A biodiversity hotspot in West Bengal, Dooars are located at the foothills of the eastern Himalayas; acting almost as a doorway to Bhutan. Dooars literally means ‘door’ in the local language. At an altitude of 1,750 meters, Dooars constitute of the plains of Darjeeling, the whole of Jalpaiguri and Alipurduar district.
If you’re in the mood for a quick getaway from Kolkata, Dooars is a great choice. It’s every bit scenic and serene, with the river Teesta flowing through it. Many other rivers flow through Dooars such as the Jaldhaka, Murti, Torsa, Sankosh, Dyna, Karatoya, Raidak, and Kaljani. The economy of this place is fully dependant on tea, tourism and timber. You’ll see acres and acres of tea estates here, and a visit is highly recommended to them. Don’t worry about being outdoors here; with the summers being short and mild, being out in the open is an invigorating experience here.
The most important forests of Dooars are the Gorumara National Park, Jaldapara National Park and Buxa Tiger Reserve. If you want to go a little off-beat, head to the other forest areas including Chapramari Wildlife Sanctuary, Neora Valley National Park, Khuttimari Forest, and Titi Forest. You’re in for a treat if you love wildlife; the forests of Dooars are home to some of the largest mammals. The most commonly sighted ones are: Asiatic elephants, rhinos, gaur, and the Indian bison. Other interesting wildlife include deer, reptiles and a diverse range of avifauna.
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Traditionally, the forests of Jaldapara has been a favourite among travellers heading to Dooars. However, in recent times, Gorumara forests have surpassed Jaldapara in terms of tourism infrastructure. Buxa forests too are quite a favourite, courtesy the largest forest area of the three.
The nearest airport from Dooars is in Bagdogra and the nearest railhead is in NJP. They’re both in the outskirts of Siliguri, which is the transit hub for this entire region.