Beauty of Bengal
The rich culture of the state binds the population together through its unique unity in diversity offering matchless geographical variety to its visitors. Darjeeling, its northern end, is embraced by the arms of the mighty Himalayas. The Dooars in the foothills are rich in forests and wildlife. The unconquerable river Ganga flows across the state’s rich alluvial plains to reach the Bay of Bengal in the south, through the vast swamps of The Sundarbans, home of the majestic Royal Bengal Tiger. The Bay of Bengal itself offers several pristine beaches. In between are various towns and cities, including the capital city of Kolkata, which offer myriad dimensions of religion, culture, heritage, attractions and society at large..
Darjeeling as the QUEEN OF HILL STATIONS. The crest of Kanchenjunga shining in the first dawn light truly supports the title. Darjeeling conjures visions of snow peaks, serenity of vibrant green hills steeped in splendor, a land of breathtaking beauty crowned by the majestic Himalayas. Darjeeling is one of the most magnificent hill resorts in the world. This heavenly retreat is bathed in hues of every shade. Flaming red rhododendrons, sparkling white magnolias, miles of undulating hillsides covered with emerald green tea bushes, the exotic forests of silver fir - all under the blanket of a brilliant azure sky dappled with specks of clouds.
Sandakphu, situated at a height of 3636 m above sea level, but is a true paradise for all adventure lovers. Trek to the highest point on this hill station and you will get the never seen before views of the Himalayan Range. A long stretch of Himalayas starting from Bhutan till Mt. Everest is visible. River Teesta flows through Sandakphu at quite a pace. The thundering River Teesta also offers a great option for adventure sports especially river rafting. Sandakphu is the only place in the world where you will find a Rhododendron and Silver fir forests. To reach Sandakphu, one has to nearly trek for 12 hrs from Maneybhanjan, which is the gateway to Sandakphu.
Kalimpong, located on a ridge overlooking the Teesta River, is a tourist destination owing to its temperate climate and proximity to popular tourist locations in the region. Horticulture is also important to Kalimpong: it has a flower market notable for its wide array of orchids. It is located at an average elevation of 1,250 meters (4,101 ft). The town is the headquarters of the Kalimpong subdivision, a part of the District of Darjeeling. Until the mid-19th century, the area around Kalimpong was ruled in succession by the Sikkimese and Bhutanese kingdoms. In 1706, the king of Bhutan won this territory from the Sikkimese monarch and renamed it Kalimpong.
Lava Lolegaon Neora Valley National Park
Lava is situated at an altitude of 7,016 feet (2,138 m). It is the entry point to the Neora Valley National Park from Kalimpong. The route to Lava is scenic with the change in vegetation from tropical deciduous to the wet alpine trees of fir, pine and birch. The Neora Valley National Park (NVNP), covers a total area of 88 km². NVNP is a compact patch of virgin forest, rich in biodiversity located in the Eastern Himalayas, a global 'biodiversity hotspot'.
The place where nature has kept its doors open the Dooars valley stretching from river Teesta on the west to river Sankosh on the east, to its north stands the east Himalayas as a natural backdrop. A vast texture of dense forests teeming with wildlife, unending tea gardens, bubbling rivers, interspersed with sleepy or busy settlements, is what Dooars is all about.
Jaldapara Wildlife Sanctuary and Gorumara National Park
Jaldapara Wildlife Sanctuary and Gorumara National Park are habitats of the rare one-horned Rhinoceros, the mighty Bison, Leopard, Spotted Deer, Sambar, Hog Deer, reptiles, huge wild Tuskers, Wild Boars and the rarest variety of animals and birds including plenty of Peacocks. Elephant safaris through the Jaldapara forest in search of wild animals, is a memorable experience. Numerous watch towers here allow you to take a real close look at wildlife. Buxa Tiger reserve is rich with bio-diversity and has a great collection of rare orchids and medicinal plants.
Rasikbil Bird Sanctuary
Rasikbil Bird Sanctuary simply belongs to the winged beauties, the birds. The constant activity of these colourful creatures and the signature tunes of them make this waterbody a paradise for bird watchers.
