Sundarban

A Complete Travel Guide and Tips To Sundarban

A Little Background

Sundarban is listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its biodiversity. The biggest attraction of the Sundarban Delta is the protection of tigers under the Tiger Protection Act. Watching a tiger swimming in the water or just walking around will inspire you. This is a once-in-a-lifetime thing. Sundarban’s roots span West Bengal and Bangladesh. 

The Sundarban occupies an area of ​​10,000 km², 10 times the size of the city of Venice. About 4000 km² is in West Bengal and the rest of 6000 km² is in Bangladesh. It has 102 islands located in West Bengal, most of which are covered with forest. There are only about 50 islands inhabited by humans in the Sundarban. The entire Sundarbans Delta is accessible to tourists. You can get to the best wildlife viewing by boats and ferries. Most of the income of the local population is based on tourism, so it has developed considerably here. You will have an unforgettable experience paddling among the enchanting Sundari and other mangrove forests. Watching tigers at the zoo is fun, but have you ever seen a Royal Bengal tiger in the forest? You can feel his glory as he roams the area. Be careful and don’t take risks. Sundarban has special tours to see  Bengal tigers up close. All avid photographers visit the delta not only for the Sundarban’s nature but for other reasons. From wildlife photography to nature photography such as sunrises and sunsets, it’s a gorgeous photography hub. Sundarban offers the opportunity to take pictures of every moment of your stay. It is the supreme natural beauty. If you’re lucky, you might even catch a shoal of dolphins in the river.

Best time to visit

March to May: Summers in the Sundarbans National Park area is hot, humid, and uncomfortable. Most visitors and locals try to avoid this season to visit the park. Summer temperatures range between 30 and 42 degrees Celsius. The area is also experiencing water shortages this season. These temperatures are also accompanied by intense heat waves. All of these factors together make the animals, especially the tigers; take shade in the high trees which makes them invisible to the naked eye.

June to October: It rains heavily during the rainy season from June to September. Monsoon rains bring the delta to life after a sweltering summer. This is another famous attraction in the park, where mangrove forests thrive and delight the soul. Animals can also escape the summer heat and get relief from the summer with rainfall during this month. The temperature also drops to a comfortable 25-35 degrees Celsius. However, one of the biggest downsides to visiting Sundarbans National Park during the rainy season is that the river,  the main means of transportation to the park, is flooded with rainwater. It is not suitable to visit the park during the rainy season as this makes traffic and access to the parking area very dangerous.

November to February: Winter is the perfect time to appreciate the beauty of Sundarbans National Park. Summer and monsoons bring warmth and moisture, but the winter climate is very pleasant and gives pets a sense of security. This is the best time to explore the forest and enjoy the natural beauty of the area. It also means that visitors are more likely to spot animal and bird species when they leave the den. The famous boat safari is also possible, as the river is not flooded and therefore not dangerous. The temperature in winter is about 10 to 30 degrees Celsius, so it is doubly good for tourists because you can enjoy walking and outdoor activities without worrying about the weather.

How to reach

Air: Netaji Subhash Chandra international airport in Kolkata which is 129 km away is the nearest airport to Sunderbans. The airport is well connected to major Indian cities through regular flights by various carriers.

Rent a taxi from the airport and reach Sundarbans. You can approach it in a number of ways. Sonakhali via Canning or Bagna via Dhamakhali is the entry point to the Sundarbans tiger sanctuary. The entry point is from Namkhana, Raydigi, or Jharkhali via Canning/Basanti to reach the south 24th section of Parganas Forest on the west bank of the Malta River.  STR is located in Canning, Sonahali, and Bagna, and Western Sundarban Forest is located in Canning, Namkhana, and Raidigi.

Train: Sealdah is the nearest station to Kolkata and Canning is the closest to Sundarban. One of West Bengal’s major transportation hubs is Sealdha. You can then travel from different parts of India via Sealdah Train Station. then catch a local train to Canning in about 1.5 hours, then you can optionally take a safari from Canning. The nearest train station is in Canning, 48 km away. The nearest town, Gosaba, is 50 km away. Sundarbans are only accessible via river canals. There is a commuter train from Kolkata to Canning and road transport to Namhana, Raidiga, Sonahali, and Najat, Godkhali where Motor launch services are available for Sundarbans.

