delete

Kitam Bird Sanctuary – 112 kms from Siliguri...

Located between 1200 feet and 3200 feet above sea level and covered within a thick temperate vegetation of shrubland and Sal-chir and pine forests, Kitam is home to more than 200 species of birds and butterflies. The beautiful village of Sumbuk and its gladiolas fields, few age-old temples and the emerald green Rangit River make Kitam one of the most beautiful and untouched wilderness in the lower altitudes of Sikkim. Characterized by warm summers and pleasant winters, Kitam Bird Sanctuary bursts with a healthy population of residents like Rufous-necked Hornbill, Grey-crowned Prinia, Rufous-throated Wren-babbler, Yellow-vented Warbler, Wedge-billed Wren-babbler and many more. Migratory birds start visiting from October every year. Peacocks roaming freely is a common sight here. Located between Namchi and Melli, Kitam is also close to some of the most popular tourist destinations like Samdruptse, Solophok, Ravangla and Tarey Bhir. BOOKING DETAILS OF KITAM Places to see in Kitam: Kitam bird sanctuary is flanked by two villages – Sumbuk and Kitam. Though the major attraction is the Bird Sanctuary, the snaking River Rangit and Manpur River also steals the show. You can take long nature walks along the wide banks of Rangit and rest your tired feet on its cold water. Other attractions include the Alley Khet, which is a meadow with some great views of the hills and rivers, some age-old temples, Peepal trees, dilapidated Stupas and a Monastery. For more photos of Kitam click here Kitam village seems to belong to the Middle-Ages, with 200-year old traditionally built mud and bamboo huts and weekly markets selling local produces and vegetables. One of the highest points of Kitam Bird Sanctuary is the small forested area of Tumbol Schor, which offers great panoramic views of the surrounding mountains. Nearby Sumbuk is also known for its galdioli farms – a visit to these farms blooming with bright red flowers is a treat to the eyes. You would also find a mammoth sized 100-year old litchi tree at Kitam. Nearby attractions of Kitam: Just 12 kms from Namchi, Kitam is close to a whole lot of other touristic destinations of South Sikkim like Kewzing, Ravangla, Temi Tea Garden (Sikkim’s only tea garden), Solophok (famous for being Chardham) and Samdruptse. Spending a couple of days in the wilderness and tranquility of Kitam Bird Sanctuary after completing the  hectic touristic itinerary of Sikkim would be a soothing relief before returning home. Things to do in Kitam: Being the only bird sanctuary in Sikkim, Kitam boasts of some watch towers and view points for bird viewing. However, to view birds you have to walk along the beaten paths of the sanctuary skirting through the mountains and river banks. The guided birdwatching trips begin in the morning at around 5:30 am and it takes around 4 hrs. There are 4 different birdwatching trails around the sanctuary and you can opt any of them depending on your choice. Some of the trails end up on the banks of River Manpur where you can continue you riverside nature walk for a few kms and enjoy butterfly watching. Some of the commonest sightings are of Chestnut-breasted Partridge, White-rumped Vulture, Slender-billed Vulture, Ward’s Trogon, Rufous-necked Hornbill, Slender-billed Babbler, White-naped Yuhina, Black-breasted Parrotbill, Beautiful Nuthatch, Rusty-bellied Shortwing, Grey-crowned Prinia, Yellow-vented Warbler, Rufous-throated Wren-babbler, Wedge-billed Wren-babbler and others. Other than bird watching, you can also indulge in activities like angling and rafting in River Rangit. Local Govt. registered guides are arranged  by the homestays and accommodation to take the guests...
delete

Mankhim, East Sikkim – 126 kms from Siliguri...

Mankhim is the hilltop adjacent to the popular destination of Aritar, in the village of Dalapchand under the Rongli Sub-Division of Eastern Sikkim.  Mankhim offers a panoramic view of Mt. Kanchenjungha and the emerald green “boot-shaped” Lampokhri Lake at the same time – this incredible view is not available from Aritar. In Mankhim, there is a small temple on the hilltop, a few homestays and a monastery, just a walk away. If you want to spend some days in complete isolation from the city’s din with fabulous views of Mt. Kanchanjungha, then Mankhim is a great choice. Bird watching, paddle boating and nature walking are other great activities here. You can tag in Reshikhola, Sillery Gaon, Pedong or Kalimpong with Mankhim. You can also take a day-trip to Kupup lake, Zuluk and the world’s highest golf course from Mangkhim. BOOKING DETAILS OF MANKHIM Places to see in Mankhim: Mankhim is a hilltop near the popular destination of Aritar, which is famous for its Lampokhari Lake. This vast human foot shaped lake is flanked by emerald green forest of Pine and Fir. The lake is ideal to enjoy paddle boating. There is also a Lodge and cafeteria beside the lake. The Changey waterfall boasting a height of 50 meters is located near Mankhim. For more images of Mankhim click here You can also visit the nearby Aritar Monastery, which houses some remarkable painted murals, rare manuscripts and Buddhist artifacts. The Dak Bungalow popularly called Ari-Bangla is an age-old British bungalow, built under the supervision of James Claude White in 1895. The little temple of Mankhim, belonging to the Rai cult of Hindu origin at Maity Village overlooks the Lampokhri and the mighty Mt. Kanchenjungha. The viewpoint near the temple offers a panoramic view of the mighty Mt. Kanchenjungha and its allies, Aritar town, rolling hills and the silk route upto Zuluk. You can also visit the Ever Green Nursery and Ram Gauri Sangrhalaya, which is a nursery and museum, displaying some nice collection of drift wood, botanical and some exotic varieties of flowers.   Nearby attractions of Mankhim: You can visit nearby Reshikhola, Sillery Gaon and Pedong in West Bengal from Mankhim. You can also visit the famous Ramitey View point for viewing the 14 turns of River Teesta with Mt. Kanchenjungha in the background. Some other nearby attractions are Kupup Lake (Bitang Cho Lake), world’s highest golf course and Zuluk in East Sikkim. If you are in the mood of little trekking, then try the Mulkarkha Lake trek. Mulkarkha Lake is famous for holding the reflection of Mt. Kanchenjungha on its waters. You can also visit the ruins of historic Damsang Fort and the famous Cross Hill. Things to do in Mankhim: There is a long jungle path acroos the hills covering may view points from Makhim to Lampokhri. You can take a nature walk along this path to Lampokhri Lake from  You can organize picnics at the popular picnic spot called Love Dara, located near Mankhim. The place is also ideal for the avid bird watchers. You can also enjoy boating in the Lampokhari Lake, trekking and rock climbing to nearby hilltops and nature walking.   How to reach Mankhim: You can also hire vehicles from Siliguri and reach Aritar in 5 hours. the route is Teesta Bazar – Kalimpong – Algarah – Pedong – Reshikhola – Rhenock – Aritar – Mankhim. If you are coming from any destination in Sikkim, you have to come via Rangpo –...
delete

Choto Kolagachia, Sunderbans – 82 kms from Kolkata...

