Kolkata (formerly known as Calcutta), one of the metro cities of India,
is the capital of West Bengal, and is situated at the East Bank of river
Hooghly. The City has population of more than 4.6 million, with an
extended metropolitan population of over fourteen million, making it the
third largest urban agglomeration and the fourth largest city in India.
The city is noted for its revolutionary history ever since the Indian
Struggle of Independence. Kolkata served as the capital of India during
the British Raj till 1911. In course
of its life of more than three hundred years the city has seen many
great personalities, to name a few, Iswar Chandra Vidyasagar, Raja
Rammohan Roy, Rabindranath Tagore, Sir J. C. Bose, Achaya Prafulla
Chandra Roy, Swami Vivekananda, Mother Teressa, Satyajit Ray and Amartya
Kolkata is located in eastern India at 22°33′N, 88°20′E in the
Ganges Delta at an elevation ranging between 1.5m (5ft) to 9m
(30ft). It is spread linearly along the banks of the River Hooghly
in a north-south direction. Like the most of the Indo-Gangetic
plains, the predominant soil type is alluvial.
city has a total geographical area of 1480 sq. km. The Sundarbans
delta, which is located at a distance of 154 km to the south of
Kolkata, separates the city from the Bay of Bengal. The city has
been divided into different topographical regions. There are mainly
five geographical units including east, west, north, south and
central Kolkata. The adjoining regions include Howrah, Hooghly,
North 24 Parganas, South 24 Parganas and Nadia.
Kolkata has a tropical wet-and-dry climate. The annual mean temperature
is 26.8°C (80.2 °F); monthly mean temperatures range from 19°C (66.2°F)
to 30°C (86.0°F). Summers are hot and humid with temperatures in the low
30's and during dry spells the maximum temperatures often exceed 40°C
(104°F) during May and June. Winter tends to last for only about two and
a half months, with seasonal lows dipping to 9°C to 11°C (54°F – 57°F)
between December and January.
The Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose(NSCB) International Airport in Kolkata is
situated at Dum Dum, about 17 km northeast of the city centre. Most of
the domestic airlines have to and fro flights at Kolkata. It is well
connected to all other important cities of India such as Delhi, Mumbai,
Chennai, Bangalore, Hyderabad, Patna, Varanasi, Lucknow, etc. There are
direct flights between Kolkata and most of the countries in the
Southeast Asia, some of the major cities in Europe, Middle East and
The city has three major railway stations,
and Kolkata. It is well connected to the rest of the country by
trains through these stations. Super-fast trains such as Rajdhani
Express and Shatabdi Express connect the city to Delhi and nearby cities
such as Bokaro and Rourkela. Coromandel Express and Gitanjali Express
connect Kolkata to Chennai and Mumbai respectively. Besides, the city is
well connected to other cities of neighbouring states by road through
various inter-state Bus services.
Travel in Kolkata is fairly convenient as it has virtually all types of
transportations. Especially, Kolkata Metro (India's first underground
railway) is a clean, efficient mode of getting around the city. Other
options to explore the city are by metered taxis, trams, and city
buses. The services are basic and cheap.
Foreign exchange counters are available at the international terminal of
the NSCB International Airport/ all leading hotels and at selected
branches of various banks around the city. Master Card and VISA card
are widely accepted at most of the hotels, restaurants, airport ticket
counters and shops. American Express card is generally accepted by
major hotels and restaurants and a few retail outlets for shopping.
Diners Card is sparsely accepted.
220 to 240 volts 50Hz AC