Bored Of The Gym? Hit Up These Three Rowing Clubs In Kolkata For A Quick & Fun Workout

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Forget those rowing machines in the recesses of gyms. If you are looking for a way to stay fit, try the rowing clubs of Kolkata. Located on the picturesque Dhakuria Lakes, you’ll get some much-needed peace from the city noise along with your workout. The classes start {mostly} about as early as the rooster crows, so as you cut through the waters, you’ll see dawn break over the Lakes.

The Calcutta Rowing Club

This club – dating back to 1858 – is a member of the Amateur Rowing Association of the East, a league which has been part of an annual regatta since the 1930s. Anyone can join, but you have to know how to swim. Do look out for the colourful Dragon Boat Festival held in June when they have races on actual dragon boats brought here all the way from China.

Bengal Rowing Club

You’ll love the fiberglass boats used for their rowing and kayaking sessions. An interesting piece of info – industrialist G.D. Birla had started this club in 1929 as the Marwari Rowing Club. Get in touch with Mr Prafulla Barik, sports coordinator for more information at 8697975629. Their fees are INR 470 for one year, plus INR 150 for rowing material. They take in students only – those in the age group of 11 to 21 years.

The Lake Club

We hear that the Lake Club was started by people who were miffed at not getting membership of the Calcutta Club during the whites-only Brit-era, phase. Now it is a much more egalitarian space. You can join their rowing classes as long as you are between 13 to 40 years, and you know how to swim. And can you believe that the fees are INR 12 per year? You have to meet the captain/coach Somnath Dey early morning around 6am in order to enroll. Call 033-2466 6538 for more info. And look out for their annual All India Invitation Schools’ Regatta.

Pro Tip

You can also get in touch with The Bengal Water Sports Management, a grassroots programme aimed at encouraging rowing among young boys and girls (up to 18).


The LBB crew consists of ladies and gentlemen with an array of interests, who are all committed to finding something unique and exciting about the city they call home.