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Old 26th May 2015, 21:51   #496
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Default Re: Kolkata - Siliguri route via Dumka, Bhagalpur. Avoiding NH34

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Originally Posted by themagicclicks View Post
Great news for me, I had already decided as per feedback from two recent travellers gmhossain and mi2n, to follow the route I know, i.e. NH34 or SH7/NH34, since was not getting an exact time frame and some have had problems with loosing the path along the way, requiring a detour. But if you can help me on this, the exact guide/route to follow like you guided your cousin, I'd prefer to follow this different route since this route is more refreshing to the eyes and easier on the left foot than the NH34 route. Please guide as you feel is necessary.
The route exactly from Kolkata is:

Kolkata-Durgapur-Asansol-Deoghar-Sultangunj-Bhagalpur-Purnea-Kishangunj-Siliguri


Kolkata to Asansol is NH-2 and a good 4lane to drive on.

Asansol to Deoghar (Have heard roads are pretty good in Jharkhand)

Deoghar to Sultangunj to Bhagalpur (Roads are narrow little congested but not bad. Plan your trip in such a way that you cross Bhagalpur during 2pm-5pm as the town is very less crowded.

Bhagalpur to Purnea (Once you cross Bhagalpur and come on NH-31 you get superb marked broad single lane road till purnea)

Purnea to Siliguri (The road is mostly 4 lane except few kms while crossing Islampur. Roads are mostly good, just at few places after Dalkola the top layer has come off the road)

Don't rely entirely on GPS and keep enquiring from any by passer if any doubt.
And keep it in mind its a longer route, you can have a look at google maps before leaving. No regrets later.

Bon Voyage
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Old 27th May 2015, 09:22   #497
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I thought the route would be Kolkata-Bolpur-Suri-Massanjore-Dumka-Deoghar-Banka-Amarpur-Bhagalpur-Purnea-Dalkhola-Islampur-Siliguri. Distance would be about 720 Kms.
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Old 27th May 2015, 11:17   #498
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Default Re: Kolkata - Siliguri route via Dumka, Bhagalpur. Avoiding NH34

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Originally Posted by BlackPearl View Post
I thought the route would be Kolkata-Bolpur-Suri-Massanjore-Dumka-Deoghar-Banka-Amarpur-Bhagalpur-Purnea-Dalkhola-Islampur-Siliguri. Distance would be about 720 Kms.
That's the route to take if one wishes to avoid Panagarh.
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Old 27th May 2015, 22:51   #499
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Default Re: Kolkata - Siliguri route via Dumka, Bhagalpur. Avoiding NH34

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Originally Posted by themagicclicks View Post
Great news for me, ... But if you can help me on this, the exact guide/route to follow like you guided your cousin, I'd prefer to follow this different route since this route is more refreshing to the eyes and easier on the left foot than the NH34 route. ... Thanks for this info, although I have already had decided to follow gmhossain sahib along NH34, but if this is really true, then might apologise to him and take this route too
Don't worry! Just hit the tarmac and you would be richer in experience no matter which route you take.

Today we returned to Malda from our Dooars trip. We had started from Murti at 6 am and reached BP Dalkhola at 10 am. We had couple of tea breaks in between. However, we got delayed as we could resume only at 11:20 am after enjoying a delicious Brunch. This delay effectively meant we would face NH-34 congestion at its full glory. Surprisingly, first holed-up was on NH-31! Entire Purnea-bound carriageway was fully choked for a kilometer from the exit to NH-34. It took us close to an hour to simply get on NH-34. It took another 15 minutes at railway crossing. Then we lost another 30 min at Karandighi due to a broken truck and followed by another hour-long holed-up at Malda outskirt due to road-repairing work. We could reach home only at 6 pm.

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Originally Posted by Sheel View Post
Met two BHPians traveling. ...
Here are couple of pics that I couldn't resist to share!

Sheel and his Black Beauty
Kolkata - Siliguri route via Dumka, Bhagalpur. Avoiding NH34-img_4354.jpg

Sheel and yours truly at BP Dalkhola
Kolkata - Siliguri route via Dumka, Bhagalpur. Avoiding NH34-img_4351.jpg
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Old 28th May 2015, 12:32   #500
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Default Re: Kolkata - Siliguri route via Dumka, Bhagalpur. Avoiding NH34

I will be going to West Sikkim next month from Kolkata. Have decided on the following route till Siliguri :

Kolkata-Burdwan-Bolpur-Suri-Masanjore-Dumka-Deoghar-Banka-Amarpur-Bhagalpur-Kishanganj-Islampur-Siliguri.

