Day 21 in India – Kolkata

I arrived in Kolkata at 3 am from comparatively chilled out Chiang Mai. I really didn’t want to deal with trying to find my accommodation in the middle of the night alone in India. So I booked a very overpriced hotel near the airport.


First impression of Kolkata from my overpriced airport hotel

The next day, I moved into a more budget traveller friendly accommodation near the centre of Kolkata. The uber ride there was an experience. There was poverty everywhere I turned, half naked man sitting on the street curve shampooing his hair and washing up using water from the fire hydrant. Skinny rickshaw man pulling a middle-aged chubby woman wearing one too many gold jewels down the narrow gap between the taxis. I was so glad I didn’t decide to take the public bus there. I hope I never have to take the public bus anywhere in India.


I’ve seen these cute yellow cabs only in Kolkata


public bus in Kolkata. Bus drivers drive like the night bus driver from Harry Potter.


The first week alone in Kolkata was intense. I went outside of the hostel for maybe 4 hours max each day, coming back well before the sunset. I was too scared to bring out my camera, hence the lack of photos. Even taking out my phone felt like I was drawing too much attention to myself.


on the way to mother Theresa’s house


One word to describe my stay in Kolkata was ‘outnumbered’. I didn’t see a single non-Indian person for the first 3 days. It was only when I went to a museum I saw a group of non-Indian travellers. I’ve never been so happy to see them in my life!

After Kolkata, I was on a 3-day train over to Mumbai. This was my first Indian train experience, and definitely the longest one to date. It was amazing! Full-ish length bed with air-conditioning, it was the best train experience I’ve had so far.

Ate lots of biryanis and chais, did not get sick (yet!).

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