Calcutta or Kolkata is one of the largest cities in the world. It's the capital city of the Indian state of West Bengal. Its coordinates are 22°30’ N and 88.°30’ E. The former capital of British India, Kolkata today forms the commercial and industrial hub of eastern India. A major port, Kolkata is situated on the right bank of the river Hooghly (about 150 kms upstream from the Bay of Bengal). The core city is sandwiched between the river on the west, the salt lakes to the east and the marshes and the swamps to the south. The region is part of the world's largest deltaic zone at the mouths of the river Ganges. The famous Sunderban mangrove forests are to the south of the city.
Kolkata is warm and humid most of the year around. However, the winter months, say, from November to February are cool, sunny, dry and very pleasant. Monsoon hits Kolkata generally in the second week of June and lasts till the end of September. During this period it rains regularly. The total rainfall during the season is about 20 cm. The temperature in summer goes up to about 37 Celsius and the relative humidity up to 100%. During winter months the temperature ranges from about 10 to 20 Celsius and the relative humidity is around 50%. Light woolen clothing is necessary during winter in Kolkata.
By Air: Kolkata is internationally connected by air directly to London, New York, Paris, Frankfurt, Moscow, Dubai, Bangkok, Singapore and others. Within India it is linked with Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Bangalore, Guwahati, Dibrugarh, Nagpur, Bhubaneswar, Hyderabad and other important cities.
By Rail: Linked to all major cities and remote areas. From here one can board trains to South India upto Kanyakumari, Jammu in the North, Gandhinagar and Mumbai in the West and Guwahati in the North East.
By Road: Just as the city is well connected by air and by trains it also has good road communication with all corners of the country.
Some of the leading Hotels in the city are: Taj Bengal, Hotel Airport Ashok, The Oberoi Grand, Hotel Hindustan International, The Park, Great Eastern Hotel, New Kenilworth International, Fairlawn Hotel, Lytton Hotel. Other Places to stay: Bliss Saptarshi, Astor.... and a host of Guest Houses and Tourist Lodges run by the Government and private bodies.
Academy of Fine Arts
Dakhshineswar Kali Temple
General Post Office
Nehru Children's Museum
St. John's Church
St. Paul's Cathedral
Yuba Bharati Krirangan ( Salt Lake Stadium )
ISI KOLKATA CAMPUS
The Kolkata campus of the Indian Statistical Institute is located in a sprawling 30-acre estate on the Barrackpore Trunk Road (B.T. Road) in the Baranagore suburb of Greater Kolkata. It consists of two approximately equal parts - the office complex and the residential complex, - separated by a public road. This road (Girish Chand Ghosh Street) connects B.T. Road with Gopal Lal Tagore Road, a road which runs along the western boundary of the main campus. The office complex bears door numbers 202, 203 and 204, and the residential complex, 205 and 206. There is no connection between the two parts of the campus; to move between the residential and office complexes, one has to come out on B.T. Road and enter the other campus. There is also a narrow public road that separates 202 and 203 B.T. Road. There is however, a direct connection between these two premises.
The ISI campus lies five kilometers North of the Shyambazar five-point crossing. If you are coming from the airport, drive towards Dunlop Bridge (via Nager Bazar and Chiria More). If you are coming from the downtown area or one of the railway stations, you will have to drive past Shyambazar and Chiria More. As you approach Dunlop Bridge, the boundary wall of the ISI campus will be visible on your left. The residential campus is at the Bus Stop called Bon Hooghly and the office campus is at the Bus Stop called ISI or Statistical. The Bus Stop further to the Statistical Bus Stop is Dunlop Bridge, which is an important landmark. Dunlop Bridge is also a useful way of describing the general destination when you are asking for directions.
If you miss the ISI gates and reach the Dunlop Bridge intersection, take a sharp left trun into Gopal Lal Tagore Road. The ISI campus will be on your left. The first entrance on your left leads you straight into the Library Building.
Kolkata has a huge fleet of Black and Yellow taxis, most of which are Ambassadors. They run on a meter, but often the meters are outdated and calculations become complicated. The lowest rate should be Rs 12, but some old taxis have not yet upgraded their meters and start at Rs 5. The taxi driver is supposed to carry a conversion chart with the validation date clearly marked on it. The best thing to do is ask for a tariff conversion card and pay according to that. Please ensure that the meter is flagged down at the beginning of the journey.
If you are coming from the airport or one of the railway stations, it is better to hire a taxi from the prepaid taxi booth. In this case you have to pay the total fare in the taxi booth. The prepaid taxi fare is marginally higher than normal, but it is a surer and safer mode of transport. From Airport/Howrah station to ISI prepaid taxi fare is Rs. 110/-.
There are a large number of buses and minibuses that pass by the Institute campus. Almost any bus that goes to Dunlop Bridge passes by the ISI gates. The buses that pass by the ISI gates are 11, 32A, 34B/1, 78, 78/1, 78A, 78B, 78C, 201, 214, 230, 234, DN9, DN9/1, L9A, L11, L20, L20A, S9, S11, S32 and SS4. The minibuses plying from Howrah to Nimta/Belgharia/Rathtala, from BBD Bag to DunlopBridge, from Babughat to Sodepur/New Barrackpore and from Metiaburuj to Srirampur go past the ISI gates before reaching Dunlop Bridge. While riding the bus from the city, the major bus stops on your way (from South to North) would be Shyambazar, Chiria More, Sinthi More and Tobin Road. The Bon Hooghly Bus Stop is just North of the Bus Stop at Ananya Cinema. This is where you have to get down in order to enter the residential campus. The next Bus Stop is ISI/Statistical, which is located just outside the entrance of the main office campus at 204, B.T. Road.
Kolkata & Bengali Link
Calcutta - A Virtual Tour - An informative site on Calcutta with several sections like history, geography, culture, education, picture gallery and links.
Calcutta - The Charming City - One of the earliest web pages on Calcutta.
Calcutta - Travel Guide - Travel tips, information about volunteering in Calcutta and links.
Calcutta Cave - A directory and web guide to Calcutta.
Calcutta Central - Searchable directory of local businesses and organizations.
Calcutta Web - A comprehensive site on Calcutta with links to various websites about Calcutta West Bengal, Bengali language and Bengali People.
Calcutta4u - Provides local news, businesses, entertainment and travel and transportation.
Calmanac and Calpedia - Lots of information about Kolkata city and the Kolkata Municipal Corporation.
Catchcal - Calcutta information directory.
Click Calcutta - Lists current events in the city.
Kolkata - Personal webpage with information about Kolkata.
Kolkata Beckons - All about Kolkata.
Kolkata Best - A Kolkata portal.
Kolkata Birds - Introducing the birds of Kolkata.
Kolkata Buzz - Guide to the city of Kolkata.
ThePlaceCal.com - A Calcutta Portal.