Gangani Road Trip via Kamarpukur and Jairambati - Part 2
|Gangani - The Grand Canyon of West Bengal|
By the time we reached Gangani, it was 3.00 p.m. Though the rains had stayed away for almost the entire day now, the sky was still gloomy and there was no sign of the sun yet. The moment we entered Gangani, the landscape that welcomed us was unbelievable. It’s hard to believe that something so interesting, beautiful and different, in terms of topography, could exist in this part of the state.
|Beautiful Gorge - Gangani|
|Hard to believe that something so interesting could exist in the plains of Bengal|
Gangani, (pronounced 'Gongoni'), located in Garhbeta, a small town in West Medinipur district, West Bengal, is one of nature’s amazing anomalies. The plain land that marks the area is interrupted by tall gorges formed over many, many years of soil erosion and movement of the Silabati River. Locally, the wide red soil gorge is known as 'Gongoni Danga' or 'Gongoni Khola'. The beautiful gorge has stunning similarity with the Grand Canyon of Arizona, USA. That’s why it’s called the Grand Canyon of Bengal. It’s a place that showcases an amazing combination of sandstone hills, thick forests and fertile riverbeds. During the rainy seasons, the Silabati River flows through the gorge, thus making it a breathtaking sight. And during the summer months, when most of the water dries up, you can cross the river on foot as the water is not too deep during that time.
|During the rainy seasons, the Silabati River flows through the gorge|
Recently, the Government of West Bengal constructed a staircase at the highest point of the gorge, which goes down near the Silabati River. While it looks little odd and disconcerting to have a piece of concrete running all the way down the surface of the gorge, it does help people who are not used to walking on bumpy or uneven terrains.
|Experiencing the beauty of the gorge|
|Locally, the wide red soil gorge is known as 'Gongoni Danga' or 'Gongoni Khola'|
Besides Gangani, Garhbeta has lot to offer to travelers. It is a beautiful place with lot of explore and experience. During the ancient times, it was the kingdom of the Bagdi Kings in which and there was a huge fort with huge walls. However, no trace of these in the present settlement. The place is also famous for many old temples and ancient structures. Unfortunately, due to lack of time we could not cover a lot of these spots in Garhbeta. We left the place with a promise to visit again.
How to reach
Just like us, you can choose to drive down to the Grand Canyon of West Bengal. From Kolkata, you can drive via Santragachi, Arambagh, Goghat and Kamarpukur, Jairambati to reach Garhbeta. Or, if you visit Bankura by car, you can easily reach Gangani. It is 37 km from Bishnupur. There are frequent trains available from Bishnupur too and the journey time is close to thirty minutes.
From Kolkata, you can board the Rupashi Bangla Express from Satragachhi Station at Howrah and get off at Garbeta Station. The journey time is close to three hours.
Where to stay
There are no hotels or resorts in Gangani. However, accommodation option is available at the nearby towns of Garhbeta and Bishnupur.
Click here to read: Gangani Road Trip via Kamarpukur and Jairambati - Part 1