Kolkata had been on my bucket list ever since I knew about bucket lists and what better way to spend your festival holidays than by ticking off something from your bucket list. The laid back metropolis, Kolkata puts its best foot forward during Durga Pujo, or Navratri to give it its North Indian name. The entire city is bustling with crowds going around visiting Pandas of Goddesses Durga. Pandal hopping is what the people call it. Words will fail to describe how truly magnificent these Pandals are. Having laboriously built over a year, they mark the biggest Bengali festival of the year and the city itself is a sea of colors during these 9 days.
The most important thing I did during this visit was gorge on mouth watering Bengali delicacies. I think I gained some weight by way of chingri, fish, momos and sandesh. During this trip I could hardly go sightseeing but I can’t wait for another chance to visit Kolkata. Going back in a 30 hour long train journey camping on the upper berth with only Salman Rushdie’s Moor’s last sigh to keep me company, I knew I was infatuated with the city.
Here’s the itinerary of the Pandals I visited in case anyone would like to know.
Day 1: Rajdanga Nabodaya Sangha, Talbagaan, Jodhpur Park, Babubagan, Selimpur
Day 2: First half: Ekdalia Evergreen, Singhi Park, Tridhara, Hindustan Park, Deshapriyo Park, Suruchi Sangha, Pally Sarodiya, Khidderpore
Ballygunge Samaj Sebi Sangha
Day 2: Second half: Ahiritola Sarbojonin, Kumartoli, Baghbazar Sarbojonin
In hindsight, this seems like a lot of places for a day and a half but thankfully I had my friend showing me around or I would have spent the entire trip either panicking or getting lost.
(Baidehi 😉 )