Lamahatta – the new North Bengal hill station where time stands still
Breathe in the freshness of the pine and oak, enjoy the silent solitude, seepin the pleasures of a quaint sleepy town, nestled in the cradle of the Eastern Himalayas. Lamahatta, the new tourist hotspot on the map of North Bengal, will just welcome you to pure, unadulterated love. And if you wish to celebrate with the love of your life, this small hamlet, three hours from New Jalpaiguri railway station should be your next honeymoon destination. Inspiration of Honourable Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee was behind development of this destination.
The undulating mountainous roads have intermittent benches for you to sit, laze and enjoy the breathtaking hills before your eyes. At times, the journey could seem like an uphill task but once you climb to the various spots, you are bound to realize that it was worth the effort. Suddenly amidst the mysterious eerie pine forests, you might encounter empty spaces, evoking a sense of further curiosity of what lies beyond.And then you might stumble upon the gigantic stone of Lamahatta, which makes a perfect frame for a photo-shoot. The lake flowing below as viewed from the hill top looks like a floating castle, surrounded by colourful flags, an abode of peace and tranquility.
Even the road that takes you to Lamahatta is by itself a story written in nature’s splendour. It takes around two hours to reach Teesta Bazar from NJP. The place is full of life and very vibrant with a plethora of activities. There are multiple shops in the area coming handy for the local inhabitants. Lover’s View point, lies close by, near Peshak Road that takes you up the stairs to a spot that is simply out of the world. The deep crevices, scattered hills at a distance, floating clouds above, take you to a land of fairytale romance. There are two rivers- Teesta and Rangit flowing relentlessly and silently. The green hue of Teesta merges with the Rangit, along a sandy land that resembles an isolated island. You can sit here for hours without even realizing the hours that have passed by.
In another forty minutes from Teesta Bazar, you reach Lamahatta. The trees bearing colourful flowers welcome you. The Lamahatta Park, also known as Mamata Park is a must visit. The entry fee is around ten rupees. The pine trees, orchid garden and red, white, yellow, blue flags have a mesmerizing serenity that will soothe your stressed-out nerves.
There are several homestays in this region. One of them is the Lamahatta Lodge that stands right next to the park. It is the perfect place to sip a cup of piping hot Darjeeling tea, sitting on the balcony and embracing the beauty of the hills. Interestingly, Lamahatta Lodge is taken care of by Timzang Lama, who was once a military man and is quite famous in the area. He narrates intriguing stories about the place, including the two lakes above the hilltop that are considered twins. Locals have various superstitions regarding these lakes. Some say that there are skeletons lying beneath the lake. Locals originally belonged to the Dukpa tribe. Since, the Lamas and Dukpashad a striking resemblance in terms of attire, the British got confused and considered both to be part of the Lama tribe. The locals have since then been living with this misplaced identity and the place is thus known as Lamahatta.