West Bengal is a state located in the eastern region of India. It is known for its rich cultural heritage, delicious cuisine, and stunning landscapes. From bustling cities to serene hill stations, there are numerous places to visit in West Bengal that will leave you spellbound. In this article, we have highlighted the top 10 tourist places in West Bengal, each with its unique charm and appeal.
Top 10 tourist places in West Bengal
Here is the list of the Top 10 Tourist Places in West Bengal
|Kolkata||The capital city of West Bengal is known for its history, architecture, cultural activities, and street food|
|Darjeeling||A popular hill station in the Himalayas, known for tea gardens, toy trains, and scenic beauty|
|Sundarbans||Vast delta and mangrove forest, UNESCO World Heritage Site, the natural habitat of Royal Bengal Tiger|
|Digha||Beach destination on the Bay of Bengal, known for clean beaches and tranquil surroundings|
|Murshidabad||A historic town, once the capital of Bengal during the Mughal era, famous for palaces and tombs|
|Shantiniketan||The small town associated with Rabindranath Tagore, home to Visva-Bharati University and the art & culture hub|
|Bishnupur||A small town is known for its terracotta temples built during the Malla dynasty in the 17th and 18th centuries|
|Kalimpong||A beautiful hill station in the Darjeeling district, known for its views of the Himalayas and orchids|
|Cooch Behar||A historic town in northern West Bengal, famous for palaces, temples, and museums|
|Jaldapara National Park||A wildlife reserve in the Alipurduar district, home to a diverse range of flora and fauna, including the one-horned rhinoceros, elephants, and leopards|
Kolkata, also known as Calcutta, is the capital city of West Bengal and one of the oldest and largest cities in India. It is a vibrant city with a rich cultural heritage, a blend of colonial-era architecture, modern buildings, and traditional cultural practices. Kolkata is known for its delicious street food, cultural festivals, and literary and artistic pursuits.
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There are several places to visit in Kolkata that are worth exploring. The Victoria Memorial is a magnificent monument built in memory of Queen Victoria that houses a museum showcasing the city’s history. The Howrah Bridge, a cantilever bridge spanning the Hooghly River, is an iconic landmark and a major transportation hub in the city. St. Paul’s Cathedral is a beautiful church that is an example of Gothic architecture. The Indian Museum, established in 1814, is the oldest museum in India and has a vast collection of art and artifacts.
Apart from these historical and cultural landmarks, Kolkata is also known for its vibrant street food scene. From delicious sweets like rosogolla, Sandesh, and mishti doi to savory dishes like phuchka, Kathi rolls, and biryani, Kolkata’s food scene is a must-try for any foodie.
Overall, Kolkata is a city that offers a unique blend of history, culture, and food that is sure to leave any visitor captivated.
Darjeeling is a picturesque hill station situated in the northern part of West Bengal, India. It is located at an altitude of 6,710 feet above sea level and is known for its stunning panoramic views of the Himalayas, lush green tea gardens, and pleasant climate. The town is surrounded by snow-capped peaks and is often referred to as the “Queen of the Hills.”
One of the main attractions in Darjeeling is the Darjeeling Himalayan Railway, also known as the “Toy Train.” It is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the few remaining narrow-gauge railways in the world. The train journey takes you through the breathtaking mountain scenery and passes through several tunnels, bridges, and loops.
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Another popular attraction in Darjeeling is the tea gardens. Darjeeling tea is world-renowned for its distinct aroma and flavor, and the tea gardens offer a glimpse into the tea-making process. Visitors can take a tour of the tea gardens, learn about tea processing, and even participate in tea-tasting sessions.
For adventure enthusiasts, there are several trekking routes in and around Darjeeling that offer stunning views of the mountains and valleys. The Singalila National Park, located in the Darjeeling district, is home to several endangered species like the red panda, snow leopard, and Himalayan black bear.
Overall, Darjeeling is a perfect destination for those seeking a peaceful retreat amidst nature. The stunning landscape, colonial architecture, and tea gardens make it a unique and charming place to visit in West Bengal.
The Sundarbans is a vast mangrove forest that covers an area of approximately 10,000 square kilometers in the delta of the Ganges, Brahmaputra, and Meghna rivers. It is located in the southern part of West Bengal and extends into neighboring Bangladesh. The Sundarbans is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and is also a Biosphere Reserve.