Note: Trains depart daily at 6:30 am, 7:42 am and 8:30 am. Then take a bus/car from Canning Station to Ferry Ghat in 1 hour. Arrive in Sajaneki by motorboat on the Gumti River from Godkhali Ferry Ghat. Now that you have arrived in Sundarban, call the hotel or boat you booked and arrive at your destination.

Boat rental from Sundarbans for a 1N 2D Sundarbans tour package costs Rs 20,000 (from Godhkhali to Godhkhali). The Rent of the boat depends on how long you stay.

The boat runs from 8:30 am to 4 pm on both days only. To rent a boat at Sundarbans, call +91 9903295920.

Car: The easiest and most convenient way to get to the national park is by car. For Sundarban tours from Kolkata, I recommend renting a car rather than bringing your own. This is because you have to leave to get to the area by boat from the port. To reach Sundarbans National Park, travel by Car, Bus, or Train. While we will arrive at Canning, then take a boat to Canning in Sundarbans for further travel to Gosaba. Kolkata to Canning distance 55.5km approximately. Kolkata to Gosaba distance 86.6km approximately.

64 km of road from Kolkata to Godkhali via Basanti Highway. You can book the nearest boat launching service, provider from Sundarbans. Kolkata is about 156 km away from Sundarban, so if you drive at a constant speed of 50 km/h, you can reach Sundarban in 3.13 hours. Travel time to Sundarban may vary depending on your car speed, or the vehicle being used.

Day by day plan

Day 1

Arriving at a hut on the banks of the Gumti River, the village will spend several days in peace. A beautiful landscape where anyone can feel ‘nostalgic’, such as yellow rice paddies, mud houses, and ponds.

10:30 AM: You can start the Sundarban jungle safari and head to the largest mangrove forest. In adventurous narrow creeks and  largest deltas, observe the following animals: 

  • estuary crocodiles
  • aquatic lizards
  • sika deer and many other wonderful birds

and, if you’re lucky, who knows if you’ve seen the Royal Bengal Tiger in its natural habitat? Breakfast snacks and lunch are prepared and served on board.

Continue your cruise from 1:00 PM to the Pakhir Island Jungle/Bird Sanctuary, located upstream of the Gumti River. Bird watching and  Serene atmosphere can be enjoyed here. You can also cruise deep into the Sajnekhali forest to spot wildlife.

lunch will be served between 1:30 PM – 2:00 PM

You go to Pakhiralay between 2:30 and 3:30 PM. Here, guests can tour the small island market and buy a variety of souvenirs, local fish, and more.

You will reach Jatirampur from 4 PM to 4:30 PM

5.00 PM: We will take a brief advent through the boat to the woodland complete with chirping birds positioned in Jatirampur chook sanctuary with the lovable enthralling view of `sunsets`. We will head again to the cottage at 6 pm (Afternoon snacks could be served at the boat or luxurious resort/cottages).

6:30 PM: Locals organize a cultural program of tribal dances. 

08:00 PM: Village chicken bonfire (only for winter season). 

09:00 PM: Dinner will be served at the resort itself.

Day 2

7:00 AM: Sit on the pier and enjoy the spectacular sunrise over the banks of the Dutta River with a cool breeze and hot coffee/tea.

9:00 AM: Start the tour on a luxury boat and visit the largest mangrove forest. 

A narrow creek in the Sundarbans Tiger Reserve. Lehman crocodiles, wild boars, Shikanaru, snakes, water monsters, beautiful birds, and Mizo. If you are lucky, you can meet the famous royal Bengal tiger along the way. Natural Habitat. We will stop at the lookout points of Sinehali, Sudhanyahali, and Dobanki camps to see the jungle and its inhabitants from a bird’s eye view. We follow a narrow creek along the five-point confluence called Panchamukhani. From this breathtaking viewing point, you can see all Bay of Bengals. 

01:30 PM: Lunch during the cruise. 

04:00 PM to 06:00 PM: Follow a narrow creek to the 5th confluence called Panchamukhani. From this breathtaking viewpoint, you can see all Bay of Bengals. 

