The road was through the lush green forest of Lataguri, my mother kept her eyes open, alert for sighting the Great Indian Hornbill on the twigs of big trees; we were blessed with the sight of something more spectacular though. It was Ekadashi and Durga Puja had just ended. To tide over the melancholy morning, we decided to take on a small trip on the outskirts of Jalpaiguri. What better option than the upcoming tourism hub in North Bengal – Gazoldoba?
The Great Indian Hornbill can often be seen in the forests of Lataguri, apart from infinite varieties of common and uncommon birds. The movements could only be noticed in the sloshing stream of Teesta canal and our moving car, remaining part of our surrounding were silent and standstill, until the territory of Baikunthapur forest ended.
The landscape of forest ended and nature unfurled the exquisite frames of countrified scenario in the backdrop of a glowing stainless sky, the widespread view of golden paddy field, lone anglers patient waiting for the catch, Gulmohar trees loaded with flamboyant displays, ostentatious lotus and water lilies in galore, very consistent yet matchless pictures to capture, for my lifetime memory.
Finally, we breathed in a place, away from all urban rumpuses. The Teesta barrage of Gazoldoba was set up to meet the basic need of irrigation. The place, surrounded by water, in the backdrop of hills and lush greenery and we started walking along the embankment of the barrage; it was like walking through the superb frames of natural landscape.
The wide open and discreet scenario of landscapes away from the notice was like walking through the avenue of forgotten days. The reflections of the clouds on the river Teesta, the swinging anchored fishing boats in the river waves, skittish movements of the dragonfly, slowly disappearing silhouette of a fishing boat towards the horizon, in the low land covered with long grasses the roost of migratory birds. The vague pictures in fragmented frames started reuniting in mind, in the conspicuous display of widespread composure.
Getting there: You can take a car from NJP station or Siliguri town. The
place can also be approached via Jalpaiguri. A ride from Siliguri will
take about 45 minutes to an hour.
What to see: The place adjoining
the Teesta barrage, just 25 km away from the Siliguri, is much admired
by nature lovers, a unique destination for bird watching; colourful
water birds from central Asia establish their migratory roost here. If
the skies are clear, you can feast your eyes on the majestic view of
Accommodation: The place is best suited for a
day-trip. The West Bengal government has a guest house at Gazoldoba.
Spending a night at the serene banks of Teesta is an experience in
The prize of the day was surely the ethereal and crystal-clear view of the peak of Kanchenjunga from the banks of Teesta.
The bard’s words came tumbling out of the mouth at the majestic sight of the King of Mountains:
“I run across hills and dales,
I wander Through nameless lands,
because I am Hunting for the golden stag”
- Rabindranath Tagore
Written by: Agnivo Niyogi for M3.tv