The Sundarbans are known for their unique ecosystem that supports a diverse range of flora and fauna. It is home to the Royal Bengal Tiger, one of the most endangered species in the world. The Sundarbans are the largest remaining habitat of the Bengal Tiger, with an estimated population of around 200 tigers.
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Apart from the Royal Bengal Tiger, the Sundarbans are also home to several other endangered species like the estuarine crocodile, Gangetic dolphin, and Olive Ridley sea turtle. The forest also has a vast collection of mangrove trees, which are adapted to grow in saline water.
Visitors can explore the Sundarbans through guided tours, which include boat rides through the mangrove forest, visits to local villages, and wildlife spotting. It is a unique and thrilling experience to witness the Royal Bengal Tiger in its natural habitat, and the Sundarbans are the only place in the world where one can do so.
Digha is a beautiful coastal town located in the Purba Medinipur district of West Bengal, India. It is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the state and is known for its pristine beaches, scenic beauty, and peaceful ambiance. Digha is often referred to as the “Brighton of the East” due to its similarity to the seaside resort town in the UK.
Digha is situated at the northern end of the Bay of Bengal and is surrounded by the lush green forests of the Sunderbans on one side and the rolling hills of the Eastern Ghats on the other. The town has a rich history that dates back to the British colonial era when it served as a popular beach destination for British officials stationed in Kolkata.
Today, Digha is a thriving tourist hub that attracts thousands of visitors every year. The town boasts of a long and wide beach that stretches for around 7 km and is dotted with numerous restaurants, hotels, and beach shacks. The beach is the main attraction in Digha and offers plenty of opportunities for swimming, sunbathing, and leisurely walks along the shore.
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Apart from the beach, Digha also has several other tourist attractions that are worth exploring. One of the most popular among them is the New Digha Sea Beach, which is situated about 2 km away from the main beach. The New Digha Sea Beach is less crowded than the main beach and offers a more peaceful and serene ambiance.
Another must-visit attraction in Digha is the Marine Aquarium and Research Centre, which is located near the New Digha Sea Beach. The aquarium is home to a diverse collection of marine life, including various species of fish, sea turtles, and other aquatic creatures.
For those interested in exploring the natural beauty of Digha, there are several nearby attractions that are worth visiting. Udaipur Beach, located around 20 km from Digha, is a secluded beach that is perfect for those looking for a peaceful getaway. The Shankarpur Beach, situated around 15 km from Digha, is another beautiful beach that is known for its serene ambiance and stunning views of the sea.
Murshidabad is a district in the Indian state of West Bengal. It was once the capital of the Bengal region during the Mughal Empire and served as an important administrative and commercial center.
The district is located on the banks of the Bhagirathi River and is known for its rich history, culture, and heritage. It is home to several historical sites and monuments, including the Hazarduari Palace, the Nizamat Imambara, the Katra Masjid, the Nasipur Palace, and the Jafarganj Cemetery.
The Hazarduari Palace, also known as the Palace of a Thousand Doors, is one of the most famous landmarks in Murshidabad. It was built in the 19th century by Nawab Nazim Humayun Jah of Bengal, Bihar, and Orissa and is now a museum showcasing the history and culture of the region.
How to reach?
Murshidabad can be reached by various modes of transportation:
- By air: The nearest airport is Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose International Airport in Kolkata, which is about 190 km from Murshidabad. From there, you can hire a taxi or take a bus to Murshidabad.
- By train: Murshidabad has a railway station called Murshidabad Railway Station, which is well-connected to major cities in India. Some of the popular trains that run to Murshidabad are Hazarduari Express, Bhagirathi Express, and Lalgola Passenger.
- By bus: Murshidabad is well-connected by road to major cities in West Bengal and neighboring states. You can take a bus from Kolkata, Malda, Siliguri, or Berhampore to reach Murshidabad.
- By car: You can also hire a car or take a taxi from Kolkata to reach Murshidabad. The journey takes about 5-6 hours, depending on the traffic and the route you take.
Murshidabad is also known for its handloom industry, particularly the production of silk sarees. The district is also famous for its mouth-watering cuisine, which includes dishes like kosha mangsho, chhanar dalna, and mishti doi.
Overall, Murshidabad is a fascinating destination for those interested in history, culture, and cuisine, and is definitely worth a visit.
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Shantiniketan, meaning “abode of peace” is a small town located in the Birbhum district of West Bengal, India. It is a world-famous destination for its rich cultural heritage and natural beauty, and the university was founded by Nobel Laureate Rabindranath Tagore.
