Winter season sets in; weather is really cool for picnic or family outing. I am also taking less work load this year end for small picnics and nearby outings. Many people in Kolkata really think where to go this winter weekends. We are really become sick of crowded city place, busy life. We need peaceful nature and some outing at picnic stops near forest or rivers or at a village garden surrounded by greenery. I love to go out with my family and explore new places. Here I have mentioned few places where you can spend your day out with your family. This is based on my journey, so some of the information may have changed over time. This is an small effort to share experience of outing in rural Bengal .
Taki Picnic spot: This is place tucked away by 75 km from Kolkata. This place is accessible by both road and train. This is the best place for family picnic. Taki is famous for best picnic spot along the Ichamoti river close Bangladesh Border. You can take Hanshnabad Local train from Sealdha and reach Taki Station, from there you can take local van to reach the picnic spot. You can reach by road, from Kolkata it’s 80 Km journey. First you reach Barasat , then take along Taki road and drive straight to reach Taki . I have visited five times there, mostly by my car.
What to see there: Taki Raj Bari , Machranga Dip ( island – really awesome views of island and rivers all around ) , boating in river Ichamoti , Hoglapata Jongal ( Hoglapata forest ) etc . You can take food in local guest house . You can get a very close view of Bangladesh. IF you go with your car , take all foods and enjoy a beautiful river side picnic . (Last time I paid Rs. 250 for booking a river side picnic sport). Place is very safe because of BSF camp .
Ichamoti Park: This place is a very safe place for family picnic . You can reach this place by private vehicle or you can reach here from Hashnabad line ( In fact I visited that place by my car ) . Route from nearby station to this place is not clear. You get all facilities from this location . You need to book this picnic spot from nearby counter. ( I feel I spent Rs 300 for a spot ) . This spot is a island surrounded by canal ( it’s created by local municipality for picnic only ) . This only picnic spot, so you can spend time with your family, playing games , you can get many other picnic parties there . I enjoyed this place very much.
Badu picnic spot : This is very close to Kolkata , 35 km off from Kolkata . There are many villa or picnic spots there. For big picnic party , you have book early . One important place is “ Makarasa Bagan “ you can say “Spider Garden “ . Actually it is Markar Shah’s Garden . This is a awesome place . Big ponds , big mango trees around the pond , big and old building along the pond guarding the mango trees . But place is not safe for family in rush hours.
But there are lots of place to arrange picnic . Most important place to visit are : Hanuman Mandir , Snake garden , Aquarium , also lots of mango gardens for family picnic and games under the big mango trees .
Sanhati Park : This is located in Ashok Nagar along Bangoan line . You can reach by train or private car . Best place to spend picnic with your kids . You can book ( in advance ) the picnic spot for full day picnic . This place has lots of rides for children . You can also visit Science Park near Habra.
Metho Gaon ( Village of mud ) : This not very popular spot located near Madhyamgram ( 25 km off from Kolkata ) . You can book one picnic spot , spend time among the paddy fields and pluck green vegetables from the fields ( with permission ) and use the same for your picnic .
Kakra Mirja pur : This is again along the Taki Road , beautiful village , country side . Ideal for family picnic. Famous “ Baba Loknath temple “ located in this place .
Other important places to visit:
Mayapur : This is approximately 125 km from Kolkata , near Krishna Nagar . You can reach by car or by train . ISKON Mandir is there. You can visit many Math and local Asram . But single day trip is hectic . Better to stay a day at Mayapur ISKON mandir .
Bangaon Bibhuti Bhusan Ghat : This place is very close to Bangaon Station . You can catch Bangaon train from Sealdah and reach the Bangaon station . From there you can reach the ghat . This is famous for Sri Bibhuti Bushan Bondapadhya , famous Bengali novelist . You can see the ghat , local bridge over river . Small picnic spot near the river. You can manage to stay nearby guest house by advance booking .
These are the places I have visited one or many times. These places are famous for their bucolic charm and smell of natures. Every winter, I plan to visit one of these sites with my family. Every time I go, I rediscover the place with new charms, with new experience ( as rural Bengal is changing fast ) . If you are in Kolkata, you can make a visit and enjoy your time with your family at country side picnic spots.