Priceless Moments And Creative Treasure hunt: Things To Do In Kolkata!

Salam everyone! I welcome you all to my blog again. I work in Hyderabad, but I always had some inclination towards Bengali culture and Kolkata. My best friend in school time was a Bengali, and since then I wanted to visit the city of joy. Thankfully, I got an opportunity last month when my same friend invited me for her marriage.

Bengali Culture

Bengali Culture | Image Resource :

This was the right chance for me not just to get closer to the Bengali customs but I also got a chance to experience some interesting things to do in Kolkata. The wedding celebrations were winded up in just three days, and then I had five days for myself to explore Kolkata completely.

To start with, I wanted to learn some creative things like painting and sketching which was a dream from my childhood days. Thanks to fine art classes at Golpark this dream became reality! These professional people helped me to relive my school times. They charged me 2000 INR which included the art material, some snacks, and taught me many tips and tricks with respect to painting and other artistic stuff. I simply loved it!

Getting closer to Bengali culture

After satiating the hunger of knowledge I wanted to please my stomach which always starts roaring when I see some delicious food and smell something spicy! I wanted to enjoy authentic Kolkatian or Bengali culture. My friend suggested me Kirtana at Nabadwip and there was I the next day itself. Just 650 bucks and wonderful experience of Bengali tradition, their cuisine, their warmth, spirituality and to sum up- inner peace! Religious Kirtana, melodious Bengali music, classic and delicious Prasad items; I didn’t wanted to move away from it. I wish I could get transferred to Kolkata in future.

Dirt biking- a thrill!

Finally, I had just a day left and wanted to experience something adventurous. And my friend told me about dirt biking in Kolkata. I browsed for some information regarding it and found Mo-bike at Lauhati. It was simply wow! I would say it was a perfect combination of speed and power. The cost was 612 INR, which included safety gear, mobike and complete instructions from the experts.

Dirt Biking in Kolkata

Dirt Biking in Kolkata | Image Resource :

I thoroughly enjoyed my time in Kolkata; it was one of the perfect trips in my life. I would never miss going to Kolkata if I get a chance in the future!

Coorg Resorts: Literal Paradises Amidst The Breathtaking Scenic Views!

Hello, This is Afreen Shaikh from Andhra Pradesh, an account executive by profession. Since my job gets so monotonous, I usually take these little breaks .This time, I decided to go to Coorg via Bangalore. I discovered Bangalore, is the city with a cool climate, because it’s situated at a place equidistant from the shores and also the elevation does a great deal for its climate. I travelled from here to Coorg which is 238 Km by road, taking just 6 hours.

Tea plantations in Coorg

Tea plantations in Coorg | Image Resource :

I had decided to save and go for a luxury trip and selected the Old Kent Spa and Resort, a 200 acre property. As I entered this coorg resort, surrounded by lovely coffee plantation I was struck by its British Colonial style of architecture. I was pleased with the large villas. The breakfast was pleasant a mixture of Coorg and British cuisine. Sitting in the lush property I watched the varieties of birds and the flora and fauna. The bathrooms were a dream with lovely English type of bath-tubs.

Old Kent Spa and Resort

Old Kent Spa and Resort | Image Resource :

Old Kent Spa and Resort Room

Old Kent Spa and Resort Room | Image Resource :

Coorg Resorts: The Verdant Green Environment Spiced With Luxury

The next I decided to go in for The Windflower Resorts and Spa, as I felt once I am here I need to have the pleasure of visiting it. Spread over a 25 acres of land the large airy 44 rooms had the sun filtering in with the coffee plantation and verdant greenery all around. The towering teakwood and rosewood trees, around the pool were such a pleasant scene.

The Windflower Resorts and Spa

The Windflower Resorts and Spa | Image Resource :

Having a riverside murmuring next to my room which is on stilts was my dream which I realized, the next day at Meriyanda Nature Resort. The stylish stone and wooden bathroom with a spacious bedroom along with a deck offering the breathtaking view of Coorg was fascinating. The trek to the water fall was enchanting, from this Coorg Resort. Similarly I checked out the Heritage resorts, where the pool had no chlorine and the meal I had, used the spice from the organic garden within its precincts.