This is a small riverside town at the confluence of Chota Kolagachia River and Rampur River on the fringe of Sunderban. A small busy Ferry Ghat ferries passengers and goods to different parts of Sunderban from here. Country boats pass through the river every minute carrying daily supplies of Sundarban and you can spend the whole day sitting in your guesthouse’s balcony watching the tides of the river, the passing boats and the setting sun. You can also take a walk in the nearby villages and witness the daily chores of the villagers, the fishermen bringing their daily catch and the changing landscape. BOOKING DETAILS OF CHOTO KOLAGACHIA Places to see in Choto Kolagachia: This is at the confluence of two rivers – Chota Kolagachia and Rampur, which gives rise to Boro Kolagachia River. The Boro Kolagachia River ultimately meets Raimongal River downstream. [AFG_gallery id=’90’] Distant chimneys of nearby brick kilns on the riverside, villages, Ferry Ghats, few abandoned temples, mosques, fishing lakes (Bheris) and endless network of rivers make Choto Kolagachia a great weekend spot. Bounded by two rivers, this small village on the fringe of Sunderban is a perfect destination for nature lovers. Nearby attractions of Choto Kolagachia: You can hire a boat from the Ferry Ghat and visit few villages in Sundarban across the river. The guesthouse would arrange a local guide to take you to the nearby villages and show you few attractions too. If you have some time, then you can hire a boat and visit various parts of Sunderban like Jhingeykhali Watch Tower and Marichjhapi village within two hours. You can also visit Buridabri or Hemnagar in Sunderbans from here. Things to do in Choto Kolagachia: The rivers are the lifeline here and you can spend the whole day watching the tides and passing boats from the lawn of your guesthouse. You can always hitch a ride from a passing boat on the river for a few hours or take guided village – walks with a local villager. If you inform the guesthouse authorities in advance, they can also arrange local cultural programs like Tusu Dance, Monosha Bhasan and Bonobibi Jatra. Bird watching and wildlife watching are two other activities you can enjoy here. Best time to visit Choto Kolagachia: The dark clouds spread over the horizon and the river during monsoons. In winters, birds chirp all around the villages and the cool river wind soothes the soul during the summer. Choto Kolagachia can be visited anytime of the year. How to reach Choto Kolagachia: If you are going by car, then you have to take Basanti Highway from Science City and reach Malancha. From Malancha, you have to go ahead to Sarberia from where you have to take a left turn towards Dhamakhali. There are also buses from Kolkata connecting Dhamakhali. The guesthouse is just a walk from the Dhamakhali Bus stop. It takes around 2 hours from Science City Crossing on EM Bypass to reach Dhamakhali. Lodging and dining facilities in Choto Kolagachia: There is only one guesthouse with four Double Bed rooms and a dormitory. The rivers flow just beside the guesthouse, which has a lovely lawn, a couple of viewpoints, a children’s park and other facilities like attached Western bathrooms, canteen, car parking and hot water geysers. Every room in the guesthouse has a balcony facing the rivers. The guesthouse is available for day picnic groups as well as for individual guests who want to stay overnight. Food served...
delete

Solophok, South Sikkim – 92 kms from Siliguri...

Solophok – one of the newest destinations of Sikkim offers a magnificent view of Mt. Kanchenjungha, a beautiful temple town of Chardham and the breathtaking experience of Tarey Bhir, which is a 10,000 feet long cliff with a sheer 3500 feet drop into abyss. If you are in Solophok, you can also visit some of the most imposing monasteries like Samdruptse and Ngadak monastery, most beautiful waterfalls like Tirikhola Dancing falls and one of the most bio-diversified regions of Tendong Hills. Located close to Namchi, Solophok is near to all attractions yet far from the crowd. BOOKING DETAILS OF SOLOPHOK Places to see in Solophok: Chardham in Solophok is believed to be one of the most sacred destinations of Sikkim. The 108 feet statue of Lord Shiva in Chardham is encircled by a girdle of twelve Jyotirlingams and a replica of the Chardham, which is Jagannath, Dwarka, Rameshawaram and Badrinath Dham. Solophok Photographs 12► The Ngadak monastery – one of the oldest Buddhist monasteries in Sikkim is also located nearby. Another great attraction is the 135 feet high statue of Guru Padmasambhava in Samdruptse Monastery. The Samdruptse hilltop offers a view of Namchi Town, Darjeeling, Kalimpong, Mt. Kanchenjungha and eastern part of Nepal. Nearby attractions of Solophok: Solophok is very near to one of the Geological wonders of the world – Taray Bhir. It is a 10,000 feet long ridge with a sheer drop of 3,500 feet with a breathtaking View Point at the edge from where one can behold Sikkim’s beautiful river valleys and forests. One can see the panoramic confluence of the Teesta and Rangeet River from here too. There is also a beautiful Rock Garden situated at the base of the Samdruptse Hills with magnificent views of Mt. Kanchenjungha. Temi Tea Garden – the only tea estate in Sikkim is only 21 kms from Solophok.   On the way to Temi Tea Garden you can visit the Tendong Biodiversity Park to have an access to the myriads of medical plants conserved beautifully by the State Forest Department. The cascading waters of Tirikhola Dancing Falls located just 40 minutes from Solophok looks like the hair of a maiden from June to September. You can also visit Assangthang just 9 kms from Solophok to visit the beautiful Shiridi Sai Temple. However, the most exciting thing to do while in Solophok is to walk along the Taray Bhir. Other nearby attractions include Ravangla, Rayong Sunrise View Point, Mainam Hill, Ravikhola Cave, Sharchogbeyphog Cave and Phur Tsa Chu hotsprings. Things to do in Solophok: Trek along the steep footpath with about 300 steps through the hamlet of Kholaghari to a long and dark cave adjacent to an old temple. There is also a tranquil spot just 5 km uphill from Namthang Bazaar (29 kms from Solophok) surrounded by virgin forest and at an altitude of 5800 feet called Nagi. Recently, this has turned out to be a perfect spot for meditation. You can also organise a picnic at Rukumtar located at the base of Tendong Hill where 70 species of birds are found singing in and around. You can also visit Tharpu Painting Village just 4 kms from Solophok. You can visit the village and get the idea of history, culture and traditions of Sikkim through the beautiful paintings and creations of the local artists. How to reach Solofok: Solofok is 92 kms from Siliguri and just 2 kms from Namchi. The Sikkim Nationalized Transport (SNT) plies regular buses from...
delete

