A place known for its tranquil environment, peaceful vibes, Shantiniketan got popularity with the name of Nobel Peace awardee Rabindranath Tagore. No picture can do justice to the real beauty of Shantiniketan, therefore it becomes essential to visit this ethereal place that offers more than eyes can meet. Especially the folks seeking solace and a moment in bliss must not miss stepping into the little paradise on earth. The unique architectural buildings including Konark, Shyamali, Udichi, and Udayana captivate the eyes of visitors with its magnificence. Here is the Shantiniketan Tourism guide that can endow you with immense assistance in making your trip to Shantiniketan effortless.
History of Shantiniketan
It was a day of 1862 when Maharishi Debendranath Tagore, father of the legend writer Rabindranath Tagore found a tranquil place where he could meditate peacefully. Considering that place an adobe of peace, he renamed it Shantiniketan. Later on, people began recognizing it as a spiritual center where a lot of the populace used to gather for prayers and meditation, and then Debendranath Tagore also laid the foundation of an ashram in 1863.
In 1901, Rabindranath Tagore began a school in the Shantiniketan itself. The great writer Tagore had a vision about the world, he believed that a man in existence must be in perfect harmony with nature and therefore laid the foundation of a school. He named it "Patha Bhavana" which began with merely five students. On the contrary to the four-walled classroom, open-air classroom studies became the reality with the inauguration of this school. When Rabindranath Tagore was awarded Nobel Prize, the school got expansion into an International University that was named Visva Bharati. Now the university has two campuses, one is at Shantiniketan and another at Sriniketan that focuses on village welfare, adult education, agriculture, and cottage industries along with handicrafts.
Major Attractions in and Around Shantiniketan
1. Tagore’s Ashram
A place of great value, Tagore’s Ashram is situated in the Uttrayan Complex. When Rabindranath Tagore’s father arrived there, he built this Ashram. The manicured fields surrounding the house elevate its beauty. If one wants to catch glimpses of the great writer Tagore navigating life trails, then this old Bengali style house is the best pick to choose for traveling among West Bengal tourist places.
2. Upasna Ghar
Among the most breathtaking buildings of Shantiniketan, you can also count on Upasna Ghar as it is made of Belgian Glass. It is the reason that prayer hall is popular with the name Kanch Mandir due to its glass laden walls. Its classical style makes it one of the most wonderful places to visit in Shantiniketan.
3. Kala Bhavan
Built for promoting art among students, Kala Bhavan focuses on the development of artistic inclination among the patrons. The most fascinating part of this art wing is the eye-catching black and white visual Aztec pattern that can captivate at first glance. It lies in the proximity of the Viswabharathi Campus and is counted as one of the most visited Shantiniketan tourist places.
4. Poush Mela
When Maharishi Devendranath Tagore adopted Brahmo along with twelve other saints, an occasion was celebrated. On the same day, people still indulge in merrymaking with the grand celebrations of Poush Mela. Being a blend of different traditions and cultures, this fair becomes highly incredible and unique to visit. On the seventh day of the Poush month, the remembrance of the Brahmo adoption day is celebrated with full enthusiasm. If one visits there in December, the performances of students can surely be a treat of the eyes.
5. Amar Kutir
Right from printed clothes to leather printed bags, Amar Kutir showcases a huge variety of handicrafts made by the locals of West Bengal. This historical place of Shantiniketan lying in the proximity of the University gathers a huge number of buyers for its vibrant hand-stitched clothes and home décor items. It is typically a history museum that pays homage to numerous authentic artifacts that catch the attention of viewers.
A meditation of Rabindranath Tagore’s father, Maharishi Debendranath Tagore, Chattimtala welcomes the tranquil vibes. Maharishi advocated that meditation and introspection are the keys to world progress as well as success. One who seeks to immerse themselves in prayers must visit this tranquil place that is surrounded by serene eponymous trees.
How to Reach Shantiniketan in West Bengal
The adobe of peace, Shantiniketan always pleases and magnetizes the followers of Rabindranath Tagore or spirituality lovers. The distance of this place from the major cities like Delhi, Bangalore, Mumbai, and Chennai is about 1423, 1959, 2049, and 1752 respectively.
When willing to travel there by air, one must know that Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose International Airport (CCU), Kolkata is the closest airport to Shantiniketan. At walking distance from here, one can get hotels in Shantiniketan for a perfect stay.
From Bangalore: Board IndiGo or Air Asia flights from Bangalore Airport. The flight fares may vary around INR 3294-3378
From Pune: Board Air Asia India flights, Go Air flights, or Spice Jet flights from Pune International Airport. The flight price maybe anywhere around INR 6437-15579.
Here is a list of Indian cities from where flights are available to Shantiniketan in West Bengal
The railways are always considered the best method to reach Shantiniketan. The nearest station to Shantiniketan is the Bolpur railway station that lies at a distance of nearly 2 or 3 km. Afterward, one can easily get a cab, taxi, or auto-rickshaw to reach the desired spot.
From Karnataka: Board KSR Bengaluru New Tinsukia Weekly SF Express from Railway station of Karnataka and finally deboard at Bolpur Railway Station
From Hyderabad: Board Secunderabad Guwahati SF Expres from Railway station of Hyderabad and then deboard at Bolpur Railway Station.
As the place shares a good road connection with the other major cities of India, one can effortlessly opt for private or public transport buses to reach Shantiniketan.
Frequently Asked Questions about Shantiniketan in West Bengal
Q. Where is Shantiniketan located?
A. Shantiniketan is a small town located in the Birbhum district of West Bengal, India.
Q. What are some popular tourist destinations in Shantiniketan?
A. Some popular tourist destinations in Shantiniketan include Visva-Bharati University, Rabindra Bhavan Museum, Uttarayan Complex, Kala Bhavan, and Amrakunja Garden.
All-in-all the aforementioned West Bengal travel guide is surely going to be a perk for those who are planning to visit there in near future.