The town of Shantiniketan was established by Tagore’s father, Debendranath Tagore, as a retreat for the Tagore family in the late 1800s. Later, Rabindranath Tagore transformed it into a university town, now known as Visva Bharati University, which attracts students from all over India and abroad. The university is renowned for its emphasis on art, music, and literature, and has produced some of India’s most celebrated artists and scholars.
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Apart from the university, Shantiniketan is known for its tranquil and serene atmosphere. The town is surrounded by lush greenery, with several parks, gardens, and orchards scattered throughout. The most popular of these is Amar Kutir, which is an arts and crafts village that showcases the traditional handicrafts of the region.
One of the most famous festivals celebrated in Shantiniketan is the Poush Mela, which takes place in December every year. The festival is a celebration of the harvest season and is characterized by music, dance, and art performances, along with traditional food and handicraft stalls.
Another major attraction in Shantiniketan is the Tagore Museum, which is dedicated to the life and works of Rabindranath Tagore. The museum houses a vast collection of manuscripts, paintings, photographs, and personal belongings of Tagore and his family.
How to reach?
To reach Shantiniketan, you can take a train from Kolkata to Bolpur, which is the nearest railway station to the town. Alternatively, you can take a bus or hire a car from Kolkata, which is about 160 km away. The journey takes about 3-4 hours, depending on the mode of transportation and the traffic.
Shantiniketan is a beautiful and peaceful town that offers a unique blend of art, culture, and nature. Its serene surroundings, rich cultural heritage, and famous university make it a must-visit destination in West Bengal.
Bishnupur is a small town located in the Bankura district of the Indian state of West Bengal. The town is known for its rich history, cultural heritage, and the famous terracotta temples that were built during the 17th and 18th centuries.
The town of Bishnupur was the capital of the Malla dynasty, which ruled over the region from the 7th to the 18th century. During their reign, the Malla kings built several temples, palaces, and other architectural marvels, many of which still stand today.
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The most famous attraction in Bishnupur is the group of terracotta temples, which are spread across the town. These temples are made of terracotta tiles and depict scenes from Hindu mythology, as well as scenes from everyday life. The most famous of these temples are the Jor Bangla temple, the Rasmancha temple, and the Madanmohan temple.
Apart from the temples, Bishnupur is also famous for its Baluchari sarees, which are handwoven silk sarees that feature intricate designs and patterns. The town is home to several traditional weaving centers, where you can see the artisans at work and even purchase a saree for yourself.
Another major attraction in Bishnupur is the Bishnupur Museum, which houses a vast collection of artifacts and relics from the Malla dynasty. The museum also has a collection of terracotta artifacts, including pottery, statues, and figurines.
How to Reach?
To reach Bishnupur, you can take a train from Kolkata to Bankura, which is the nearest railway station to the town. Alternatively, you can take a bus or hire a car from Kolkata, which is about 150 km away. The journey takes about 3-4 hours, depending on the mode of transportation and the traffic.
Bishnupur is a fascinating destination that offers a glimpse into the rich history and cultural heritage of West Bengal. Its terracotta temples, Baluchari sarees, and the Bishnupur Museum are some of the major attractions that draw visitors from all over the world.
Kalimpong is a charming hill town located in the Darjeeling district of the Indian state of West Bengal. The town is known for its scenic beauty, serene atmosphere, and rich cultural heritage of the local communities.
Kalimpong is situated at an altitude of 1,247 meters above sea level and is surrounded by lush greenery, with stunning views of the Himalayan range in the distance. The town is famous for its orchids, nurseries, and flower markets, which are major attractions for visitors.
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One of the main attractions in Kalimpong is the Zang Dhok Palri Phodang monastery, which is a Buddhist monastery that is home to several rare Tibetan manuscripts, scrolls, and artifacts. The monastery is surrounded by beautiful gardens and offers stunning views of the surrounding hills.
Another popular attraction in Kalimpong is Deolo Hill, which is the highest point in the town and offers panoramic views of the Himalayan range. The hill is also home to a park and a temple, making it a popular spot for picnics and leisurely walks.
Kalimpong is also known for its vibrant local markets, where you can buy traditional handicrafts, local produce, and souvenirs. The Haat Bazaar, which is held every Wednesday, is a major attraction, with vendors from the surrounding villages selling a variety of goods.