Mulkarkha Lake Trek, North Bengal

Mulkarkha Lake is a natural lake tucked in a remote corner of the forests of the Himalayan foothills of Northern Bengal. The most fascinating feature of this lake is the reflection of Mt. Kanchenjungha on its tranquil waters. The trek route to Mulkarkha Lake is one of the most exciting and untouched trails of the Himalayan foothills. You would come across 200 feet waterfalls, dense forests, enchanting views of Mt. Kanchenjungha, ageless Buddhist monasteries, remote villages, hundreds of species of birds, butterflies and flowers.  The Mulkarkha Lake is considered sacred by the locals as Manokamana (Wishing) Lake. The overall difficulty level of this trek is considered “Easy” and there are numerous options for completing this trek. Our Starting Point for the Mulkarkha Lake Trek is the small village of Lingzey in West Bengal.  This little Himalayan village has the second largest temple in Darjeeling district. Throughout the year several Hindu festivals are held in the temple complex. The most important among them are the Sawan Bole Bhum, Shivaratri, Durga Puja, and Bala Chaturdasi. There is also a Sanskrit Vidyalaya  in Lingzey which stocks rare and valuable books of Hinduism.  Other than that, Lingzey also has a Hot Suphur Spring, few traditional Lepcha Houses and the Rang Bang River. BOOKING DETAILS OF MULKARKHA LAKE TREK Photographs of Mulkarkha Lake Trek 12► The three options of the Mulkarkha Trek are: OPTION 1 (5 Nights / 6 Days – Uphill trek and Downhill trek) OPTION 2 (4 Nights / 5 Days – Uphill by car upto Chota Ramitey and Downhill trek) OPTION 3 (3 Nights / 4 Days – Uphill by car upto Chota Ramitey and Downhill by car from Chota Ramitey) Mulkarkha Lake is 2.5 hours trek from Chota Ramitey, which is motorable from Lingzey     ========================================================= OPTION 1 (5 Nights / 6 Days – Uphill trek and Downhill trek) ========================================================= Day 1: Reach Lingzey from NJP /Bagdogra Distance: 104 kms from Siliguri Altitude: 4800 ft. Time taken: 4 hours by car Places of Interest: Hareshwar Shivalaya Mandir & Sanskrit Vidhyalaya, Lepcha Monastery, Traditional Lepcha House, Devi’s Than, Sankhey Dhunga, Dawaipani (Hot water sulphur-rich spring), Rang-Bang River Side Picnic Spot, Sericulture. Where to stay: Homestay facilities Day 2: Trek from Lingzey to Jhusing Distance: 5 kms uphill Altitude: 5400 ft. Time taken: 4 hours Type: Easy Introduction with porters and Guide in the morning. Have breakfast and a Brief of the trek from the guide and start for the trek from 8:00 am. Reach Jhusing at 1:00 pm. Stay in our Homestay facilities and have lunch. Take rest and get a brief of next day’s trek. Places of Interest: Jhusing View Point, Servang Waterfalls, Mini Micro Hydro Project River Recreation. Where to stay: Homestay facilities Day 3: Jhusing to Tagathan Distance: 3 kms uphill Altitude: 5900 ft. Time taken: 4 hours Type: Easy Early morning visit to Jhusing View Point for a mesmerizing sunrise over Himalayan Ranges (including Mt. Kanchandzonga)). Have breakfast at Jhusing and leave for Tagathan (3 kms) at 9:00 am. Reach Tagathan at 1:00 pm. Have lunch and stay overnight at Tagathan Homestay. Places of Interest: Tagathan Falls, Dhoksingh Falls and nice view of Newra valley National Park. Where to stay: Homestay facilities Day 4: Tagathan to Mulkarkha Distance: 3  kms uphill Altitude: 7300 feet Time taken: 3 hours Type: Easy Early morning visit to nearby Tagathan Falls. Return to Tagathan Homestay, have breakfast and then start trek at 8:00 am. Reach Mulkarkha by 12:00 noon. Places...
delete

Sillery Gaon, Pedong – 92 kms from Siliguri...