07:30 PM: The cultural program is structured using a mythological performance “Mawanbi Vi Yatra” performed by local performers. 

09:00 PM: Upon arrival at the resort, dinner will be served at the resort itself.

Day 3

6:00 PM: Early the next morning, around 6:00 AM, the houseboat starts cruising towards the beautiful Burir Dabri deep in the woods. Before the start of the Bangladeshi Sundarban, you will arrive at Burir Dhabri, the farthest watchtower on the Indian side. The Raymangal River separates India and Bangladesh. From the Buri Dhabri Watchtower,  you can see Sundarban from Bangladesh as well as Sundarban from India. Sundarbans, Bangladesh is across the river. This full-day river cruise combines both a wide river and a narrow stream. The tour takes you back and forth between the small towns scattered around on one side and the Sundarbans National Park on the other. This side of theOn the way, you will pass the historic site of Marijapi. We will also drive on many remote uninhabited islands such as Satjelia, MollaKhali, Kumirmari, and more. This is the last location on the southeastern tip of Sundarban (near the Bangladesh border).

01:00 PM: Netidhopani Watchtower / Netidhopani Closure Take the boat safari to Netidhopani Watchtower in case of closure. A full-day cruise through the jungle park located deep in the Sundarbans tiger sanctuary. You can also visit Here is the 300-year-old Bonobibi Temple, believed to be the goddess of the forest and worshiped by all the villagers.

02:00 PM: A hot lunch is served on the boat during the return trip to the resort. You can Visit Sundarban Research Centre, Bay of Bengal Mohona, Kalash Beach, Kalash Camp with the overnight Stay on the Boat or Launch, or hotel.

Evening: In the evening, an invitation to the local village theater (Bonobibi Yatra) where villagers perform in their native language “Bengali”.

Arrive at Buridabriwatch Tower around 11:12 PM. The road to the tower is a thrilling adventure and adrenaline rush on the famous mud tracks. You will feel like you are walking through the lush Sundarbans forest to reach a wooden watchtower. From the tower, you can see the Raimagal River, which is also the international border of India and Bangladesh. Across this river, you can see Sundarban, Bangladesh.

 Start your journey back to the hotel (boats, resorts)

Around 01:00: Lunch on the way is served around 01:00 to 02:00. Tea/coffee is served between 04:30 and 05:30. In the evening, the houseboats return around 06:00 to 06:30 nightlight. Snacks are served approximately 06:30-07:30 and dinner is served approximately 09:00-10:00 PM.

Day 4

8:30 AM: Breakfast is served on site. (Free tea or coffee served) 

9:30 AM: You can take a trip to the nearby village to visit the tiger widow, nearby fishermen, and honey merchants and take a quick stroll through the village.

This could provide a perfect possibility to discover rural Bengal and its human beings from one of the remotest corners of it. You could additionally get to realize how tough it’s miles to make ends meet with the aid of using amassing honey from the jungle home of maximum ferocious tiger & tigresses withinside the world, fishing from shark & crocodile weighted down rivers, amassing woods from the jungle of maximum toxic lizards & snakes, their each day conflict to go effective rivers going through all odds of nature & its phenomenon like `Amphan`, `Aila`, flooding of the complete vicinity every year and lack of lives and cattle due to it.

Noon: Lunch is served whilst cruising on the boat. 

2.30 PM: We will head again from Pakhiralay to Gadkhali bidding goodbye to the remarkable jungle viz. the Sundarbans National Park & leaving in the back of its maximum foxy wildlife, and tough operating human beings. 

 5.30 to 6:00 PM: We will attain Kolkata.

Festivals

Sundarban doesn’t have much to celebrate. But whatever you celebrate, it is celebrated with love and happiness. The main public holidays in Sundarbans are:

  • Banbibi Festival

The Bonbibi festival is celebrated once a year, in January or February

This is the main festival of Sundarbans. This is only celebrated by those who have spent a long time in Sundarban. People associated with the forests of Sundarban. In English, Bonbibi means forest wife. She is important here as Sundarban is a place where you can see all kinds of wildlife. Nothing happens in Sundarbans Forest without her permission. She is a god and no one has ever seen her. But everyone believes she is. Protect and love everyone. Everyone knows that if you go into the woods without praying to her and asking her permission, there is no guarantee that you will return safely. 

