All You Need To Know Before Visiting Santiniketan

All You Need To Know Before Visiting Santiniketan

An abode of peace, Santiniketan is just a few hours’ drive from Kolkata, and of course it’s a visual wonder! Dating back to 1883, Santiniketan is widely famed for its immense contribution to arts, education and literature scene in the country – Visva Bharati University is not a mere institution promoting liberal arts and humanities, but a powerhouse of literary, fine arts and musical movements started by artist, poet and Nobel Laureate, Rabindranath Tagore. Its alumni include some of the eminent personalities who have made it big in the world of modern art, literature and classical music.

While Visva Bharati University sits in the heart of this cultured small town, the surrounding areas feature a host of instagrammable spots, cute cafes, quaint bookstores, vibrant bazaars, golden forests and gushing rivulets. Santiniketan, as a whole, is a verdant seemingly small town and there are many places to explore.

Places to Visit:

Uttarayan Complex

It is a beautiful collection of five houses, Udyan, Konark, Shyamali, Punasche, and Udichi, built when Tagore lived and thrived. Another house, the sixth one, named as Bichitra was later built by his son – Jawaharlal Nehru inaugurated it in 1961. Today, it serves as a museum-cum-library, where Tagore’s rare manuscripts, letters, paintings, title deeds, photographs and other knick knacks are stored and on display.

Vishva Bharati

It is the keynote place of attraction in Santiniketan and it opens for the visitors after 1 PM. It has been famed and glorified under the tutelage of Tagore. However, things have changed now. No longer is it the educational hotbed, but has turned into an appreciable relic. Museums and guided tours have replaced erstwhile open air classroom training. Out of huge motley of courses spanning various fields, Vishva Bharati was widely acclaimed for Kala Bhavan (the arts department) and Sangeet Bhavan (the music department). 

Former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi, Maharani Gayatri Devi, Economist and Nobel laureate Amartya Sen and ace filmmaker Satyajit Ray are some of the key alumni members of Santiniketan.

While touring this area, you should visit Chhatimtala, the place from where Santiniketan gurukul bloomed; Santiniketan, the original house built by Debendranath Tagore; Amrakunja, the area where open air classes used to be held and Upasangriha, the famed prayer house made of Belgium glass and exquisite marble stones sourced from abroad. Kala Bhavan needs a special mentioning. Take a tour around this area, and catch glimpses of myriad artists in make.

How to Reach:

Well-connected via rail and road, Santiniketan is not too far from Kolkata. The train journey is scenic and quick.

Best Trains – Kavi Guru Express and Ganadevta Express

If you are thinking of travelling via road, the road network connecting Kolkata to Santiniketan is well laid and ensures a comfortable driving experience. The time taken to reach there is around three hours.

If you are visiting Kolkata for work or personal purpose, a quick weekend trip to Santinketan is highly recommended. However, in case, you are having difficulty in finding cheap hotels in Kolkata, we’ve good news – Hotel VIP International is one of the most popular hotels in Park Street Kolkata. By combining comfort with class, they offer top level hospitality services that can’t be left ignored. For more information, visit their official website today.

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