Victoria Memorial

Why To Go

A stately memorial to remember Queen Victoria, in the heart of Kolkata is the grand Victoria memorial. The Viceroy of India, Lord Curzon, in January 1901, just after the death of Queen Victoria, suggested of building this memorial. He wanted to make the edifice amidst the greenery, and Kolkata was the most enthralling option. This marble monument is the most spacious and luxurious heritage site of the city of joy. This building spreads 338 feet by 228 feet, covering a vast area of 64 acres of land. The memorial is 200 feet high, 184 feet just before the base of the queen’s statue, and the statue itself is 16 feet. Voluntary subscriptions from princes and common public brought one crore and five lakhs rupees. This was entirely dedicated to the construction of this magnificent structure.

The expert mind of Sir William Emerson brainstormed the magnificent design of this building. He was the President of the British Institute of Architects at that period. He laid the plan for this building, and Messrs Martin and Co. Calcutta began the construction of this historic monument. The superintending architect was the great Vincent J. Esch. His supervision has created many enticing sites of the era, which are still appreciated. This building itself is a history that people feel and relive once they enter the monument. Under the department of culture, Government of India, this royal monument stands has a pride of Kolkata. The grandeur of renowned historical icons is preserved in this museum, which serves as a treasure trove of knowledge.

The glorious ceremony of laying the foundation stone of this memorial took place on January 4, 1906. The awe-inspiring King George V did the honors. He was the Prince of Wales during that golden era. In 1921 it was officially unlocked to the commoners. This classic structure spreads an ambiance of a blend of British and Mughal culture. The elements embraced in the atmosphere of this memorial make it one of the most alluring tourist attractions. The finest of all, this white canonize has much to explore. People from all around the globe visit this place to take back mesmerizing memories and accession of wisdom.

The marble-domed Victoria Memorial amid beautiful greenery and varied hues of flowers has become the unofficial symbol of Kolkata. It remains a showcase of imperial grandeur. Inside are exhibitions of relics from the colonial past – paintings, uniforms, arms, and photographs.

Travel Tips

Kolkata is always inviting for its pleasant weather. But it would be wise to carry an umbrella with you irrespective of the place you visit. The best time to visit Kolkata is December to early March. Avoid summers because it is hot and humid. Carry cameras to take memorable photographs.

Things To Do

This historical museum is open six days a week for tourist visit. Monday’s are an official off. You can visit the place between 10.00 am to 5.00 pm. On public holidays like Republic Day, Independence Day, Id-ul-Fitr, Gandhi’s birthday, Dusshera, and Christmas Day, the museum remains closed. The evening light and sound show is an entrancing attraction also. The show is conducted in both English and Bengali. Named as the “Pride and glory – the story of Calcutta,” it is initiated jointly with the Bengal chamber of commerce. The visit to the museum, garden, or the sound and light show is scintillating. The museum is a grace that honors a tribute to the rich legend of India. The oil paintings of Queen Victoria are self speaking for her luxurious journey of her life. Her pianoforte, writing desk, and chair is in the center of the room. Apart from the western paintings, many Indian paintings are also exhibited here. The massive collection of both is enticing. The relics include inkpot of Pandit Ishwar Chandra Vidyasagar and pistols of Lord Warren Hasting. The ivory chair of Mrs. Warren Hasting and the throne of Nawab of Bengal is also captivating. Many culminating statues and sculptures are found both within the memorial as well as in the garden. Inside the monument, you will discover bust of Earl of Canning and Peary Chand Mitra. Many classic manuscripts are also displayed and preserved. The vital library has a charming collection of 10674 books and periodicals. For research, you will find many original documents of the ancient times archived also. The illumination job makes the memorial look charming even at a distance in night. The list of attractions is endless. One is sure to experience quality time exploring this heritage site and gather infinite knowledge of the historic period.

Getting Around

Getting around is convenient and hassle-free. Numerous public transports are easily accessible. Public buses or cab can opt. Even underground metro rail will offer an effortless journey. The cabs are also reasonable for relaxed travelling. For exploring the entire city, one has the option to choose from many car rental service providers.

How To Reach

FLIGHT

The closest airport is the Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose International Airport, where national and international flights operate. Outside the airport, you will find an excellent cab facility. Victoria memorial is a popular tourist spot so that any driver will take you to the place without any hassle.

TRAIN

If you prefer train journey, Howrah Railway Station is the nearest. After arriving at the station, you can take a taxi or a bus. Sealdah Railway station is also there where many trains ply from all across major towns of India.

ROAD

The cheapest transportation is the bus. From any corner of Kolkata, you will find numerous buses which will drop you in front of the memorial. You may also get taxis and private cars.

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Surrounding Attractions

The Indian Museum, St Paul’s Cathedral, Zoo gardens, Birla planetarium, GPO, National library and South City Mall are popular spots near Victoria Memorial. Dakshineswar, Kalighat temple, Firingi temple, Lake Kali bari are some of the famous temples. Pay a visit to Esplanade and New market area, one of the oldest markets for lovely shopping. Tourist spots such as Digha, Mandarmani, Shantiniketan, Murshidabad, Bankura etc. are lovely places of attractions are ideal for 2-3 days trip.
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