Kolkata, a land of myths, stories, literary geniuses, and intriguing religious places boasts of its vibrant cultures and diverse traditions. With numerous esoteric temples and religious places, Kolkata is a major pilgrimage site in India. These beautiful religious sites depict the beautiful culture and glorious past of this city. If you are interested in a religious tour, then Kolkata is a place to visit. So, through this blog, we will explore some major religious sites in Kolkata that you should visit on your next trip.
Famous Religious Places in Kolkata: Temples
Spreading over 40 acres of land on the western bank of Hooghly, the historic Belur Math is one of the famous pilgrimage places of Kolkata. It is the main headquarters of the Ramakrishna Math and Mission. The key feature of this temple is its unique architecture, which amalgams Hindu, Christian, and Islamic motifs as a symbol of unity of all religions. This temple consists of prayer halls and other shrines dedicated to Sri Ramakrishna, Sri Sarada Devi, and Swami Vivekananda. You can also see a museum and other educational institutes in the vicinity of Belur Math. In short, the spiritual ambiance and creative architecture make Belur Math one of the best historical places in Kolkata.
Location: Belur, Howrah
Timing: 6.00 AM-9.00 PM
Dakshineswar Kali Temple
Dakshineswar Kali Temple on the eastern bank of the river Hooghly is a Hindu navaratna temple dedicated to Bhavatarini, a manifestation of Goddess Kali. Rani Rashmoni founded this popular Hindu pilgrimage in 1855. Dakshineswar temple is also famous for its navaratna style of Bengal architecture. You can also find twelve shrines in the vicinity of this temple. This architectural masterpiece is one of the beautiful monuments in Kolkata.
Location: Dakshineswar, Kolkata
Timing: 6.00 AM-8.30 PM
Kalighat Kali Temple
Kalighat Kali Temple is one of the 51 Shakti Peethas, located in the city of joy-Kolkata. This is the temple where the toes of Sati’s right foot fell during Shiva Tandava. It is said that the Calcutta name is derived from the word Kalighat. This 200-year-old temple is one of the best places to visit on your Kolkata trip.
Location: Anami Sangha, Kalighat, Kolkata
Timing: 5.00 AM-2.00 PM, and 5.00 PM-10.30 PM
Calcutta Jain Temple
Calcutta Jain Temple, also known as Pareshnath Jain Temple, is a complex dedicated to four Jain Tirthankaras. A Jain named Rai Badridas Bahadoor Mookim built this temple in 1867, and Sri Kalyansurishwarji Maharaj inaugurated this one. The intricately carved marbles and glassworks are the key attractions of the architecture of this temple. The premise of the temple also consists of beautiful gardens and fountains. Moreover, the beautiful architecture of this temple draws tourists from all over the world.
Location: Gouribari, Maniktala, Kolkata
Timing: 6.00 AM-10.00 AM, and 5.00 PM-8.00 PM
Another renowned temple of Kolkata known for its magnificent architecture is Birla Mandir. The Birla family started the construction in 1970 and took almost 26 years to complete this marvelous structure. This is a grand temple that features the deities of Lord Krishna and Goddess Radha. So, a large number of devotees congregate here during Janmashtami. This temple also features other deities like Lord Ganesha, Lord Hanuman, Lord Shiva, ten avatars of Lord Vishnu, and Goddess Durga. The traditional style of architecture is another striking feature of this temple. This temple is an epitome of craftsmanship that is a product of an amalgamation of traditional and contemporary art. The elegant architecture and design of Birla Mandir bear a heavy resemblance to the Lingaraj Temple of Bhubaneswar. The grandeur and beauty of the temple have also made it one of the famous religious places in Kolkata.
Location: 29, Old Ballygunge Road, Ashutosh Chowdary Avenue, Kolkata
Timing: 5.30 AM-11.00 AM, and 4.30 PM-9.00 PM
This is another magnificent temple of Kolkata that features Lord Krishna and Goddess Radha. Built-in 1970, the ISKCON temple of Kolkata is also known as Sri Sri Radha Govinda Mandir. Apart from its religious importance, this temple is also famous for its finest architecture. The interior walls of this temple have beautiful engravings of quotations from Bhagavad Gita. There is also a large hall meant for religious activities and evening aartis. The spiritual ambiance of this temple makes this one of the crowdest religious places of Kolkata throughout the year.
