Kolkata, located on the Hooghly River’s east bank, embodies the essence of Eastern India. Kolkata, as a historical city, has a plethora of architecturally significant palaces, monuments, and temples. Let us look into some fascinating an interesting facts about this Eastern India Gateway “Kolkata”:
Kolkata is a city divided into three villages
Did you know that Calcutta, now recognised as Kolkata, was created by the amalgamation of three villages, namely Kalikata, Gobindapur, and Sutanuti.
Kolkata was home to the biggest & oldest Banyan tree in the world
For the past 342 years, Kolkata has been home to the world’s oldest and largest banyan tree. For centuries, tourists had been drawn to the Great Banyan Tree. It survived two cyclones in 1864 and 1867, but the 2020’s Amphan cyclone in West Bengal severely damaged the stems and the branches of the tree.
Kolkata is the world’s second most valuable city after London
That is Kolkata, after all! During the British Raj, India was a raging centre of all societies, commerce, thriving cultures, and people and then Calcutta (now Kolkata) of British India, is said to have been the second most valuable city in British colonies around the globe after London. Here, leading universities, economic industries, as well as other big institutions, were built.
This city has India’s oldest port
Sea trade was always prevalent in this coastal city. The Kidderpore Port (Port of Kolkata), located in the city’s central-west area, was named after Lord Kyde (a 19th-century engineer) and is India’s oldest port.
India’s Scientific and Cultural Capital
Kolkata’s magnificent architecture, delectable cuisines, intellectuals such as Rabindranath Tagore along with a melting pot of cultures combined together, make this city, India’s scientific and cultural capital.
India’s Football Capital
Even though cricket is the most famous sport in India, football is the city’s heartbeat. It is so prevalent that it has the world’s second-oldest football league. Everyone in Kolkata, from a tea vendor to a business owner, is a football fan.
The National Library
The National Library of Kolkata is just some minutes’ walk from Alipore Zoo. It was the residence of the Governor-General of India prior to independence. The National Library is the country’s largest library in terms of size and public records.
Eden Gardens is the country’s oldest and second-largest cricket ground, as well as the world’s third-largest. This ground hosted India’s first-ever Day/Night test match between India and Bangladesh on November 22, 2019. In 1977, Eden Gardens hosted a football match between the New York Cosmos and the Mohun Bagan. Pelé, the legendary footballer, had played for the Cosmos in that match.
The concept of ‘Adda’
Regardless of business life, you will notice that people in Kolkata will stand right in the road for chit-chat at any time of day or night. And in the early evenings, you can see people walking out of their houses, assembling to sit on the cement seats constructed right next to their houses to participate in a game of ‘Goppo’ (conversation). And these sessions are always backed by rounds of tea and various savouries such as aloo chop, shingara, beguni, muri makha, peyaji and so much more.
College Street or ‘Boi Para’
The land of bibliophiles College Street, or ‘Boi Para’ (Colony of Books), as it is affectionately known by Bengalis, is the country’s biggest book market. In fact, it is the world’s biggest second-hand book market, spanning 1.5 kilometres in central Kolkata. Make sure to have your hands on any book, new or old, written in any local dialect. This spot is also famous for selling books written in many other languages, like French, Russian and even German.
Metro Station Rabindra Sarobor
The Rabindra Sarobar metro station, is considered to be one of Kolkata’s most ill-fated locations and is also said to be haunted, this is mainly due to the fact that this station has a high suicide rate. It is often said that certain figures can be seen vanishing from sight with the very last metro of each day.
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