Staying in Kolkata obviously has some undeniable advantages. While the gastronomic experience in the city is something to die for, not literally though, an overnight journey will land you in North Bengal from where some of the best views of Kanchenjungha and adventures in the Terai will leave you with a lifetime of memories. So the next time you hop on to a train to New Jalpaiguri, try these lesser known North Bengal holiday destinations that are nothing short of pure bliss. Fortunate to have visited each one of them, I am already scouring the IRCTC website for the next available train. Meanwhile, keep reading.
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One of the smallest villages in India, with less than 15 families. That’s Ramdhura for you. So what’s on offer? Kanchenjungha towers over everything in this village which is just seven kilometres from Deolo. Enjoy a hot cup of tea on your homestay balcony and feast your eyes on the expansive slopes of the lush green mountains. Ramdhura is a perfect destination if peace is what you want on a North Bengal holiday.
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Adventurists and bird lovers swear by this tiny Himalayan village. Kolakham, on the edge of the Neora Valley National Park, is a little more than 100 kilometres from Siliguri. Cloud and mist plays hide and seek here. Kanchenjungha and its adjoining peaks are visible on a clear day, while a wide variety of birds add a dash of colour to the surroundings. Go on a jungle trail where you may just bump into some wildlife. The beautiful Changey Falls is a five kilometre walk from the village.
3. Sillery Gaon
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At a height of about 6,000 feet, Sillery Gaon is a small Himalayan village surrounded on all sides by dense pine forests. It is located eight kilometres from Pedong. The last few kilometres of the road leading up to the village is more of a hiking trail that wobbly cars perilously negotiate. A four kilometre hike from Ramdhura will take you to the Ramitey view point where the meandering Teesta flows below and the world’s third highest mountain stands tall in all its jaw-dropping beauty.