Looking for a weekend getaway from Kolkata? How about an untapped hill at a distance of only 250 km from Kolkata? I am introducing you to the Ayodhya Hills in Purulia, West Bengal. The Purulia tour is a great idea if you want a short road trip from Kolkata.
Ayodhya Hills or অযোধ্যাপাহাড় are one of the most popular destinations in Purulia. It is a 700-metre-high plateau, the easternmost part of the Chhotanagpur Plateau and an extended region of the Eastern Ghats.
Being part of the Dalma Mountain Range, it is surrounded by lush green forests, beautiful waterfalls and tribal villages. The slopes have narrow streams and springs which lead to Subarnarekha in the west and Kangsabati & Kumari in the north.
This culturally rich place has preserved its natural beauty which makes it a peaceful as well as fun weekend destination for you. Let’s see what you can include in your little itinerary.
Nearby Attractions: A Purulia Tour from Ayodhya
Most tourist spots are actually near Ayodhya Pahar. These include beautiful lakes & dams, untapped waterfalls, lush green forests & hills and culturally-rich tribal villages.
So, let’s look at the best spots that can make you forget your busy life.
Waterfalls, Lakes & Dams
Among the water bodies, the following are a must-watch:
- Bamni Falls: Located at 434 metres above sea level, this beautiful waterfall leads to a lake. However, there are approximately 800 rough steps to the lake. So, climbing down would interest you only if you love adventure!
- The Turga Dam and The Turga Falls: This is located at 284 metres above sea level. The beauty of this spot is something you should capture in your camera.
- Khairaberia Dam: This irrigation dam is at the foot of Chemto and Barra Hills. It leads to the Khaira river. You’ll enjoy the beauty best during spring, when the red Palash flowers bloom and surround the area.
Some other lakes and falls to look at are:
- Tarapaniya Lake
- Ghagkocha Falls
- Brahmani Falls
- Muruguma Dam
- Paprakocha Dam
- Machkanda Falls
Nearby Hills& Tribal Villages
Purulia is not only green, it’s got a carpet full of flowers that make the surrounding really colourful. It’s also a home for Santhals, Kumars, Mahatos, Kalindis and Sahish tribes. Let’s take tour to their home town:
- Mayur Hills: Located at 605 metre above sea level, this hill has plenty of Sal, pine and silk cotton trees. If you want a panoramic view of the entire range of Ayodhya Hills, this is the right spot to visit. You should stay over to see the beautiful sunset transform to a romantic moonlit night.
- Pakhi Pahar: Also known as the Murra Buru hill, this place is known for rock paintings of birds. Of course, there are real birds to watch too! Not only will you find peacocks, there are wild animals like deer, leopards and boars too.
- Charida Village: This place is known for the famous Chau dance performed by the tribal communities. You can begin your day watching how the chhau masks for this dance are made at the pilgrim centres and end it by watching the performance. You can choose to buy the masks too!
- Bagmundi:Located at 264 metres above sea level, this is the most populated town near Ayodhya Hills. Surrounded by dense forests and waterfalls, you can enjoy the view of flora and fauna along with some historical destinations.
You can also take a short trip to Dalma Pahar and Chamtaburu Hill.
What Should You Not Miss at the Ayodhya Hills?
While you’re at the Ayodhya Hills, there are some places you shouldn’t miss visiting:
- The Sita Kunda:This mythological destination has an interesting story behind its beauty. It is a spring that was created by Lord Ram to quench Sita’s thirst. He shot an arrow on the earth’s crust from which water gushed out. The Santhals drink water from here every year on full moon day, followed by which they indulge in hunting.
- Gorshabru: This is the highest peak of Ayodhya Hills at a height of 868.68 metres. Enjoy the beauty of dense forests, mesmerizing waterfalls and welcoming tribal villages here. The panoramic view of hills is something you should capture before you leave.
- Upper & Lower Ayodhya Dam: These dams are a part of the Purulia Pumped Storage Project, set up to generate hydroelectricity. Water flows fromthe upper dam at a height of 495 metresto the lower dam at 300 metres. Its capacity is 900 MW (4 x 225 MW).
Apart from sight-seeing on Purulia tour, shopping and entertainment, this place is also very good for rock climbing, trekking and hiking. So, adventure lovers, peace lovers, nature lovers and photographers – all can have a memorable experience here.
How to Go to Ayodhya Hills from Kolkata?
There are 3 ways to go to Purulia from Kolkata:
- Train: You’ll get trains from Howrah Station that will drop you to the Barabhum Station. Within 40 mins, you’ll reach Bagmundi from there, which is close to Ayodhya Hills.
- Bus: If you want to travel from bus, Shahid Minar in Esplanade will take you to Purulia. It will be a 303.2 km drive.
- Car: Of course, if you love driving, it is the best option to choose. You can take the State Highway 5 and Bagmundi via Kharagpur and Balarampur. You can even go via Durgapur.
When to Visit Purulia?
Of course, you’ll love travelling the most when the weather is pleasant and the surroundings are in their best form. Commonly, the period between September-March is the ideal time to travel.
However, if I were to shortlist even from here, there are 2 options for you:
- Early October: That is just after the monsoon when it is greener and the Kash Phool blooms.Also, the winds are cool and pleasant which make travel even more soothing.
- February-March: This is actually spring time, when the Palash flowers bloom and create a red carpet on the green surroundings. The sky is clear and the wind is chilly as winter is about to leave.
Purulia tour are gaining popularity among people living in Kolkata for a short tour in West Bengal. After a tiring and stressful week, who wouldn’t like such a weekend getaway from Kolkata?