Purulia Tour Guide- Detailed Itinerary

Purulia Tour Guide


Purulia is one of the most visited places in West Bengal and this Purulia detailed tour guide will provide you with all the details you need to travel to Purulia. Purulia is also known as "Lal Matir Desh" which means land of red soil in Bengali. Purulia greets travelers with lush green meadows & forests, hills, lakes, and its natural beauty along with rich history. Not known to many Purulia has played an important role to carve the history of Bengal. Purulia is also rich in tribal culture and will keep you mesmerized with its rustic beauty.



    When to Visit Purulia?

    We traveled to Purulia after staying at home for more than 10 months in the month of December. Winters are the best time to visit Purulia. The tourist season starts in November and ends in March/April for Purulia. 

    The best time to visit Purulia is from early March when the Palash flowers blooms and Purulia transforms into a different beauty. Purulia is filled with Palash trees and when they bloom the entire land looks reddish in color due to the color of the flower. The trees look as if on fire with their red-colored flowers in full bloom.


    Purulia when to travel
    (Source)


    How to reach Purulia?


    The fastest way to reach Purulia is by car which will take you approx 7 hours. The road condition is really great and shouldn't be a problem to drive. The road trip to Purulia will also treat you to beautiful views of the countryside through jungles and paddy fields.

    You can also take a train to Purulia from Howrah Junction. Purulia has its own station. You can check the train timings at the IRCTC website. The train journey will take you approximately 9-10 hours to reach Purulia from Kolkata.

    What is the History of Purulia?

    There is hardly any written history of Purulia however one can find the mention of crushing the Varendra rebellion by Pala King Rampala in the poem Ramacharitram written by court poet Sandhyakar Nandi.

    It is also believed that a major trade route passed through Purulia in the 10h -12th Century. One can find the influence of Jainism in Purulia. There was a huge settlement of Jains during this time Purulia and one can find Jain temples in Purulia. which were built in Oriya Deul Style Architecture. The temples were built of stone and bricks.

    One of the important areas in the Purulia district is Garpanchkot. The name is derived from two words Gar ( Fort) & Panchkot ( Panchkot Raj). So basically the combination of two words became Garpanchkot which is the fort of the Panchkot kings. We have heard of the river Damodar, which gets its name from king Damodar Sekhar. He established Panchkot Raj during 90 AD along with the help of Sardards of Jhalda. He kept on expanding his kingdom. The name Panchkot comes from the 5 clans of the areas.


    How many days are required to Travel to Purulia?

    4 Days 3 Nights are enough to cover all major places of the Purulia district. However, if you have a lesser number of days you can choose and pick the places which you want to visit in Purulia.


    Purulia Tour Guide - Detailed Itinerary of Purulia

    Purulia has two major circuits for traveling. Circuits are basically routes which one can follow to travel. If you ask any tour agent regarding travel to Purulia they will talk about these circuits.

    However, during my travel, I didn't follow any of these circuits and made my own route keeping in mind two important things :

    a. Important places that depict the true history and natural beauty of Purulia

    b. Places which can be covered in 1 day without getting too tiring and which can be covered in 5-6 hours

    I created two routes which I followed for two days to cover Purulia and the majority of its tourist and not so touristy places.


    First Circuit 

    Garpanchkot, Baranti, Joychandi Pahar, Telkupi, Banda Deul Tour Itinerary

    This is one of the first two routes in Purulia which covers Garpanchkot, Baranti, Joychandi Pahar, beautiful & submerged temples of Telkupi & Banda Deul.

    If you don't want to read, and if you want to see the places how it looks, we have got you covered. You can check the below Youtube post for the detailed itinerary of the Garpanchkot area and also covers the history of the place.



    The following is the detailed tour plan of Garpanchkot, Baranti, Joychandi Pahar, Telkupi, Banda Deul. It will take you approximately 6 to 7 hours including travel time. If you have extra days in hand you can always split this route into two days. However I suggest, it can be easily covered in 1 day as given below.


    Garpanchkot

    Garpanchkot or Garh Panchkot as mentioned above was derived from two words Garh & Panchkot. Garh Panchkot was under the rule of the Singh Deo Dynasty of the Panchkot Raj in the Purulia district. Here you can see a group of temples and the ruins of the fort of the Panchkot Raj. 

