Kolkata, the City of Joy, is one of the oldest and most loved cities in India. Apart from a rich history and culture, there are also a number of amazing places to visit in Kolkata. No matter what type of traveller you are, no matter where you come from, it is hard not to fall in love with Kolkata. It is a city with vibrant and colourful lanes, and you can feel the pulse as you meander through these lanes.
Kolkata is not merely a city. It is an emotion that needs to be felt. It is a canvas coloured with every shade. And, if you are here, you can absolutely not miss these 21 amazing places to visit in Kolkata.
21 Incredible Places to Visit in Kolkata
1. Indian Museum
The Indian Museum was founded in 1814 by the Asiatic Society of Bengal in Kolkata, the Indian Museum is the oldest and the largest of all museums in India. It is home to some of the rarest scientific and cultural artefacts and the exhibition includes Mummies, Mughal paintings, antiques, fossils, coins, armours, and other such items. The museum is one of the most important places in Kolkata.
- Location: 27, Jawaharlal Nehru Rd, Dharmatala (Esplanade), Kolkata
- Timing: 10:00 AM – 6:30 PM (Tuesday – Friday); 10:00 AM – 8:00 PM (Weekends); Monday closed
- Entry Fee: Indian adults – INR 50; Kinds above 5 years – INR 20; Foreigners – INR 500
- Nearby attractions: Victoria Memorial, Town Hall, Paul’s Cathedral, Princep Ghat, Eden Gardens
2. Victoria Memorial
An iconic marble building built between 1906 and 1921, it was originally dedicated to the memory of Queen Victoria of the British Empire. The building boasts of Indo-Saracenic revivalist style architecture which is an incredible blend of British, Mughal, Islamic, Decaani, Venetian and Egyptian influences. The museum is home to some of the rarest books such as Rubaiyat and Arabian Nights by Omar Khayyam, the original works of William Shakespeare and other books.
The museum also a Royal Gallery that has massive oil paintings of the various life events Quen Victoria and her family. There is another gallery called the Culcutta Gallery which portrays the history and development of the city and beautiful gardens. The massive white palace-like building has been transformed into a museum and is one of the most famous places to visit in Kolkata.
- Location: Queens Way, Kolkata
- Timing: 10 AM – 5 PM
- Entry Fee: Museum – INR 20 for Indians; INR 500 for Foreigners; Garden – INR 10 per person
- Nearby Attractions: St Paul’s Church, Eliot Park, Nizam Palace
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3. Birla Planetarium
Who doesn’t love to look up at a starry sky and wonder what lies beyond? The Birla Planetarium is the perfect place to enjoy and experience the night sky and the cosmic world as never before. The recent modernization and updating of the shows have made it even better. It is one of the best places to visit in Kolkata for children.
- Location: Jawaharlal Nehru Road, Kolkata
- Timing: 12:30 PM – 6:30 PM (Monday – Saturday); 10:30 AM – 6:30 PM (Sunday)
- Entry Fee: INR 40 per person
- Nearby attractions: Victoria Memorial, Inox Forum Mall, St Thomas Church, Fountain of Joy
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4. St. Paul’s Cathedral
You need not be a Christian to visit the cathedral. The St. Paul’s Cathedral is among the first constructions made by the imperial British Empire in India. However, today, it is as much part of Kolkata as any other places in the city.
This massive cathedral is especially known for the gothic architecture and is one of the most visited Kolkata sightseeing options in the city. The calm and serenity it offers is a soothing experience for the mind and the soul.
- Location: Cathedral Road, Kolkata
- Timing: 9 AM – 12 PM & 3 PM – 6 PM (Monday – Saturday); 7:30 AM – 6 PM (Sunday)
- Entry Fees: None
- Nearby Attractions: Academy of Fine Arts, ISCKON Kolkata, Park Street, Quest Mall
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5. Jorasanko Thakur Bari
Rabindranath Tagore needs no introduction! A Nobel laureate in the field of literature, he is among the brightest personalities to have ever lived on earth. The trip to Kolkata will remain incomplete without a visit to the historic Jorasanko Thakur Bari.
The home of Rabindranath Tagore, his family, and ancestors. Even though the generation did not carry forward, the legacy remained and the house has become a museum and a place of tourist attraction. It is indeed one of the best places to visit in Kolkata with family.
