Bakkhali Tourism

Bakkhali is famous for

Review and Ratings (62)

Read 62 Bakkhali reviews with average rating of 3.8/5

Koushik Mondalratingratingratingratingratingrating4.3/5

6 reviews

Beautiful beach with clean and less crowded

Great place to take a short break from your normal routine if you are staying in Kolkata. One of the best place in West Bengal. It's a very pleasant beach and less crowded, clean beach. If you wish to avoid the hustle and bustle of Digha beach, then yes this is the right place. Unlike Digha beach, which is too much crowded, Bakkhali beach is quiet and silent. Anybody can relax, enjoy as their wish.

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Rajat Kotharyratingratingratingratingratingrating4.3/5

6 reviews

Cheapest and Closest Sea Beach to Kolkata

So friday evening I suddenly got so unnerved and tensed i could not think clearly. I knew I had to get out of the stress and de stress for a day or two. But the problem with the idea was getting tickets and booking hotels was going to be another stressful session. So suddenly while searching for places near Kolkata where we can go for relaxation bakkhali came up quite often. I researched this place but could not get any specific information apart from that it took 5 hours to reach there.

So now I immediately went online and looked up the options for traveling. There was 3 ways of going there.

First you could go by car and it takes 4-5 hours for the journey depending on the road and traffic condition. I did not have a car so that option was out.

Secondly you can go by Bus. WBSTC Buses go daily from Esplanade to Bakkhali. I went to the bus stand and I did not like the buses much which had less space between seats and to travel continuously for 5 hours in such a cramped style did not work for me.

Finally I settled for train since there were many timings for train and service was also good. Especially since I was going with my wife and 2 year old son I knew this would be a little bit relaxing. But for this I had to make sure to catch the early morning local train from Sealdah to Namkhana if I wanted to go in an empty train.

The earliest we could go was the 5:12 AM local from Sealdah to Namkhana on Saturday Morning and so accordingly I left my house near New Market at 4:10 am and reached Sealdah at 4:25 am. When I went to the ticket counter i asked for a ticket to Namkhana and it was Rs 25 per person. The ticket guy was very nice and seeing my kid he advised me not to take the 5:12 am train but rather travel to Lakhikantapur on the Lakhikantapur Local which leaves Sealdah at 4:30 am and reaches Lakhikantapur in 2 hours. He said this will be a very empty train and would not get crowded in the stations ahead also. We did that and reached Lakhikantapur at 6:25 and waited for the Namkhana Local from Sealdah which reached there at 7 am wondering why did he tell us to travel again in the Namkhana Local from there. When we boarded the train we found it to be a lot less crowded and after talking to another person who had boarded the train in Sealdah who had to stand for a long time in a coach packed with people i understood that this was the easier option for us.

We reached Namkhana at 8:20 am and got a toto from outside the station which took Rs 7 and dropped us off in the Ghat. We had to catch a boat which took 2 minutes to cross the river and Rs 2 in total per person for crossing.

Now after crossing the river usually buses were there for Bakkhali just on the other side but since a bridge is being made so they shifted the bus stand far and we had to take another rickshaw van which took Rs 7 again to go to the Bus Stand.

Once at the bus stand we took the bus which took Rs 16.50 per person to drop to Bakkhali. There are regular buses from there to Bakkhali every 10 minutes or so depending on the passenger volume. You can even go by Maruti Van near the bus stand where they take Rs 300-350 for Drop. Even Totos go who take same amount more or less depending on your negotiation skills.

We reached Bakkhali in 45 minutes and got off in the Bus Stand. It was 9:40 am then. The weather was lovely and cloudy so we enjoyed the travel. Road also is very nice but small in width.

Once we got down in the stand we had breakfast of Luchi Cholar Dal 1 plate and Frooti Tetra Pack for Rs 35 just opp the stand. It was fresh and yummy.