    Garpanchkot Travel Guide

    Garh Panchkot Travel Guide



    The main temple which you will see is the Panchratna temple which is accompanied by the Jor Bangla architecture. You can see the terracotta work on the temple walls however most of it has vanished now. The temple has been restored and is one of the temples which is in the best condition in this area. 


    Garpanchkot Fort

    Garpanchkot



    The dynasty was rulers till the 18th century. This is the time when Marathas is better known as Bargis attacked and looted the Panchkot Raj. The king fled away and it is believed his 17 wives committed suicide by jumping into a well. 

    You can see the ruins of the fort and other temples in this area. The temples and the ruins of the fort can be seen within walking distance ( approx 500 mts) from the Panchratna temple.

    Baranti ( Boronti )

    Baranti or Boronti as it is called in Bengali in Purulia district is a man-made reservoir caused due to building of the dam. In the distance, you can see the hillocks. Baranti lake in Purulia is known for its scenic beauty.
    The lake looks stunning during the sunset and the sunrise.

    You can spend some quiet time here enjoying nature at Baranti Lake in Purulia.

    Baranti Travel Plan



    Joychandi Pahar

    If you have seen the movie Hirok Rajar Deshe by Satyajit Ray then you will be able to recognize Joychandi Pahar in Purulia.Its a small hillock and from the top you get beautiful views of the area. Around 500 stairs will take you to the hilltop. On top, you will find a temple.

    But if you ask me temple and views are not the most interesting thing on Joychandi Pahar. You will find a Semaphore tower once you climb approx 400 stairs. These are Semaphore towers were used for signaling when the telegraph and telephony were not invented. These giant towers were made of brick and were built in a single line from Calcutta to Chunar ( a distance of total of 690 kms). 

    Semaphore of West bengal

    Semaphore Tower

    Joychandi Pahar Purulia



    The semaphore towers used moving arms and people would move the arms to send out the signals. The position of the arms along with a crossbar on the semaphore tower indicated a signal and the same signal would be relayed from one tower to the other.

    These semaphore towers were built by the British East India Company. However sadly these semaphore towers in Purulia are not taken care of and are in dilapidated condition.

    Para Temples

    Para is a small village in the Purulia district and is off the touristy route. You will not find tourists in this place. It is assumed that Para served as the capital of Panchkor kings. You will find only three temples in dilapidated condition in Para.
    The Para temples in the Purulia district has beautiful stonework on them, however, most of the stonework is lost now. Still, you will be able to see the stonework which will remind you of the beautiful temples of Konark and Khajuraho.

    Banda Deul in Purulia

    The temple in Banda Deul is the most preserved temple in Purulia and the architecture of the Banda Deul will keep you mesmerized.
    Banda Deul temple was made in the 11th century and is not clear whether it was a Hindu or Jain temple.Banda Deul is made of sandstone and is made in Rekha style of triratha variety with beautiful architecture. You will find an amalaka on its top.

    Banda Deul temple

    Banda Deul temples


    On the door, you will find a carving of boys blowing the horn. Watch out for the water outlet shaped in form of an elephant head at the bottom of the temple. There was a mandapa that was supported by pillars however you will find only the pillars now.

    Banda Deul


    Telkupi Submerged Temple

    Telkupi derives its name from the kingdom of Tailakampa. At one point in time, Telkupi in Purulia consisted of the largest number of temples. However, most of the temples got submerged when a dam was built in 1957 and part of the history was forever lost.

    Now you will be able to see a half-submerged temple from far. If you can catch hold of a fisherman then probably you will be able to go near the temple or else you have to satisfy yourself from far.

    Telkupi Purulia Temples




    Second Circuit

    Deulghata Temple, Khairabera Dam, Ajodhya Pahar, Bamni Falls, Marble Lake, Charida Chhau Mask Village


    This route is in the heartland of Purulia and you will be welcomed with beautiful village & tribal scenes. You will be enthralled with the rustic charm of Purulia. Also here you will be able to witness the raw nature through waterfalls, hills & lakes.

    The total duration will be 5-6 hours including travel time. One word of caution keeps on asking the locals about the routes as Google map doesn't show the best driving routes always. In one of the instances, we entered a tribal village where there were no roads and we got stuck at a dead end. However, I didn't complain as we got to see the beautiful tribal village.
     