Sillery Gaon, a pristine Himalayan village nestled at an altitude of 6000 ft. is an ideal romantic escape. With only 25 families residing in this picture-perfect destination, Sillery Gaon offers a spectacular view of Mt. Kanchenjungha touching and its allied peaks. The entire ambiance of the place is shrouded with tranquility, only interrupted by the chirping of birds. The pine trees admiring this serene village is nowadays being lovingly called New Darjeeling nowadays. Sillery Gaon is located 96 km from New Jalpaiguri via Kalimpong. BOOKING DETAILS OF SILLERY GAON Places to see in Sillery Gaon: Tin Chuley is a wonderful hilltop near Sillery Gaon, providing a 360 degree view of the legendary Himalayas, the towns of Sikkim, Jeep La and Nathula. The place is accessible by car or you can also trek to Tin Chuley. Another amazing spot of the location is Ramitey, a celebrated vantage point, which offers an extensive view of River Teesta with around 14 turns along with the majestic Kanchenjunga range. For more photos of Sillery Gaon click here You can also pay a visit to Damsang Fort, located 4 km. away from the Sillery Gaon. This fort locally was constructed in 1690 by the Lepchas. However, it was invaded by the British after the Anglo-Bhutan War of 1864. The remnants of the fort only exist now. You can conclude your day tour by savoring the exquisite beauty of the Silence Valley, a small forest area with grassy land, offering the ultimate serenity. Nearby attractions of Sillery Gaon: Sillery Gaon is surrounded by Pedong, Reshi and Aritar. A major attraction of tourists visiting Sillery Gaon is Sangchen Dorjee Monastery near Pedong. This 300-year-old monastery was built during the reign of Bhutanese in Pedong. The old section of the monastery is admired with some exquisite wall paintings depicting Tantrik Buddhism. The major attraction of the new section is the mummified body of a most revered Bhutanese priest. The annual “Chyam” dance is also held at this place in April-May. You should also visit Cross Hill near Pedong, built by Fr. Augstine Desgodins in 1882. It stands grandly, overlooking Jelep-La and Nathula and is considered as a place of Pilgrimage for the local Christian Community. Another “must visit” location is the Shahid Park located 2 km from Pedong bazaar. A memorial stone has been laid at the park to commemorate the memory of a local young soldier of Indian army, Let Palender Raj who sacrificed his life at Thangdhar J & K sector (Kargil War). The park offers clear view of Sikkim on the opposite side. A visit to the Rikisum, a majestic viewpoint on the way from Algarah to Lava is also rewarding. You would also appreciate the natural splendor of Kashyone village, located 8 km from Pedong bazaar. Savor the majestic view of the union of Rongpo Khola and Tista River, behind this village. The village is dotted with Cinchona plantation. Walk a little ahead to visit Ranibon that has been declared as a preserved forest. You will also find a 300-year old Lepcha house here, which is the sole specimen of the rich Lepcha craft works. Many tourists also make trip to Reshi Bridge and Reshi Khola, located 15 km from Pedong Bazaar. Rishi and Mudum Khola merge to form Rishi Khola just before the bridge. The place nurtures a romantic natural atmosphere. The Aritar Lake or Lampokhri is an amazing eco tourism spot, located 16 km from Rishi Bridge in East Sikkim. The...
delete

Monchasa, Contai – 130 kms from Kolkata...

Whenever we plan for a vacation, most of the time we stay at some plush, contemporarily decorated hotel or resort, which oozes an artificial flavor. But sometimes, our heart yearns for something natural, devoid of any artificiality. So if you seek to savor original village culture and authentic earthen traditions come to Monchasa, brimming with a true sentiment of natural India. It is the first rural based sustainable eco-tourism initiative in India, which is promoted to support a very special social cause. Located on the banks of Bagda River in the remote village of Paushi, in East Midnapur district of West Bengal, it has an interesting story behind its development. BOOKING DETAILS OF MONCHASA There is an orphanage called Antyodoy Anath Ashram in Paushi. The primary aim of this orphanage is to provide food and shelter to the parent-less children or single parent children, abandoned by their family. The orphanage is operated by Sri Balaram Karan, who was an owner of a medicine shop at Kalianagar. To run the orphanage, he sold out most of his assets. After sometime, an ashram was constructed to provide shelter to the destitute children. Now, to support this noble cause, Mon Chasha has been built, which is a sprawling eco-tourism project. For more photos of Monchasa click here Places to see in Monchasa: Explore the location to enjoy some wonderful view. The Shalmoli Bithi, which is the plantation area of the project offers a real visual treat. You will find wide species of fruits, flowers, vegetables and spices. The authority of the project is also taking the effort of tagging the plants with their significances and name in local language along with its scientific name, to enrich the knowledge of the visitors. You will also found many plants having medicinal importance, like Ram Tulsi – Bon Tulshi – Krishna Tulshi (Holy Basil), Aamlaki (Goose Berry), Boyar (Baheda), Hartuki (Haritaki) and Neem trees. Visit Ishani and Naitri, the huge fish tanks (jheel), where large numbers of fish including Rui, Katla, Mrigel, Kalbous, Carp, Telapia, Puti, Mourala are bred completely naturally. For the conservation of traditional cultural heritage, “Sahajiya” has been built, which is a platform for local cultural performances as Chhau, Raibneshe Jatra Pala, Baul Fakir Darbesh and other programs. The other options include slide presentation, film show or story telling. The Sahajiya cultural centre is a straw / hogla thatched circular clay court beautified with green grass. Guests need to sit on the ground over hand crafted Madur. Do not miss Nabya Nakshi, the handicraft centre promoted by this project. There is also a plan for promoting Nakshi Kantha, one of the most treasured handicrafts of Bengal, to support the local self help group. You can also visit Aamar Bangla, where you will find numerous attractions like Dhenki, Kumorer Chaak, Tamt, Langol – Moi, Hand Painted Alpana, Pot Chitra, Typical Styled Tulshi Mancha, Machh Dhorar Jal, Chhip, Gachhe Jholano Hnarite Payra, Mouchak, Borshar Toka, Kendupatar Borshati, Lau Macha etc. Nearby attractions of Monchasa: The temple of Bahiri which dates back to the Middle Ages is just a few kilometers from Mon Chasa. The historically significant town of Tamluk boasting of a thousand year old Devi Barghobhima Temple (one of the popular Shakti peeths), a Rajbari, a museum and Rakhit Bati – the secret centre of freedom fighters is also located nearby. You can also visit Mandarmuni – the popular beach destination within an hours drive. Things to do in Monchasa: You can visit...
delete

Fagu Tea Bungalow, Gorubathan – 75 kms from Siliguri...

