Friday, February 15, 2013

First Chinese New Year in Kolkata, India - Day 1

What a nice mixture! Hehe... I spent my Chinese New Year first day for the very first time in Kolkata, India. It was a last minute arrangement. It was on 20th January. Tashi told me he and his families would go to India for body check up in Vellore, then headed to Kolkata. I was asking him when would he reach Kolkata. He said he would reach Kolkata on 8th and he would stay until 14th then left to Bhutan.

There is sister hotel properties in Kolkata and I had been wanting to explore Kolkata. Since Tashi would go there, I was asking him if it's convenient for him and his families if I joined them, and he said it wouldn't be a problem at all. He said he would be free after 10th Feb. So, I asked my husband permission to go to Kolkata. He knew it's my passion to travel, to see the world. Although it was planned during Chinese New Year, with a heavy heart, he agreed to it. So, I planned the trip after that. At the same time, I was asking another Bhutanese friend, Riku, if he could join us as well. He was thinking about it and at the end, he agreed to join.

Days after that, I purchased my air ticket, booked the hotel rooms, did some research on where should we go, printed the map, etc. But only days before the date, Tashi then told us that he couldn't make the trip to Kolkata on the date planned as he was waiting for the check-up results and he still had few tests to do. So at the end, the trip would be only me and Riku.

So, after a long waiting days, I finally flew to Kolkata on 10th February. I took Drukair. It's a direct flight, only about 3 hours and 40 mins journey. There is time difference of 2.5 hours between Kolkata and Singapore. I reached there at about 8am Kolkata time. Riku was there in the airport, together with other 2 Bhutanese students, Dorji and Sonam, awaiting for me in front of arrival gate. I later found out that Riku had just met and known them the night before, during his 18 hour-long bus journey from Phuentsholing to Kolkata, and he was sleeping at their rented house on his 1st night in Kolkata (Riku reached Kolkata on 9th Feb).

We went to the hotel to check-in and put in our belongings and had a short rest. Since Dorji and Sonam were free (they had created off days themselves for the 2 days to celebrate the Bhutanese Losar by not attending classes), they were willingly to accompany us for sightseeing. So four of us headed to Victoria Memorial Hall. Before that, we thought of visiting Nicco Park, but when we reached, it was not opened yet. Therefore, we went to Victoria Memorial Hall.

Victoria Memorial Hall - Riku and me

Sonam, me, and Dorji

Victoria Memorial Hall is a memorial building dedicated to Victoria, Empress of India. It is now served as museum. It is beautiful and grand. It is resemblance with Taj Mahal. The domes are beautiful. The building was made by white marbles. Inside, it was filled with paintings, sculptures, and manuscripts from British period.

Photo taken by Riku

It is a favorite location for romantic, strolling couples, dating place. We could find few couples sitting beneath the trees or sitting on the bench, enjoying their times, as if the building was belong to two of them only. Haha... Interesting!!!

We walked around the area. Found lots of beautiful flowers in the garden. And we took some beautiful photos below.

Love the view of the trees

Beautiful reflection

After done with the sightseeing, it was time for lunch. We went to New Market area and chose one Indian restaurant and we had our lunch there. Riku ordered 10 pcs of Roti, which we couldn't finish as he thought the roti size would be in smaller size haha... We ate it with chicken baratha, vegetable curry, and salad. The roti was very nice and fresh. It was a nice Indian meal I had. Simple but fulfilling :)

Lunch time!!!

After that, we went to Nicco Park. But due to hot sun, we decided not to enter. So we separated. Dorji and Sonam went back to their house, Riku and I went back to hotel for rest. I took a nap and we both met up for dinner at the shopping center that was located just beside the hotel, called City Center.

Seeing McDonald, I asked Riku if he was fine if we had our dinner there. He said, ok. So, we entered in and ordered our food. As expected, the McDonald there doesn't serve beef. The usual Big Mac is replaced with Chicken Maharaja Mac. Riku had that, while I ate Big Spicy Paneer Wrap. It was something that McDonald in other part of the world doesn't serve. So there we were, having our meal. After that, we went outside and had a cardamon hot tea in a cool weather. So cute, the drink was served using the pottery made cup and after drink, we could just throw it away. But I guess they will wash and re-use it ba? The cup made the tea smelled different and tasted better :) Simply love it!

McDonald in India
Hot Cardamon Tea using pottery cup :)

After dinner, we just walked around and explored the shopping center, then went back to room and sleep.

No comments:

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...