    If you want to witness the beauty of this route through video then check out the below Youtube video which we have made especially for you.


    Now, let us start exploring this route, and let me take you through a beautiful journey of Purulia.

    Deulghata in Purulia


    Deulghata means “the land of temples” in Bengali, and it is one of the rich heritage sites in Purulia. The temples trace the history of Jainism in Purulia and West Bengal. In earlier days there were three temples in Deulghata however in 2002 one of the largest temples collapsed. Deulghata is located on the banks of the river Kasai.

    Deulghata Purulia


    Deulghata Travel plan



    The two surviving temples follow the Oriya Rekh Deul architecture. You can see elaborate brickwork on the temples. Notice the serpent style artwork on the walls of the temple. The door of the temples is triangular in structure. You can find Shiva Lingams inside the temples, however during the 11th century probably the Siva Lingam was not there.

    Once you see the temples don't miss seeing the idols of Durga & Chandi which are kept in three rooms outside the temples. Check the above video to see the idols in Deulghata.

    Deulghata IdolsDeulghata

    Deulghata



    Once you get out from the temple complex, on the right-hand side you will be able to see the Kasai river. Few steps will take you on the banks of the river and will keep you mesmerized with its beauty.

    Khairabera Dam

    Khairabera is a beautiful manmade lake formed due to the construction of the dam. It will mesmerize you with its beauty nestled among the hills on all sides and jungles.

    If you want to enjoy some time on your own at peace then head to Khairabera Dam in Purulia.  There are few staying options near Khairabera Dam and you can choose to stay there to have a peaceful holiday.

    Charida Chhau Mask Village


    If you love the dance form of Chhau then you should visit the Charida Chhau Mask village. You can see the Chhau mask in the making and can also help the local tourism by buying few masks. The cost of the masks starts as low as Rs 200.

    Chhau Mask Purulia



    You can also see intricately designed chhau masks even made with peacock feathers.

    If you are not aware of how the Chhau dance is done then check the video below.



    Bamni Waterfall

    This is one of the most beautiful waterfalls in Purulia. Bamni waterfall falls in three stages and if you have to reach the main part of the Bamni falls be ready to go down and climb some 500 stairs.

    However the sound of the water amidst the trees and rocks will freshen you up and will make you forget the tiredness from climbing 500 stairs.

    Bamni waterfalls



    Bamni falls in Ajodhya Pahad in Purulia shouldn't be missed at all.

    Marble Lake & Echo Point

    Take a break at the Marble Lake in Purulia. This marble lake is situated among the tribal belt in Purulia and is a little offbeat destination. Locals also call it Blue Lake due to blue colored water of the lake.

    Marble Lake Purulia



    Stand on the top of the Marble lake and shout at the top of your voice, soon you will be able to hear your own echo. Its really fun to hear your own echo. My suggestion visit during the sunset as the reflection on the water looks like a sheet of gold laid out in front of you.

    Where to Stay in Purulia?

    The following are the places where you can stay while traveling to Purulia. Well, these are not sponsored links and I personally loved the places when I was searching for my stay in Purulia.

    1. Kushal Palli Resort - www.kushalpalli.in
    2. Panchet Residency. This is where I stayed - www.panchetresidency.com
    3. Khairabera Eco Adventure Resort - https://ecoadventureresorts.com/
    5. WBFDC Nature Resort - This is one of the best properties - https://wbfdc.net/

    Let us know in the comment section below if you would like to get any more information to travel to Purulia. Would be happy to help with any information.

    If you are in a hurry and would like to Pin it or Later read then PIN the below image.


    Charida Chhau Mask Village Purulia

    Chhau Mask Purulia







    Shoestring Travel

    6 comments:

    1. Replies
      1. Thank you Sumit... explore Purulia now and let me know if you need any help

        Delete
    2. Such a vivid writeup. Our bengal has so many hidden gems to explore , only need little care and promotion. Well done

      ReplyDelete
      Replies
      1. Thank you Pamela...yes Bengal needs to be explored in much more depth...lots of hidden gems in west bengal which people hardly know about

        Delete
    3. Great and informative writeup with vivid description.

      ReplyDelete
      Replies
      1. Thank you so much... thanks for your inspiring words

        Delete

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