- Location: Jorasanko, Kolkata
- Timing: 10:30 AM – 4:30 PM (Tuesday – Sunday)
- Entry fee: Adults – INR 10; Foreigners – INR 50
- Nearby attractions: Dakshineshwar Kali Temple, Eden Gardens, College Street, Howrah Bridge, Princep Ghat
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6. College Street
Also known as the boipara in the local Bengali dialect, the College Street got its name due to the presence of some of the finest colleges of India. The Presidency College and Hindu College are two iconic educational institutions present over here and one of the most famous places to visit in Kolkata.
However, that’s not what brings most of the people down to this place. The stalls along College Street are the best places to locate some of the oldest and rarest books and also grab a good deal for them. It is a book lover’s paradise. And, do not forget, the Indian Coffee House and Paramount Sherbats & Syrups. You get guaranteed refreshment and true Kolkata experience.
- Location: College Street, Kolkata
- Timing: All through the day. The best time between 10 AM and 8 PM.
- Nearby Attractions: marble Palace Kolkata, Pareshnath Jain Temple, Bada Bazaar, New Market
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7. Dakshineshwar Temple
The bond between Kolkata and Maa Kali, a Hindu Goddess, is quite old. However, it was Rani Rashmoni who strengthened the bond further. Maa Kali wasn’t worshipped in the regular households. It was the effort of Rani Rashmoni that led to a change in this.
The Dakshineshwar Temple was established by Rani Rashmoni battling many odds, and it served an important role behind many historical events. This temple brought together another two iconic figures, Sri Ramakrishna and Swami Vivekananda and played a vital role that led to the formation of the Ramakrishna Mission.
The grandeur of the place still holds and you simply cannot leave Kolkata without visiting the temple at least once. Indeed this is one of the top 10 places to visit in Kolkata
- Location: Dakshineshwar, Kolkata
- Timing: 5 AM – 8 PM
- Entry Fees: None
- Nearby attractions: Salt Lake Stadium, Ramakrishna Mutt, City Centre Mall, General Post Office
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8. Belur Math
The Belur Math was established under the Ramakrishna Mission and is one of the finest places for anyone who is looking to break away from the monotony of city life. The math has its own museum where you can see many items of use by Sri Ramakrishna, Swami Vivekananda, and Maa Sarada.
You will find many books as well that will give you a better understanding of their lives. The temple offers evening prayers, which is an amazing experience in itself. You can also enjoy the cool breeze blowing across the River Hoogly as you sit by its bank in the lap of nature.
- Location: Belur, Howrah
- Timing: 6 AM – 12 PM & 4 PM – 9 PM
- Entry Fees: None
- Nearby Attractions: Victoria Memorial, Swami Vivekananda’s ancestral House, Eden Gardens, Howrah Bridge
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9. Rabindra Sarobar Lake
Not many people are aware of this wonderful location in the heart of a bustling part of the city. Rabindra Sarobar Lake is a wonderful place to spend the afternoon and evening. You can even sit by the lake until late evening and enjoy the cool breeze.
The ample foliage makes it the perfect place to spend even a hot day. There are benches all across the park surrounding the lake where you can rest and spend some quiet time. It is also quite popular among the evening and morning walkers and joggers as the roads within the park are pretty safe for pedestrians.
- Location: Dhakuriya, Kolkata
- Timing: From sunrise till night
- Entry Fees: None
- Nearby Attractions: South City Mall, Mother House, Parashnath Jain Temple, Netaji Bhawan
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10. Science City
Science is indeed a marvel and the use of some basic science can create amazing displays. The Science City in Kolkata is one such place where you will find numerous scientific theories put to action. This place is particularly popular among school kids, but also extremely recreational and enjoyable for the adults alike.
From the hall of mirrors to various displays based on illusion to numerous rides, and much more! Science City is a place where you can spend an entire day without getting bored a bit!
- Location: J.B.S. Haldane Avenue, Kolkata
- Timing: 9 AM – 8 PM
- Entry Fee: INR 50 per person
- Nearby Attractions: Tagore House, Birla Temple, Quest Mall, Nicco Park
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11. Nicco Park
One of the oldest recreational parks of the city, the Nicco Park remains a favourite among tourists and locals alike. The park has a host of various types of rides, all perfectly safe and well maintained. Nicco Park is divided into the dry park and the wet park.