A hundred-year old British tea bungalow located on a hilltop surrounded by endless miles of tea gardens with breathtaking views of mountains – that is Fagu. Just 20 kms from Malbazar near the famous Gorumara National Park, Fagu Tea Bungalow is decked with period furniture, British colonial exterior, lush green lawns and verandahs with sloping roofs. It has three large luxury bedrooms, dressing rooms, modern toilets and boasts of fireplaces in every room. If you want to savor the splendor of nature, come to Fagu – the place is unique in itself and offers the ultimate seclusion. There is nothing in Fagu other than your very own heritage tea bungalow, some exotic species of birds, splendid mountain views, orchards and emerald green forests. BOOKING DETAILS OF FAGU TEA BUNGALOW Places to see in Fagu: Besides offering breathtaking views of the mountains, tourists can also explore the forests and various flower orchards around Fagu teasort. The tea gardens are the major attractions here. You can take long nature walks to various viewpoints within the gardens or enjoy a riverside picnic. However, the main attraction of Fagu is your fabulous British tea bungalow with lush lawns surrounding it. For more photos of Fagu click here Nearby attractions of Fagu: One of the major tourist destinations near Fagu is Gorumara National Park. Other nearby tourist destinations includes Lava, Rishyap and Kalimpong. You can visit an ancient monastery, the picture-perfect village of Suntaleykhola and nearby Rock Garden. Just 30 mins down the Fagu bungalow, there is a fabulous scenic spot – Fafar Kheti. A spectacular waterfall, lush jungles, a snaking Chel river, calls of unknown birds and distant villages make Fafar Kheti one of the most beautiful offbeat destinations in this part of the Dooars. The Sevoke Coronation Bridge and River Tista are other nearby attractions you can savour. Things to do in Fagu: With so many activities lined up, you will never experience a single dull moment in Fagu. You can enjoy a riverside picnic if you want to spend some quality time with your family and friends. Bird watching is another popular activity in Fagu. Guided tours are also organized in the tea estate, which also includes a visit to the tea factory at Fagu, where you can watch tea plucking, tea processing and tea tasting. The place is also ideal for enjoying a nature walk or a trek to various nearby forests, waterfalls and mountain villages. At Fagu, you would experience time traveling – you can re-live the days of a British Tea Planter’s life here and enjoy nature every bit. How to reach Fagu: Fagu is located near Gorubathan around 75 km from New Jalpaiguri. The Tea Bungalow is easily accessible by road. You can hire a taxi from Siliguri or New Jalpaiguri and drive over Coronation Bridge to Malbazar or Damdim and finally to Gorubathan. Fagu is very near to Gorubathan. You can also get down at New Mall Junction station and hire a taxi to reach Gorubathan just 20 kms away. Best time to visit Fagu: The Fagu Tea Bungalow welcomes tourist all through the year. The temperature hovers around 25 degree C in the summers and the winters are a bit cooler. Lodging and dining facilities in Fagu: You will truly treasure your stay at the 100-year old British tea bungalow cherishing the days of the Raaj and the lonely adventures of a Tea Planters life. The bungalow featuring a British architecture is admired with well-maintained...
delete

Bunkulung, Mirik – 48 kms from Siliguri...

Nestled in the lap of nature, just 15 kms from Mirik – Bunkulung is a picture-perfect Himalayan village surrounded by hills and rivers. With miles of green millet and paddy fields spread over the slopes of the mountains, scores of ponds and water tanks for trout farming and the Murmah Khola and Balasun River crisscrossing the village, you need nothing more to pacify your tired soul. You can take long walks in the nearby tea gardens, enjoy a dip in the rivers and sit and watch the clouds and sun playing hide and seek over the lush green mountains all around. Bunkulung is one of the best examples of ecotourism in North Bengal. The locally grown produces, includes varieties of fruits and vegetables boasts of high quality. The 19 ponds of sericulture project, maintained by the Government of West Bengal, enhance the beauty of the location. Moreover, use of any chemical fertilizers or toxic materials is restricted in the region. This exotic tribal village of Bunkulung is primarily dominated by the Limbus of the Gorkha community. This beautiful name, Bunkulung is a nice combination of Lepcha and Limbu language. BOOKING DETAILS OF BUNKULUNG Places to see in Bungkulung: Bungkulung is nature lover’s paradise. The whole village is engaged in agriculture – you would find unending miles of paddy and millet fields and 19 big ponds for pisiculture. Bunkulung has been declared as a model village by the DGHC fisheries department in 2001. The pleasant climate, availability of huge tracts of barren land and easy accessibility of water from close by streams and rivers, help in promoting pisiculture in the region. Floriculture is also practiced in Bunkulung and the farmers. You can also visit the nearby Balason River and Murmah River. For more photos of Bunkulung click here Nearby attractions of Bunkulung: You can visit the nearby tea factory and tea gardens in Murmah and Gayabari. You can also visit the town of Mirik just 15 kms away and enjoy a boat ride in the famous Mirik Lake. The Bokar Monastery in Mirik and the orange orchards of Rangbang can all be covered in day trips. Things to do in Bunkulung: You will never have a single dull moment, during your stay at this exquisite location. If you nurture an adventurous bent of mind, enjoy camping and picnics on the banks of River Balasun or take a dip in the chilly waters of this river. You can enjoy angling in the nearby rivers or indulge in horse riding through the paddy fields, mountains and tea gardens. Enjoy a nature walk along the picturesque landscape of Bunkulung. Enthusiast tourists can enquire for the local cultural program, organized in open air with barbeque and campfire. You can also enjoy village treks to various nearby villages around Bungkulung. How to reach Bunkulung: Bunkulung is 48 km from Siliguri, in the Siliguri-Mirik highway. Tourists can hire a vehicle from New Jalpaiguri to reach Bungkulung. It takes around 1.5 hours to reach Bunkulung from Siliguri via Siliguri-Mirik road. You can also hire cars straight to Mirik and then change for a car to Bunkulung. Best time to visit Bunkulung: You can visit Bunkulung any time of the year. In the rainy season, the whole of Bunkulung is shrouded in green and in the winters when the millet and paddy ripe, the endless stretches of golden brown covers the mountain slopes of Bunkulung. Lodging and dining facilities in Bunkulung: Our spacious and clean homestay in Bungkulung...
delete

Rajabhatkhawa, Terai – 15 kms from Alipurduar...

