Durga Puja is the time of the year when people from all walks of life come together to celebrate the return of Goddess Durga to her parental home. Although it is celebrated all over India and the world, Kolkata is the hotspot of Durga Puja. It becomes the ‘City of Joy’ in its truest sense by raising the bars without any limits.
The Durga Puja of Kolkata is an emotion…a tradition that has been revered the world over. It has even received the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity award from UNESCO in 2022.
The Must visit Durga Puja Pandals
Durga Puja usually takes place during the month of October, the most vibrant time for us people living in Kolkata. There are pandals erected all over Kolkata for the purpose of this festival, however, some of them are easy to catch everyone’s attention because of their striking creativity and grandeur. So, let us now look at some of the most popular Durga Puja pandals in Kolkata.
1. Kumartuli Park Durga Puja
Kolkata has many talented artisans who are expert clay modelers handcrafting Goddess Durga idols for generations. Kumartuli is the area in Kolkata where this work takes place.
The Kumartuli Park Durga Puja is special because it is held in the very area where most of the idols of Goddess Durga are made by the master craftsmen who live in the area. The puja started in 1995, and is well known for the unique themes with which the pandals are constructed.
The mesmerizing Durga idols sculpted in Kumartuli are also exported to foreign nations where Bengali expatriates celebrate Durga Puja. In 2018, their theme for Durga Puja was Lord Krishna’s theme for humanity.
Location: It is situated between the Hooghly River and Rabindra Sarani. The closest metro station to this place is Sovabazar Sutanuti.
Address: 8B, Abhay Mitra St, Sovabazar, Kumartuli, Shobhabazar, Kolkata, West Bengal 700005
2. Baghbazar Sarbojanin Durga Puja
Renowned as one of the oldest pujas in Kolkata. For over a century now Baghbazar’s Durga Puja has upheld the Bengali traditions and culture. The Baghbazaar Sarbojanin Durgotsav and Exhibition successfully attracts thousands of worshippers and visitors every year. The area is decorated with stalls and even carnival rides.
The Baghbazar Durga Puja is also popular for the Sindoor Khela ritual which attracts a huge crowd of visitors on the fifth day of Durga Puja (Dashami), which is the last day.
Location: This puja takes place in North Kolkata, near the Baghbazar Launch ghat.
Address: J938+V9H, Brindaban Pal Ln, Bidhan Sarani, Baghbazar, Kolkata, West Bengal 700003
3. Santosh Mitra Square
With masterfully crafted Durga Puja pandals and beautifully made Durga Idols, Santosh Mitra Square never fails to attract thousands of visitors every year. In 2017, they had an English theme and Goddess Durga was seen in a setting that resembled Buckingham Palace.
Location: It is located in Central Kolkata. The closest metro station is the Central metro station.
Address: H988+C72, Natabar Dutta Row Road, Lebutala, Bowbazar, Kolkata, West Bengal 700014
4. Ekdalia Evergreen Club
Ekdalia Evergreen is a renowned Durga Puja in the Gariahat area of South Kolkata. Established in 1954, it never fails to amaze the crowd with its massive, colorful, and aesthetic Durga Puja Pandals which are replicas of temples around India. Because of the exotic lighting and beautiful decorations, the best time to visit the pandal is at nighttime.
Location: It is located in the Gariahat area of South Kolkata, . The nearby metro station is Kalighat metro station.
Address: 15, Ekdalia Rd, Ekdalia, Ballygunge, Kolkata, West Bengal 700019
5. College Square
Established in 1948, this Durga Puja is a unique one as it is located beside the massive College Square Lake. It is illuminated with vibrant lights which reflect in the lake giving it a heavenly appearance. Most people visit this pandal in the evening or night to get a glimpse of this beauty.
Location: Located in Central Kolkata, near 53 College Street. Nearby landmark is Calcutta University, and the nearest metro station is Central Metro Station.
