorial
  • Jorasanko Thakur Bari
  • Howrah Bridge
What are the top 3 attractions you can visit free of cost in Kolkata?
  • Princep Ghat
  • Mother House
  • Park Street
What are the top 3 child-friendly points of interest at Kolkata?
  • Eco Park
  • Science City
  • Mother’s Wax Museum
What are the top 3 points of interests for couples in Kolkata?
  • Millennium Park
  • Elliot Park
  • Victoria Memorial
What are the 3 must visit attractions at Kolkata?
  • The Indian Museum
  • Dakhineshwar Temple
  • Belur Math

Activities

in kolkata
What 3 spots can I head to for an adrenaline rush in Kolkata?

Aside from kayaking at Eco Park, New Town, Kolkata is not very well-known for attractions that will give you an adrenaline rush.

Price of kayaking at Eco Park: INR 150 for a single seat kayak. (30 minutes)

Psst, you can challenge your friends to a game of who can gulp down the most number of puchkas, in a given time. We think that is an extreme sport too. ;)

What are the top spots to experience the Art & Culture of Kolkata?

Art and Cultural Exhibition Centres -

  • Academy of Fine Arts – Maidan
  • Kala Mandir Auditorium – Park Circus
  • Birla Academy – Southern Avenue

 Art and Cultural Fairs -

  • The International Kolkata Book Fair or Boi Mela: This is an annual fair that takes place in January, coinciding with Makar Sankranti.
  • Dover Lane Music Festival: This is the annual music fair that happens in January.
  • Ilish Utsav: Food is a very important part of Kolkata's culture. In August, the West Bengal Government celebrates an extravagant festival, with fairs, and food stalls, and with Hilsa fish in different forms.
What are some festivals that I must not miss at Kolkata?

The people of Kolkata celebrate more than 20 festivals in a year, with some popular ones being -

  • Poila Baisakh (Bengali New Year) on the 14th or 15th of April.
  • Durga Puja around September - October.
  • Kali Puja between October and November.

Food

in kolkata
What are the best pure vegetarian restaurants in Kolkata?
  • Govinda’s – For delicious Indian food.
  • Rajdhani Thali – For Rajasthani and Gujarati delicacies.
  • Hukana Matata – For continental delicacies and cocktails/mock-tails.
Where can I eat like a local in Kolkata?
  • Oh! Calcutta – an elite Bengali dine out.
  • 6 Ballygunge Place – Adi Bangaliana (food unique to old Calcutta).
  • Kasturi – for Bangladeshi Bengali cuisine.
Where can I find the best street food in Kolkata?
  • Hot Kati Roll – for authentic kathi kebab rolls.
  • Radhu Babu’s Tea Shop – for classic tea and evening snacks.
  • Rajendra Phuchka – for award-winning Phuchka (Golgappa/Panipuri) experience.
What are the best premier restaurants in Kolkata?
  • Baan Thai – authentic Thai restaurant at the Oberoi Grand.
  • Pan Asian – ITC Sonar for Chinese, Mongolian, and Korean food.
  • Grand Market Pavilion – ITC Royal Bengal for world cuisine.

Transportation

in kolkata
What are the average cab fares in Kolkata?
  • Ola Cabs with a base fare starting at INR 35.
  • Uber Cabs with a minimum base fare of INR 47.50.
  • Gatidhara  West Bengal Government’s app-based cab service.
  • Pink Cab – Cabs driven by women for women.
How can I access public transport in Kolkata?
  1. Regular or Non-AC buses - Fares range from INR 7- 20.
  2. AC buses – Fares range from INR 20 – 65.
  3. Autos – the fares are dependent on the route you want to take. A majority of drivers charge a minimum fare of INR 7 for the first kilometre.
  4. Local taxis – The minimum fare is INR 30 and there is an additional 25% charge if you want the air-conditioning.
  5. Kolkata Metro – The fare ranges from INR 10 – 30.
  6. Trams – the true essence of Kolkata, with fares ranging from INR 7- 15.
  7. Kolkata Suburban Railway system – the tickets range from INR 5- INR 20.
  8. Rickshaws – the fares are not consistent and vary from place to place.
  9. Hand-pulled rickshaws – very common mode of transport in north Kolkata.
  10. Government buses – West Bengal Transport Corporation.

