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Kolkata’s nearby Bibhutibhushan Abhayaranya --- ideal weekend getaway

11 April, 2020 18:30:00
Kolkata’s nearby Bibhutibhushan Abhayaranya --- ideal weekend getaway

A weekend trip far from the hustle and bustle of city life, yet close to one’s home is always welcome. Bengal now boasts of some of the best roads through its various districts and smooth road trips. So, for all city-dwellers a short break over the weekend to Bibhutibhushan Abhayaranya, around 80 kilometres from the urban grandeur of Kolkata is always welcome. This area is also known as Parmadan Forest and later named after the famous Bengali author Bibhutibhushan Bandopadhyay and coined as Bibhutibhushan Abhayaranya. 

Bibhutibhushan Bandopadhyay is not just famous for Aam Aantir Bhenpu that was converted to the path-breaking world-famous movie Pather Panchali by Satyajit Ray, but also for another novel, Aranyak. This particular novel is close to the heart of all nature lovers, as the author aptly gave a sense of human form to trees and plants, as if they can talk, and yes they can feel and communicate. Hence as an ode to this famous author whose love for nature was exemplary, the sanctuary of Parmadan has been named as Bibhutibhushan Abhayaranya. 

On the banks of the serene Icchamati River, bordering Bangladesh, that is known for the immersion of Durga idols between two Bengals, lies this sanctuary. During Spring the trees burst in a riot of colours as majority of trees present here are Shimul, Arjun and Shirish. The forest is also home to animals such as rabbits, monkeys and many more. It is an abode of birds such as Sankhhachil, peacocks, Nilkantha and Phultusi. The park also has a sizeable deer population that has increased over the years and now has almost 250. In 1964, around 14 deer were released in this area after which they bred and increased in number.

The entire sanctuary has been constructed on 68 square kilometers land. There is also a children’s park inside, so if you are travelling with kids, they will also get a source of entertainment. There is also a small zoo and lodge of the Forest Department. You might stay at the lodge at night. Picnics are also allowed inside, if you get a permission. For bird enthusiasts, there is enough room for some great photography.

How to go: 
Catch a local train to Bongaon from Sealdah, then take an auto or toto and get to the Motiganj Station. Take any bus going to Duttafulia and reach Parmadan forest. If you want to travel by a car, you can opt for National Highway 34.    

When to go: 
Winter is the best season to venture into the forest with the wonderful chill and the bright sunshine. So, pack your bags next weekend and just reach this lesser known virgin territory.

Where to stay: 
Forest department bungalow if you wish to spend a night and catch the birds that come in early dawn. Else you can just take a day trip


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  • Bibhutibhushan Abhayaranya

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