Would request input or suggestion for better routes if any.

For Kaluk, I would be following the route suggested by gearhead_mait. It would be Jorethang-Zoom-Soreng-Kaluk. The same route was taken by mi2n recently.

Regards

Pawan
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Old 28th May 2015, 12:40   #501
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Default Re: Kolkata - Siliguri route via Dumka, Bhagalpur. Avoiding NH34

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Originally Posted by PapaBravo View Post
I will be going to West Sikkim next month from Kolkata. Have decided on the following route till Siliguri :

Kolkata-Burdwan-Bolpur-Suri-Masanjore-Dumka-Deoghar-Banka-Amarpur-Bhagalpur-Kishanganj-Islampur-Siliguri.

Would request input or suggestion for better routes if any.

For Kaluk, I would be following the route suggested by gearhead_mait. It would be Jorethang-Zoom-Soreng-Kaluk. The same route was taken by mi2n recently.

Regards

Pawan
Pawan, I can vouch that this route will be good roads through out. The distance would be a bit more though.
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Old 28th May 2015, 12:49   #502
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Default Re: Kolkata - Siliguri route via Dumka, Bhagalpur. Avoiding NH34

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Originally Posted by BlackPearl View Post
Pawan, I can vouch that this route will be good roads through out. The distance would be a bit more though.
Thanks for the prompt reply BP. I would prefer a longer cruise rather than a shorter one with obstacles. This should be 725 kms approx.
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Old 29th May 2015, 14:32   #503
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Default Re: Kolkata - Siliguri route via Dumka, Bhagalpur. Avoiding NH34

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Originally Posted by PapaBravo View Post
Kolkata-Burdwan-Bolpur-Suri-Masanjore-Dumka-Deoghar-Banka-Amarpur-Bhagalpur-Kishanganj-Islampur-Siliguri.

Would request input or suggestion for better routes if any.
Instead of Burdwan-Bolpur-Suri I would go Burdwan-Pangarh Darjeeling Morh-Ilambazar-Suri for the simple reason that the road from Bolpur to Suri is very circuitous, lots of bumps and too many locals trying to stop for chanda.

Panagarh is a little longer but perhaps worth the detour given that the road is nice.

If you really want to avoid Panagarh, after crossing Ajay head towards Ilambazar and take the ADB Road aka Panagarh-Moregram Road.

Last edited by Sudipto-S-Team : 29th May 2015 at 14:34.
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Old 29th May 2015, 14:47   #504
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Default Re: Kolkata - Siliguri route via Dumka, Bhagalpur. Avoiding NH34

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Originally Posted by Sudipto-S-Team View Post
Instead of Burdwan-Bolpur-Suri I would go Burdwan-Pangarh Darjeeling Morh-Ilambazar-Suri for the simple reason that the road from Bolpur to Suri is very circuitous, lots of bumps and too many locals trying to stop for chanda.

Panagarh is a little longer but perhaps worth the detour given that the road is nice.

If you really want to avoid Panagarh, after crossing Ajay head towards Ilambazar and take the ADB Road aka Panagarh-Moregram Road.
...only if the stretch of NH60 between Suri and Dubrajpur has been repaired now.
When I last travelled in January 2015, the NH60 stretch between Suri and Dubrajpur was horrendous. On the contrary, the same stretch from Suri onwards till Rampurhat was super smooth.
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Old 29th May 2015, 15:01   #505
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Default Re: Kolkata - Siliguri route via Dumka, Bhagalpur. Avoiding NH34

I guess the purnea, bhagalpur route would be the best for you Pawan, sans only two major headaches. a) Bhagalpur town itself, there's a shortcut as mentioned by Anirban (1100D) which I missed and next is the legendary Vikramshila setu ( luckily i didn't get stuck up in the jam, which is very frequent, and at times nightmarish). Balance I had major issues in the Dumka Bhagalpur stretch, roads were carpet bombed. I am sure they have made it alright.
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Old 29th May 2015, 18:27   #506
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Default Re: Kolkata - Siliguri route via Dumka, Bhagalpur. Avoiding NH34