Address: College Square, 53 College Street (Opp. Calcutta University), Kolkata, West Bengal 700013
6. Mohammad Ali Park
This puja began in the year 1969 and is famous for its architectural intelligence. Every year they produce an innovative theme which is mostly replicas of splendid monuments from around the world. The entire park is also a large ground that features spectacular decor and dazzling lights. Their creative themes have brought them several awards.
Location: This puja takes place in Central Kolkata, at Mahatma Gandhi Road.
Address: J938+V9H, Brindaban Pal Ln, Bidhan Sarani, Baghbazar, Kolkata – 700003
7. Suruchi Sangha
Suruchi Sangha’s Durga Puja is fifty years old and has won awards in the year 2003 and 2009 for the best-decorated pandals. Suruchi Sangha flaunts a beautiful idol of Goddess Durga and the pandals are well-crafted. Every year they make pandals themed after a different Indian state and Goddess Durga’s idol is also crafted in the way in which she would appear in the respective state the pandal is themed after.
Location: It is located in South Kolkata, in the New Alipore area.
Address: Block M 500 and 505, Station Rd, Block M, New Alipore, Kolkata, West Bengal 700053
8. Shreebhumi Sporting Club
The Sreebhumi club’s pandals are an example of architectural genius. Massive-styled pandals are made with great elegance and radiate the cultural and traditional vibe in the atmosphere that is enough to captivate anyone’s attention. From pandals styled in the theme of a royal mansion to famous architectural structures such as Burj Khalifa, they have mastered it all. People from all over Kolkata flock to visit this pandal. This year they would be flaunting an extravagant Vatican City theme.
Location: It is in the Laketown locality of South DumDum Municipality. The nearest metro station is Belgachia Metro Station.
Address: HCX3+H53, Canal St, near P.S, Sreebhumi, Lake Town, Kolkata, West Bengal 700048
9. Bosepukur Sitala Mandir
It is a multi-award-winning pandal that has been organizing Durga Puja for over 60 years. It became famous some years back when they portrayed the rural lifestyle of India. They also attained immense fame when they made the idol of Goddess Durga with earthen pitchers.
Location: It is in South Kolkata in the Bosepukur, Kasba area. The nearest landmark is Bosepukur petrol pump.
Address: 1/27, Bosepukur Rd, Tal Bagan, Bosepukur, Kasba, Kolkata, West Bengal 700042
10. Badamtala Ashar Sangha
Being one of the older Durga Puja Pandals, this puja has been organized for over 75 years. It started from humble origins and later went to win the award for creative excellence in the year 2010. They make unique and spectacular themes for their pandals every year without any repetitions.
Location: This Durga Puja is located in South Kolkata, at Nepal Bhattacharjee street. The nearest metro station is Kalighat Metro station.
Address: 5, Nepal Bhattacharjee St, Anami Sangha, Kalighat, Kolkata, West Bengal 700026
11. Tridhara Sammilani
This is another Durga Puja pandal that is more than 75 years old, but has become especially famous in recent years, especially among the younger generation.
Trdihara Sammilani is popular for the innovative themes with which its Durga Puja pandals are created. From recreating ancient civilizations to creating themes with a philosophical touch such as ‘Modernism’, Tridhara Sammilani is successful at drawing in a huge crowd every year.
Location: Near Deshapriya Park in South Kolkata. The nearest Metro station is Kalighat.
Address: Satyendranath Mazumder Sarani, Dover Terrace, Near Deshapriya Park, Kolkata, West Bengal 700025
It’s time to go pandal hopping
Please note that these are not the only famous Durga Puja pandals in Kolkata, there are many more. The best time to visit the pandals is during the evening time. However, many people prefer to go pandal hopping late at night, which has another beauty to it. If you want, you can chalk out a plan to visit the most prominent pandals overnight since the City of Joy does not sleep during Durga Puja.
Durga Puja is not just about the pandals, it is also about the way the entire city is decorated, the air of festivity, the mouth-watering food stalls, the carnivals, gorgeously dressed people, and many more.
Read about 5 Brilliant Ways To Enjoy The Kolkata Durga Puja to get the best flavour of the festive seasons.