|Tourism in West Bengal
Place of Interest:
Darjeeling: Weary souls looking to rejuvenate the mind and body can plan a short trip of two to three days in Darjeeling, spending time scuttling between tea gardens, enjoying a one hour joy ride in the famed Darjeeling Himalayan Railway and taking those leisurely walks around the Mall. Within three days you can also visit the various places of tourist interest and spend time picking up local artifacts from the numerous curio shops dotting this hill resort.
The Howrah Bridge: The old Howrah Bridge, a floating pontoon Bridge, was opened in October 1874 and made over to Port Commissioners who managed and maintained it. The height of the Bridge at the supporting towers on the both ends is 300’ feet. Each tower has a constant width of 11’ feet and a tapering from 8’-6’’ to 4’-6’’ at the top. The entire structure is laid on main piers of re-enforced concrete monoliths with steel ceiling edges. Each pier is 181’-6’’ long by 81’-6’’ wide and is amongst the largest in the world. The monoliths and grinders on the Calcutta side are 103’ feet deep and on the Howrah side it is 88’ feet deep. These monoliths are the heaviest in the World. One can have a bird’s eye view of Howrah Station and glimpses of the cities of Kolkata and Howrah along the banks of the Hoogly River standing at middle of the bridge.
Belur Math: The math is the headquarters of the Ramkrishna Mission, a society established for the propagation of the orthodox Hindu faith chastened with modern outlook. There is also a large Museum inside the Math on the lives of Sri Ramkrishna and his close disciples. The temple and the Math is visited by countless people, most of whom are religiously inclined, to celebrate the birthday anniversary of Sri Ramkrishna (18th February 1836) in February when a fair is held there. The place also attracts large number of visitors from Kolkata and abroad every day, especially of Sundays and holidays.
Ganga Sagar: Most of the year the place is one serene spots you can think of : windblown, absolutely quite, with sweeping views of the mighty Ganga ending its journey into the sea, and a lovely island they call Sagardwip. But come mid-january( the last day of the month of Pous in the Bengali Calendar), divinitity seems to descend from the blue sky overhead on to the waters and the beach at Sagardwip. Millions of pilgrims and devotees from all over india come to take a dip in the freezing waters here to cleanse all sins away and offer worship at the temple of Kapil Muni. A huge and colourful fair takes place on this occasion- aptly names Sagar Mela – which is held once a year during Makar Sankranti.
Sundarban: The home of Royal Bengal Tigers. A ‘World heritage site’ . The world’s largest estuarine forest – one of the very few in the world still having its flora and fauna intact, a remarkable feature being the bayonet like roots of mangrove forests sticking out above the water levels. Tourist Lodges available at Sajnekhali, Bakkhali, Gangasagar.