So pray to her when you enter the Sundarban Forest. At certain times of the year, real festivals are held in honor of her. On this day, everyone enjoys and celebrates by wearing traditional costumes and playing traditional folk music. Many local cuisines are served, and people celebrate this holiday in a colorful and lively way.

  • Hilsa Ilish Festival

What’s the best way to enjoy the variety of dishes prepared by Illish on a Sundarbans tour? You can taste all the Bengal fish dishes without the painstaking cooking at home. Hilsa Festival is especially the Sundarbans food festival. These fish are abundant in the waters of Sundarban in August and September. During this time, locals go on vacation to celebrate the incredible amount of fish caught there. People from all over the world attend this festival. 

If you are traveling to Sundarban during this period, check the tour or Sundarban Package to see if this festival is included. If you do not come to Sundarban at this time and participate in this festival, you will lose a lot. You should attend this festival and have fun. 

Where to stay

  • The Houseboat life: Explore the world`s biggest mangrove wooded area with a highly-priced life in the serene waters. You get to enjoy nature and tranquillity at its first-rate, at the side of a hassle-free, comfortable, and highly-priced life. The Houseboats are geared up with first-rate facilities, providing site visitors a life, that they can by no means forget.  Houseboats are designed to preserve our site visitors` comfort, solace, and health as a major priority.
    • Party on Waters: Party on waters is such an incredible element to pay attention to. Yes, houseboats are usually on water and they provide you with a spellbinding sense. You live on water for such a lengthy and also you sense the vibe of the birthday celebration from within.
    • Get a Jungle Party to sense: The Jungle Party is something anyone seems ahead to. It is like an adventuring birthday celebration on the water with the jungle all around. How incredible the texture might be right!
  • Solitary Nook Resort: Located in Pahiralaya, Solitary Nook Resort is an ideal accommodation for honeymooners. The resort has all the amenities needed for a comfortable stay, and the hotel’s friendly staff is an added bonus. The resort’s ethnic and rusty hues make your stay even more enjoyable. For booking click here
  • Sundarbans Tiger Land Resort: is a framed green hotel. It is a super vicinity for the ones searching for peace of thought and for people who need to revel in the splendor of nature. The hotel is tastefully decorated and has a pond and garden. You can feel the atmosphere just by sitting by the window and looking at the city! For booking Click here
  • Royal Sundarban Wild Resort: Located in Jharkhali, Royal Sundarban Wild Resort is one of the closest resorts to the center of Sunderban. The location near the forest area gives visitors the opportunity to observe the wild animals up close. The lodge is located near a freshwater lake, which is home to many migratory birds. The surrounding natural beauty and exceptional service of the hotel make a stay at Royal Sunderban Wild Resort quite different from any other. For booking click here

Famous food options

Hilsa Fish: Hilsa fish is a famous food in Sundarbans, one of the specialties of Bengal. It can be made into a curry or fried Bhapa Elisha, which is a very tasty and light dish. Prepare the Hilsa fish by boiling it in mustard oil, turmeric, green chili, and salt. The spicy taste of Bengal is crazy and the freshwater fish makes the dish even tastier. Hilsa is considered one of the traditional Bengali cuisines and it is worth trying to include dishes made with Hilsa while touring the Sundarbans.

Chingri maacher malaikari: Another  special Bengali dish is chingri maacher malaikari. It is also a very popular non-vegetarian dish among Bengali people. Chingri mach, or shrimp, can be effortlessly observed withinside the freshwater rivers of Sundarban. This dish is readily available at Sundarban Tourism Resort. Shrimp is cooked in a delicious sauce, creamy coconut seasoned with cinnamon and green cardamom or Chota Ilish. Golda Chingri (large freshwater prawns) and Baghda chingli (tiger prawns) can both be used to make this dish and are readily available.

Must Have Travel Accessories:

  1. Rucksack option 1
  2. Rucksack option 2
  3. Neck pillow option 1
  4. Neck pillow option 2
  5. Neck pillow with eye mask option 1
  6. Reusable filter water bottle option 1
  7. Power bank option 1
  8. Power bank option 2
  9. Anti Theft Backpack with USB Charging Port option 1

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