West Bengal forms a part of the great Gangetic plains, with
the mighty Himalayas crowning it in the north and the vast Bay
of Bengal in the south. West Bengal was the home of the Nobel
laureate Rabindranath Tagoreand his Shantiniketan, which continues
to be a beacon to the present day.
The state also possesses some beautiful beaches such as Digha.
Then there are the Sunderbans or the 'beautiful forests' at
the juncture of the Ganga and the sea. A major attraction here
is the diverse forms of wildlife including deer, wild boars,
monkeys, snakes, crocodiles and, of course, the Royal Bengal
Tiger. The Diamond Harbour, at the point where the Hooghly turns
south and flows into the open sea, is also worth a visit. In
complete contrast to the tranquility of the sea is the hubbub
of Calcutta and the quiet and amazing beauty of the hills in
and around Darjeeling.
Darjeeling's Toy Train
The 80 km ( seven and a half hour) long journey by Darjeeling's
Toy Train on a 2ft wide track up the mountains, offers stunning
and breathtaking views of the Himalayas - of rolling tea plantations
and wild orchids. While the Batasia Loop & the Tiger Hill are
two interesting spots on the way the Observatory Hill offers
a magnificent view of the Kanchenjunga ranges.
New Jalpaiguri, the starting point of the hill train to Darjeeling,
is well connected by rail to Calcutta, Delhi, Guwahati, Mumbai,
Thiruvananthapuram, Kochi and other places.
Area: 87,853 sq. km
Population: 74.5 million
Main Language: Bengali
Best time to visit: October to March
West Bengal Travel Reservation Form