Crowded roads, yellow taxis, Victorian age buildings, and a beautifully lit Howrah Bridge, Kolkata has an old world charm that you can’t experience in any of India's other metropolitan cities. But, this time, Assam Bengal Navigation (ABN) takes you further afield from this soulful city to an exploration beyond the obvious. Often ignored, the surrounding region of Kolkata is filled with history, culture and plenty of untold stories that will be revealed to you during three glorious days of sailing aboard ABN Sukapha.
The Dutch and Islamic Connection
Bengal was not just home to the British and French, but also a number of other empires too. So, the first day of the cruise includes exploring the Dutch and Mughal settlements around Kolkata. The trip starts with visiting the Dutch settlement of Chinsura. Thereafter, the next stop is the famous Hooghly Imambara – where the walls are engraved with the verses of the Koran and the halls full of history.
The terracotta temples of Bengal are a little-known attraction that's fast become a favourite among our guests. Walk through these temples, marvelling at their intricate patterns, before reaching Mayapur, famous for being the headquarters of ISKON (International Society for Krishna Consciousness).
The cruise will give you enough time to explore the Radha Madhav temple complex, museum galleries, and the Srila Prabhupada’s Pushpa Samadhi Mandir. You can also visit Krishnanagar to visit the colony of the clay modellers and shop for some of the famous clay souvenirs.
What happened when the French came to India? Approximately an hour from Kolkata, Chandannagar, which was formerly known as Chandernagore, is a charming town by the side of Ganges. The city, as well as the people of Chandannagar, still hold French culture close to their heart. Walk along the wide riverside promenade of Chandannagar to travel back and relive the French era.
India is full of contrasts and layers, diverse landscapes and hard-to-reach villages. And, if you have already visited the India of the guidebooks, it's time to go somewhere untouched by tourism.
Starting from Oct 2018, you can now embark on a river cruise that will take you to Kolkata's lesser-explored surrounding region, away from the hustle and bustle of the city.