Location: Gauranga Ghat Road, Ramkrishna Pally, Panihati, Kolkata
Timing: 4.30 AM-1.00 PM, and 4.00 PM-8.30 PM
The 1729 Taraknath Temple is one of the oldest temples in Kolkata, which is dedicated to Lord Shiva. Throughout the year, this temple is buzzing with a large number of devotees. During Shivratri and Gajan, thousands of devotees gather here from different parts of the country. Taraknath Temple is one of the busiest and crowded temples in Kolkata.
Location: Mandir Rd, Tarkeshwar, Kolkata
Timing: 6.00 AM-1.30 PM, and 4.00 PM-7.00 PM
Sri Bal Hanuman Temple
Dedicated to Lord Hanuman, the symbol of power and strength, Sri Bal Hanuman Temple is one of the famous Religious places in Kolkata. Apart from Hindu devotees, Jains and Buddhist followers also visit this temple. It is also the biggest Hanuman temple in Kolkata. The temple is very crowded on Tuesdays and Saturdays.
Location: Lake Town, Kolkata
Timing: 6.00 AM-8.00 PM
Built-in 1949, Lake Kalibari temple is famous for its sacredness and piousness. This temple is dedicated to Goddess Kali, but the deity inside the temple is Goddess Karunamoyee, another aspect of Kali. The other name of this temple is Sree Sree 108 Karunamoyee Kalimata Mandir, but it is popular as Lake Kalibari Temple.
Location: Southern Ave, Rabindra Sarobar, Sarani, Kolkata
Timing: 6.00 AM-12.30 PM, and 3.30 PM-9.00 PM
Famous Religious Places in Kolkata: Mosques
Nakhoda mosque is one of the busiest mosques of Kolkata, in the Chitpur area of the Burrabazar business district. The construction of this mosque imitates the architecture of the mausoleum of Mughal Emperor Akbar at Sikandra, Agra. This mosque holds a large prayer hall with a capacity of 10,000 people. The masjid also has three domes and two minarets, which resemble the Buland Darwaza at Fatehpur Sikri. In short, the Nakhoda mosque is a must-visit place in Kolkata for those who love to relish the beautiful architecture.
Location: Rabindra Sarani, Chowringhee North, Bow Barracks, Kolkata
Timing: 11.00 AM-9.00 PM
Tipu Sultan Masjid
A relic of the architectural and cultural heritage, Tipu Sultan Masjid is a famous mosque in Kolkata. Prince Ghulam Mohammed, the youngest son of Tipu Sultan, built this building in 1842 in the memory of his father. Earlier, he also built an identical mosque in 1835 at Tollygunge. Now both mosques are managed by the Ghulam Mohammed Wakf Estate.
Location: Lenin Sarani Rd, Esplanade, Chandni Chawk, Bowbazar, Kolkata
Timing: 8.00 AM-12.00 PM, and 3.00 PM-6.00 PM
Must read: Top 37 Amazing Places to Eat in Kolkata
Famous Religious Places in Kolkata: Churches
St. Paul’s Cathedral
St. Paul’s Cathedral in the city of Kolkata is an Anglican cathedral that runs under the Church of North India. It is the largest church in Kolkata, which is famous for its Gothic style of architecture. During the Christmas holidays, it looks more beautiful with colorful dazzling lights. It is the first Episcopalian church in Asia, which was built to accommodate the increasing Christian community in Calcutta. The cathedral follows the Indo-Gothic style of architecture. This building houses an episcopal throne on the southern flank of the altar and a reredos on its eastern end. The cathedral’s interior also displays many plastic art forms and memorabilia. In short, it is a must-visit place in Kolkata for those who are seeking historical and architectural pleasure on their vacation trips.
Location: Cathedral Road, Maidan, Kolkata
Timing: 9.00 AM-6.00 PM
Church of Christ The King
Christ The King is another architectural marvel of Kolkata, which is located in the busy neighborhood of Park Circus. Also known as Park Street church, this is one of the famous churches in Kolkata. Both the interior and exterior decoration of this church is so beautiful. It also has a majestic hall with a seating capacity of hundreds of people. The peaceful ambiance can make anyone fall in love with this church. No doubt, this church must be on your list of top religious places in Kolkata.
