Dooars - home of the wild
The foothills of Eastern Himalayas take form of a vast green forest area, namely Dooars, which is a home to numerous wild flora and fauna. The name derived from the word ‘duar’ which means door in local languages. Genuinely, the area serves a purpose of gateway to the far Eastern Himalayas, especially Bhutan, with 18 passages. Covering an area of 8800 sq km, the Dooars range shelters the whole districts of Jalpaiguri and Alipurduar and upper part of Coochbehar district of West Bengal along with some of Indian state of Assam.
The Dooars range is primarily famous for wide range of wildlife, especially one-horned Indian rhino and gaur, Indian bison. The national parks and wildlife sanctuaries are home to several more endangered animals like royal Bengal tiger, deer, bison, elephants, birds, plants etc. Such an ambience drags thousands of tourists from the whole world every year. Tourism is one of the main sources of income here along with tea and timber.
Places to visit in Dooars
Manas National Park
Manas National Park in Indian state of Assam contains a large forest area which has been announced as a UNESCO World Heritage Site, a Biosphere Reserve, Project Tiger Reserve and an Elephant Reserve. It is named after the River Manas.
Gorumara National Park
Among all the protected areas, Gorumara National Park was announced as the best in the year of 2009. Trees of Indo-Malaya ecozone, 50 species of mammals, 194 species of birds, 22 species of reptiles etc are key attractions here.
This is a deep, mysterious forest in Dooars range, which has been several times mentioned in local legends. Chilapata Forest offer golden opportunity to observe the flora and fauna, along with the Nal Rajar Garh and the bloodlike-liquid spilling trees around the fort.
Phuentsholling actually lies in the south Bhutan, along the border with Indian town of Jaigaon. This town is a major trading gateway between India and Bhutan. Apart from that, the place has large significance for cultural and architectural aspect.
Buxa Fort and Tiger Reserve
The tiger reserve in Buxa falls under the Alipurduar district of West Bengal. Situated along the border of Bhutan, it serves as a corridor for elephants between India and Bhutan. Visitors can also go for the historically important Buxa Fort and Mahakaleshwar Jyotirlinga Mandir.
Jaldapara National Park
The area of Jaldapara National Park provides excellent opportunity to those who love to study or take some photographs of the wildlife of Himalayan foothills region. Elephant safaris are arranged for the visitors here.
Mahananda Wildlife Sanctuary
A wildlife sanctuary between the river of Teesta and Mahananda is spread and elevated from 500ft altitude of the forests to 4500 ft altitude of Kurseong hills. Mahananda Wildlife Sanctuary gives shelter to several endangered species of animals, reptiles, birds, plants and trees.
Lataguri is a small forest village of Jalpaiguri and located outside the Gorumara National Park. This area is emerging like a town and a marvellous site for tourism. There is a Nature Interpretation Centre nearby that offers vast information about the flora and fauna of Dooars.
Chapramari Wildlife Reserve
Chapramari Wildlife Reserve covers an area of 960 hectares. In the year of 1998, this area was announced as a wildlife sanctuary by the Government of India. Teesta, Murti and Neora rivers flow and fertile the land.
Malbazar is a sub-divisional town of Jalpaiguri district. It is located in the eastern part of Dooars range. Tourists of Dooars find this place proper for accommodation and food while touring in the nearby forests, tea gardens, small hills, Balaji Mandir, Buddhist temple etc.