Located just 15 kms from Alipurduar, Rajabhatkhawa is the gateway to the famous Buxa Tiger Reserve. Surrounded by emerald green forest and hills this scenic hamlet is an idyllic spot for experiencing green darkness. Serving as an entry point to nearby forests, this little town is bounded by rivers like Raidak and Jayanti. Numerous nature trails originate from Rajabhatkhawa and pass through dense forested areas in and around Buxa Tiger reserve. Bird watching, jungle safari, trekking and wildlife watching are the main activities here. Rajabhatkhawa and its surrounding areas are also home to various migratory birds. The Nature Interpretation Centre at Rajabhatkhawa with its museum of wildlife related exhibits is very impressive too. BOOKING DETAILS OF RAJABHATKHAWA Places to see in Rajabhatkhawa: Rajabhatkhawa is a great place for enjoying a relaxed vacation. The nearest sightseeing destination is the famous Buxa Tiger Reserve, which is famous for its ruined Fort, wild elephants, leopards, tigers, bisons and a host of wild animals. All required entry permits to this Buxa Tiger Reserve are issued from Rajabhatkhawa Nature Interpretation Centre. There are a number of trekking trails through the Buxa forest, which offer hikers the chance to savor a glimpse of animals in their natural habitat. Spanning an area of 759 sq km, the Buxa Tiger Reserve is admired with hilly landscape crisscrossed by several rivers and their tributaries. The Buxa Fort is located at an altitude of 867 meters on the Sinchula Range in the middle of the reserve forest. Nearby attractions of Rajabhatkhawa: In order to reach Buxa Fort, you have to trek around 5 kms from Santrabari. The Buxa Fort located at an altitude of 2600 ft has a huge historical importance because it as used by the British to confine freedom fighters – even Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose is said to have spent some days here. The sacred temple of Mahakal is also located nearby. The riverbed of Jayanti and the dense forests of Chilapata is also located nearby. The beautiful forested area of Jayanti with the meandering Jayanti River and its endless white pebble laden banks is a grand site. You can also visit the nearby Chilapata Forest or the famous Pokhri, which is visited by thousands of devotees. You can also visit nearby Cooch Behar town for a visit to the Cooch Behar Palace.   Things to do in Rajabhatkhawa: Rahabhatkhawa is enriched with plenty of sight seeing destinations. Surrounded by thick forest, the place is a storehouse of flora and fauna. Wildlife safaris, bird watching and trekking are the prime activities of the tourists visiting the destination. The region is admired with a number of beautiful trekking trails, most of which pass through the Buxa Forest. The most popular trek initiates from Santlabari (914 ft) to Buxadar, which is a 5 km trek through the dense forested area lead to the Buxadar Forest Bungalow. The bungalow provides accommodation facility to the trekkers. If you trek for another 4 km through the forest trail, you will reach the Rover’s Point – famous as a birdwatching destination. Another 12 km trek from this point will take you to the picturesque Rupam Valley in Bhutan. The journey through this trekking trail is quite adventurous and full of excitement. Nearby Jayanti is a beautiful place where tourists can relax and rejuvenate enjoying the cool breeze by the riverside. Buxadar to Jayanti trek is another very popular trekking trail of the region. This 13 km trail passes through the thick forest...
delete

Jayanti, Dooars – 30 kms from Alipurduar...

Imagine staying in a cottage amidst a lush forest overlooking a meandering river and the distant mountains. Jayanti is one of the last destinations in Dooars still untouched by mass tourism. Often termed as the “Queen of Dooars,” this heavily forested area is close to the famous Buxa Tiger Reserve known for its tigers, leopards, elephants, deer, peacocks and the historic Buxa Fort. Although the Jayanti River is mostly dry throughout the year, its shores of white pebbles add to the eternal beauty of the place. With the soothing sound of the Jayanti River blending with the chirping of birds, your weekend trip to Jayanti is sure to rejuvenate your tired soul. The way to Buxa Tiger Reserve offers breathtaking views where herd of elephants or spotted deer or peacocks are a common sight. Jayanti is located in Jalpaiguri district of West Bengal. It is a forest village forming a natural boundary with the Bhutan Hills, some 30 kms from Alipurduar.  BOOKING DETAILS OF JAYANTI Places to see at Jayanti: There are in fact, quite a number of places to see at Jayanti other than the Jayanti River. One such place is the ruins of the historic Buxa Fort which is located on top of the Buxa Hill, at a height of 2600 feet. During the time of British India, this fort used to be a prison for freedom fighters. After that, it became the spot for refugee camps for Bangladeshis and Tibetans. There is also a Pokhri (pond) located on the nearby Pokhri Hill, which is considered holy by the locals. It is some 4 km from Jayanti. This place has great religious importance for the Bhutanese and to reach both Pokhri and Buxa Fort, you need to trek through the forests. For more photos of Jayanti click here Mahakal is another popular sightseeing destination and popular pilgrimage site. It is located very close to the Bhutan border and is a cave devoted to Lord Shiva. The hike through the forest towards the Mahakal cave is famous for bird watching. You can also trek to the nearby Bala Riverbed (another river near Jayanti), which is a great place for bird watching, mainly for peacocks but don’t stay back till late evenings because it is a leopard prone zone. Another great destination for elephant viewing is Bhutia Basti just 1.5 kms from Jayanti. Nearby attractions of Jayanti: You can actually visit a lot of places during your stay in Jayanti and one such place is the Jaldapara Wildlife Sanctuary which is one of the best forests in India to view Rhinoceroses. The sanctuary covers a total area of 216 sq kms and is covered by woods, grasslands, flowing streams, sandy river banks and long lines of trees. It is located in Jalpaiguri district and has the Torsa River flowing through it. Other than rhinos, Jaldapara is also the home of a wide range of birds like paradise flycatcher, Bengal Florican, racket-tailed Drongo and hornbill. Totopara – the village of the Toto tribe is one of the oldest tribes of India who reside in the area. From Jaldapara Wildlife Sanctuary, you can also visit Khairabari Leopard Sanctuary. The Chilapata Wildlife Reserve can be an equally exciting place to visit. One of the main interests of the Chilapata Forest reserve is the “Nalraja Garh” or “Mendabari Fort,” situated very close to the Bania River. The fort is in ruins and it speaks a lot about the Nal kings. You can also...
delete

Chandbali, Bhitarkanika – 45 kms from Bhadrak...