Meriyanda Nature Resort

Meriyanda Nature Resort | Image Resource :

On my last day I casually checked out the Serene Woods, and was completely taken up by the unique nature get-away. The evening bonfire, the treks and bird-watching was something which I promised myself next time.

Serene Woods

Serene Woods | Image Resource :

Belur Math- A Place That Has Spiritualism In Its Air!

Belur Math

Belur Math | Image Resource :

I am a keen follower of Swami Vivekananda and Ramakrishna right from my childhood days. And till date, I love reading their books. And when we are in Kolkata, why not visit their own place. So, the day was dedicated to them and we took a cab to this spiritual place. It took about two hours for us to reach the place.

Belur Math Interiors

Belur Math Interiors | Image Resource :

Statue of Ramakrishna Paramhansa within the temple shrine

Statue of Ramakrishna Paramhansa within the temple shrine | Image Resource :

What a serene atmosphere! It was pure and magical. There was tranquillity all over the place, and we came across many disciples of Ramakrishna who were friendly enough to help us check out every corner of the entire place. There was a vast history of this place, and one of the devotees was gentle to share the knowledge that he had.

We came across many small and big temples here besides Sri Ramakrishna temple; they were Old shrine, room of Swami Vivekananda, Holy Mother temple, Swami Brahmananda temple, Samadhi enclosure, Old Math, museum of Ramakrishna, and many more. Every temple still had the essence of those great people who left with us their teachings.

We even purchased few books of Ramakrishna and Vivekananda as their teachings will help us to turn our souls into a pure form. The entire area of Belur Math has an appeal which can transform an individual automatically. Well, I can say that the air of this place is so spiritual that anyone can get attracted to it. A trip to Kolkata is incomplete without visiting this place.

There is one more thing which I would like to mention, it is that I found many widows in white sarees both old and young at the outer vicinity of the shrine. Upon asking, I came to know that there are many widow ashrams in Belur where the women have given their entire lives in the name of spirituality. It was an astounded experience for both of us.

Widows at Belur Math

Widows at Belur Math | Image Resource :

It was afternoon by then, our time to leave. We didn’t want to move out from the place as there was some natural pull that we felt here. Nevertheless, even good things have an end and our cab was waiting to take us to our next destination- Marble Palace.

Mesmerized By The Massiveness Of Eden Gardens Stadium Kolkata

After checking out the serene environment of Millennium Park in the Strand Road, we decided to explore our next destination. But before that we needed to power up our body. So, after having something from a restaurant located close to the park, we hired a yellow taxi, which is perhaps one of the iconic symbols of Kolkata, and headed towards Eden Gardens Stadium.

The distance between Millennium Park and the Cricket stadium is not too much. The roads were quite broad and the traffic was moderate. So, it took the driver about 10 minutes to take us to the entry gate of Eden Gardens cricket stadium. From outside, I had no idea how this huge stadium would look. I knew the fact that this stadium is the largest cricket stadium in India; and, it holds third position in the list of largest cricket grounds in the world.

Eden Gardens Stadium Kolkata

Eden Gardens Stadium Kolkata | Image Resource :

Fortunately, the gates of Eden Gardens stadium remain open for the visitors all through the week. The gates open at 9 in the morning and close at 6 in the evening. Located in BBD Bagh, this stadium has always been one of the prime representatives of Kolkata. Again, there was no entry fee for getting inside the station. However, one of the guards was a bit hesitant about letting us inside.

We requested him couple of times and a little amount of money provided us the way to get inside the stadium. As I went inside, my mouth was left open. The stadium is so huge that it becomes absolutely difficult to spot people on the other side.

I was able to gobble some quick facts during the exploration. For instance, the stadium was established in the year 1864. The present capacity of Eden Gardens is 60,000. However, in some instances the number of audience had passed the figure of one lakh.

Moving around the stadium was certainly an unforgettable experience for me as well as for Anita. It took about an hour to explore the stadium. After taking some selfies, we hired a cab and headed straight to our hotel. No doubt, we were quite tired.

