Victoria Memorial, the beautifully crafted white embodiment build in the memory of Queen Victoria, stands tall amidst the lush green surroundings. Built in January 1901, on the death of Queen Victoria, this monument stands tall battling time and change.
“Let us, therefore, have a building, stately, spacious, monumental and grand, to which every newcomer in Calcutta will turn, to which all the resident population, European and Native, will flock, where all classes will learn the lessons of history, and see revived before their eyes the marvels of the past.”
Such is the beauty of this masterpiece that even today it leaves every visitor in awe.
The splendid collection of artifact inside enlightens with loaded information about Kolkata and its history depicting the erstwhile British era and the rise and fall of Kolkata, the first capital of colonial Kolkata.
The museum boasts of collections dating back to the era of Moghuls, Sultans and Nawabs , the sword , the dagger, the shields, crockery, clothing , paintings, they all speak about Kolkata our very own “City of Joy”.
As a child I remember visiting the Victoria Memorial holding hands of my parents and rejoicing the rich history of Kolkata along with the refreshing blossoms in the garden.
The gardens cover an area of 64 acres designed by Redesdale and David Prain. There is a bronze statue of the Queen Victoria seated on her throne. In the paved quadrangles and elsewhere around the building, you can find statues of past Viceroys Hastings, Cornwallis, Clive, Wellesley, and Dalhousie.
This journey transports us into a different world all together. As you ascend the steps and approach towards the garden area, the statues of former Generals and Viceroys beckon you to gaze and rejoice the glorious history of Kolkata.
A walk down memory lane, the nostalgia of childhood visits to this place leaves me emotional every time I step into Victoria Memorial. There is an inherent mystery surrounding this place that transports the mind into an unknown zone raising the curiosity of every soul to relive the era.
Situated opposite to the bustling Maidan where noises of kids playing football, lovers enjoying their moment of closeness and vendors busy earning their livelihood by selling team and eateries, Victoria Memorial is a contrasting site that gives mental peace and enlightenment.
A lot has been written about the beauty of the Taj Mahal, the monument of love but for Kolkata, Victoria Memorial will always be our monument of love, love for the rich heritage, love for the beauty, and love for our city Kolkata.
Walking through the pebbles, breathing the fresh air of tranquility, I leave the historic era behind and step aside to a new world where people are so engrossed in their lives that they rarely find time to enjoy life. Bidding adieu Victoria Memorial, with a smile on my face and contentment, I am ready to face the atrocities of the Modern world, leaving behind the glorious past to thrive and breathe amidst the grandeur inside the Victoria Memorial.