This short itinerary has been specially designed to give travellers a taste of Bengal’s rich heritage. Visit the imposing Imambara that overlooks the river, the new ISKCON temple of Mayapur – a vast complex of worship that receives over a million Krishna devotees annually – the intricately carved terracotta Hindu temples of Kalna, and Chandernagore, a charming riverside town that was in French possession until 1950.
This morning you’ll be collected from your hotel to embark the ship by 11am. Sailing upstream, you pass the old Dutch settlement of Chinsura before landing to visit the imposing Imambara at Hooghly. With verses from the Koran written on its walls, the Imambara is an opportunity to step back in time and relive a slice of Islamic history in Bengal. After the visit, reboard your cruise and start sailing, leaving urban sprawl far behind.
Enjoy breakfast with an ever-changing view as you sail upstream, before landing at the country town of Kalna. Here you’ll take cycle rickshaws to see a group of some of Bengal’s most attractive terracotta temples, as well as the unique Shiva temple with its concentric rings made up of 108 shrinelets. Continue on through the countryside to Mayapur to visit the vast new ISKCON (International Society for Krishna Consciousness) temple which dominates the skyline. As the headquarters of ISKCON, or the Hare Krishna movement, the temple receives over a million singing and dancing devotees a year from around the world. Sail downstream as dusk falls to a mooring near Kalna.
This morning you’ll sail downstream and visit a saree-weaving village before continuing on to Chandernagore. A French possession until 1950, this old colonial town offers a chance to visit an 18th century church as well as Dupleix Palace, the erstwhile residence of the Governor-General of French India and now a fascinating museum. Later, sail on down to Kolkata.
After breakfast, disembark and transfer to the airport or your hotel in Kolkata.