|Kolkata||Hotel Hindustan International or similar|
|Kolkata||The Oberoi Grand or similar|
Durga Puja Tour 2022 : A 03-night journey to India’s most popular tourist circuit will bring you one step closer to exploring India.
Arrive Kolkata’. Check in to your hotel in Kolkata. (standard check-in at 1400hrs)
Later in the afternoon around 1500 hrs. proceed for city tour visiting various famous Durga Puja pandals of South Kolkata accompanied by a local guide.
Durga Puja pandals in Kolkata are famous for its unique themes, creative excellence and wonderful ideas. During Durga Puja there is a healthy competition among the Puja committees to surprise and attract more visitors by creating something totally unexpected – there are forgotten pages from India’s history, some pandals are creating awareness of burning social issues, some have opted for creating replicas of well-known monuments and buildings.
Transfer back to hotel for overnight stay.
Post breakfast, proceed to visit some traditional household puja sites of North Kolkata, witness rituals and interact with the organizers to understand the social significance of this festival.
Afternoon short city tour including a drive around of Victoria Memorial followed by a visit to St. Paul’s Cathedral and Mother House
Return back to hotel, overnight.
Breakfast at hotel. Your guide will meet at the hotel lobby. Then proceed for a walk tour at Dalhousie Square Area – The Second City of British Empire
Distance Covered : 2 kms (approx.)
Duration : 2 hours
Places Covered : Raj Bhawan – Treasury Building – St. John’s Church – Secretariat Offices – Kolkata GPO & Postal Museum – Collectorate Building – Writers Building – St. Andrew’s Church – Old Currency Building – Central Telegraph Office – Great Eastern Hotel.
This walk will be conducted by experienced guides from the department of tourism.
The area covered by this walk was originally known in the eighteenth century as ‘Lal Dighi’ (Red Lake), and later as Tank Square. Later still, in the heydays of the British administration, it was called Dalhousie Square, after Lord Dalhousie who was the Governor General in the 1850s. Later on it was renamed as Benoy – Badal – Dinesh Bag (popularly known as BBD Bag) in the memory of three Indian nationalist martyrs – Benoy Krishna Bose, Badal Gupta and Dinesh Chandra Gupta. The area near around the Dalhousie Square provide one of the most interesting walks through eighteenth and nineteenth century history and architecture of Kolkata.
It starts from the Governor’s House (Raj Bhawan) goes past the Treasury Building to St. John’s Church, up to the Kolkata General Post Office (GPO), and around past the Collectorate Office and the Writer’s Building – the seat of the state government. Then you can take a quick round of St. Andrew’s Kirk, take a straight walk down the Old Court House Street and go past the Old Currency Building. Cross over to see the Postal Sorting Office, the Central Telegraph Office. Then turn left into Wellesley Place (now Red Cross Place), past the Raj Bhawan outhouses and left again to the Great Eastern Hotel. This would bring you out very near Curzon Park where you would have started off from.
Return to Hotel for short rest.
Later visit various Durga Puja pandals to witness “Sindur Khela” (Vermillion game).
Sindur Khela is a major event of Dashami. First, the married women greet the Mahadevi for one last time, accompanied by rituals. They do aarati, put ready-to-chew paan-leaves in the hands of the goddess, put sweets on the lips of the idol, wipe out eyes as one does to wipe off the tears when leaving a loving place. This event is called “Durga Baran”. They apply vermilion to the Goddess’s head and to each other and greet each other with sweets. The ritual of applying sindoor also takes place at home when Bijoya Dashami is celebrated with family members.
From there you will be taken to the river side to see how idols are immersed in the river. The immersion brings end to the five day long festival full of happiness and enjoyment.
Return to hotel, overnight.
Post breakfast and checkout from hotel. Drive to airport for the flight back to your home to cherish the memories in your heart.