One of the key cities in northern West Bengal, Silinguri is a sprawling urban settlement. Although the city is a fast developing modern one with little tourist attraction in it, people travel to Siliguri since it serves as a base to explore Darjeeling, Kalimpong and Doars region in West Bengal, as well as Gangtok and other places in Sikkim. Singuri is also a good place for shopping or accommodation at the beginning or the end of a tour to this region.
Silinguri is located in the narrow corridor connection Northeast with the rest of India with Bhutan in the northeast, Bangaladesh in the south and Nepal in the west. Proximity to the international borders with Bangladesh, Nepal, Bhutan, and also China places Silinguri at a strategic significance. In respect of trade, commerce and tourist traffic, Silinguri occupies an extremely important position for Nepal, Bhutan and the Northeastern state.
Siliguri has a pleasant climate summers are moderate with a maximum temperature of about 40°C. Winters are cool and pleasant with a maximum of 15°C and a minimum of 4°C.
It is at Silinguri that the Darjeeling Himalayan Railway begins its remarkable journey to Darjeeling. Before the railway was built, a first class road, built by the government at a cost of £6,000 a mile, wound upwards to Darjeeling.
Siliguri Tourism Information
Gajoldoba on Tista Barrage
It is an hour's drive fom Silinguri through the Baikunthapur forest and will take you to Gajoldoba (25 km), an ideal place for bird watchers.
The place has been a boon to the migratory water fouls after a dam was constructed for irrigational purposes on river Tista. The reservoir, surrounded by dense forests of Baikunthapur, invites a large collection of water birds from Ladakh and Central Asia.
It is about 15km from Siliguri on Siliguri-Jalpaiguri highway, and is a lesser-known artificial water body. The Fulbari barrage on Mahananda, the most important river of Siliguri forms a huge marshy land which provides an ideal nestling place for migratory water fouls like Rudy shell, Mallard, open bull stork etc.
Shorea Forest Recreation Center
Just 15 minutes drive on National Highway No. 3 towards Gangtok lies a recently established eco-tourism centre - Shorea. The name has been derived from the Botanical name of Sal tree, Shorea Rubusta as the place is situated amidst the dense high Sal forests of Baikunthapur division of Mahananda Wild Life Sanctuary. The forest department here builds a unique tree top restaurant.
Recreation Center (Madhuban)
A popular picnic spot and lover's Point, Madhuban is 15km north of Siliguri on the way to Mirik-Siliguri highway. A park has been created on the natural environment of the Mahananda wild life sanctuary. A large number of city dwellers visit the park, which also holds a small zoo inside.