We don’t blame you if you’re confused about where to go to usher in the New Year near Kolkata. We’ve made things simpler by giving you these options that includes a beach, hill station and a national park.
Better known as ‘India’s longest motorable beach,’ Mandarmani offers a clear, 13km stretch where you can drive alongside the sea watching the waves and drinking in the impeccable peace and quiet. This is what brings many people to this beach. It hugs a long, untarnished stretch of the shoreline. If you are not able to take a drive, don’t worry, a long walk will prove to be equally enthralling, as it really is exquisitely serene and beautiful
Bleak and beautiful in equal measure, the mangrove forests of the Sunderbans comprise the largest riverine delta in the world. Visit this magical terrain to see nature at its wildest. Keep your eyes open as you cruise through its complex river channels, and look out for giant crocodiles basking on the muddy banks. And if you’re lucky, you might just spot a majestic Bengal tiger returning your gaze from amid the thickets.
Betla Forest Safari
Also known as Palamau Tiger Reserve, Betla National Park is spread over the hilly landscape of picturesque Palamau district. Tiger sightings are relatively rare here, but you almost sure to see wild elephants roaming freely. A trip to this primitive region of Jharkhand is also worth considering because it guarantees a glimpse into the rich tribal and anthropological heritage of the state. The park is technically open all year-round, but the best time to visit is between November to March.
Kurseong is a tiny hill town best known for its tea estates and a rush of Raj-era boarding schools that dot its extents. Flanked by hilly slopes draped with manicured tea estates, it is also currently the southern terminus for the charming toy trains of the Darjeeling Himalayan Railway. There are numerous good walks in the area. Eagle’s Crag (2km return) affords splendid views down the Teesta Valley and the steamy plains to the south. St Mary’s Hill (4km) takes you past atmospheric grottos and churches into charming pine forests that lead all the way up to a spectacular mountain ridge.