15 Most Interesting Facts About Kolkata, The City of Joy

Kolkata, the name probably leaves a sweet taste in the mouth of most people who have tasted the Roshogolla and the Mishti Doi that the city is so famous for. However, fortunately, there’s more to the city of joy than that. Now, since we are here, let’s board a yellow taxi and take a joyride to discover more interesting facts about Kolkata.


1. College Street

The bookworm’s dream, College Street is the biggest book market in the world. People from all around the world gather like bees to visit this place that offers you a huge collection of books ranging from regular textbooks to rare archives, brand new books to second hand treasures.

Image source: Flickr

2. Alipore Zoo

Boasting a diverse range of species, Alipore Zoo is the oldest zoo in the country. Established in 1875, Alipore Zoo attracts a huge number of tourists every year.

Image source: Flickr

3. National Library

A few steps away from Alipore Zoo will bring you to the National Library, Kolkata. Before independence, it was the residence of the Governor General of India. The National Library is the biggest library in the country by volume and public records.

Image source: Flickr

4. Eden Gardens

Eden Gardens is the oldest and the second-largest cricket ground in the country, and the third-largest in the world. On 22 November 2019, India’s first ever Day/Night test match between India and Bangladesh was hosted at this ground. A football match between New York Cosmos and Mohun Bagan was organised at Eden Gardens in 1977. The legend Pelé had played for Cosmos at that match.

Image source: Flickr

5. Vivekananda Yuba Bharati Krirangan(VYBK)

Also known as the Salt Lake Stadium, VYBK is the second-largest stadium in the country by seating capacity. Principally used as a football ground, it hosted the 2017 FIFA U-17 World Cup Finals, and will be hosting the 2021 FIFA U-17 Women’s World Cup.

Image source: Wikipedia

6. Derby Matches

One thing that runs in the blood of Bengalis is football. More particularly, the rivalry of two clubs East Bengal and ATK Mohun Bagan is celebrated by Bengalis around the world. Derby matches are organised between these two clubs with a history of more than a hundred years between them. Excitement runs high as they compete against each other trying to best each other every time they meet. Their rivalry is among the most interesting facts about Kolkata.

Image source: Wikimedia commons

7. International Book Fair

The Kolkata International Book Fair is held every year, attended by a humongous number of people from around the world. From little magazine stalls to international book stores, the book fair is the paradise awaited by book lovers globally.

Image source: Wikimedia commons

8. Rabindrasangeet

Though occasionally used in Bollywood tracks, the songs created and composed by the first non-European Nobel Laureate, Rabindranath Tagore, remain unnoticed outside Bengal. Known for the variety in their content and melodies, and the sheer volume of Tagore’s works, Rabindrasangeet is revered in Kolkata like hymns for worship.

Image source: Wikimedia commons

Also read: 20 Fascinating Facts About West Bengal

9. Chinatown

The only Chinatown in India, China Town in Tangra was once inhabited by more than 20000 Chinese immigrants. However, now only 2000 of them remain. This area has cheap restaurants and bars for cheap food and leisure. The authenticity of the Chinese cuisine draws people to this part of the city.

Image source: Wikimedia commons

10. St. Paul’s Cathedral

Located on the Cathedral Road, St. Paul’s Cathedral is believed to be the largest church in India, and the first Anglican cathedral built in Asia. The cathedral is noted for its Gothic architecture.

Image source: Flickr

11. University of Calcutta

Established in 1857, the University of Calcutta was one of the first multidisciplinary and Western-style institutions in Asia. Stalwarts like the novelist and the writer of the national song, Vande Mataram, Bankim Chandra Chattopadhyay, and the first Indian female to practice Western medicine, Kadambini Ganguly, were among the first graduates of this university.

Image source: Flickr

12. Mother House

Established in 1950 by Mother Teresa, the Mother House is the headquarters of the Missionaries of Charity. The place also is the final resting place of Mother Teresa, and has a small museum dedicated to her, containing her memories.

Image source: Flickr

13. Trams

The tram system in Kolkata is the oldest running tramway in Asia. It is also the second oldest electric tramway in Asia. Kolkata has preserved the old school romance of trams carefully, with tramways running crisscross through the streets of the city.

Image source: Flickr

14. Kolkata Knight Riders

In the Indian Premier League, an important position is held by the Kolkata Knight Riders, co-owned by superstar Shah Rukh Khan, the heartthrob Juhi Chawla, and her spouse, Jay Mehta. They have won the IPL trophy twice, in 2012 and in 2014.

Image source: Wikimedia commons

15. Sovabazar Rajbari

One of the oldest royal buildings still standing in the city, Sovabazar Rajbari is famous for its architecture, and the grand Durga Puja that is celebrated on its premises every year. For tourists, the history of Sovabazar Rajbari is among one of the most interesting facts of Kolkata.

Image source: Wikimedia commons

Enlisted above are 15 of our top choices for the most interesting facts about Kolkata. However, the city of joy can present itself in a new way to each eye, and hence, comment to let us know about the interesting facts that you have learnt about Kolkata.


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