Thursday, 8 December 2011

Bardhaman, West Bengal

Located at an average elevation of 40 meters above sea level, Bardhaman is one of the important districts in West Bengal. The headquarters of the district has also been christened by the same name. Talking about Bardhaman city, it is situated about 100 km to the north-west of Kolkata, on the Grand Trunk Road (NH-2) and Eastern Railway. River Damodar and Banka Nala are the two main water bodies of the place. The city has been serving as the headquarters of the district since the time of the Mughal rulers. During the British rule in India, Bardhaman was the district headquarters of British India.

Bardhaman district has an enriched historical, cultural & religious importance. There are many theories behind the naming of Bardhaman. As per its literal meaning, Bardhaman means a prosperous and growing centre. It is believed that the region signified the frontier colony of the progress of aryanisation through the upper Ganges River Valley. However, the Aryans failed to proceed further east and the name was retained. According to another theory, the origin of this name dates back to sixth century BCE and is ascribed to Vardhamanswami or Mahavira, the twenty-fourth Jain Tirthankar, who is believed to have spent some time in Astikagrama. The place was thus named in his honor.

Thanks to the numerous conflicts and acquisitions in its past, Bardhaman has a multi-cultural heritage. The architecture of the place displays a glimpse of the prolific powers of the yesteryears. Being both a victim and a survivor of numerous violent conflicts, due to Mughal, Pashtun and Maratha invaders, Bardhaman today showcases beautiful and exotic temples, duels, monuments and structures. Right from Raja Todarmal to Daud Karnani, from Sher Afgan and Kutub-ud-din to Ajimuswan and even young Shah Jahan, the town of Bardhaman was visited by the most respected notables of the Delhi Sultanate. It surely is a haven for archeologists and people with an inquisitive mindset.

Once in Bardhaman, there are numerous sites that would surely make the place worth visiting. One of the most important sites is the shrine of Sarvamangala, which is said to contain the remnant of Sati's body, the umbilicus. Thereafter, you can watch the enigmatic Curzon Gate, standing tall in the honor of Lord Curzon. The exotic palaces and lovely gardens would surely be the favorite hotspot of tourists visiting the beautiful city of Bardhaman. Once done with the sightseeing, do not forget to taste the sumptuous sweet delights - Sitabhog and Mihidana, the two famous sweets that were introduced in the honor of the Raj family. Shaktigarh's Langcha is another local specialty. With much to revel in, Bardhaman is a must-go destination!!

Places To See:

Curzon Gate

One of the popular tourist sites in Bardhaman, the beauty of the majestic Curzon Gate is spellbinding. Named in honor of Lord Curzon, the gate was constructed by Maharaja Bijoy Chand Mahatab, in the year 1903. Today, the gate has been renamed as Vijay Toran and is a great place to view the architectural magnificence and the glory of the past. The Royal Palace, wherein the kings and the queen resided, is just one km away from this gate. 

Tomb Of Sher Afghan

Located at Pir Beharam, in Kanchannagar, the tomb of Sher Afgan is the last of the Afghan jagirdars in Bardhaman. Sher Afgan revolted against Mughal Samrat Jahangir. To get control over the situation, Jahangir had sent Kutubuddin. Both, however, died at the war in 1610 and were buried at the burial ground of Pir Baharam. Thousands of visitors visit the site during festive occasion. the Tomb takes tourist back to the regal and imperial age of India, what with its mesmerizing and fascinating charm and elegance. 


Established by King Bijoy Chand Mahatab, in 1884, Golapbag is a perfect place to relax in a soothing ambience. Literally meaning the ‘Garden of Rose’, the place is a charming site filled with beautiful and lovely roses. The place also has beautiful water tanks. A botanical and zoological garden, it is home to 128 types of trees, including mango, casuarina, eucalyptus, jaam and shimul. Golapbag is a lovely site to behold in the spring season. 

Meghnad Saha Planetarium

The second planetarium of the state (first being Birla Planetarium in Kolkata), Meghnad Saha Planetarium has been built within the university grounds. Built in assistance with the Japanese government, the planetarium, though small is size, has been outfitted with latest technology instruments. It has been opened for public use since the year 1994. Regular shows are conducted herein.

