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Sightseeing
Jhalong Jhalong
Jhalong is a small town by the Kumai river on the way up to Jaldhaka. There are many trekking routes that go through the spice gardens and fruit plantations here.
Jatileswar Temple Jatileswar Temple
Situated near Mainagiri, it is famous for its idol of Lord Shiva. After offering prayers, find yourself a nice corner and settle down with some books while listening to bird singing
Rachela Pass Rachela Pass
Stunning views of the Kanchenjunga can be seen by going up to Rachela Pass, a popular point for adventure-seeking and adrenaline-charged tourists. A panoramic view of the Chola Range is available from here.
Rishap Rishap
Rishap, another upcoming tourist destination is a short drive away from Lava. A recent addition on the tourism map of West Bengal, this sleepy hamlet is full of coniferous forests.
Gazoldoba Gazoldoba (Teesta Barrage)
Gazoldoba is an hour's drive from Siliguri. It is a large barrage on the river Teesta. It has an excellent winter population of ducks. It is also a good place to see migrating and wintering raptors, and grebes.
Rocky Island Adventure Camp Rocky Island Adventure Camp
The Rocky Island Adventure Camp is another spectacularly located tourist destination where there are thousands of boulders with interesting names that are meant to signify their resemblance to certain mythological characters.
Khairbari Khairbari
It now acts as a permanent shelter for tigers, and the place has been aptly named Bagh Ban, meaning "tiger forest" in Bengali. A maximum of 15 tigers can be accommodated in the forest. A leopard rehabilitation centre is located at Khairbari that offers safaris to visitors.
Murti Murti
A lesser-trodden off-beat wonder of the Dooars region, this stretch of green offers some eco-friendly accommodation where you can spend a peaceful evening by the river, listening to the music of the woods and water as the sun goes down.
Kalijhora Kalijhora
It is a small area of forest on the northern edge of the Mahananda Wildlife Sanctuary at an altitude of 300 m. It is an hour's drive from Bagdogra. A good place to see several lowland forest species, the place is noted for its campgrounds, which provide enough open space to organize activities.
Phuntsholing Phuntsholing
A scenic drive through terraced fields that offer gorgeous vistas with an en-route stop at the hilltop Kharbandi Gompa, a monastery built by Bhutan's Queen Mother. Phuntsholing is the gateway to Bhutan from India. It is located on the south-west corner of Bhutan on the Indian border.
Samsing Samsing
With its orange orchards and cardamom plantations, Samsing is an unspoilt mountain destination that is growing in popularity among tourists. Atop Kitap Singh Hill, it is nearly three hours away by bus from the heart of Siliguri. The tea estates on the way to Samsing are a visual delight.
Jaldapara Wildlife Sanctuary Jaldapara Wildlife Sanctuary
This wildlife forest has the largest concentration of the endangered one-horned rhinoceros in India after Kaziranga. On a lucky day you can spot them from the watchtowers. Another must watch is the Royal Bengal tiger. The park is also the breeding ground for reptiles like the Indian python, fresh-water turtles, geckos, monitor lizards and kraits. Elephant and jeep safaris inside the forest can be organised.
Totopara Totopara
Situated amid a lush green countryside that meets the river Torsa, Totopara is a tiny hamlet where the Totos, an aboriginal tribe of Indo-Bhutanese origin, live. The Totos have broad and square cheeks, flat noses, small eyes and thick lips. Most of the Totos live in elevated bamboo huts that are surrounded by a kitchen garden where the tribal people grow their own vegetables.
Chilapata Forest Chilapata Forest
One of the lesser-known wildlife abodes in the region, the forest forms an elephant corridor between Jaldapara and Buxa Tiger Reserve. The Bania river meanders its way through the forest. The main attraction here is the Nalraja Garh or the fort of the Nal kings. The fort was built in the 5th century during the Gupta period. A stone temple is situated nearby.
Alipurduar Alipurduar
Located in the north bank of the Kaljani river, Alipurduar is the gateway to Bhutan and the north-eastern states of India. Small streams intersect the town and add to its natural beauty. Previously, Alipurduar was an old trading centre that was part of the "Silk Route". The highest peak of Jalpaiguri, the Chota Sinchula is located in Alipurduar from where you can view the Buxa Hills and Bhutan Valley.