Location: Syed Amir Ali Ave, Park Circus, Park Street area, Kolkata
Timing: 10.00 AM-8.00 PM
Armenian Church Of The Holy Nazareth
Built-in 1724, Armenian Church is one of the oldest churches in Kolkata. There is a graveyard surrounding this church, where you can also spot the oldest grave with the date of 11th June 1630. The interior of this church is well maintained. The upstairs of the church also contains a good collection of old paintings. Being the first church of its kind, it is also called the Mother Church of the Indian Armenians. It must be a great place to witness a unique section of Indian history.
Location: Armenian Street, Bortola, Barabazar Market, Kolkata
Timing: 9.00 AM-4.00 PM
St. John’s Church
This is the third oldest church in Kolkata. This significant heritage site became Calcutta’s main cathedral in 1815 and remained so until the construction of St. Paul’s Cathedral in 1847. Being an original Bengal Parish Church, this church is a rich repository of ancient reminiscences and historical monuments related to Kolkata’s history. Warren Hastings and Reverend William Johnson were the church’s prime movers. The is also the tomb of Lady Canning at St John’s Church.
Location: Council House Street, opp. Dewars Garage, Lal Dighi, B.B.D. Bagh, Kolkata
Timing: 8.00 AM-5.00 PM
St. Jame’s Church
Located on A.J.C Bose Road, St. James Church is another famous church in Kolkata. This 1862 Church was built to replace an older church with the same name at Nebutala Lane. It is also popularly known as Jora Girja for its twin spires. On 12 November 1829, Bishop Reginald Heber consecrated this ancient church. This church follows the English Gothic style of architecture.
Location: A.J.C Bose Road, Maula Ali, Taltala, Kolkata
Timing: 6.00 AM-6.00 PM
Mar Thoma Syrian Church
The Mar Thoma Syrian Church is also known as the Malankara Mar Thoma Syrian Church. It is an ancient Syriac Christian community based out of Kerala. This church follows the ancient Syriac High Church traditions. During the time of Portuguese, Dutch, and British periods, it has witnessed many changes and different policies. This church also organizes different social events like blood donation camps and other social drives for the underprivileged. In short, this is one of the must-visit religious places in Kolkata.
Location: 29, Ahiripukur Rd, Rowland Row, Ballygunge, Kolkata
Timing: 8.00 AM-6.30 PM
St. Thomas Church
St. Thomas is a Roman Catholic, Latin Rite church. It is a classic colonial building where you can also spot a gothic tower. In this church, Mother Teresa’s body was kept for about one week before her funeral in the year 1997. It has also a marble base relief of St. Thomas. Another highlighted part of this church is its beautiful altar windows.
Location: 13D, Mirza Ghalib Street, Janbazar, Taltala, Kolkata
Timing: 7.00 AM-9.00 PM
Holy Rosary Cathedral
Holy Rosary Cathedral, commonly known as the Portuguese Church, is the only remaining architectural relic of Kolkata’s lesser-known Portuguese past. This church was founded in 1799, and it is also known as the Murgihata Church. Currently, it is the seat of the Archbishop of the Roman Catholic Archdiocese of Calcutta. The cathedral has a decorated pediment, flanked by two domed towers on either side and an arched entrance portico. The interior also includes beautiful sculptures, including 14 Cross Stations. Behind the altar, there are the figures of Madonna and Child.
Location: Brabourne Road, Pageya Patti Street, Portuguese Church St, Bara Bazar, Kolkata
St. Andrew’s Church
St. Andrew’s Church is the one and only Scottish church that you can see in this part of the world. It is one of the top religious places to visit in Kolkata. The tall and massive spire of this beautiful church makes it one of the most highlighted buildings in the city. The church was first introduced in 1818 to the public and since then it comes under the most visited churches in Kolkata.
Location: 15, B.B.D Bag North, Murgighata, Barabazar Market, Kolkata
Timing: 10.00 AM-2.00 PM
These are some of the famous religious sites in Kolkata, where you can relish the real culture, magnificent architecture, ancient reminiscences, and the glorious past of this city. With various religions, Kolkata is truly an enthralling religious destination. Among various religious sites, I have listed some of the top places to visit in Kolkata. So what are you waiting for? Plan your next religious journey from this charming city. No doubt, the calm and positive vibes of these places will surely give you immense spiritual experiences.
I hope this blog will help you to find some of the famous religious places in Kolkata. If you find this blog interesting and helpful, then don’t forget to share your experience by commenting below.
Also read: 37 Most Famous Religious Places of Odisha