Siliguri is a quaint little town near West Bengal. If you’re looking for some laidback time around tea plantations, greenery and mist this is your pick for a simple getaway. Here are some places that you can visit nearby:
The famous hill station from everyone’s childhood tales, and where “Kasto Mazza” from Parineeta was shot among a number of many movies, is the pretty hill station of Darjeeling. It’s just a 2 hours long drive from Siliguri making this an ideal location for you to cover along with it. Drive around to just gaze into the mountain side and the mountain life.
Now that we have already mentioned “Kasto Mazza” wouldn’t the list be incomplete without this? How can you not take the toy train when you’re somewhere where it still runs! You could take the train from Siliguri to Darjeeling to experience the British style vintage railways. More importantly to gaze into the green valleys enveloping you as it moves in its zig zag manner. The train has been running for over 140 years which accredited it with a UNESCO heritage status too.
If you are in the mood for a lesser known place, then drive off to Kurseong. It takes only an hour from Siliguri and doesn’t see as many throngs of crowds. Carry your book, sit at a pretty spot, get lost in the words and in the view. Give yourself the quiet time that a break from the city life deserves. The name Kurseong in itself means “Land of White Orchids” and in the right season you can spot a number of these. The destination also makes for a good visit if you are interested in taking some small treks or hikes as a couple of these start from here. River rafting is also an option, though occasionally available.
The monastery is home to The Great International Tashi Gomang Stupa. It is believed to have been built by the revered and highly respected Buddhist lama, Rinpoche. You could visit the monastery to experience the tranquillity and peace that it offers. Maybe you could interact with a monk or two and even ask them about their way of life. The stupa is no ordinary stupa, it is in fact 100ft tall!
This is for the wildlife lovers to take a safari ride and explore the flora and fauna of the area. You can also spot elephants, rhinoceros, peacocks, etc. The forest Is also home to Nalraja Garh, a fort which has been standing there, albeit in ruins, but since the 5th century, the time of the Gupta empire. The fort has ramguna trees in its proximity which are also called blleding trees because oddly when they are cut, they secrete red coloured juice like liquid. You could make this one hour’s visit from Siliguri to explore a dense forest and its mysteries.
There you have it, your simple visit to Siliguri and its nearby areas to visit the hill stations at a peaceful pace wherein you enjoy the pleasant atmosphere and all there is, without an unnecessary rush.