Science Center

Situated at Golapbag Road, near Bardhaman University, the science center is one of the popular tourist attractions in Bardhaman. The complex has a museum and a park, which offers insight into the animal kingdom and the environment at large. The center is a good hangout zone and beautifully combines entertainment with knowledge.


Bardhaman Excursions

108 Shiva Temple

A huge complex dedicated to Lord Shiva, the place is home to 108 Shivlingas. The temples are divided into two circles, with black and white lingas. Built in 1788, on the Burdwan-Siuri NH, the temple was built on the order of Rani Bishnukumari, Queen of Burdwan. One of the most pious sites, it attracts huge trail of devotees all the year round, especially on Mondays. Large mass of people throng the temple complex on the occasion of Maha Shivratri. 

Sarbamangala Mandir

Built by Maharaja Kirtichand, in the year 1702, the temple of Mata Sarbamangala is located on D.N. Sarkar Road. It is one of the oldest religious institutions in this area, its prime attraction being the 1000-year-old idol of Maa Durga. The idol has eighteen hands and is seated on a lion. While large mass of people visit the temple regularly, occasions like 1st Baisakh, Bipadtarini Brata, Saradiya Durgotsov, Kali Puja, Nabanna and Shib Ratri Brata, witness huge flocks of worshippers. 

Kankelshwari Kalibari

One of the most striking places near Bardhaman is Kankelshwari Kalibari. Home of Goddess Chamunda, the temple, which is assumed to be 2000 years old, boasts of an exquisitely carved sculpture of the deity. Found from the river-bed of Damodor after the devastative flood in 1923, the idol is made from precious black stone, with 8 hands. The sculpture has human muscles and veins carved in it, making it the most artistic part of the idol. Situated at Brishnu Mandir, in Kanchan Nagar, the temple is a must see destination for those touring Bardhaman district. 


Located about 50 km from Bardhaman, Kalna is the confluence of the Shakta and Vaishnava forms of worship. The place is home to 'Ambika Kalna' or the summer residence of the Rajas of Bardhaman and also to various temples and shrines. The temples of Kalna are extremely beautiful to look at and exude the artistic glory of the yesteryears. Built of bricks, with intricate terracotta designs, each one of these temples is worth a visit............

How to Reach Bardhaman

The nearest airport from Bardhaman is the Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose International Airport of Kolkata. It is located about 160 km from the place and caters to all the major Indian destinations, apart from a few international ones as well. From the Kolkata Airport, you will have to board bus or private taxi for reaching Bardhaman. 

Numerous trains pass through the Bardhaman district. The Howrah-Delhi line also passes through it. There is constant connectivity to the place through rail, as it is one of the major rail heads in the state.

The road connectivity of the district is also very good. Interstate bus services connect the city, with key destinations in India, on a regular basis. Well-maintained four-lane GT Road is there for those who want to drive down to the place, by their own car............

Asansol, West Bengal

Asansol is the second largest city of West Bengal, situated in the Bardhaman District. It serves as an important coal mining commercial center in India. In fact, its claim to fame is its base of coal and steel industry. Situated between Durgapur and Chittaranjan, this city, with about 1,000,000 residents, is one of the 100 fastest developing cities in the world. With a rich mineral resource and extensive work force, Asansol has become one of the best options for versatile industrial ventures, institutions, transport and commerce.

Situated about 200 km away from the capital city of Kolkata, Asansol is sited on the exposed Gondwana rocks, unlike the rest of West Bengal. Its topography is composed of undulating laterite soil. Damodar and Ajay, two mighty rivers in West Bengal, flow besides this city. The climate of Asansol can be divided into four seasons, namely summer, monsoon, autumn and winter. The summer of Asansol is like the rest of the West Bengal, extremely hot and humid. The monsoon are pleasant and the winters chilly.

