The Victoria Memorial is situated in Kolkata, West Bengal, India, which was built between 1906 and 1921. It is dedicated to the memory of Queen Victoria, then Empress of India, and is now a museum and tourist destination under the auspices of the Ministry of Culture. The memorial lies on the Maidan (grounds) by the bank of the Hooghly River, near Jawaharlal Nehru Road (better known as Chowringhee Road).
Victoria Memorial History
In January 1901, on the death of Queen Victoria, the 1st Baron Curzon of Kedleston, the then Viceroy of India, suggested the creation of a fitting memorial. Lord Curzon proposed the construction of a grand building with a museum and gardens.
The Prince of Wales, later King George V, laid the foundation stone on 4 January 1906, and it was formally opened to the public in 1921. In 1912, before the construction of the Victoria Memorial was finished, King George V announced the transfer of the capital of India from Calcutta to New Delhi. Thus, the Victoria Memorial was built in what would be a provincial city rather than a capital.
The Victoria Memorial was funded by Indian states, individuals of the British Raj, and the British government in London. The princes and people of India responded generously to Lord Curzon's appeal for funds, and the total cost of construction of the monument, amounting to one crore, five lakhs of rupees, was entirely derived from their voluntary subscriptions.
Places To Visit In and Around Victoria Memorial
Victoria Memorial is one of the most popular places to visit in Kolkata. Here's the list of the best tourist places near Victoria Memorial.
1. Angel of Victory
The figure of Angel of Victory is situated on the center dome of Victoria Memorial in West Bengal. It is mounted on a large ball bearing. The best thing about the figure is that it rotates with the wind.
2. Dome Bordered with Sculptures
Another attraction that strikes the most is the fine allegorical sculptures that consist of art, architecture, charity, justice, motherhood, learning, and prudence.
3. Galleries at Victoria Memorial
The Victoria Memorial consists of 25 galleries that include the sculpture gallery, the royal gallery, the central hall, the portrait gallery, and more. Also, the other exhibits of the museum involve coins, stamps, and maps. The cost of visiting the museum is INR 20 for Indians and INR 200 for foreigners.
Things to Do in Victoria Memorial
1. Garden of Victoria Memorial
You can also have a walk around the Garden of Victoria Memorial and sense a glimpse of royalty.
Shopaholics can have a great experience of shopping nearby Victoria Memorial. Some of the nearby shopping spots are Swar Sangam, AC market, Metro Plaza, etc.
Best Time to Visit Victoria Memorial
It is opened from 5:30 AM-6:15 PM.
The entry ticket to the light and sound show is INR 10 for children and INR 20 for Adults.
How to Reach Victoria Memorial?
It will take around 30 minutes to reach Victoria Memorial from Howrah Junction. Also, there are buses and taxis that can easily drive you towards your destination.