Sundarbans Tiger & Biosphere Reserve
Sundarbans, the world's largest estuarine forest and delta covered by mangrove forests and vast saline mud flats is situated on the lower end of Gangetic West Bengal. A land of 54 tiny islands, crisscrossed by innumerable tributaries of the Ganges. A unique region where there are no borders to divide fresh from saline water, river from sea. Sunderban National Park, forming the core area of Sunderban Tiger Reserve, received recognition as World Heritage Site by UNESCO in 1987. You can explore the wildlife of Sunderban that harbours Jungle Cats, Fishing Cats, Axis Deer, Wild Boar, Rhesus Monkeys, Mongooses and the largest Estuarine Crocodiles in the world. Sunderban is the breeding ground of immense variety of birds like Heron, Egret, Cormorant, Fishing Engle, White Bellied Sea Eagle, Seagul, Tern, Kingfisher as well as migratory birds like Whimprel, Black-tailed Godwit, Little Stint, Eastern Knot, Curlew, Sandpiper, Golden Plover, Pintail, White-eyed Pochard and also Whistling teal. Come and discover wide variety of aquatic and reptile life forms that include Olive Ridley sea turtle, hard shelled Batgur Terrapin, Pythons, King Cobra, Killback, and Monitor Lizards including the Salvator Lizards.
Breathtaking Beaches promise the perfect escape to tranquility. The coastal strip of West Bengal, extending from the Gangetic delta land to the border of Orissa, presents some beautiful options in sea resorts - Digha, Shankarpur, Mandarmoni, Bakkhali, Gangasagar, Tajpur, etc. All of these offer wide, flat, hard beaches, a gently rolling sea, rows of casuarina forests and a pleasant, warm weather round the
The State of West Bengal has a lot to offer to the tourists. Whether they are the chaste ripples in the waves of the Holy Ganga that bring in an effect of serenity or the high-rise monuments that one would see on the Dalhousie Street or the sculpture’s delight – the Victoria Memorial, Hazarduari, Shaheed Minar, or the Terracotta temples, they all speak highly of the rich cultural heritage of the State of West Bengal.
The Hazarduari Palace, or the palace with a thousand doors is the chief tourist attraction of Murshidabad. This three-story palace was built in 1837 by Duncan McLeod for the Nawab Najim Humaun Jah, descendent of Mir Zafar. It has thousand doors (among which only 900 are real) and 114 rooms and 8 galleries, built in European architectural style. Parallel to the north face of the Hazarduari Palace, stands the Nizamat Imambara, built in 1847 AD. by Nawab Nazim Mansoor Ali Khan Feradun Jah, son of Humayun Jah. The Imambara, which is the largest in Bengal. Katra Mosque is about one and a half km from Murshidabad Railway Station on the Berhampore-Lalgola Road. This imposing structure was built by Nawab Murshid Quli Khan in 1723-24 and it remains one of the most important tourist attractions.
Bishnupur was ruled under the Gupta period by local Hindu kings who paid tribute to Samudra Gupta. Apart from the unique architecture of the period, Bishnupur is also famous for its terracotta craft and its own Baluchari sarees made of tussar silk.Royal patronage also gave rise to Bishnupur Gharana (school) of Hindustani classical music in late 18th century and the Bishnupur School of painting. The Rashmancha pavilion used for housing the idols of Lord Krishna from other temples during the Rash festival was built in brick by King Veer Hambir in 1600 A.D. This is the oldest brick temple in Bishnupur and is shaped as an elongated pyramidal tower surrounded by hut-shaped turrets. The outermost gallery is elegantly surrounded by Bengal hut-type roofs.
Jore Bangla temple
The Jore Bangla temple resembles two thatched huts joined together and surmounted by a single tower. This temple in brick was built by the Malla King Raghunath Singh in 1655. The entire outer surface is decorated with terracotta plaques displaying various aspects of human life and culture, gods and goddesses, animals, floral and geometrical designs.
The temple of Madanmohan
The temple of Madanmohan, the most renowned temple in Bishnupur, in the Sankharipara area was built outside the fort compound by King Durjana Singh Dev, in 1694 AD for his family deities of Lord Krishna and Radha. There are impressive scenes from the Ramayana, Mahabharata and the Puranas carved on the temple walls.