Saturday, March 12, 2016

A Drive to Chandannagar


Its been a a short while since we were on the road (read Highways) still getting over the epic 6600+ kms Road Trip from Kolkata to Kanyakumari and our Ride (Maruti Ertiga ZXi) beckons us to take her out again.

So we decided to take a short day trip to Chandannagar which is not too far from the outskirts of Kolkata on the other side of the river on the banks of the Hooghly just about 35-40 kms from the city.

So here we are, trip meter set to Zero at its 11:31 am on a beautiful sunny day!
We made a brief stop at McDonald's Mani Square Mall and packed some Burgers and stuff to much on the go.
A little under an hour later we were crossing the New Bridge at Bally called the Vivekananda Setu. You can see the old Truss & Girder Rail and Road Bridge on the right.
Once we hit the National Highway, memories of our recent Road Trip came floding in as we started to step on the gas and chew the kilometers. This was going to be a brief interlude as we would soon be getting off this Fantastic Highway back on to smaller and narrower roads.
Finally we are at the Gates of Chandannagar as we pass over this small bridge with the two pillars with the French quote "Liberte Egalite Fraternite".

Chandannagar, formerly spelled as Chandernagore (Bengali: চন্দননগর Chôndônnôgôr, French: Chandernagor), is a Corporation city and former French colony located a little over 35 kilometers north of Kolkata, in West Bengal, India.

Our first stop is the the Chandannagar Strand on the banks of the River. Its beautifully maintained and itself made the trip worthwhile.
The scenic Hooghly River from the promenade.
Fishermen at work on their boats pulling in their nets.
At the end of the promenade is a Jetty from where one can take the ferry across the river.
If you're a nature lover, there were hundreds of parakeets nesting and flying about the trees on the Strand and around.
There are some interesting Buildings from the days gone by like this one housing a Government Office.
Our faithful Maruti Suzuki Ertiga ZXi parked on the Strand while I pranced around shooting pictures of all the interesting Buildings and Architecture.
Originally the French Governor's Residence, not it is the Chandannagar Museum & Library.
Located in the lane leading from the main Promenade on the Strand is the Sacred Heart Church, one of the main tourist attractions.
Go a bit further into the town and you'll come upon Nandadulal Jiu Mandir which is the other main attraction. It's in a nondescript lane, so you might have to ask around.
On our way back to Kolkata, we decided to check out the famous Serampore College Building. It took us some meandering and we came onto a road along the river.
Serampore College. Though the gates were locked, I managed to get a photograph of the Building. The two little girls actually posed for me in one of my clicks which I only noticed when my wife pointed it out once we got back home.
As we drove through the narrow streets, I'd rather call them lanes, of Serampore there were some intriguing Buildings tucked into these neighbourhoods.
A non eventful drive back towards Kolkata and as we were crossing over the old Bally Bridge, I could see the sun setting in my rear view mirror.

I'm sure there were some more places to see, but we covered what we had set out to see.  Chandannagar is off the Buket List.

You can see more pictures on my Instagram account at www.instagram.com/rohitnyss