Then we started searching for hotels. I saw many hotels but most of them had very small rooms or unclean rooms. I finally settled on Chhuti Hotel which is just 5 minutes from the bus stand and got a good deal for an AC room at 1700. The room was huge and it had a balcony but view was of the road so nothing to see basically. AC was working fine and the entire room was clean and nice. Bathroom was also very nice and clean. Since we were pure Vegetarians they said we would not get much option outside so we ordered a Veg Meal and the manager promised us he would make it separately for us. The quantity of rice was generous and ghee was also poured in it generously. Paneer Aloo Subzi was also very tasty along with Fried Papad, Chutney and Chop. After this we left our bags in the room and headed for the beach which is just 10 minutes walk from the hotel and the view of the sea with very little people on it made all our efforts successful. My son had a very good time and enjoyed in the sea. We also hired 2 chairs for Rs 10 per chair per hour and it was wonderful sitting at the beach enjoying the fresh air. In the evening lot of Chaats counter open at the beach and you can have puchkas, papri chaat, bhel etc.

Next Day Morning we also visited the zoo near the bus stand maintained by Forest Department but could not see a single crocodile but managed to see lots of deers sleeping in the shade. Nothing else is there. They charged Rs 10 per person for entry.

After that we went on a sightseeing trip where we tied up with a Toto Driver and for Rs 500 he took us to 4 Points namely Henry's Point, Benfish, Frasergunj and Jambu Dwip and also dropped us off at Namkhana for our return journey.

We skipped Henry's Point since he said there is nothing there to see and then he said he would take us to Benfish and Jambu Dwip. Basically he just takes you to Benfish where trawlers unload fish and there you get charged Rs 4 for entry per person. Once you go inside you have to talk and negotiate with a trawler who will take you to Jambu Dwip for a 1. 5 hour to 2 hour journey where they take you near Jambu Dwip but do not let you get off there since they said its not permitted by the government. Its a good experience to travel the seas and experience the choppy waves but do make sure you take a big trawler because the small ones are slow and you get tossed around in the waves a lot. We had gone during Jowar Time so we faced lot of choppy waves but enjoyed the journey. However my baby puked since he had just had his meal 1 hour before so make sure you get 2-3 hours of gap after food before the journey especially during Jowar or High Tide. We negotiated with a big trawler for Rs 1500 and since there were 13 of us so we just had to pay Rs 115 each.

Also while going to Benfish he took us through a field full of huge Sunflowers and we had a happy session of photography there.

After all this we got into the toto went back to Namkhana and again crossed the river and took another toto and got off at the station and caught the 5:30 pm Sealdah Local which was a little crowded since that being Sunday but managed to reach Kolkata by 8:30 pm.

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Bakkhali Overview

Bakkhali is a seaside resort located in South 24 Parganas district of West Bengal. It is a Ganges delta island on the fringes of Bay of Bengal, forming a part of Sunderbans. Frasergunj and Bakkhali are the twin towns forming a single locality. A seven kilometre long beach joins Frasergunj with Bakkhali. The beach is suitable for driving or cycling.

Frasergunj is named after Andrew Fraser, an early 20th century Lieutenant Governor of Bengal, who is credited for discovering this place. Some local tales say that Andrew had landed here after some ship wreckage and he was helped to stay alive by locals. After regaining his health, Fraser started visiting this place regularly and converted it into a seaside resort.

Apart from its long beach, Bakkhali has many attractions - the windmills of Frasergunj is a sightseeing spot and so are the fishing harbours, local temples and mangrove forests. The only form of local transport is rickshaw van, but tourists can hire trekkers to move out of Bakkhali. Fishing is the primary occupation of the local population and there are fishing harbours at Frasergunj where tourists can buy local catch at cheap rates.

Bakkhali offers many places of attraction like the crocodile breeding centre, the Banabibi temple and nearby mangroves at Henry’s Island. The beach of Bakkhali is inhabited by millions of harmless red crabs which disappear in their holes as soon as they see someone near.

The nearest railhead to Bakkhali is Namkhana, which can be reached from Kolkata by rail. After reaching Namkhana, tourists would then need to cross the Hatania Doania River on a barge and reach the other side of the river to drive another 25 km to reach Bakkhali. Cycles, motorbikes, cars, buses and people are carried on these barges and it hardly takes five minutes to cross the river.

The most popular destinations near Bakkhali are Henry’s Island and Jambu Dwip. Henry’s Island can be reached within 20 mins from Bakkhali on a van rickshaw. It has a 100 metre long mud path through a dense mangrove forest opening up on a deserted beach. Jambu Dwip is a deserted island on the Bay of Bengal that can be reached by local ferry boats.