The water park, which forms the wet park, is particularly a hit during the summer months. This place is pretty big and if you plan on enjoying everything, make sure you have the entire day reserved for the visit. Nicco Park surely is one of the best places to visit in Kolkata for youngsters.
- Location: Sector IV, Salt Lake, Kolkata
- Timing: 10:30 AM – 7:30 PM
- Entry Fee: INR 250
- Nearby Attractions: Salt Lake Central Park, Subhash Sarovar, Mani Square Mall, Rabindra Sarobar
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12. Eco Park
This is a relatively recent addition to the list of attractions in the city. The Eco Park is quite a large place with a huge water body, offering the perfect opportunity to enjoy a cool picnic in the soothing breeze blowing across the lake.
There are quite a few fun activities available such as cycle riding, boat riding and a hot favourite – a trip of the Seven Wonders of the World, well the miniaturized versions basically. However, fun nonetheless! Eco Park is truly one of the unique places to visit in Kolkata.
- Location: New Town, Kolkata
- Timing: 12 PM – 8:30 PM (Tuesday – Sunday); 12 PM – 8 PM (Monday)
- Entry Fees: INR 20
- Nearby Attractions: Mother’s Wax Museum, Rabindra Tirtha, Axis Mall, Shyama Raya Temple
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13. Princep Ghat
If you want to enjoy the beauty of the River Hoogly while also have a fine place to sit and relax, the Princep Ghat is the perfect place for that. It has a long walk along the side of the river with ample trees to keep the place shady and cool. You can either stroll about or sit on one of the benches as you enjoy the view of the river. This place is particularly popular among the youths of the city and is also one of the famous places to visit in Kolkata.
- Location: Fort William, Hastings, Kolkata
- Timing: 8 AM – 10:45 PM
- Entry Fee: None
- Nearby Attractions: Metcalfe Hall, Millenium Park, Writer’s Building, General Post Office, Eden Garden
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14. Park Street
The best place for party lovers, night owls, and music, drinks, and food lovers has got to be Park Street in Kolkata. From exquisite bars to nightclubs and finest dining spots, Park Street has it all. If you wish to enjoy the nightlife in Kolkata, Park Street is where you need to be.
Christmas celebration at Park Street is as iconic as the Durga Puja celebration all across Kolkata. And if you care to explore further, you might even come across some of the rarest items from the British Empire era at few stores on Park Street. Park Street undoubtedly is one of the best places to visit in Kolkata during Christmas.
- Location: Park Street, Kolkata
- Timing: Anytime
- Nearby Attractions: Oxford Bookstore, Indian Museum, Vitoria Memorial, New Market
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15. Mother’s Wax Museum
Well, this one is the Indian version of Madame Tussauds wax museum and one of the unique places to visit in Kolkata. Located close to Eco Park, this is yet another recent addition to the city, but quite popular nevertheless. You will find excellent lifelike wax figures of many eminent personalities of Bengal and India, as well as some international icons. Get ready to be clicked alongside these eminent personalities!
- Location: New Town, Kolkata
- Timing: 12 PM – 7:30 PM
- Entry Fees: INR 250 per person
- Nearby Attractions: Jorasanko Thakur Bari, Biswa Bangla Gate, Rabindra Tirtha, Wet O Wild
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16. South City Mall
Who doesn’t love shopping! And mix it with ample option for recreation, it becomes the perfect combo! South City Mall, one of the largest shopping malls in South Kolkata, has it all. Whether you are looking for the latest in the fashion segment or wish to catch the new movie, you will have all the options at South City Mall. After the remodelling and reopening of the place, it has become even more attractive and one of the main places to visit in the south Kolkata.
- Location: Prince Anwar Shah Road, Kolkata
- Timing: 11 AM – 9:30 PM
- Entry Fees: None
- Nearby Attractions: Rabindra Sarobar, Birla Industrial & Technological Museum, Quest Mall
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17. Quest Mall
This one can be safely said to be the first premium shopping mall of International fashion brands. From Gucci to Armani, your thirst for the premium fashion brand items will be quenched at the Quest! The mall also houses the finest restaurant and fast-food brands. The Inox multiplex at Quest boasts of providing the best movie experience.
