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Old 14th October 2012, 23:20   #106
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Originally Posted by rahul4640

The hotel at Raiganj run by West Bengal Tourism Development Corporation, located very close to Kulik bird sanctuary may be an option for stopover at night. It is 425 KM from Calcutta, 72 KM after crossing Maldah, two or three KM after crossing Raiganj town and 181 KM from Siliguri. Although I have never stayed there, I have stopped there twice for food. It has both AC and non-AC rooms, a decent restaurant, fully secured car parking and is located right on NH-34. It was not expensive either, as I was quoted only Rs 800/- for an AC room in the month of May this year.

An advantage of staying here is that you may leave early in the morning to avoid the dreaded traffic jam at Dalkhola. And after that Silliguri is only a breeze.

But the problem is that the signboard of this hotel is clearly visible only while driving from Siliguri to Calcutta. While going toward Siliguri locating this hotel may be little difficult to locate, although assistance may be sought from the locals.
Thank you for sharing the hotel details. I hope it shows up on map my india gps.
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Old 15th October 2012, 00:24   #107
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Thank you for sharing the hotel details. I hope it shows up on map my india gps.
Two weeks back, Kolkata to Siliguri took us 13 and half hours in my Bolero. With a faster and more comfortable car, it can be done in less time. The road condition is very bad throughout.
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Old 15th October 2012, 05:36   #108
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Two weeks back, Kolkata to Siliguri took us 13 and half hours in my Bolero. With a faster and more comfortable car, it can be done in less time. The road condition is very bad throughout.
Which route did you take? NH 34 all the way?
Could you suggest the best route since I will be travelling up to siliguri next week.
Thanks.
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Old 16th October 2012, 09:13   #109
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Originally Posted by BlackPearl View Post
Two weeks back, Kolkata to Siliguri took us 13 and half hours in my Bolero. With a faster and more comfortable car, it can be done in less time. The road condition is very bad throughout.
Hi BlackPearl , I have the same question as noidea , did you fully drive on NH34 or did it via NH2- Moregram-NH34 route ?. Your time of 13 hours, is with night driving or a very early morning start from Kolkata ?

Do you have any current information on the alternate Dumka , Bhagalpur route ?
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Old 20th October 2012, 07:36   #110
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Please suggest a decent hotel in Siliguri which is close to the route to Mirik. I am unable find one on expedia.
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Old 20th October 2012, 12:11   #111
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Originally Posted by Harry1983 View Post
Please suggest a decent hotel in Siliguri which is close to the route to Mirik. I am unable find one on expedia.
Barsana Hotel is a good option

http://www.barsanahotels.com/
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Old 20th October 2012, 18:37   #112
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Gents, On on my way to North Bengal! Leaving on the 2nd of Nov returning on 11th Nov.

Route 1
=======
Belghoria Exp Way -> Durgapur Exp Way -> Burdwan -> Guskhara -> Bolpur (-> Ahmedpur)-> Purandarpur -> Suri - > Tilpara Barrage -> Messenjore dam -> Dumka -> Bhagalpur - > Purnia Dalkhola


Second route....continue till Bolpur through Burdwan as normal
Route 2
=======
Bolpur - > Ahmedpur -> Sainthia ->mayureshwar-> Fatehpur -> Rampurhat -> Nalhat-> Morgram....then as usual through Malda.

I'll be driving during the day... will try to start as early as possible.
I see that NH34 is being relaid, but not very good quality tarmac, hope it lasts the full winter. But not sure till what point this relaying work is going on, hence not trusting NH34.


I learnt from Rahul Da that the Jhargram stretch on either side of Dumka is not good... but not to the extent of being a turn off.

I'm also in a fix about the destination.
2nd Nov - Early Morning dep....reach siliguri asap and rest for the night
3rd Nov - reach Kurseong /reach kalimpong
4th Nov - stay at kurseong /stay at kalingpong
5th Nov - reach pelling .... not sure about the road condition
6th Nov - stay pelling
7th Nov - stay pelling
8th Nov - reach darjeeling .... not sure about the route
...please suggest
9th Nov - stay darjeeling
10th Nov - head home early morning

Feel free to alter the plan .... I'll prefer destinations with better roads over the actual popularity of the destination.
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Old 20th October 2012, 21:29   #113
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Please suggest a decent hotel in Siliguri which is close to the route to Mirik. I am unable find one on expedia.
I prefer Mainak mainly because it has parking on its own grounds. (Am sure Barsana also has parking on own grounds. Do check rates for both.) But it is ~5 Kms from Matigara, which is the turnoff for Mirik if you are coming from Calcutta side.

Regards
Sutripta
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Old 20th October 2012, 22:26   #114
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Originally Posted by Sutripta
I prefer Mainak mainly because it has parking on its own grounds. (Am sure Barsana also has parking on own grounds. Do check rates for both.) But it is ~5 Kms from Matigara, which is the turnoff for Mirik if you are coming from Calcutta side.

