A last minute swap from Lagos in Nigeria to Calcutta in India. Calcutta was a new destination for me and was a much shorter flight than the one over to Lagos, so I was happy to accept the swap. A nice and easy four hours over to Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose International Airport in India landing early morning just before 8am.
Once I checked in, despite it being a short flight we had worked through the night and I didn’t manage a great sleep prior so I decided to sleep for a few hours before meeting the crew later on.
Feeling a bit more refreshed after a few hours nap, I met a couple of the crew upstairs by the pool before we went to dinner. The purser had been here a couple weeks before and went to a restaurant he said was really good and did an amazing biryani. Being such a foodie myself and always wanting to try out new places I tagged along and three of us jumped into a rickshaw to get to the restaurant despite it being a ten minute walk away.
It is actually that chaotic along the road, to even attempt crossing is risky business. I’d never been in a rickshaw in India too so I was happy to immerse myself in the chaos, although these little rickshaws are tiny! At 5”10 (178cm) myself, I practically had to become a contortionist to fit inside along with the two other guys that were joining! Thankfully it was a short journey and wasn’t long before we reached the restaurant (Arsalan) after weaving in and out of cars, people and animals along the dirt road.
We piled around a table and ordered an abundance of dishes. For an absolutely bargain £6 I got a chilli butter paneer masala, garlic naan, chicken tikka kebab, a drink and also included a tip?! How crazy!
Food was really really good, probably the best garlic naan I have ever eaten. Think I’ll be dreaming of this garlic naan until I return to Calcutta.
Feeling insanely full after all the food, we walked back towards the hotel when one of the boys suggested stopping for some chai. I’m ALWAYS up for a cuppa and we set off with that in mind. As we walked along, we walked past a hotel that had an abundance of people outside of it with some kind of celebration.
There was a band playing such loud music and a man was on a horse with everyone photographing him. I thought maybe it was a wedding, but there was no bride to be seen. People were dancing around and in such beautifully coloured outfits. It was really quite the spectacle.
We continued on and found a tea stop and I went for a little clay pot mug of adrak wali chai which was ginger, cardamom, tea leaves, sugar and milk for 35p. I’m obsessed with ginger at the moment so this had my name all over it, and it tasted fantastic! When I put this on my instagram story, my friend Gina replied saying she had a recipe from her travels in India and would send it over to me, so I can’t wait to make some of this back in Dubai.
A very relaxing layover filled with good food, good company and good rest. A short and sweet flight between Dubai with just the one service and a nice layover in India. Happy to have ticked off Calcutta from my list, a very enjoyable last minute swap from Lagos where I was originally meant to be going. Only nine Emirates layover destinations left for me to tick off!
As always, feel free to follow me on Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and YouTube: