Jhilimili means to sparkle or twinkle in Bengali. And the place about 15 km from Mukutmanipur in Bankura district of West Bengal stays true to the meaning. Jhilimili is often referred to as the Darjeeling of South Bengal. That’s because on your way from Ranibandh to Jhilimili, dense natural forests with micaceous soil line on both sides of the road. Now, it’s that soil that lends all the sparkle to the town.
Also, since it’s mounted on a hillock, and with all the thick forests of varying height, and the sun-beams flickering through them; there’s a certain charm that envelops the place. If one can get over the abundant natural beauty, there’s much to do in terms of activities and sightseeing here as well.
With river Kangsabati flowing by the side of this hill, the banks make for a perfect picnic spot. There’s even a watch tower located on the bank of the river offering mind-blowing, sweeping panoramic views of the surrounding. For those who like to take strolls amidst nature and hear the call of the birds, Jhilimili is as idyllic as it can get.
There are small tribal villages scattered in and around the forest area giving a peek into the tribal culture of the area. For those interested, it’s a great place to interact with the locals, learn a thing or two about them and share a perfect meal together. The annual festival of Tusu Parab, where they worship Goddess Tusu is also a major attraction in the region. The festival is celebrated every year on the bank of River Kangsabati during mid-January.
The best time to visit Jhilimili is during the winter months of November to February. Mid-January is, however, great due to the festivities surrounding the festival because you get to see some tribal folk, song and dance. Trains run from Howrah, Santragachi and Shalimar to Bankura. It takes around three and a half hours to reach Bankura by train. Buses then ply from Bankura and Mukutmanipur to Jhilimili via Khatra.