Offbeat destinations in West Bengal - Part 1

West Bengal - also known as the sweetest part of India, is predominantly known for roshogollas, mishti doi, and ilish machh. If I ask you about West Bengal, you'd not be mistaken to associate with the Howrah bridge, and a few more other landmarks that are mostly advertised in the mainstream media, if done at all.

But, I am here to tell you about a different part of Bengal altogether - the part that is most often ignored. If you see the geographical map of India and look at this particular state, it stretches all the way from the lofty mountains of the Himalayan range, passes through the Gangetic plains, and ends at the vast Bay of Bengal. So it is safe to say that, whichever type of terrain you are looking forward to your trip, you can find it here.

The main issue is that most of these places are either not known or not visited much by tourists. Let alone people from outside the state, even I, like most of the people of my own state, also didn't know about what my state has to offer until I was stuck at home and had so much of that travel itch, that I started to look at what my state has to offer.

So, here I present to you some of the places that I found that you wouldn't have known otherwise... at least 90% of them. But before that, let's look at some key details about West Bengal.

Places Index (click here if you want to go to that particular section)

When to visit

Technically, you can visit anytime you want, but I find the summers a bit humid for my own taste. But if that doesn't bother you, then you're welcome all year round.


Most of the people speak Bengali here, but you'd be at ease as the majority of the population can either speak Hindi or English, if not and every broken Hindi is sure to be found in most places.

The taste

Most of the people associate Bengalis with roshogolla, misti doi, and maach (I swear.. don't call it maachi, it means 'fly', we eat fish, not flies). Well, keeping that aside, I am happy to let you know that the local cuisine comprises a number of flavors! Among them, kosha mangsho, fulko luchi, mutton biryani is popular. Among quick snacks is the piping hot jhal muri with crispy beguni, however, the options are endless!

From Left to Right, starting from top: Misti doi, Kosha Mangsho, Shorshe Ilish, Biryani, Phucka, Roshogolla, Beguni, Jhalmuri in a paper envelope, Classic Bengali meal on on a Brass plate.

Of course, there are a thousand more dishes that are prepared in a variety