Kalighat Kali Temple is an eminent religious attraction in Kolkata. Interestingly, the temple is considered as one of the fifty-two Shakti Peethas and many people believe that the toes of Sati’s right foot had fallen here.
The image of Goddess Kali that you will see in this temple is totally distinctive from all the other Kali images dispersed in every nook and cranny of this grand metropolis.
Besides, you will be surprised to know that the Kalighat kali temple almost came into being around two hundred years back. Initially, when the shrine was under construction, only the face of Goddess Kali was made and subsequently worshipped for a short span of time.
Later, when the tongue, hands and ornaments of the deity was created using silver and gold, the idol of the Goddess attained a whole new different form.
History of Kalighat Kali Temple
The Kalighat Kali Temple finds its genesis all the way to the nineteenth century. However, grapevine has it that the Temple dates back to the seventeenth and fifteenth centuries as well. Sounds exciting, isn’t it?
It was the initiative of a renowned Zamindar family, Sabarna Roy Chowdhury that resulted in the construction of this Temple in 1809 and the rest is history. Santosh Roy Chowdhury, a descendant of this family began making the Kalighat Temple in 1798 as he himself was an ardent Kali devotee.
Subsequently, it took around eleven years for the construction of the temple to cease and the pre-eminent idol of Goddess has been worshipped there ever since.
Kalighat Temple Location
The main Kalighat Temple nestles across the coast of the Adi Ganga River. Aside from that, there is also a temple dedicated to Radha-Krishna that is situated in the west of the temple area. In fact, reaching the Kalighat Temple is very easy and simple.
In case you are coming by metro, then, the nearest metro station you can get down to is the Kalighat metro station itself. Or else, there are many buses, taxis and other means of transport as well via which the Kalighat temple can be reached from any part of Kolkata or Howrah.
Commuting to this holy shrine through a short tram ride would also be great. However, if waking is more your thing, then, you can start walking from the metro station or bus stop and resort to Ishwar Ganguly Street, a small lane, five hundred meter away from the Kalighat kali temple.
It commences from S.P Mukherjee Road that is situated just next to the Kalighat Metro Exit. As you take this itinerary, it will let you avoid the cacophony of the Kalighat Temple Road, leading you to the temple without any fuss or unwanted hassle.
Kalighat Kali Temple Timing
The Kalighat Kali Temple opens for the devotees around 5.30 AM in the morning and remains open till 10.30 pm in the evening. Coming to the allocation of Bhog, it starts around 5 PM in the evening since the Bhog Rag ritual occurs in the temple between 2.30 to 3.30 PM in the afternoon.
Besides, the Mongal Arti in the temple is done every day at 4 AM in the morning while the daily worship or the Nitya Puja is done between 5.30 to 7:00 AM as per the norms of the temple. Subsequently, the Sandhya Arti starts from 6.30 PM in the evening and ends by 7:00 PM at the most.
However, you must remember that the darshan timing of the Kali temple may vary a bit during the time of special occasions and festivals. Particularly, auspicious days like Astamis are considered events of great importance here while on Tuesdays and Saturdays an exclusive Puja is performed for Goddess Kali.
Note, the Kalighat temple closes everyday at 11.30 PM in the night, no matter if it’s weekdays or holidays. So, make sure you visit this amazing historical shrine by strictly adhering to its timings, or else you may not get the opportunity to view Goddess Kali and accomplish all the other rituals pertaining to that.
Where to buy Puja items near the Kalighat temple?
There are quite a few local shops near the Kalighat temple, where you can shop for premium Puja items as you offer them to Goddess Kali to seek her choicest blessings instead. The below checklist comprises the names of a few of these renowned stores.
- Karuna Dashakarma Bhandar
- Saradamayee Dashakarma Bhandar
- Ganguly Stores
- Ganesh Bhandar
- Prosad Puja Shop
- Siddheshwari Dashakarma Bhandar
- Bhattacharya Dashakarma Bhandar
- Ram Thakur Bhandar
- Shree Durga Basanalaya
- Radhagobindo Basanalaya Dashakarma and other nearby pooja stores.
Before you start your prayer session, make sure that you turn up in any of these shops and purchase the essentials that you want to offer the Goddess. Most of these local stores sell good-quality Puja-related stuff like flowers, sweets etc for affordable price options.
To the best of suggestions, you can ask the ingenious residents out here and they will recommend you the finest outlet where you can buy the much-needed holy ingredients up to your satisfaction.
Notable tourist attractions near the Kalighat temple complex
While paying a visit to the Kalighat Temple, we solely consider the main temple area of tantamount importance. However, there are many other enticing spots that surround the actual temple complex and you can come to any of these locations and traverse across whenever you feel like it. Mentioned below are a few of such places.
This is where the sacrificial altar is situated, meant primarily for the purpose of animal sacrifice. Once you turn up here, you will see that there are two Hari Kath back to back.
The smaller one is for the sheep and goats whereas the bigger altar is for the sacrifice of buffalos. To one’s utter amazement, this temple still sacrifices animals on a regular basis.
A massive hall right next to the main temple, the Natmondir is regarded as an immensely prominent spot since the image of Goddess Kali can be seen clearly from there.
Predominantly built by Kasinath Roy in 1835, the shrine has since then been revamped quite a number of times. As a result, it looks very different now from the time it first came into being.
The Radha-Krishna temple is located inside the actual temple complex, particularly to the western side of it, close to the entrance area. Originally, it was built in 1723 by a settlement officer of the Murshidabad district and later revamped in 1843 by a well-known landlord named Uday Narayan Mondal.
Subsequently, the Dolmancho was constructed in 1858 by Madan Koley who would reside in Saha Nagar. Apart from the grandiose Radha-Krishna idols, there are also four other holy shrines of Lord Shiva dispersed in various parts within the main temple area.
Come to see this amazing triangular altar since it is as long as three feet. Alongside, you will see a tiny cactus plant nestling on the north of the chief temple complex. Inside this plant, there are three individual stones that are placed next to each other.
If considered from left to right, each of these stones represents Goddess Shashti, Shitala and Mangal Chandi respectively. In 1880, Gobindo Das Mondal built this altar and it is also regarded as the Samadhi of Brahmananda Giri. Surprisingly, the salient acts of worship and all the imperative rituals out here are mainly done by female priests.
Other attractions worth checking
Kalighat Kali Temple, Dakshineswari Kali and Birla Mandir are two other temples that must be in your visit list during the Kolkata tour. Although Birla Mandir is not far away, Dakshineswar and Belur Math are on the northern side. But, you can take a metro ride from Kalighat Metro station and reach Dakshineswar quite comfortably in under 45 minutes.
And while you are here, you may also like to take a short trip to the Alipore Zoo Kolkata as it promises to offer a lot of fun and exciting experiences, especially for kids.
Traverse Kalighat as you please!
Visiting the Kalighat Kali Temple means coming across the most compelling tourist spot in Kolkata. Whether it’s the hospitable locals all around the temple area or the protruding tongue that the idol of Goddess Kali has, you will fall for each of the wonders and amazements that this spectacular shrine has to offer you.
So, hurry! This 2022 explore the revered Kalighat Kali Temple to the full and make your Kolkata trip worth the wait and investment.
Also, when visiting Kalighat Kali temple, you cannot use any camera or mobile phone inside the Kalighat temple premises. So plan accordingly.
Planning to visit Kalighat Kali Temple, Kolkata and have any other questions? Feel free to ask by commenting below. And if you have visited Kalighat temple recently, and feel like sharing your experience then you can do so by commenting below.