How to reach?
To reach Kalimpong, you can take a flight to Bagdogra Airport, which is the nearest airport to the town. From there, you can take a taxi or a bus to Kalimpong, which is about 80 km away. Alternatively, you can take a train to New Jalpaiguri, which is the nearest railway station, and then take a taxi or a bus to Kalimpong.
Kalimpong, top 10 tourist places in West Bengal is a picturesque town that offers a perfect getaway from the hustle and bustle of city life. Its stunning natural beauty, rich cultural heritage, and vibrant local markets make it a must-visit destination for travelers to West Bengal.
9) Cooch Behar
Cooch Behar is a historic city located in the northern part of West Bengal, India. The city is known for its rich history, cultural heritage, and royal past. It was once the capital of the Koch dynasty, which ruled over the region from the 16th to the 18th century.
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One of the main attractions in Cooch Behar is the Cooch Behar Palace, which was built in the 19th century by the Koch dynasty. The palace is a perfect example of the classical European style of architecture and is surrounded by well-manicured gardens. The palace is now a museum and houses a collection of artifacts, including royal furniture, paintings, and weapons.
Another popular attraction in Cooch Behar is the Madan Mohan Bari Temple, which is dedicated to Lord Krishna. The temple is located in the heart of the city and is one of the oldest temples in the region. The temple is known for its intricate terracotta works, which depict scenes from Hindu mythology.
Cooch Behar is also famous for its natural beauty, with several parks and gardens that offer a peaceful escape from the hustle and bustle of the city. The Baneshwar Siva Temple, located on the banks of the Baneshwar River, is a popular spot for picnics and leisurely walks. The Sagar Dighi, a large pond located in the heart of the city, is another popular spot for relaxation.
How to Reach?
To reach Cooch Behar, you can take a train to Cooch Behar Railway Station, which is well-connected to several major cities in the region. Alternatively, you can take a bus or hire a car from Siliguri, which is about 160 km away. The journey takes about 4-5 hours, depending on the mode of transportation and the traffic.
Cooch Behar, top 10 tourist places in West Bengal is a charming city that offers a glimpse into the rich history and cultural heritage of West Bengal. Its palaces, temples, and natural beauty make it a must-visit destination for travelers to the region.
10) Jaldapara National Park
Jaldapara National Park is a famous wildlife sanctuary located in the Alipurduar district of West Bengal, India. The park is known for its diverse wildlife and is home to several rare and endangered species of animals and birds. It is spread over an area of about 216.51 sq. km and is situated at an altitude of 61 m above sea level.
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One of the main attractions of Jaldapara National Park is the Indian one-horned rhinoceros. The park is home to the largest population of rhinos in West Bengal, with about 200 individuals. Apart from rhinos, the park is also home to elephants, tigers, leopards, wild boars, bison, and several species of deer.
Jaldapara National Park is also known for its birdlife, with over 240 species of birds found here. Some of the commonly spotted birds in the park include the Bengal florican, crested eagle, Pallas’s fish eagle, Finn’s weaver, and the great hornbill.
Apart from wildlife, Jaldapara National Park is one of the top 10 tourist places in West Bengal and also offers several opportunities for adventure and nature lovers. The park is surrounded by dense forests and rolling hills, making it an ideal destination for trekking and camping. The rivers flowing through the park also offer opportunities for fishing and rafting.
How to reach?
To reach Jaldapara National Park, you can take a train to New Jalpaiguri, which is the nearest railway station, and then take a taxi or a bus to the park. Alternatively, you can take a flight to Bagdogra Airport, which is about 145 km away from the park, and then hire a taxi or take a bus to Jaldapara National Park.
Jaldapara National Park is a must-visit destination for wildlife and nature lovers. Its diverse wildlife, beautiful landscapes, and serene atmosphere make it an ideal destination for a peaceful and adventurous vacation.
With its diverse range of attractions, West Bengal offers something for everyone. The state is also well-connected by road, rail, and air, making it easily accessible for travelers. The people of West Bengal are warm and welcoming, and the state’s rich cuisine and cultural heritage add to the experience of visiting the state.
In conclusion, the top 10 tourist places in West Bengal are a true reflection of the state’s rich history, culture, and natural beauty. Each destination has its own unique charm and offers a different experience for travelers. Whether you are looking for adventure, relaxation, or cultural immersion, West Bengal has something to offer everyone