Bengal – The land of diversities
Happy World Tourism Day to all my readers. Although I am not a travel blogger in true sense of the term, I have occasionally shared my experiences of exploring some places, which have wow-ed me. Travelling always brings with it a welcome relief from the tedious monotony of life. Occasional breaks always energise you with a fresh spirit to take on the world.
Having grown up in north Bengal, my childhood had been one of great joy – with multitudes of places to explore: from the hills to the forests. And with the tourism infrastructure improving by the day in the State, destinations in the bucket list keep increasing forever.
Whenever it comes to travelling, I always choose Bengal over any other place, not for any parochial reasons, but for the simple reason that it is meaningless to explore the world when you have not even discovered the hidden gems of your own motherland. As Rabindranath had so beautifully said it:
দেখা হয় নাই চক্ষু মেলিয়া. ঘর হতে শুধু দুই পা ফেলিয়া. একটি ধানের শিষের উপরে. একটি শিশিরবিন্দু।
(I have not seen yet, just two steps outside my home, a drop of dew on the shaft of paddy)
India, we know, is a land of great diversities, ranging from the Himalayas in the north to the seas to her south. Bengal, too, is guarded by the Himalayas in the north and is bordered by the seas on the south. She is blessed with natural resources – forests, tea gardens, beaches, hillocks, canyons, mangroves, land of red soil, tribal hamlets, heritage sites, places of worship… you name it and you’d find it in Bengal. And with the recent thrust on eco-tourism, and home stay tourism, these destinations have become more tourist-friendly.
For simplicity, Bengal can be divided into 4 zones:
Zone I – North Bengal (Cooch Behar, Jalpaiguri, Alipurduar, Darjeeling, Kalimpong, North & South Dinajpur)
Home to the Himalayas and Dooars forests.
Zone II – Gour Banga (Malda, Murshidabad, Nadia)
The seat of power during medieval period. Home to historical and religious sites.
Zone III – South Bengal (Hooghly, Howrah, Kolkata, North & South 24 Parganas, Purba Medinipur)
The remnants of colonial rule can be best experienced here. Also, home to beaches and mangroves.
Zone IV – Paschimanchal (Bardhaman, Birbhum, Purulia, Bankura, Jhargram, Paschim Medinipur)
The land of red soil, tribal belt of Bengal, folk culture and art.
I initially wanted to make a listicle of places to visit in Bengal, then, changed my mind, as the list would be forever-expanding. Instead, I am sharing pictures of some of my favourite destinations. Hope you like it.
All images are from the official website of West Bengal Tourism Department. You can visit the website for more information, booking and photos.
P.S. I am taking my Alexa rank to the next level with Blogchatter. This is my last post.
On 1st September, my Alexa rank was 6,143,301 (global) and I did not have a country rank. As of today, my global Alexa rank is 1,223,202 and my India rank is 42,525.
DISCLAIMER: All Images Used In This Post Have Their Respective Copyrights