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Oct 6, 2012

The unique destinations and its specialties of West Bengal

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By Jyoti Parida

India! It is a small piece of the Earth which is blessed with beautiful gifts of nature. The beauty of nature present here attracts the travelers from across the world to our India. Whether we go to east or west or north or south all the directions are being equally graced with its unique specialties. So no body can give a judgment on any one particular direction. So here are some unique destinations and its specialties of West Bengal.

The capital of West Bengal is Kolkata. There staple food is rice, fish & sweets and listening and learning music is must in every house. The most unique feature of Kolkata is the Howrah Bridge and it is a suspension type balanced cantilever bridge that crosses the Hooghly River in West Bengal. Kalighat Kali Temple is a famous Kali temple of Kolkata which is one of the 51 Shakti Peethas. The name Kolkata is said to have being derived from the word Kalighat. Bengali novels also occupy a major part of Bengali literature. Some great novelists are Bankim Chandra Chattopadhyay, Rabindranath Tagore and many more. The National Library of India at Belvedre, Kolkata is the largest library in India by volume and India’s library of public records. The Victoria memorial is built in the memory of Queen Victoria. The Indian Museum is the largest museum in Asia and the oldest in the Asia-Pacific region. Eden Gardens is one of the two 100,000 seated amphitheatres for the game of cricket. The Metro Railway Kolkata is the first underground Metro railway in India.

Digha is a nearest and most popular sea resorts of West Bengal. It lies in East Midnapore district. It is located 183 km from Kolkata/Howrah via Mecheda. It is almost a 5 hour journey from Kolkata and bus service is always available from across the town.

Kalimpong is in Darjeeling district in the northern part of West Bengal. The interesting places to visit in Kalimpong are Gauripur House it is the home of the great Bengali poet Rabindranath Tagore, Deolo the highest point in Kalimpong and offers an early morning view of the Kanchenjunga massif, Golf Course a very beautiful place to watch, Cactus Nursery where we can see the Tequila plant, Tashi Takgye is a wholesale supplier/importer/exporter for the northern region where we can get a huge collection of items at unbelievable prices and also don’t forget to taste the locally made lollipops.

Maldah is a district of West Bengal. It lies 347 km north of Kolkata. Once it was the capital of Bengal. Jute, Mango and Silk are notable products of this district. A special variety of mango is being produced and exported across the world. Places to visit are Adina Mosque, Gol ghar, 12-gated mosque, temple of Jahura Kali and many more.

Bishnupur also spelt as Vishnupur is a temple town in Rarh. It is famous for its terracotta work and Baluchari sarees which are being traditionally woven with Mahabharata and Ramayan symbols. Here we can see a lots of temples all built of terracotta. The places to visit are Jorbangla Temple, Nandalal Temple, Radhamadhab temple, Shyamrai Temple or Pancha Ratna Temple of Shyam Rai, Rasmancha the oldest brick structure, Dalmadal Caman, Gumgarh the place of no return, Pathar Darja main gateway of Bishnupur and many more to visit.

Kharagpur is an industrial city in India. It is located in the Midnapore West district of West Bengal. It is the fourth largest city of West Bengal in area and fifth largest city in population. Kharagpur is home to one of the prestigious Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs). Kharagpur also has one of the biggest railway workshops in India with the longest railway platform in the world. Kharagpur has the first underground Air force Station in Kalaikunda and it also has one more Air Force Station in Salua. We can also see Hijli Jail where the father of the nation Mahatma Gandhi and also Khudiram Bose a freedom fighter of Bengal served their term in this jail. There are a lot of companies present in Kharagpur like SE Railway Workshop, BSNL telecom factory, Tata Metallic’s and Tata Bearings and many more.

Sagar Island or the Ganga Sagar is in the southeast of West Bengal. Gangasagar pilgrimage and fair is held annually where the holy dip is being taken at the occasion of Makar Sankranti and it is the second largest after the holy Kumbha Mela. Sagar Island is about 80 km south of Kolkata, cut off from the main land of the Muriganga river. At present there is no bridge to connect the island to the main land. The Muriganga river can be crossed by ferry service to reach the Sagar Island. After reaching the Sagar Island one has to take a private taxi or bus to reach the meeting point of Ganga and Sagar(Bay of Bengal).At present there are no hotels only there are Ashrams and Dharamshala type where no food is neither available, nor outside food is brought in. But there is plenty of food to purchase outside.

Krishnanagar is a municipality and administrative headquarters of Nadia district of West Bengal. It is an important centre for culture and literature. In Krishnanagar there is a locality where a colony of artists work with clay called Ghurni. These artists produce images of Hindu gods and goddesses for traditional worship throughout the year and also clay models of human figures and real life objects. There are so many places to visit like Rajbari the royal palace with a beautiful Durga Temple in the courtyard where the famous jhulan mela is celebrated every year in the months of July/ August and Baro Dol in March/ April. We can also see a famous Roman Catholic Church inside it there is 27 oil paintings describing the life of Jesus Christ and also there are wooden sculptures by Italian artists.

Cooch Behar is the district headquarters and the largest city of Cooch Behar district in the state of West Bengal. It is situated in the foothills of the Eastern Himalayas. It is well known for the Cooch Behar Palace Madan Mohan Bari temple and Maharani Gayatri Devi.

Darjeeling is a small city in West Bengal and it the oldest hill station in India. The main attractions of Darjeeling are the beautiful views of Kanchenjunga from Tiger Hill, Darjeeling Tea is famous for its aromatic and delicate taste, trekking, Toy train, Rock Garden, Batashiya Loop, mountain biking and many more. Darjeeling Himalayan Railway nick named the “Toy Train” is a 2 ft narrow gauge railway from New Jalpaiguri to Darjeeling in West Bengal run by the Indian Railways. The “Toy Train” has been listed as World Heritage Site by the United Nations Educational Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO).

Rampurhat is a city and a municipality in Birbhum District of West Bengal/ Jharkhand border. This city is famous for Tarapith temple, which is one of the Shaktipith.

Santiniketan is a small town near Bolpur in the Birbhum district of West Bengal. It is famous because of Rabindranath Tagore who wrote many of his literary classics here and his house is a place of historical importance. Santiniketan is also home to Amartya Sen, the Noble Prize winner in Economics. The places to visit in Santiniketan are The Visva Bharati University, Upasana Griha a prayer hall made of several coloured Belgium glasses with marble steps, Dehali house of Rabindranath Tagore, Black house, Santiniketan Griha, Bichitra, Kala Bhavan and many more.

Bardhaman or Burdwan is a city of West Bengal. It is the headquarters of Bardhaman district. The places to visit here are the famous Shrine of Sarvamangala is said to contain the remnant of Sati’s body, The Curzon Gate is built in honour of the visit of Lord Curzon, The palaces and gardens of the Maharaja Gopalbag, Konkaleshwari Kali Mandir, Nawab Hat where we can see 108 Siva Lingam temples, Planetarium named after India’s eminent scientist Meghnad Saha and many more.

In West Bengal we can also find the Sundarbans National Park which is densely covered with mangrove forests and is one of the largest reserves for the Bengal Tiger. Tropic of Cancer passes through National Highway 34 in Nadia District, West Bengal. In West Bengal we can also see the Santal/ Santhal largest tribal community in India. The Santhals are short in stature and among them the broad flat nose with a sunken nose ridge is fairly common. They frequently have wavy hair; sometimes it is curly, though it is never frizzy.

In other words we can also say India is a recipe and the ingredients are caste, culture, tradition and honesty. The philosophy of India’s spectacular destinations is eternal. Proud to be born and brought up in a diversified country.


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