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A Super Rainy visit to Diamond Harbor

There are not many places you can go to during this lockdown.

There are friends' places you can go to. And relatives. 

If you wish to go further and visit more distance places (if you are residing in a city) - things become a lot more difficult. 

One - there is the threat of the virus.

Second - there is a psychological issue that works. Why go so far when we can just chill at home?

The point is that there is only so much 'chill' a person can do at home, especially since the virtual house arrests already make sure you are AT HOME most of the time. And it has been months.

So on we went to the last stop the river Hooghly makes before meeting the Bay of Bengal.

This was the destination.

We did not plan to stay a night, it was just going to be a simple visit - spend a couple of hours and come back.

It was raining all the way (almost) on our way to the town. Fortunately it had stopped when we reached there. 

We could see the rains pouring on the other bank of the river and the chimneys of factories and brick kilns dotting all over the landscape.

A doggo pack was on the prowl on the NH 117 (the infamous highway that connects Behala to Diamond Harbor town). One of them must have been fed up with his life. As soon as he saw the car approaching, he jumped. The car hit, he cried. At the time, I was under the impression that he was a goner - probably got Moksha. On our way back we did not manage to see any trace of the body though. So I guess he was only injured.

Some interesting observations were made on our way and once we reached there.

The place seriously lacked the following - 

  1. A decent place where people could sit and chat
  2. A clean environment - there were absolutely no garbage disposal bags whatsoever. 
  3. Half of the seats built facing the river had already been taken by the river itself.
  4. The road connecting the town from Kolkata city had 2 lanes ONLY. For most of the road, considering the fact that there are limited connectivity options - this was extremely inadequate.
If I can sum all the above in a single line - it would be that the place was negligence personified. No excuse of destruction due to Amphan can suffice. Even the entry to the only Hotel run West Bengal Tourism was hopelessly filthy.

Diamond Harbor riverside repairs

But the weather was nice, the rains washed the roads clean. The green foliage around appeared greener, the contrast was great. Tiny town markets were dotted on the road and they looked exactly the same as they did about twenty years back. Time had really stood still for much of West Bengal's hinterland.

Recommendations for future tourists / travelers
  1. Come with no expectations - you will like this place
  2. Book a room in a hotel. The riverside practically does not exist, but the river does. From what I can see from the photos - the interiors of these hotels are great. Besides, a stroll will do you good. 
  3. The road connecting to this place is narrow and there are some extremely aggressive buses that ply - drive carefully. Very carefully.
  4. You can get fish cheap - usually every evening right by the market on the road. You can even see the boats coming ashore and offloading their freezers to sell their day's catch.
  5. If you plan to visit and leave on the same day, there is no need to pack your food. The restaurants are closed, true. But they do provide takeaway services. Plus, there are super cheap roadside didir dokans (Bengalis will get this). If you are super health conscious, get biscuits or stay at home.


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