Calcutta boasts of the oldest Chinatown in the world outside the sphere of Chinese cultural influence in Southeast Asia. The Chinese community from several villages in South China started arriving and settling in Calcutta, a thriving colonial capital, since the late 1770s. Soon they started calling the city home, with only formal ties to their original homeland. The Chinese in Calcutta excelled as artisans and later, as restaurateurs, and built Taoist temples in their settlement in Tiretta Bazar. A thriving Chinatown thus came up in the centre of the city, adding to the ethnic and cultural diversity of Calcutta.

In this walk, we will explore what little remains of this old Chinatown of Kolkata. We will visit several Chinese temples, and learn about the Chinese culture and traditions unique to the Kolkata Cantonese community.

This guided tour is free.

Event Partner

Heritage Walk Calcutta

Walk Leader
Dr Tathagata Neogi and Chelsea McGill
Dr Tathagata Neogi: Dr Tathagata Neogi is the co-founder of Heritage Walk Calcutta. Apart from his professional training in archaeology, he is extremely passionate about Kolkata’s history and rich cultural heritage. After graduating in History from Jadavpur University, Tathagata did an MA in Archaeology from the University of Exeter, UK. He recently completed his PhD in Archaeology from the University of Exeter. Tathagata has also led a heritage documentation project in West Bengal and was a member of the International Council on Monuments and Sites (ICOMOS) from 2012-2016.

Chelsea McGill: Chelsea McGill has an MA from the University of Chicago with specializations in Linguistic Anthropology and South Asian Studies. Her master's thesis dealt with the discourse surrounding tribal groups/adivasis in Bangladesh in the media. She is fluent in Bengali and founded Heritage Walk Calcutta with her husband, Dr Tathagata Neogi.