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Originally Posted by me_sid View Post
I guess the purnea, bhagalpur route would be the best for you Pawan, sans only two major headaches. a) Bhagalpur town itself, there's a shortcut as mentioned by Anirban (1100D) which I missed and next is the legendary Vikramshila setu ( luckily i didn't get stuck up in the jam, which is very frequent, and at times nightmarish). Balance I had major issues in the Dumka Bhagalpur stretch, roads were carpet bombed. I am sure they have made it alright.
Thanks Sid Da. Did you take the Bounsi route from Dumka to Bhagalpur. If yes, then I believe it has lunar landscape. I am planning to go via Deoghar which I believe is a better route.

Regards,

Pawan
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Old 29th May 2015, 20:28   #507
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Default Re: Kolkata - Siliguri route via Dumka, Bhagalpur. Avoiding NH34

Deoghar-Banka-Sultanganj is definitely a much smoother route. This I got from someone from Pune who had gone up Dumka-Bhagalpur but came back via Deoghar. He said Dumka-Bhagalpur was terrible.
Regarding the bad road condition between Dubrajpur and Suri - I wouldn't know this. If that is the case then going through the narrower Bolpur-Suri is the only option.
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Old 29th May 2015, 22:51   #508
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Default Re: Kolkata - Siliguri route via Dumka, Bhagalpur. Avoiding NH34

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Originally Posted by Sudipto-S-Team View Post
Regarding the bad road condition between Dubrajpur and Suri - I wouldn't know this. If that is the case then going through the narrower Bolpur-Suri is the only option.
Dubrajpur and Suri is still in very bad condition. Input from a relative who travelled on this route 10 days back.
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Old 30th May 2015, 11:52   #509
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Default Re: Kolkata - Siliguri route via Dumka, Bhagalpur. Avoiding NH34

I have just returned from a trip to Bhutan. Drove up all along NH34 and returned by NH34 and SH7.

I started at 3:00 in the afternoon and reached Golden Park, Malda at 11:30 PM. Kolkata to baharampur was ok-ish. You get these lovely stretches of smooth roads where you drive along at a clipping pace and suddenly you have to slow down for a diversion that is cratered like something awful. After baharampur you drive along excellent 4 lane toll roads until a few kilometers before Farraka Barrage.

From Farakka to Malda you have very bad roads at the diversions, and the stretches of smooth roads are very few and far between. Don't drive along this route at night. Most, if not all, of the diversions are unmarked and everybody drives in high beam, even the motorcycles.

Next morning, from Hotel Golden Park, Malda we had excellent roads for about 30 odd kms, after which the same story started. drive on excellent roads for 3 minutes and than slow down to a crawl at the diversions and pray that you don't damage your vehicle.

At Dalkhola we were stuck for one and a half hours. And there after great roads all the way to Siliguri, patchwork repair in places and surface peeled of in places , but you can live with it.

On the way back, we took village roads to bypass Dalkhola, via Rampur, Chakulia and Botolbari. Decent roads, but I am not sure if you do actually save a lot of time. It takes about an hour from the time you leave NH 31 till the time you rejoin NH34 along these roads.

Stayed at Golden Park again for the night and started really early next morning to avoid the Kaliachok market rush. Took SH7 from Moregram. The first 10 odd kilometers were quite uncomfortable roads, potholes and local traffic. After it is mostly great roads all the way to Bardhaman. And of-course brilliant roads on NH2.

Had a load of fun in Bhutan, and the roads there are uniformly great.

Cheers.
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Old 30th May 2015, 11:59   #510
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Default Re: Kolkata - Siliguri route via Dumka, Bhagalpur. Avoiding NH34

And one more thing, there is this HUGE crater on NH31, just before Islampur, where the road changes from a 4 lane to a 2 lane with no divider. If you fall into it you will need 4X4 to get out, for sure. You will see a break in the divider of the 4 lane road where you can cross over to the other/wrong side just before the crater, but don't worry because the 2 lane starts in about 50 meters.

Sorry admins, I thought there is an auto merge feature. Sorry about the back to back post.

Last edited by noidea : 30th May 2015 at 12:03.
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