Asansol is also an interesting destination, in terms of tourism. Within a radius of 20 km from the city, there are several beautiful excursions. One of the most popular places near Asansol is the Maithon dam and lake that, apart from being a power production unit, also serves as a popular picnic getaway from the city. Other than this, Nehru Pak, Churulia and Kalyaneshawri temple are popular destinations around the city.

Places to See:

Kalyaneswari Temple

The famous Kalyaneshwari Temple is situated about 20 km from the city of Asansol. It is considered to be an ancient temple, which is as much as 500 years old. The presiding deity of this temple is Maa Kalyaneshwari, a form of Goddess Shakti or Kali. The temple is situated very close to the famous tourist spot Maithan. More

Maithan is one of the most popular excursions from Asansol. It is not only visited by tourists, but is also a favorite getaway of the locals, especially on weekends. Situated about 22 km from Asansol, on the border of West Bengal and Bihar, Maithan also houses the largest reservoir of the Damodar Valley Corporation. The reservoir is about 15,712 ft long and 165 ft high. More

Nehru Park

Nehru Park is located in Burnpur, very near to Asansol. This beautiful park is sited on the bank of Damodar River and has several amenities, like boating, restaurant and musical fountain. The park was earlier known as Riverside Park. There is a very nominal entry fee for the park and a direct bus service takes you to the place, from Asansol. A huge cast iron statue of Jawaharlal Nehru, the first Prime Minister of India, welcomes you to the park. 


Churulia is a small village, which is about 17 km from Asansol. This place is basically known as the birth place of Bengali poet Kazi Nazrul Islam. The village currently houses the Nazrul Academy, where several manuscripts, medallions and other belongings of the poet have been preserved. A weeklong festival is held here annually, to celebrate the birthday of this legendary national poet of Bangladesh.

Asansol Weather...........

Asansol Weather

Asansol is the second largest city in West Bengal. It is also one of the most ethnically and culturally diverse cities in the state. Being the location of one of the largest coal mines in India, the city is one of the 100 fastest developing cities in the world. While the entire West Bengal lies on the flat alluvial plains, Asansol is situated on the Gondwana rocks, between two mighty rivers - Damodar and Ajay. The climate of Asansol is divided in to four main seasons - summer, monsoon, autumn and winter. Read on to explore more information on the weather and climate of Asansol.

In summers, which last from March to May, the city experiences a hot and humid weather during the day time. However, nights are comparatively cooler, due to the cold breezes that blow at that time. The city also suffers heavy thunderstorms in early summer. The summer season is comparatively longer than any other season in Asansol. 

Between June and September, like the rest of the West Bengal the city of Asansol also witnesses monsoon. The maximum rainfall is witnessed here is in the month of July, up to 533 mm. 

The autumn season in Asansol lies between rainy spring and winter and is comparatively very smaller to other seasons. 

In Asansol, winter comes with the arrival of November and leaves by the end of February. During this time, the maximum temperature is around 200 C, while the minimum temperature hovers at 40 C............


Maithan is one of the most popular excursions from Asansol. It is not only visited by tourists, but is also a favorite getaway of the locals, especially on weekends. Situated about 22 km from Asansol, on the border of West Bengal and Bihar, Maithan also houses the largest reservoir of the Damodar Valley Corporation. The reservoir is about 15,712 ft long and 165 ft high. It is spread over an area of 66 sq km. Built in 1957; this dam is still the hot spot of tourism near Asansol

Other than the dam, the most prominent attraction of Maithan is the 135 ft deep hydel power project, inside the hills. It is first one-of-its-kinds power project in Southeast Asia. This power plant has the capacity to generate 60 MW power. Apart from these, the 120-150 ft deep Maithan Lake makes a magnificent site for picnic, boating and fishing. People come here to enjoy their weekends with their family. A deer park and a bird sanctuary have also been established nearby, attracting a lot of crowd on weekends. 

The literal meaning of Maithan is 'Holy Mother's Abode'. The place is named so after the 500-year-old Kalyaneshwari Temple, located in the vicinity. The temple is situated nearby, on atop the Hyangla Pahar, the hungry mountain. The Kalyaneswari Temple is dedicated to a formof Mata Kali and is said to be built by a Hindu King Harigupta. A visit to this temple is said to be immensely fruitful. It is famous for granting the wishes of barren women, longing for a child............