Regards
Sutripta
Thank you Sutripta. I will check Mainak as well, Barsana appears to be expensive as its just for one night.
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Old 20th October 2012, 22:29   #115
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Originally Posted by ranjitp1

Barsana Hotel is a good option

http://www.barsanahotels.com/
Thank you Ranjit. I saw their site and it appears to be expensive given the requirement is only to get some rest and head to mirik. I will definitely consider this if I don't find a cheaper alternative.
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Old 22nd October 2012, 20:09   #116
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Please suggest a decent hotel in Siliguri which is close to the route to Mirik. I am unable find one on expedia.
Harry this can be an option http://vinayakonline.com/tariff.htm
The online booking does not seem to work, but location and tariff looks interesting.

another option.. looks even better, both location and tariff wise... parking is there
http://hotelsharda.in/location.htm

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sutripta View Post
I prefer Mainak mainly because it has parking on its own grounds. (Am sure Barsana also has parking on own grounds. Do check rates for both.) But it is ~5 Kms from Matigara, which is the turnoff for Mirik if you are coming from Calcutta side.
I see that the WBTDC Website has only AC standard bed option @1500 / night, that was 2 days back (for 2nd Nov '12). Today I saw the same room is @ 1440/ night. I'm still waiting... what is your verdict on booking advance? It seems if I walk in may be I'll get cheaper rates and better option than booking online. I stayed there last time in 2010 for a similar trip to Doars. Rates were around 800 INR for Non AC booked online. Searching for hotels after a tired long drive will be a bad turn off for my family, hence at a fix. Parking was good and peace of mind!

Last edited by arindam_xeta : 22nd October 2012 at 20:15. Reason: More information on hotel
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Old 22nd October 2012, 21:01   #117
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^^^
Being a govt. hotel, I don't think the receptionist has either the authority or the inclination to give a discount.
Mainak recently underwent a renovation. Maybe all rooms are now AC, but I doubt it. Why don't you give them a call? Pls. note AC rooms have a 'luxury' tax.
During holiday season, advance booking will give peace of mind.

Regards
Sutripta
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Old 22nd October 2012, 23:02   #118
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sutripta
^^^
Being a govt. hotel, I don't think the receptionist has either the authority or the inclination to give a discount.
Mainak recently underwent a renovation. Maybe all rooms are now AC, but I doubt it. Why don't you give them a call? Pls. note AC rooms have a 'luxury' tax.
During holiday season, advance booking will give peace of mind.

Regards
Sutripta
I agree advance booking is the right way to go. I will give them a call
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Old 28th October 2012, 20:10   #119
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arindam_xeta View Post
Gents, On on my way to North Bengal! Leaving on the 2nd of Nov returning on 11th Nov.

Route 1
=======
Belghoria Exp Way -> Durgapur Exp Way -> Burdwan -> Guskhara -> Bolpur (-> Ahmedpur)-> Purandarpur -> Suri - > Tilpara Barrage -> Messenjore dam -> Dumka -> Bhagalpur - > Purnia Dalkhola


Second route....continue till Bolpur through Burdwan as normal
Route 2
=======
Bolpur - > Ahmedpur -> Sainthia ->mayureshwar-> Fatehpur -> Rampurhat -> Nalhat-> Morgram....then as usual through Malda.

I'll be driving during the day... will try to start as early as possible.
I see that NH34 is being relaid, but not very good quality tarmac, hope it lasts the full winter. But not sure till what point this relaying work is going on, hence not trusting NH34.


I learnt from Rahul Da that the Jhargram stretch on either side of Dumka is not good... but not to the extent of being a turn off.

I'm also in a fix about the destination.
2nd Nov - Early Morning dep....reach siliguri asap and rest for the night
3rd Nov - reach Kurseong /reach kalimpong
4th Nov - stay at kurseong /stay at kalingpong
5th Nov - reach pelling .... not sure about the road condition
6th Nov - stay pelling
7th Nov - stay pelling
8th Nov - reach darjeeling .... not sure about the route
...please suggest
9th Nov - stay darjeeling
10th Nov - head home early morning

Feel free to alter the plan .... I'll prefer destinations with better roads over the actual popularity of the destination.
I have just returned from a trip of North Bengal And Dooars. Went to Siliguri with an open itinerary and booking for 5 days in WBTDC lodges. 23-24 and 26-27 in Siliguri ( Mainak Tourist Lodge) and 25th in Jaldapara.

On 23rd started at 5:00 AM and reached Siliguri at 7:00 PM with a break at Malda. All along route 2 as you have mentioned, my flat advice - AVOID IT.

