Weekends are a time to relax and let go. Some people like to sit at home with a tub of popcorn and binge something on Netflix. Others like to get away from Kolkata's hustle and bustle, and relax in serene places. If you fall in the second category, we've got you covered.
Unlike Digha, Tajpur does not have the maddening crowd. It is a fairly an unknown beach town. Since it was discovered quite recently, it is still developing to become a tourist hotspot. Visitors can engage themselves in water activities like canoeing and snorkeling here.
It is well connected with Calcutta through roadway and takes just about four and a half hours to reach from Calcutta. October to March is the best time period to visit this place.
Bakkhali is a small beach town located in West Bengal. Henry Island is the most famous attraction here. The white beach is not at all crowded, and that makes it even more fun for the visitors. Its etymology is Bak which is derived from red beaked seagull, as they are found in plenty here.
The best time to visit Bakkhali is from July to March. It is well connected with Calcutta through roadway and railway. Either way, it takes about four hours to cover the distance.
Santiniketan is the adopted home of legendary Nobel laureate - Late Rabindranath Tagore. He founded a school here in 1901, which went on to become the first University in India. It is one of the most popular tourist destinations in the state. Tagore's Ashram and Chhatimtala are the other must-visit places in Santiniketan.
There are regular trains from Calcutta to Santiniketan. By car, it should not take more than four hours. Mid-July to March is a wonderful time to visit Santiniketan.
Sunderbans is one of the oldest and largest National Parks in the country. With nearly 200 Royal Bengal Tigers, it is the home to the most number of tigers in the world. It is also the largest mangrove forest in the world. The endangered Gangetic Dolphins can be found here. It also used to be a home to One-horn Rhinoceroses until the British hunted them to extinction.
To go for a safari, one will have to hire a boat service. The best time to visit Sunderbans is between November and February.
Mandarmani has become the most visited weekend getaway from Calcutta in the last five years. With water activities like Parasailing, Jet Skiing, Banana boating, etc., Mandarmani is hugely popular amongst the youths. It becomes extremely lively on full moon days because of the high tides. There are a bunch of really nice resorts on this beach town.
Mandarmani is well connected with Calcutta though roadway. It takes just about four hours of travel to reach Mandarmani from the state capital. The best time to visit Mandarmani is between mid-July and March.
By Mehul Manot