Located in Bhadrak District of Orissa, Chandbali is one of the main gateways to the Bhitarkanika Wildlife Sanctuary. Shrouded in forests, rivers and distant hills, Chandbali is just right antidote for your stress. The picturesque Baitarani River flows beside Chandbali and meets the Brahmani River at a distance. Chandbali used to be a famous port during the medieval times but now it is a popular tourist spot. You can still find some of the remnants of the British period like anchor and cannons out here. From Chandbali, you can visit many nearby places like Dhamra, Aradi and Nalitapatia by boat. Apart from being one of the most popular gateways to the mangroves of Bhitarkanika Wildlife Sanctuary, Chandbali also acts as the hub for visiting remote beaches like Gaharimatha – one of the most popular Olive Ridley Turtle nesting sights. BOOKING DETAILS OF CHANDBALI Places to see in Chandbali: Some 35 km away is located the 650 square km Bhitarkanika National Park which can be reached by ferry service. This is one of the few marine parks of India and was founded with an aim to protect saltwater crocodiles. This is the main reason behind the establishment of a saltwater crocodile breeding center inside the park. Beside, there are various other pieces of attractions including temples and monuments belonging to the period of 9th century. Chandbali also has Sri Aurobindo Dibyadham Ashram, Relics Temple and Integral Education centre. Nearby attractions of Chandbali: One of the main attractions of Chandbali is the Bhitarkanika River that has thick mangrove canopies on either side and gives a spectacular setting for wildlife viewing and majestic sunsets. Take a boat ride from Chandbali and catch the glimpse of the Giant Saltwater Crocodiles. If you are an adventure lover, then take an enjoying long walk through the Bhitarkanika forest that takes you through the remaining of an old village which was once inhabited by mariners. Beside, the beaches of Barunei, Ekakula and Habalikhati are not to be missed out. Bhitarkanika forest is home to a wide range of animals like Rhesus Monkey, King Cobra, Spotted Deer, Pythons, and others. You can see a crocodile-breeding center at Dangmol which houses the rarest White Crocodile “Sankhua.” Other than animal life, a good variety of bird life including migratory birds like Open Billed storks, Kingfishers, Whistling Teals, Sand Pipers, Sea Gulls and others can also be seen. Another very exciting thing to watch out for is the Olive Ridley Sea Turtles at Gahirmatha. Things to do in Chandbali: Take leisurely walks along the banks of Baitarini River, enjoy boat rides over the river along the mangroves, visit local temples and experience village life. You can also enjoy a daytrip to Bhitarkanika Wildlife Sanctuary. How to reach Chandbali: If you are traveling by flight, then the nearest airport is Bhuvaneshwar airport which is located at a distance of 125 km. This airport is well served by most of the major airlines. Chandbali does not have a railway station of its own and is served by the Bhadrak and Cuttack railway stations. Cuttack is located at a distance of 107 km. But if you are traveling by car, then you can surely reach this destination from Bhubaneshwar too just 125 km from Chandbali. Bhadrak is another major Railway station which is very near to Chandbali just 45 kms away. State Highway 5 connects Bhadrak to Chandbali. You would get regular buses and taxis from Bhabrak to Chandbali. Best time to visit...
delete

Padua, Koraput – 130 kms from Vishakapatnam...

A serene lake with an island surrounded by hills wrapped in forests – that’s Padua near Koraput in Orissa. Nature is abundant here with lakes, rivers, hills, forests, valleys and miles and miles of paddy fields. Spanning an area of around 50 sq. km, this charming location is nestled at a height of 3500 feet above sea level. It stands midway between Araku and Koraput and tourists visiting Araku, can easily make a trip to Padua just 30 km away. You can also reach Padua from Koraput, which is just 70 km away. In Padua, you can enjoy boating and angling in the Macchkunda Lake, nature walks and treks on the nearby hills and keep romancing the moonlight amidst the music of wilderness. BOOKING DETAILS OF PADUA Places to see in Padua: Padua is an outstanding destination with an array of impressive attractions. If you have planned for a two-night stay at Padua, then visit the nearby Nageshwari Caves, Duduma Dam, Rani Duduma waterfall and Sili caves. A visit to Deomari, the highest point of Eastern Ghats also offers a memorable experience. The Macchkonda Lake along with Macchkonda powerhouse is also worth visiting. Walk down to the nearby tribal village of Kulabi, inhabited by the local tribal people. Click here for more photos of Padua Nearby attractions of Padua: Padua is 30 kms from Araku valley, 130 kms from Vishakapatnam and 70 kms from Koraput so you can tag Padua into your Vizag – Araku itinerary too. You can enrich your experience of touring Padua, by making an enjoyable trip to the Koraput in Orissa. The picturesque landscape of Koraput admired with verdant hills, meandering streams, lush green valleys, spectacular caves and wonderful waterfall, bring heaven to the earth. The prime attraction of Koraput is “Sabar Shrikhetra,” a modern temple of Lord Jagannath, built on a hilltop. Do not miss the Tribal Museum and Nisanimunda, located a few kilometers away from the temple. From Padua, you can also visit Araku Valley in Andhra Pradesh. Araku lures tourists mainly for viewing its rich landscape, hills and valleys. Travelling to Araku by train from Vishakapatnam truly offers an enduring experience. On its way to Araku, the train needs to cross a total of forty-one tunnels and a number of bridges. The Ananthagiri hills found on the way to Araku Valley is famous for coffee plantations and panoramic views of the entire Araku region. Nestled on the Eastern Ghats of India, Araku valley is mainly the refuge of tribal people. There is also a Tribal Museum in Araku displaying tribal handicrafts and lifestyle. Araku Valley is also a superb base for sightseeing. You can visit Katika waterfalls, Ananthagiri hills, Chaparai River and Padmapuram gardens from Araku. While returning Vishakapatnam you can also pay a visit to the Tyda forest. Another most enchanting attraction is the Borra Caves, located 49 kms from Padua. This enthralling tourist attraction, nestled at an altitude of 705 m is primarily noted for the stalactites and stalagmite formations. The caves are located in the Araku Valley of the Ananthagiri hill range and drained by the Gosthani River. At the entrance point, the cave measures around 100 m horizontally and 75 m vertically. You can also trek 4 kms to reach the nearby Nageswari caves and have a panoramic view of the  Machkunda Valley. Here you can meet the tribal people and even try to discover a part of the Nageswari caves.     Things to do in Padua:...
delete

Paradip – 125 kilometers from Bhuvaneshwar...

