the largest hub for flowers in Asia

August 14, 2022, 2:50 p.m.

Last modification: August 14, 2022, 3:38 PM

Kolkata is one of my favorite cities in the world, so much so that I have to make an annual pilgrimage as it is my photography paradise. One of the city’s most eye-catching spots is Mallick Ghat and is widely regarded as Asia’s largest flower mandi (market). It was built by Ram Mohan Mallick in 1855 and celebrates its 164th anniversary this year.

Photos: Mr Aminur Rahman

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Photos: Mr Aminur Rahman

The city itself is over three centuries old and for 125 years, Mallick Ghat, located under the Howrah Bridge on the banks of the Hooghly River, has opened up shop early every morning to showcase all the colors nature can flourish in .

Photos: Mr Aminur Rahman

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Photos: Mr Aminur Rahman

Photos: Mr Aminur Rahman

Garlands of bright orange marigolds strung together forming huge chains, bouquets of lotuses, roses, sunflowers and all manner of flowers and their distinctive scents pervade you as you enter the market. Most vendors live in makeshift shelters inside the market and are usually busy with flower arrangements and bouquets which are in high demand during festival seasons and religious occasions.

Photos: Mr Aminur Rahman

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Photos: Mr Aminur Rahman

Photos: Mr Aminur Rahman

From small quantities to large quantities, you can buy flowers from 4 a.m. to 10 p.m. Peak hours last until 10am and resume after lunchtime. Since the market is also the largest supplier of flowers to its neighboring states, the market is also a hub for packing and transporting large bales of flowers. The picturesque vibrancy, vigor and life of the Kolkata Flower Market experience is worthy of a bucket list.

Photos: Mr Aminur Rahman

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Photos: Mr Aminur Rahman

Photos: Mr Aminur Rahman

Staying up until 5 a.m. on vacation may seem sadistic to others, but I do it to reap the rewards of photographic landscapes of the rising sun over piles of flowers and the florists who tend to them.

Terisa K. Carn