Mongpong

Why To Go

If all you need is to refresh your mind and rejuvenate your soul, in the lap of nature, then Mongpong is your place. Mongpong, a little village in the Kalimpong District, is nestled at the fringe of the Mahananda Wildlife Sanctuary, on the bank of the beautiful Teesta River. Set at the foothills of the Himalaya, Mongpong is blessed with serene landscapes. With rolling lush hills, dense forests, numerous streams formed by tributaries of Teesta River and several birds, Mongpong is a nature lover’s paradise. Mongpong is the doorway to Dooars.

Travel Tips

Monsoons should be avoided.

Things To Do

Bird watching is the best activity possible in the marshy regions which are an excellent breeding spot for the migratory birds from Central Asia and Ladakh. Pintail ducks, bar-headed goose, woodpeckers, owls, Poachard, Brahmini ducks, mallard, barbets, whistling thrush and various kinds of kingfisher are observed here. Visit the age old tea gardens- Washabari Tea Estate and tea gardens at Leesh. The imperial bungalows amidst lush green tea gardens provide an old world charm. The blue waters of Leesh River and the Leesh Bridge over it are enjoyable spots. Sit calmly by the river to watch the sunset as dusk comes over silently with only the sound of the flowing river. Odlabari and Damdim tea estates are nearby tea estates which can be explored. Odlabari is situated in between two rivers- Chel and Ghis. The blue sky with fluffy white cottony clouds, the cool breeze and the lust green tea gardens on rolling hills make the place magical. Take the shady forest trails through the Sal Forests of Mongpong and breathe in the fresh air to rejuvenate the body and the mind. The chirping of numerous unknown birds and the pleasant chorus of crickets that sounds like temple bells make a soothing music. The iconic Coronation Bridge or Sevoke Bride, 4 kilometers from Mongpong, is an important place to visit. Surrounded by forested hills of Mahananda Wildlife Santuary, the historic arch bridge stands over the gushing Teestha River. This bridge was built in 1941 and was named ‘Coronation Bridge’ after the coronation of Queen Elizabeth in 1937. NH31 runs through the bridge connecting Jalpaiguri and Darjeeling districts. Drive to Kalijhora, 8 kilometers from Mongpong, to have a panoramic view of the vast Teestha Basin. Kalijhora is a lovely village, famous for being a shooting spot to super star Rajesh Khanna’s movie years back. Do not miss the Mongpong Nature Recreation Centre for informative knowledge on the flora and fauna of the Mahananda Wildlife Sanctuary. Adventure seekers love trekking to Ponbu, a small Himalayan Hamlet, situated on the trek route from Samthar village to Purbikhola. Ponbu is 8 kilometers from Samathar which is around 40 kilometers from Mongpong. Ponbu is popular for adventure tourism. Nezeok Reserve Forest in Ponbu is home to varieties of birds. You can explore the banks of Rivers Teestha and Rilli. For some thrill you can also try the hand pulled ropeway to cross the Teestha River, like the locals.

Getting Around

All the places can be driven to. One can hire a car for site seeing.

How To Reach

FLIGHT

Bagdogra Airport to Mongpong is 37 kilometers and takes around 1.5 hours. Cabs need to be hired from the airport.

TRAIN

New Jalpaiguri Junction (NJP) is the most popular and busy station with easy availability of vehicles to all places across North Bengal. Mal Junction Station is ideally the closest to Mongpong.

ROAD

It is less than 30 kilometers from Siliguri and can be reached in less than an hour from Siliguri via NH31. From Kolkata one can reach Mongpong by 13 hours. The distance between Mongpong and Kolkata is 580 kilometres. If one is driving from Kolkata, he will have to take NH21 from the airport and merge to NH27. Taking a night halt at Malda Town is advisable. From Siliguri finally NH31 leads to Mongpong.

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Surrounding Attractions

The beautiful Chalsa comprising of Gorumara National Park, Chapramari Wildlife Sanctuary, Matiya Dam and the beautiful Murti River is easily accessible from Mongpong. Jaldapara National Park is also near to Mongpong as it is the doorway to Dooars. Samsing, Suntalekhola, Jhalong, Bindu (Bhutan Border) are easily accessible too. One can drive up the hills to Kalimpong and Lamahata. These are some amazing hill stations with the view of majestic Kanchenzunga.
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