For more information on the Government buses, you can visit their website https://wbtc.co.in/bus-service/.

Shopping

in kolkata
Where can I find the best bargains in Kolkata?
  • New Market shopping area: For the best deals on all fashion products from Simpark Mall and Sree Ram Arcade. There are other stand-alone stores for fashion, especially footwear like Sreeleathers, Bata, Woodlands, etc.
  • Gariahat Market: Kolkata's very own flea market.
  • Barra Bazar: If you like wholesale shopping, this needs to be on your list for the cheapest deals.
What are the top 3 spots for shopping if I feel like indulging in Kolkata?
  • South City Mall – Prince Anwar Shah Road.
  • Quest Mall – Ballygunge.
  • Forum Courtyard Mall – Elgin Road.
Where can I shop like a local in Kolkata?
  • Adi Dhakeswari BastralayaRashbehari Avenue for the authentic Bengali weaves.
  • Sarang - for Boutique and designer sarees.
  • Adi Mohini Mohan Kanjilal – Heritage Bengali sarees.

Tips and Suggestions

in kolkata
How safe and accessible is Kolkata in the night?

Public transport is operational until 11 PM. 

Please note that if you are travelling to Salt Lake or Rajarhat, you will need to take a cab. 

If you are traveling after 10 PM, we recommend renting a car or booking a taxi.

Safety tips for late night travel

Kolkata is comparatively safer than other metros and some cities. The city centre is buzzing almost until 11 PM after which, the streets can get empty.  Central Kolkata aside, the rest of the city gets deserted after 10 PM. 

Your safety will however depend solely on where you wish to travel, how you wish to commute and obviously how late at night you plan the journey. Kindly ensure due diligence before making plans.

What currency is accepted in Kolkata?

The local currency is INR. It is recommended to keep loose change handy, especially if you are going to explore street-side eateries and travel by public transport.

International tourists please keep in mind, that the currency exchange counters throughout the city shut shop by 6 PM. Only Sudder Street Exchange corners remain open until 9 PM.

Bargaining tips and tricks
  • All public transport buses and autos charge a fixed price. Your only scope for negotiation is with taxis where meters are not operational.
  • Road side food stalls have a fixed price too. No bargains there.
  • New Market, Barra Bazar, and Gariahat shopping areas are the best areas to put your bargaining skills to good use.
What is the tipping culture in Kolkata?

Tipping is not mandatory, however premier restaurants charge 10% of the total bill amount as a service charge.

What are some common greetings/gestures that will be useful at Kolkata?
  • Namaskar - Hello
  • Shuprovat - Good Morning
  • Shubho Ratri - Good Night
What gestures are an absolute no at Kolkata?
  • Beware of overly friendly shopkeepers, they are most likely conning you. (Not true in all cases.) Use it to your advantage and try to strike a bargain. 
  • If a cab driver does not respond to your call, ask if he is willing to take you for a little extra tip. (INR 10 - 20, if you are in a hurry.)
What is the weather like in Kolkata?
  • In summer the temperature ranges between 27-32 °C.
  • In winter the temperature can go as low as 7°C.
  • February-March is pleasant with a comfortable temperature around 18 - 22°C.
  • June-September is monsoon with moderate to heavy rainfall.
What should I pack for Kolkata?
  • You always need to carry an umbrella when in Kolkata. Though rain is not common in the winter, the weather here can be unpredictable. 
  • Don't pack too many woolens if you are not traveling in winter. Even then, a light wrap and a cardigan should do the trick.
  • For summer, light, cotton clothing is highly recommended. 
What are the Emergency Helpline Numbers for Kolkata?
  • Medical: 9830079999
  • Police: 100
  • Fire Brigade: 101
  • Women Helpline: 1091
  • Child Helpline: 1098
What items are prohibited in Kolkata?
  • Use of plastic bags below 50 microns.
  • No flammable objects, explosives, raw meat or pets on public transport.
Who are the top 2 network service provider in Kolkata?
  • Vodafone
  • Airtel

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