The day of love and celebrating love is knocking on the door and it’s time to plan a special date with your beau! Gifts and goodies, chocolates and flowers might be on the essentials checklist, but planning a day’s outing dedicated to your special someone is a treat fit for the day. So this V-Day, set out on a journey together — tumio hentey dekho Kolkata — to create a day of love and memories.
If you need some help setting it up, here’s a handy guide…
Sunrises and scrumptious breakfasts
They say morning shows the day, so plan the start well to set the tone for the rest of the day.
A serene sunrise at an old ghat
Whether you both wake up at the same time together or not, watching the sunrise together on a special day is an attainable task. Imagine sitting on the banks of the Ganga at Sovabazar Ghat as the sky lights up with colour and while there is still a slight chill in the air — what a romantic start to the day!
A spot of delish breakfast
Get a hearty breakfast of mutton ghugni and bhnarer cha at Lalu-Bhulu tea shop opposite the Kolkata Police Sutanuti Outpost. Always busy with regulars and visitors who travel far to taste Lalu-Bhulu’s tea and food, this little shop has made a rock solid place in the hearts of city foodies.
An artsy post-breakfast stroll
Right after breakfast at Lalu-Bhulu — which must end with an extra cup of cha — walk straight ahead into the sculptors’ gully of Kumartuli. With no pujas approaching, the artisan’s hub works with a different rhythm. Stroll around, visit the various workshops, talk to the artists to know more about this place, which is intrinsic to the cultural and religious heritage of the city and the state. Don’t forget to check out the antique radio shop while you are there.
Retail therapy and a taste of Bengal
After a morning in the north, spend the afternoon in the south of the city.
Time for some shopping and snacking
Head to Dakshinapan for some mid-morning shopping. If you’re a soon-to-be-married couple, and this is your last V-Day before D-Day, it’s a good day to window shop for your new home. From home decor to jewellery, Dakshinapan has everything to delight a shopper. If D-Day is far away, you can also shop for gifts and trinkets. And if you’re the ones whose D-Day happened a while ago, get out of the loop of ‘let’s buy what’s needed’ and pamper your partner with some cute gifts.
A trip to DP (Dakshinapan) is incomplete without stopping at Rajendra’s. The phuchka and alu dum stall right outside the complex gates is famous! As they prepare your tok-jhal alu dum, feast on some phuchkas. After all, shopping needs energy!
A slice of history for lunch
A 108-year-old pice hotel close to Lake Mall, Tarun Niketan is one of the few remaining pice hotels in the city. Opt for an authentic Bangali lunch with kochi panthar jhol, kochu shaak chingri, kobiraji jhol and much more. Bonding over food is the best kind of bonding, isn’t it?
The perfect evening has books and cocktails
The grand luncheon at Tarun Niketan demands a bhaat ghum, but it can also be a great time to enjoy each other’s company while also doing your own thing — a trip to the bookstore sounds like a plan!
Books and banter post lunch
The scent of freshly-printed pages, cute stationery and postcards, the adrenaline rush before zeroing down on what makes it from the counter to the cart — oh the joy! Head to Oxford Bookstore on Park Street and browse around. Make your way upstairs to Cha Bar and enjoy a warm cup as evening sets in.
It’s cocktail hour!
It’s time to begin the V-Day evening date, and Trincas is just round the corner — another gem standing tall with history and heritage. Head there to sip your favourite drink and some more conversation as the heart keeps humming “Yeh tumhari meri baatein, humesha yun hi chalti rahe”...
Liven the night with a dinner, a drive and more
Dinner date part two calls for a Kolkata-favourite meal and since you’re in Park Street, there’s a host of options within walking distance. Our pick is a classic chelo kebab!
A dinner date at Peter Cat
Soft lighting, a delicious plate of Chelo Kebab, and your favourite person — recipe for the ideal date is set. It’s the dinner date that will receive “awwwws” on the ’gram, and will also be one of the fondest memories of the year and beyond. #DinnerDateDoneRight, as they say.
The night is young, so let’s not say goodbye yet
As the radio plays V-Day melodies, and glimpses from the day bring unmindful smiles, it’s time to go on a long drive. Don’t keep a fixed route in mind, just channel the inner Uttam-Suchitra and have your own “Ei poth jodi na desh hoy” moment. It’s late and the traffic and the cacophony has died down as the city gets ready to sleep. A small paan shop here, a few people there, bright lights and comforting shades — the city weaves magic every moment, and will not turn you down on V-Day too.
End your day of memories — one that will make you look forward to February 14, next year — with a night-time snack stop at Balwant Singh’s Eating House. Our pick is their signature Doodh Cola, but if you’re someone who enjoys chai at any time of the day, they make it a good cuppa.
Cheers to love, to the togetherness. Aasche bochor abar hobe…