Gorumara National Park Gorumara National Park
Located on the banks of river Murti, it is renowned for the great Indian one-horned rhinoceros. The park has a spot called Rhino Point, where rhinos and bisons huddle together to lick salt. You can also catch a glimpse of elephants, leopards and barking sambar deers. Valuable trees like Teak, Simul, Siris, Khair and Sal abound in the forests and there are numerous migratory birds. You may also spot the Indian python and the King cobra.
Chapramari Wildlife Park Chapramari Wildlife Park
Chapramari is home to all sorts of fauna. It is famous for its elephant and gaur (Indian bison), spotted cheetah and sambar. One of the most important areas for the barking deer and wild boar, Chapramari is also one of the few places where the pangolin proliferates successfully. The trees hide some of the most sought-after birds like the green magpie, scarlet minivet, hill mayna, Indian treepie and white-breasted kingfisher.
Buxa Tiger Reserve Buxa Tiger Reserve
The crown gem of the Dooars region, the Buxa Tiger Reserve, is a sanctuary set up to preserve the Royal Bengal tiger. The Jayanti River flows through the forest. Located inside the reserve at an altitude of 800 metres is the historic Buxa fort. During British rule, this fort was used as a prison. Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose was also confined inside the fort. A sacred temple which is dedicated to Lord Shiva, also lies inside the reserve.
Suntalekhola Suntalekhola
The orange trees, the flowing river, the rustle of conifer leaves and the slanting rays of the sun will catch your eye at Suntalekhola. Seat yourself on the riverbed and listen to the melodies of the water. Walk through remote villages and terraced paddy and maize fields eventually lead to Mouchuki, the entry point to Neora National Park. You can view the hills of Bhutan and the Jelepla Pass that forms the connecting link between Tibet and India from here.
Lava-Lolaygaon Lava-Lolaygaon
Lava is a forest village with a popular Buddhist monastery that is known as Lava Monastery. Surrounded by very large forests, Lava includes the remote and uninhabited Neora National Park, and is a bird watcher's delight. Some of the most sought after and least known birds of India can be spotted here. Lolaygaon is higher up than Lava. From Jhandi Dara (wooded hilltop), one can enjoy a brilliant view of the sunrise.
Neora Valley National Park Neora Valley National Park
Located in a woody forest area near Lava. Dense bamboo groves and abundant species of orchids crowd the park. Wild animals like red panda, Himalayan black bear and wild dog can be found here. The park is also a popular picnic spot because of its the serene, pollution-free environment. Adventure seekers can trek to Rechela Danda, the highest peak in the park.
Jayanti Jayanti
Known for its scenic beauty, the dense green hills and the dense forests make for a pastoral setting. Take a train to Alipurduar Junction and hire a car to reach Rajabhatkawa. Rajabhatkawa is a beautiful town near the Buxa Tiger Reserve and one of the main centres of eco-tourism. Places of tourist interest at Rajabhatkawa include an orchidarium, an animal rescue centre and a nature interpretation centre.
Gahunbari Gahunbari
Simple, quiet and apparently one of the least-visited destinations' Gahunbari is a stunning sea of green tea gardens and tropical forests. One can also catch a glimpse of the majestic Kanchenjunga from here. Uphill from Gahunbari is a spot called View Point, which offers a spectacular view of the Dooars region along with the China and Bhutan border.
Jaldhaka Jaldhaka
A hill travellers' idyll, Jaldhaka is one of those special places where you can wake in the morning without the hum and hoot of traffic. Apart from ambling around, there is nothing much to do here. Take a walk to Dalagaon View Point. You will be able to see the lush green hills of Bhutan stretching across the horizon.
Lataguri Lataguri
Lataguri is a quiet town, which is located near Gorumara. Besides the quiet and calm surroundings, the main attraction here is the Nature Interpretation Center that gives information about the flora and fauna of the region.
Laliguras Laliguras
Located near Suntalekhola, the place is most beautiful during the monsoons with a view of tea gardens in every direction. Verdant greenery and a river flowing adds to the beauty of the landscape. It is a popular picnic spot for the local people.
Bindu Bindu
Bindu, a small village on the India-Bhutan border, provides the perfect escape for city dwellers. The journey to Bindu via Chalsa-Khunia-Jhalong is a fascinating one as the road passes through the tea gardens, forests, river valleys and small, quiet villages. The people of Bindu are engaged either in Elaichi (Cardamom) or Suntala (Orange) cultivation. Places to visit around Bindu include: Bindu Dam, Jaldhaka Hydel Project, Cardamom Curing Centre and Godak Village.