How to Reach Asansol

There is no direct flight to Asansol. The nearest airport from the city is in Kolkata, from where you can hire a bus, cab or taxi to reach Asansol. However, there is also a private airstrip at Burnpur, suitable for small planes.

Asansol is a prominent junction on the Howrah-Delhi track. Most of the trains on this route stop at this junction. There are ample numbers of trains for this place and the route is also considered to be one best in Indian Railways. Direct trains are available from many parts of India to Asansol.

The road route to Asansol is very straight, as the city is located on Grand Trunk Road (NH 2). This is one of the best road routes in India, with four lanes and a divider in place. If you traveling towards Asansol from Kolkata, you must take the Durgapur Expressway from Dankuni and then switch to follow the GT Road............

Durgapur, West Bengal

Durgapur is one of the well-planned industrial cities in West Bengal, situated on the banks of river Damodar. Founded in the late fifties, by the then Chief Minister of West Bengal, Dr. Bidhan Chandra Roy, the city falls under the Bardhaman district. The city has an average elevation of 65 meters and sprawls over an area of 154 sq km. It is surrounded by Asansol subdivision on the west, Bardhaman Sadar subdivision on the east, Bankura district (across Damodar River) in the south and Birbhum district (across Ajay River) to the north. Ranigunj-Dhanbad area, the biggest coalfield region in India, is also close to the Durgapur city.

There are two main water bodies in the Durgapur subdivision - River Damodar and River Ajay. While the former flows in the north, the latter directs its way in the south of the city. Two rivulets, namely Singaran and Tamla, flow through the area, joining Damodar. On the other hand, river Ajay is the point of unison of two other rivulets, Kunur and Tumuni. Talking about the topography of the area, it is an undulating one. Once a wild forested area, it has many trees evacuated from the area, for civilization purposes. However, some parts of the region are forested till today, standing tall and signifying the yester years. 

Right from being home to the mighty emperors in the former years to the present day industrialization and commercialization, Durgapur city has undergone various changes. Durgapur Steel Plant has played a prominent role in altering the face of the city. A unit of SAIL (Steel Authority of India), it brought about industrialization and employment in the city. Alloy Steels Plant, Mining and Allied Machinery Corporation, Hindustan Fertiliser Corporation, Philips Carbon Black Ltd., Sankey Wheels and Bharat Ophathalmic Glass Ltd follow later, further elevating the standard of living in Durgapur. 

Today, Durgapur has become one of the hotspot destinations in West Bengal. It offers tourist a lot of interesting sites, which makes the place worth visiting. In addition to this, the city is on the way to become an Aerotropolis, an integrated city with contemporary infrastructure for industries, logistics hub, IT, hospitality, healthcare, education, retail and residential. Just about 10 km away from Durgapur, an airport city is being built by Bengal Aerotropolis Projects Limited (BAPL). Software biggies, such as Wipro and TCS, are also moving towards Durgapur. In the coming years, the city is sure to experience a facelift.

Places to See:

Bhabani Pathak’s Tilla

Bhabani Pathak’s Tilla is great place to observe the network of tunnels in Durgapur, starting near the city center region and extending right up to the Damodar River. Today a protected monument, it first came to limelight in the novel ‘Durgesh Nandini’, by Bankim Chattopadhyay. As per the legend, unless a person had the map of the tunnel system, navigating inside was completely impossible. 

Durgapur Barrage

Durgapur Barrage is the perfect place to watch the amalgamation of nature's fury and man's effort to control it. Best visited during monsoon, the barrage is a sight to behold, with water trying to move out of the locked gates. There is also a short bridge over a canal, which is situated a few yards away from the main barrage. Walking over the bridge would surely be a riveting experience for one and all. For bird watchers, the site is nothing less than a paradise. During the wee hours of the morning, you are sure to spot lots of colorful birds here, singing harmoniously. 