Located in the confluence of mighty Mahanadi River and the Bay of Bengal, Paradip or Paradeep is a gem of a place somehow neglected by the tourist rush. At Paradip you can enjoy mesmerizing sunsets and sunrises, pristine beaches, age-old temples, thousands of Olive Ridley turtles, a magnificent lighthouse and one of the largest ports in India. Paradip is located some 125 km towards the east of Bhuvaneshwar and 94 km towards the east of Cuttack. Fishing is a very important activity of the people of Paradip and the best part – it is not crowded. BOOKING DETAILS OF PARADIP Places to see in Paradip: One of the biggest attractions is the confluence of the Mahanadi River and the sea. Beautiful scenes of sunrise and sunset make the spot a really exciting one. There is the Hukitola Building, which showcases the rain harvesting system of the earlier days. Among the ‘must visit’ destinations of Paradip, there is the Tulasi Kshetra, which is very famous for the Baladeva Temple, the Gahirmatha beach, which has now been converted into a breeding center for Oliver Ridley turtles. Also, you must never miss a trip to the Light House, Paradeep Port, Marine Aquarium, Jagganath Temple, Smurti Udyan and Hanuman Temple. [AFG_gallery id=’66’] Nearby attractions of Paradeep: The most popular attraction near Paradeep is the Bhitarkanika Wildlife Sanctuary that is spread over 672 square kilometers and is home to a wide variety of animal life like sea turtles, crocodiles and water monitor lizards apart from the wide variety of birds. The famous Gahirmatha Wildlife Sanctuary located on the fringes of Bhitarkanika Wildlife Sanctuary is also a great place to see the nesting of Olive Ridley Turtles. The caves of Udayagiri and Ratnagiri are also located nearby. Things to do in Paradip: Enjoy long walks along the beach, visit temples, take camel rides on the beach and watch the mesmerizing sunsets. You can visit the local temples or go for a boat safari through the mangrove forests. How to reach Paradeep: Cuttack station is the nearest railhead of Paradip. You have to hire taxis from Cuttack to reach Paradip. You would also get hired cars to Paradip from Bhuvaneshwar. Paradip is only 125 kilometers from Bhuvaneshwar. National Highway 5A passes through Paradeep, connecting the sea side with Lalitgiri, Udayagiri and Ratnagiri. Best time to visit Paradip: The best time to visit Paradip is during the months of November to March. Lodging and dining facilities at Paradip: The Tourism Department accommodation at Paradeep is facilitated with AC Double Bedrooms, Dining Hall, Lawns and all other modern facilities. We arrange Tourism Department bookings for this Tourist Complex at Paradip directly from Kolkata through our affiliated authorised Travel Agent. Paradip is famous for its seafood – lobsters, prawns and crabs form a very common item of the local cuisine. You can also taste a lot of sweet dishes, which are quite popular here like ‘pithas’ or small cakes and Chanapora. Apart from all these, tasting the ‘Mahaprasad’ or the ‘Bhog’ offered to Lord Jagannath is a must try during a visit in Paradip. Photographs by Amit Chandra, Kshitij Kapoor, Sanjeev K, Amar Panigrahi and Aditi Pany. BOOKING DETAILS OF...
delete

Geonkhali, East Medinipur – 130 kms from Kolkata...

If you want to spend an idle weekend on a riverside watching the boats pass before you, people waiting for hours to catch the ferry and mesmerizing sunsets over Rupnarayan then drop at Geonkhali, where time slows down a bit. Located almost 130 km from Kolkata, Geonkhali is nestled at the confluence of River Rupnarayan, River Damodar and River Ganges. At Geonkhali, the rivers become extremely wide and appear like the sea – the view is truly breathtaking. The riverfront is flanked with a green wilderness of babala, sirish, akashmoni and mango trees. You can catch country boats from the ferry ghat and crossover to Gadiara or nearby Nurpur. Geonkhali is located in the Mahisadal Block of East Midnapore district. Geonkhali has developed primarily due to the establishments of water treatment tanks. It supplies fresh water to Haldia, since water over there is saline. BOOKING DETAILS OF GEONKHALI Places to see in Geonkhali: It is a riverside village and the beauty of the sea-like river is Geonkhali’s main attraction. Other than the rivers, you can visit the nearby Mahisadal palace and nearby Kolaghat. The Radha Krishna temple in Mahisadal is another nice place to pay a visit. For more photos of Geonkhali click here Nearby attractions around Geonkhali: You can visit Gadiara, nestled on the other side of the river. Diesel powered boats are available to cross the river in around 15 minutes. From here you can also catch a boat to visit Nurpur. Haldia is also nearby – it takes around an hour from Geonkhali. Things to do in Geonkhali: Geonkhali is simply an amazing place to move around. You can drive down by the road or take a leisurely stroll by the riverside. The confluence of the three mightiest rivers of Bengal gives it the appearance of a sea here. The good thing about this place is that it is still not crowded, which offers an ample scope for savoring the natural beauty of the region in isolation. You can also check out the remnants of launches and steamers by the riverside. There is a ferry ghat from where you can enjoy boat rides to nearby destinations and there is a small park and lake near the water treatment plant where you can enjoy boating too. How to reach Geokhali: You can catch bus from Esplanade to Nurpur, located nearby Geokhali. The distance is about 52 km. Then you need to take a launch from Nurpur to reach the destination. You can also visit Gadiara and catch a ferry to cross over to Geonkhali. The most convenient rail station to Geonkhali is Bagnan from where you can catch Auto Rickshaws to Gadiara. From Gadiara you can catch a ferry to cross the river for Geonkhali. Alternatively, if you want to go by car then reach for Kolaghat and take the NH 41 heading towards Haldia. Soon, you would reach the Nandakumar crossing from where you can take the road towards Mahisadal and then to Geonkhali. Best time to visit Geonkhali: You can visit the place any time of the year. Lodging and dining facilities in Geonkhali: Geonkhali Resort is a nice retreat in this fishing village, offering decent accommodation facilities overlooking the river. The resort has AC deluxe, non AC standard, non AC economic and four bedded rooms. The resort also offers impressive conference facility. It has spacious lawns. The riverside cafeteria is also known for serving delectable cuisines.   Photographs by Amarnath Mahalanobish. BOOKING DETAILS OF...