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Raimatang: Enjoy a stay at the forested butterfly village near Alipurduar - GetBengal story

30 November, 2023 10:44:38
Raimatang: Enjoy a stay at the forested butterfly village near Alipurduar - GetBengal story

Raimatang, a newfound paradise in the heart of Dooars

The silence of dense forests can be deafening at times, making one wonder where the soul searching could begin. But the same silence can also be enchanting and engrossing, attracting you to a haven of peace, far from the madding crowds. If the hills this winter have been offering incessant views of the Sleeping Buddha as the Kanchenjungha peak rises almost every morning displaying its splendour for tourists, the crowds along the serpentine mountain roads can act as a spoiler. So, you can take a detour from the hills this winter, and enjoy an equally enchanting destination - the small forest village of Raimatang.

Located by the river Raimatang in Dooars, this region is very close to the Buxa Tiger Reserve and is surrounded by evergreen forest and hills. The gorgeous river, thanks to an overloaded monsoon this year, still has water gushing down its vales. Raimatang falls under Jalpaiguri district of West Bengal and is around 146 kms from Siliguri and around 48 kms from Alipurduar. You do not even have to travel the traffic packed hilly roads, rather have a wonderful trip down the lush forested highways to reach this village.

There was a time when Raimatang was out of bounds for tourists, till the State Government started promoting this wonderful area and instantly it was a hit with adventure tourists and nature lovers fond of birds that visit this area in hordes, some very rare species, along with colourful butterflies. The quaint forest top homes look like a fairytale, some even offering tree houses for the tourists to enjoy. Raimatang is increasing in its popularity because of its inexplicable beauty. Staying at the forest rest house if you are lucky to book it, is amazing, because of its ideal location. On the other side stands a watch tower from where tourists can watch wildlife during morning and afternoon hours. If you are lucky, you will get to see elephants in the forest near the village and an abundance of colourful butterflies. Sometimes on the river bed or in the forest you can see innumerable butterflies assembled together. A visual treat indeed!


This place is famous for its butterflies that flock at times on the river beds leaving the forests. As Raimatang is surrounded by the Buxa Tiger Reserve, wildlife also can be sighted specially in the early morning and afternoon hours as they come down to the river that acts as their water hole. There is a popular trek-route between Raimatang and Lepchakha through the Buxa Tiger Reserve Forest, that can provide an adventurous journey for those who wish to enjoy a bit of hilly terrain. Those who love hills, can also enjoy this small forest village as it is surrounded by towering lush blue hills of Bhutan and the sunrise and sunset across these hills can be breathtaking. Moreover, it is on the western side of Sinchula hills that adds to its solitude. This makes it a perfect getaway for people who love nature, wildlife, and want to escape from the din of city life. To reach Raimatang, you will have to cross the river bed of Raimatang River. This journey itself is so adventurous with the wheels of your jeep jumping across the boulders slushed with river water. 

Things to do 
This forest village is the ideal place for people looking for some quietude in the lap of nature. This is not a place full of activities, rather a place to rest and relax. Yet there are good trekking routes from Raimatang to Aadma and Chunabhati. It is a trek of around 20 kms and involves an overnight stopover at Chunabhati. You can also take a jungle safari with a guide through the dense part of Buxa Tiger Reserve, to get the best view of wildlife here.

The watchtower here offers great views of the surrounding Buxa Forest and occasional glimpses of wildlife. You can also take a nature walk on the Raimatang river bed.

How to reach Raimatang
Raimatang is in Jalpaiguri district. You can take a bus to this village from Kalchini. From Kalchini, you can take a private vehicle to reach the village. You can also take a bus from Alipurduar.

Best time to visit Raimatang
Raimatang is cut off during the monsoons, usually mid-June to mid-September as there are no bridges on the River and mostly the river water flows much above the suitable level. However, Raimatang can be reached the other nine months of the year and it is truly the last few destinations in the Dooars region, where you can still witness wildlife in their natural habitat. Best time to visit is November to March.


Accommodation at Raimatang
Other than the forest guest house that you can book through the Forest Department, there are some homestays with basic amenities where one can stay with the locals and enjoy the local cuisine. 

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