Durgapur Steel Plant

One of the most important sites in Durgapur, the steel plant sprawls over a mammoth space and is the one of the awesome sights to watch out for. A SAIL (Steel Authority of India) initiative, the plant is responsible for the economic boom of the place and also played a significant role in the industrial development of the country at large. The scale of its work, coupled with the huge workforce, would keep you wondering about the management and efficiency of the place. To get a first hand experience of how things work at the plant, you need to get a permit from the administrative building, at the main entrance of the plant.

Troika Park

If you are touring Durgapur with your family and kids, Troika Park qualifies as a must-see place. A recreational spot, the park has exciting rides, apart from a toy train and a few other attractions that are sure to make the day for your kids. Adjacent to this recreational zone is a deer park. So, in case you want to have a look at the deer and even touch a few of them, head straight to Troika. Apart from this, you can also indulge in boat riding, as there is a lake near to the park. All in all, this park is the perfect place for picnic.


Durgapur Excursions

Located about 42 km away from Durgapur, Asansol is the second largest city in West Bengal, after the state capital, Kolkata. Just like Kolkata, Asansol boasts of being one of the culturally and ethnically diverse places in the country as a whole. There are a number of places in and around Asansol that are worth visiting. The city is accessible by both roadways and railways, from Durgapur. There are a number of recreational establishments that would surely be a great leisure past time. More


Located at an average elevation of 155 m, on the Asansol-Durgapur region, Chittaranjan is a small town in the Bardhaman District of West Bengal. The region falls between two rivers - Damodar and Ajay. Named after Indian freedom fighter, Chittaranjan Das, it was a heavily forested area until the discovery of coal, which led to the industrialization of the place. Chittaranjan poses to be a perfect getaway for tourists who are looking for excursion places near Durgapur. Right from the banks of the Ajar River that serves as a famous picnic spot to the horticulture garden, boating club and the loco park, the options are many. 


Baluchari Saree

At a distance of about 72 km from Durgapur, Bishnupur is an ancient city, reputed for its magnificent temples and terracotta sculptures. Home to major art and craft, Vishnupur has also been credited for its Baluchari sari, which has its base well rooted in this ancient city. Initially woven with Ramayana and Mahabharata motifs, the saris have now been modernized. Panchmura, the place which produces Bankura horse - the symbol of Indian handicrafts, is also near Bishnupur and can be visited while touring the city.


The birthplace of the famous Bengali Vaishnava poet Joydeb, Kendubillo is a temple town in Birbhum district of West Bengal. Also known as Joydeb-Kenduli, it is located about 22 km from Durgapur and is famous for its temples that portray exquisite carvings as well as the Makar Sakranti Fair. The place houses a navaratna temple, named Radha Vinod Temple, which was set up by the royal family of Burdawan. The temple boasts of excellent terracotta artifacts on its walls. The fair, on the other hand, is held in the first half of January and is one of the major rural fairs in West Bengal, extending for about 10 to 15 days............

How to Reach Durgapur


Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose Airport, sited in Kolkata, is the nearest airdrome for reaching Durgapur. The airport, at a distance of approx 175 km from Durgapur, is very well-connected to key cities in India as well as abroad. After de-boarding from the plane, you can reach Durgapur either by railway or roadway. There are regular services for both the modes of transport. Though there is an airdrome in Panagarh, in Durgapur subdivision, it is mostly used by the Indian Air Force.

Durgapur city has its own railway station, which is well connected to all the major cities of the country, including Howrah, Delhi, Guwahati, Amritsar and Kolkata. The station is situated at a distance of about 159 km from the Howrah station. The daily trains, express trains and super fast trains that run along the line stop at Durgapur station, connecting it to the neighboring states of West Bengal.

Durgapur is easily accessible by road as well. There are regular buses that ply on the Kolkata and Durgapur line, connecting the subdivision to the state capital. One can also take a bus from Esplanade Bus Terminus or Karunamoyee Bus Stand in Kolkata. Apart from the government-run buses, there are private buses as well. The distance between Durgapur and Kolkata is about 176 km. Durgapur is also well linked with Patna (374 km), Asansol (50 km) & Shantiniketan (62 km)............
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