West Bengal offers a variety of terrain – from the sharp Himalayas in the North to the wide paddy field covered Gangetic plains and into the mangrove delta of Bay of Bengal. West Bengal is geographically diverse. It houses the former (British) capital of India – Kolkata, a cosmopolitan cocktail interspersed with formidable culture, beautiful traditions, festivals and aching poverty.
The Royal Bengal Tiger wanders the Sunderbans (forest) imperially, and green paddy fields encompass lost mud villages, living in a picture postcard landscape. As you move up the sultry plains and river basins to the snowy mountains above, the range of people and cultures changes dramatically. Black coal like soot clears, and the renowned globally tea estates of Darjeeling come into view. The toy train makes fairy-tale like, the already splendid hill statin of Darjeeling, with its vestiges of British Raj.
Bengali missionaries and revolutionaries liberated India from centuries of oppression, and the real meaning of freedom was discovered in secret Renaissance and freedom movement meetings in the intellectual capital of India.
PLACES TO SEE
Kolkata: The former capital of British India Kolkata (Calcutta) is a paradox between colonialism and modernism, poverty and poise. Drenched with semi-shambling relics of Colonial architecture that are a photographer’s treats Calcutta assumes different lures for everybody.
Darjeeling: Fascinating tea gardens, toy train rides, historical vibe and crumbling Colonial era architecture.
This crowded, colourful metropolis of culture and poverty thriving side by side is sure to mesmerize and shock you simultaneously.