Roads were made for journeys, not destinations
Each one of us deserves a break to break the monotony of life. For people like me who find joy in
travelling offbeat, road trips are the best way to explore life across different places and to get away
from the busy life of metropolitan as well. Even short weekend trips can impart a new vigour to the
mind. Garpanchkot just fits the idea.
Located at the foothills of the Panchet Hill, Garpanchkot lies in the district of Purulia near the colliery
belt. Named after the ruins of the Panchkot Palace, which still stand there bearing the testimony of
time, is a perfect weekend gateaway for people residing in Kolkata or nearby places in West Bengal.
The distance from Kolkata to Garpanchkot is roughly 270 kilometres by road. The route taken by us
was Kolkata-Burdwan- Durgapur-Asansol- Garpanchkot via NH 19. Most parts of the roads being
extremely well maintained our car glided at 120 kmph with ease through major part of the stretch.
With only two short breaks in between at Govindpur and Durgapur, we reached our destination within
The place can also be reached by taking a train to Barakar or Asansol and then trekker to cover an
hour long path to reach Garpanchakot. But the beautiful highways and the thrill of a road trip will be
Stay at Garpanchkot
Till a couple of years back the only option for accommodation was the Resort run by the State
Government. We had put up in ‘Panchet Residency’, a private resort.
The resort is built on a huge property. The tranquility inside the resort with Panchet Hill in the
backdrop wins the heart at once. It is the perfect place to put your feet up and relax.
#1 The ruins – There are a couple of places to visit in and around Garpanchkot. The most popular of
them is the ruins. The ruins of the Garh (Fort) of Singh Deo Dynasty located at the southern foothills
and a group of temples is still standing as mute spectators of the rise and fall of the dynasty.
The place is in a dilapidated condition due to poor maintenance. However, the drive to this place is
something to look out for. Narrow winding roads with picturesque view of rustic Bengal seeps into
ones heart and soul.
#2 Panchet Dam – Next in the list is the Panchet Dam. It is 15-20 minutes drive from Garpanchkot
and is a nice place to be in the evening to watch the sun slowly set.
#3 Boranti – Quite uncommon for Garpanchkot visitors to be here. But this was perhaps the most
beautiful of them all. Surrounded by beautiful lakes and hills, the wilderness of this place seemed to
have arrested the advance of civilization.
During my 3 days tour to Garpanchkot last winter, time seemed to drag by laden feet. Mornings were
spent maneuvering through the rustic village paths, whereas evenings were spent watching the setting
sun gilding the Panchet hills with golden hue. The memory of this trip was something to store away,
and then conjure up someday when I was back to city life once again.