When are you visiting the Grand Canyon of West Bengal?


Have you heard about Gangani? Perhaps not. This place is known as the 'Grand Canyon of West Bengal'. Know about this beautiful place very near to Kolkata and plan to visit the place whenever you visit Kolkata.

Perhaps all of us have heard about the Grand Canyon. The Grand Canyon is a very steep canyon formed by the Colorado River in the USA. The Grand Canyon is 446 Kilometer long, up to 29 Kilometer wide and attains a depth of more than 1.8 Kilometer in some places. Many tourists visit the Grand Canyon every year.

But very few of us are aware of the existence of a small replica of the great Grand Canyon in West Bengal in India. It has very recently come to the tourist map of West Bengal. Let us know about the Grand Canyon of West Bengal.



Have you heard about Gangani?

Most probably, you have not heard about Gangani (or Gongoni). This is a small and beautiful village located at the outskirt of Garbeta town of West Medinipur district of West Bengal. The small village is lying on the bank of River Silabati, which local people call 'Silai'. In this small and peaceful village, you can see deep gorges formed by the River Silavati. The gorges are an anomaly among the lush greenery of the plains of Bengal. The gorges have been formed by soil erosion and the movement of the river. Recently the Tourism Department of the State Government has built a staircase to reach the topmost point of the gorge. Except the monsoon session, people can also cross the river by walking. It is a unique marvel which is now being visited by the increasing number of tourists from the neighbouring places and also from Kolkata.

Gangani has also been mentioned in the Mahabharata. Local people believe that at Gangani, the second Pandava, Bhim, killed a demon named Bakasura.

Other historical places to visit

There are some other historical places near Gangani which must be visited. These places are mentioned below:-
  • Sarbamangala Temple: This temple was built during the sixteenth century by the Bagri kings. In this ancient temple, Goddess Durga is worshipped as Goddess Sarbamangala. The temple complex is an excellent example of Orissa temple architecture.
  • Krishnarai Jiu Temple: It is another famous temple in the neighbourhood. This temple is made of black basalt stone. This temple was also built in the sixteenth century by a minister of the local Bagri kings. People say that the temple holds high spiritual values and many locals worship in this temple
  • Raikota Fort: This fort was also built during the sixteenth century by the local kings of Bagri. It is another example of Oriya architecture in the bordering district of Orissa. However, it must be stated that the fort is in urgent need of renovation. Tourists having interest in history and nature-lovers come here to visit the fort and enjoy the resplendent sight of the sunset


How to reach Gangani

As already stated, Gangani is very near to Kolkata, the state capital. It can be visited by road. The tourists can take NH6 and reach Gangani via Uluberia, Bagnan and Chandrakona in less than three hours.

The Garbeta town (nearest to Gangani) has its own railway station. Although many local trains are available, the tourists can avail Rupashi Bangla Express from Santragachhi station (just beside Howrah station) to reach Garbeta.



Where to stay

There are a few hotels at Garbeta, but it would be better if the tourists plan to stay at Kharagpur or return to Kolkata on the same day.

Conclusion

Till such time you get the opportunity to visit the Grand Canyon on the banks of Colorado River, why don't you visit the Grand Canyon of West Bengal at Gangani? Enjoy the deep gorge and sublime natural beauty of this historical place.


Article by Partha K.
“Those who will not reason, are bigots, those who cannot, are fools, and those who dare not, are slaves.” - George Gordon Byron

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