- Location: Ballygunge, Kolkata
- Timing: 10 AM – 10 PM
- Entry Fees: None
- Nearby Attractions: Birla Temple, Netaji Bhawan, Parashnath Jain Temple, Park Street
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18. Alipore Zoological Garden
Who doesn’t love to check out animals? The Alipore zoological garden is the perfect place to check out an amazing collection of animals from across the world. A zoological garden is also a great place for a picnic and you need to plan an entire day if you wish to check out the place in its entirety. This is definitely one of the best places to visit in Kolkata with family and friends. Children particularly love watching the various antics of the animals.
- Location: Alipore Road, Kolkata
- Timing: 9 AM – 4:30 PM
- Entry Fees: INR 30
- Nearby Attractions: The Agri-Horticultural Society of India, Victoria Memorial, Netaji Bhawan, National Library
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19. Fort William
Named after King William III, this fort is among the oldest buildings representing the British Presidency in India under the rule of the British Empire. The fort stands on the River Hooghly’s eastern bank and remains a major attraction for tourists visiting Kolkata.
The Fort William is currently under the command of the Indian Army and the HQ of the Indian Army, Eastern Command. You can have a fascinating trip of this place, provided you are an invited guest or a member of the Indian Army. Otherwise, you may check out the place from the outside perimeter.
- Location: Hastings, Kolkata
- Timing: NA
- Entry Fees: None
- Nearby Attractions: Maidan, Birla Planetarium, St John’s Church, St Paul’s Cathedral, Royal Kolkata Turf Club
20. Eden Gardens
The Eden Gardens is among the largest cricket stadiums. It is the largest in India and second only to Melbourne Cricket Ground, Australia, in the world. If you are in Kolkata at a time when there is an international cricket match or the IPL going on in the Eden Gardens, do not miss watching it at any cost.
The atmosphere inside is electrifying. No wonder, the Eden Gardens is regarded as one of the most prestigious cricket stadiums in the world, at par with the Lords, England or MCB, Australia.
- Location: BBD Bagh, Kolkata
- Timing: As per match
- Nearby Attractions: Vidyasagar Smriti Mandir, College Street, Marble Palace, Millenium Park
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21. Rabindra Sadan
Rabindra Sadan and the area surrounding it is the art lovers’ paradise. From fine arts to theatres to photography to the finest movies, you will find it all at one place. Rabindra Sadan itself hosts theatres and plays. The Academy of Fine Arts, right next to it, is the best place to check out art exhibitions by various talented contemporary artists and the artists of the next generation.
Nandan cine lovers’ paradise and this is one of the finest movie halls in the city, at an amazingly low and affordable rate. Do not miss checking out this place while on a trip to Kolkata.
- Location: AJC Bose Road, Kolkata
- Timing: Variable timings
- Nearby Attractions: Academy of Fine Arts, Maidan, Park Street, Quest Mall, National Library
Kolkata is a treasure trove, ready to be explored. The history of the city and its tryst with art, culture, food, and heritage makes it one of the most fascinating metropolitan cities in India. Anyone who has been to Kolkata and explored its true beauty has fallen in love with the city and keeps coming back.
Which is the best part of Kolkata that you love? Is there any other place you will like to add to the list? Let us know about your experience in the city. And do not forget to share this with your friends and family.
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Frequently Asked Questions
Q1 What are the best places to visit in Salt Lake, Kolkata?
You can check out these amazing places in Salt Lake, Kolkata: Central Park (Sector 3), City Centre Mall, Nicco Park, College Street, Mother House, Netaji Indoor Stadium.
Q2 What are the best places to visit in Kolkata during Durga Puja?
If you are visiting Kolkata during Durga puja, visit some of these famous places: Santosh Mitra Square, College Square, Bagbazaar, Ballygunge Cultural Association, Dum Dum Park, Tarun Sangha and others.
Q3 What are the perfect places to visit near Kolkata in winter?
Some of the top places to visit near Kolkata during winter include Shantiniketan, Bakkhali, Mukutmanipur, Parasnath Hills, Tarapith, Jamshedpur, Bishnupur.
Q4 What are some great places near Kolkata to visit in summers?
You can visit Mirik, Darjeeling, Gangtok, Sandakhphu, Simultala, Siliguri, Shillong, Kalimpong, Netarhat, Kurseong and others during summers for a refreshing getaway.
June 25, 2018
Brilliant! Just finished your article. Picture of the post is amazing.
Ruma Dey Baidya
July 24, 2019
Such a nice blog and nice article about Kolkata.
February 22, 2020
Nice to know about the sight seeing places in Kolkata