24th went to Mirik, through a slightly twisted way. I was diverted to the Rohini road which goes to Kurseong by a slightly drunk and helpful gentleman. It is scheduled to be a Toll Road, and right now it is absolutely spanking new and beautiful, though the first 5-6 km before the start of the climb are bad.Then I had to come down Pankhabari road back to Hill Cart road and then proceed to Mirik. The drive down Pankhabari was scary to say the least.

25th we went to Jaldapara and NH 31C along Sevok, Oodalbari, Malbazar is in absolutely great shape until about 5 km before Jaldapara, and it is in a terrible shape for another 5-6 kms further on. We travelled along this route to Phuentsholing, where my wife did her shopping,.

26th , early morning jungle safari on elephants back, saw a couple of rhino, and started out from Jaldapara tourist lodge at 10:30 AM. With no fixed schedule we drove around the tea estates and the forests, Chalsa, Gorumara, went up a bit along Lava road and finally checked back into Mainak Tourist Lodge in early evening.

27th - the idea was to go up to Kalimpong and perhaps Gangtok time permitting, but my daughter absolutely put her foot down for a repeat trip to Mirik. So Mirik it was all day long.

28th - Started at 3:40 AM from Siliguri along Route 1 as you have drawn - My suggestion - take it both ways.

On the way back, barring a small stretch near Bagdogra, the roads are Excellent until Bihar- Jharkand Border. I think the place is called Hasdiha.

Then one needs to slow down because there are potholes which can be avoided and culverts which needs to be crossed with care because they are not flattened out.

About 7-8 kms before the Massenjore dam the roads become as smooths as Hema Malini's cheeks (quoting Lalu ji) and are that way all the way back home, except perhaps a small wrinkle or so - now and then.

Reached home in Behala, at 4;30 PM, includes a lunch break - about 1 hour.

Last edited by noidea : 28th October 2012 at 20:17.
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Old 28th October 2012, 22:46   #120
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Just while I was contemplating perhaps to commit the greatest mistake you saved me!! I was falling back to NH34 all through. I have an open itinerary just as your's, I'm slowly finalizing it.

Quote:
Originally Posted by noidea View Post
I have just returned from a trip of North Bengal And Dooars. Went to Siliguri with an open itinerary and booking for 5 days in WBTDC lodges. 23-24 and 26-27 in Siliguri ( Mainak Tourist Lodge) and 25th in Jaldapara.
I've not yet booked any lodges, will need to decide on that soon! What's your opinion?

Quote:
On 23rd started at 5:00 AM and reached Siliguri at 7:00 PM with a break at Malda. All along route 2 as you have mentioned, my flat advice - AVOID IT.
I'll fall back to Route 1 - Bhagalpur

Quote:
24th went to Mirik, through a slightly twisted way. I was diverted to the Rohini road which goes to Kurseong by a slightly drunk and helpful gentleman. It is scheduled to be a Toll Road, and right now it is absolutely spanking new and beautiful, though the first 5-6 km before the start of the climb are bad.Then I had to come down Pankhabari road back to Hill Cart road and then proceed to Mirik. The drive down Pankhabari was scary to say the least.
I'll drive through Rohini Road, in case I start with Kurseong. Which car your were driving?

Quote:
25th we went to Jaldapara and NH 31C along Sevok, Oodalbari, Malbazar is in absolutely great shape until about 5 km before Jaldapara, and it is in a terrible shape for another 5-6 kms further on. We travelled along this route to Phuentsholing, where my wife did her shopping,.
I'm planning to take NH31C all the way up to Kalimpong then to Gangtok!

Quote:
26th , early morning jungle safari on elephants back, saw a couple of rhino, and started out from Jaldapara tourist lodge at 10:30 AM. With no fixed schedule we drove around the tea estates and the forests, Chalsa, Gorumara, went up a bit along Lava road and finally checked back into Mainak Tourist Lodge in early evening.

27th - the idea was to go up to Kalimpong and perhaps Gangtok time permitting, but my daughter absolutely put her foot down for a repeat trip to Mirik. So Mirik it was all day long.

28th - Started at 3:40 AM from Siliguri along Route 1 as you have drawn - My suggestion - take it both ways.

On the way back, barring a small stretch near Bagdogra, the roads are Excellent until Bihar- Jharkand Border. I think the place is called Hasdiha.

Then one needs to slow down because there are potholes which can be avoided and culverts which needs to be crossed with care because they are not flattened out.

About 7-8 kms before the Massenjore dam the roads become as smooths as Hema Malini's cheeks (quoting Lalu ji) and are that way all the way back home, except perhaps a small wrinkle or so - now and then.

Reached home in Behala, at 4;30 PM, includes a lunch break - about 1 hour.
I got some updates that the road between Pattabari and Dumka were not good, in fact non-existent in certain parts (I think this part is between messenjore and Dumka). May be its been patched up recently! your timing on return leg was really good!

This update really will help me to finalize the trip now! I'll start concentrating beyond Siliguri!
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