Travel Photo Of The Week : St Paul’s Cathedral Kolkata

St Paul's Cathedral Kolkata

St Paul’s Cathedral Kolkata | Image Resource :

St Paul’s Cathedral Kolkata – The sounds and acoustics in this massive church was my favourite part. There is a nice garden right before you enter the huge doors of the church that is a perfect place to take some pictures. If you are looking to find solace, look no further! The overall environment here was brilliant!

Millennium Park- A Good Place To Experience Some Serene Moments

It was our second day in Kolkata. After checking into the hotel room at about 8 in the evening, we decided to pamper our taste buds with some fine delicacies of Kolkata. Since we were a little tired, so I and my friend, Anita decided not to go anywhere. The next day, we woke up fresh and were absolutely thrilled to explore the next hot spot of Kolkata, and it was the Millennium Park.

Millennium Park Entrance

Millennium Park Entrance | Image Resource :

Situated on the eastern bank of the Hooghly River, and along the popular Strand Road, this private park is quite popular for its quiet environment. Through Google maps I found that the distance between this park and the place where I stayed was more or less 15 kilometers. Hence, we decided to start early in order to avoid the traffic.

After enjoying the breakfast, which also included the widely popular ‘Misti Doi’ or sweet curd, we dressed ourselves up and were ready to move on. It was really good that the manager of the hotel arranged a cab for us, and directed the chauffer to take us to the destination. The ride was quite at ease and in less than an hour, we were in front of Millennium Park.

Millennium Park Kolkata

Millennium Park Kolkata | Image Resource :

It was around 10:30 in the morning, and the gates were already open. I asked one of the guards about the timings, and he said that the park remains open from 10 in the morning to 6:30 in the evening. Since no entry fee is required to get inside the park, so we headed straightly towards it. As I moved inside the park, the cool breeze accompanied with lush green environment definitely relaxed my mind.

The entire park is a stretch of two and half kilometers, and the landscaped gardens are one of the prime attractions. We also tried some snacks which were sold inside by the hawkers such as the famous Jhal Muri of Kolkata. The view of Hooghly River from the park was absolutely a treat to the eye. I would definitely love to visit this park once again, but in the evening, when the sunrays would create an amazing effect on the river. Overall, it is a good place to spend some peaceful time.

Travel Photo Of The Week : Ghatarani Waterfalls Chattisgarh

ghatarani waterfalls chattisgarh

Ghatarani Waterfalls Chattisgarh | Image Resource :

Ghatarani Waterfalls Chattisgarh – There is nothing compared to the satisfaction I get when I visit nature sprawling places. This interest took me to Ghatarani Waterfalls. If you ask me the unforgettable part of the trip to Chhattisgarh, I would say spontaneously that trekking to this place, truly a different experience entirely. Trekking is not my type, but this was so nice!

With The Life And Colors Of Nature – Achanakmar Wildlife Sanctuary, Chhattisgarh

Cities and Towns feel incomplete without a part of nature still intact within its developments. Being a hardcore nature addict, I can only tell you the wonders of nature that man has just learnt to appreciate more of late. There are several varieties of species of animals and plants that are becoming close to being extinct with the development of lands and constant deforestation. Moreover global warming has also been a large cause for the lifestyles and lifespan of animals to alter along with their human interaction.

achanakmar wildlife sanctuary chhattisgarh

Achanakmar Wildlife Sanctuary Chhattisgarh | Image Resource :

I was so pleased and touched to see the care and affection that the people of Chhattisgarh have taken into building this sanctuary for the wildlife of the city. It has managed to preserve several endangered species such as the leopards, Wild Bisons, Bengal Tigers and more. As a matter of fact, the Achanakmar Wildlife Sanctuary has been declared as a Tiger Reserve in India.

leopards at achanakmar wildlife sanctuary chhattisgarh

Leopards at Achanakmar Wildlife Sanctuary Chhattisgarh | Image Resource :

wild bisons at achanakmar wildlife sanctuary chhattisgarh

Wild Bisons at Achanakmar Wildlife Sanctuary Chhattisgarh | Image Resource :

bengal tigers at achanakmar wildlife sanctuary chhattisgarh

Bengal Tigers at Achanakmar Wildlife Sanctuary Chhattisgarh | Image Resource :

Though not a very popular tourist destination, the dense foliage of the forest still does attract the adventurous and nature loving people to witness the beauty of nature and be a part of it. The hilly topography of the terrain also gives a challenging trek to those who love to scale heights and lengths.

