Bishnupur (also called Mallabhum after the Malla rulers of this place ) is famous for its Terracotta temples built by then ruling Malla Kings during 17th and 18th century. Archaeological Survey of India maintains most of the sites of Bishnupur. Since 1997, the temples of Bishnupur is on UNESCO World Heritage Site‘s Tentative list. You can hire a rickshaw from railway station or bus stand to get around the town or simply walk as the temples are very nearby to each other. The ASI has a single and only ticket counter in Rasmancha (Rs.15 for Indians), the ticket issued is for all the temple sites in town, so it’s better to start with Rasmancha, the other temples are in walking distance. Other attractions include Terracotta crafts, Baluchari Sarees. Bishnupur Mela is held in December every year to mark the end of harvesting season, exhibition and sale of unique handicrafts, sculptures, hand woven and printed cloths and musical performances. Bishnupur Gharana is famous for their classical music. It is recommended to go around winters as summers are quiet hot.
How to reach from Kolkata?
By bus: WBTC, SBSTC and several private buses ply from Kolkata to Bishnupur and back. Night Services are operated by some private operators. Some timings of state buses are given here. However, it is advised to check before you travel as timings are subject to change.
By road: Distance from Kolkata to Bishnupur is 150 kms.
From Kolkata, take the 2nd Hoogly Bridge to Durgapur Expressway/Kolkata-Delhi Highway. From Dankuni, take a left turn and after 3 hours of driving via Chanditala, Arambag, you will reach Bishnupur. It will take around 4 hours and the stretch through Joypur forest is quiet scenic with forest on both sides.
Attractions in Bishnupur
- Shyamrai Temple
- Jor Bangla Temple
- Radhashyam Temple
- Lalji Temple
- Madanmohan Temple
- Dalmadal Cannon
- Jor Mondir
- Nandalal Temple
- Radhagovinda Temple
- Radhamadhav Temple
- Kalachand Temple
My Experience in Bishnupur
I boarded the bus from Kolkata at 06:30 and got down at Exchange Office Crossing at around 11:00. As I was hungry I grabbed a meal at a nearby eatery, from where Rasmancha was 5 mins. walking distance. I choose Rasmancha as my first destination as the only ticket counter for all temples is here. I got my tickets done and entered Rasmancha.
Exiting Rasmancha, I walked the road northwards, took the first right, then taking a left, Gumghar was seen. Opposite Gumghar the narrow lane went to Shyam Rai Temple. After Shyam Rai Temple, I headed north and visited Jor Bangla Temple, Radhashyam Temple, Lalji Temple and Gardarga situated one after another like in a row.
From Gardarga, I walked up to the main road, and turned right to Mahadeb sweet shop towards Madanmohan Temple. A five mins. walk reached me to the temple.
From Madanmohan Temple, I started walking south, crossing the main road, walking another 20 mins. took me to Dalmadal Cannon.
Walking south from Dalmadal Cannon, taking the first left, I reached Jor Mandir Temples. It consisted of 3 temples in a complex. After Jor Mandir, I walked eastwards, and visited Nandalal Temple, Radhagobinda Temple, Radha Madhav Temple and Kalachand Temple situated one after another in a row.
After visiting Kalachand Temple, I headed towards my last destination Lal Bandh which is a lake located on the eastern fringes of Bishnupur.
After Lal Bandh, I walked up to the railway station to board the train back to Kolkata, as there weren’t any bus that time. It took 4 hours 30 minutes for me to get around the spots in the town by walking. I went to board the Rupashi Bangla Express back to Kolkata, but the previous train was running 1 hr 30 min., so I boarded Aranyak Express upto Santragachi Jn.
My Expense: Kolkata to Bishnupur via WBTC bus: Rs. 100
Food: Rs. 100; Get around: Walking
Bishnupur to Santragachi by Superfast category train: Rs. 95
Total: Rs. 295
Trip to Bishnupur can be done in a single day from Kolkata, but if it becomes hectic, you can stay for a day or two and visit the nearby places listed below
Nearby places to visit
Accomodations in Bishnupur
There are many hotels and lodges in Bishnupur town to choose from. Some I have listed below:
- Bishnupur Youth Hostel
Enquiry and BookingCounter: 142/3,A.J.C Bose Road,Moulali,Kolkata-700014,
PH- 033 22653231.
- Bishnupur Tourist Lodge
Ph. No.: 9732100950
- Annapurna Hotel
Ph. No.: 7407504000, 7407505000.
- New Mukherjee Lodge
Ph. No.: 8250623299, 9614472230
- Udayan Lodge
Ph. No.: 03244 252 243
- Monalisa Lodge
Ph. No.: 3244 252894, 9434115177, 8145684141
- Hotel Laxmi Park
Ph. No.: (3244) 256353/256377.
- West Bengal Tourism Bishnupur: https://wbtourismgov.in/destination/place/bishnupur