A pristine wildlife stowed away in the lush greens of the hills, gave me an opportunity to a breath taking view of the entire forest from one of the five watch-towers, Tangli Pathar.

Away from the maddening crowd and in the presence of the world’s best fashion designer: Nature, what more could I want to be inspired. It seems dubious to not want to delve into the lap of nature for even a second of its authentic love.

The drive to the Wildlife Sanctuary from the hotel itself was an adventurous journey. Colorful roads, buzzing with life and thriving with new life, I was loaded with more positive energy than ever. I couldn’t care less for technology with my head between the hedges of pure beauty and innocence.

Take the drive to Achanakmar Wildlife Sanctuary and marvel the charm of mother-nature that we rarely get to witness in our modernized, tech savvy lifestyle.

A Garden Of Friendship – The MaitriBagh Chhattisgarh

Aah! After all the hogging and pigging out, I definitely need to do some working out before I get back to routine. And so, I am about to visit the very famous MaitriBagh of Chhattisgarh. Every city requires a park. A place to breathe in some fresh air after all the pollution and commotion we face and live in day in and day out. I put on my tracks, (lucky I packed them) and began my early morning jog.

The MaitriBagh is both a zoo as well as a park, along with a musical fountain. Pretty impressive, right?! What began as a simple gesture of friendship between India and the USSR, is now a regular picnic spot. And the park is indeed a “Friendship Garden”. It was both developed and maintained by the Bhilai Steel Plant, SAIL, giving the people a reason to rest, recreate and relax.

the maitribagh chhattisgarh

The MaitriBagh Chhattisgarh | Image Resource :

All About The Bagh

I saw several tourists in the park and I could not help but stare in awe at the local crowd that was gathered before me. The Zoo opens at 10 am and closes at 5 pm Tuesdays through Sundays, while the park remains open upto 7.30 pm.

The Musical Fountain Show is conducted at 7 pm only on Saturdays and Sundays. So plan ahead if you wish to catch the spectacular display of water and lasers. I would suggest you visit the park at 4pm, probably a littler earlier for the zoo, so that you can cover all the sections and then leisurely arrive for the musical fountain show.

musical fountain at the maitribagh chhattisgarh

Musical Fountain at The MaitriBagh Chhattisgarh | Image Resource :

The entire layout is divided into the zoo, beautiful gardens, a small waterfall, the toy train called- the Maitri Express, the musical fountain and more. If you wish to catch an aerial view of the Maitri Bagh, you may approach the PragratiMinar. You will find probably the best possible access to an eagle’s view of the entire stretch of the Maitri Bagh as well as the Steel Plant.

toy train at the maitribagh chhattisgarh

Toy Train at The MaitriBagh Chhattisgarh | Image Resource :

You need to pay a meager entry fee of rupees ten, while you get to enjoy something that is worth much more. Do note that the Maitri Bagh Chhattisgarh remains closed on Mondays. Plan ahead and catch all the attractions and still beat the crowd. Remember, it is a Garden of Friendship, so rest, relax and recreate with your near and dear ones.

Travel Photo Of The Week : Vivekanand Sarovar Chhattisgarh

vivekanand sarovar chhattisgarh

Vivekanand Sarovar Chhattisgarh | Image Resource :

Vivekanand Sarovar Chhattisgarh – It was an evening well spent at the Vivekananda Sarovar in Chhattisgarh. My friend and I enjoyed boating and in fact we even went for another round around the artificial lake. Should say that the sprawling nature around the lake added charm to this place making the dawn look amazing and beautiful.