04 Jul, 2018
Nobel Laureate Rabindranath Tagore’s Santiniketan is a small town located 164.7 km north of Kolkata. Santiniketan is located near Bolpur, which is untouched by the chaos of the city life. The serene town of Santiniketan was established by Rabindranath Tagore and is now a university town – Visva Bharati University.
The university, which was Tagore’s vision, was established in 1921 and was funded by the Maharajah of Tripura. It was established to provide the best of eastern and western teachings to students. The university has the concept of open-air education. The classes are not conducted inside the four walls of a classroom. Many eminent people from across the world taught at Visva-Bharati. Amartya Sen, Satyajit Ray and Indira Gandhi are some of the illustrious students of the university. The art college of the Santiniketan is called Kala Bhavan and is considered among the world’s best art colleges. Santiniketan has many beautiful paintings, murals, frescos and sculpture of Binod Bihari Mukhopadhaya, Nandalal Bose and Rabindranath Tagore.
The best time to visit Santiniketan is during festivals and fairs like Basant Utsav in March, Joydev Mela in January and Poush Mela in December. During these events, the famous mystic Baul singers will enthral you with their songs and recitations.
Things to do: Take a tour of the university and soak in the art and culture of the place.
Best time to go: You can visit Santiniketan throughout the year but to see the colourful side of the university town, visit during one of the festivals.
Driving distance: 164.7 km (3 hours 35 minutes)
Where to stay: Some of the best hotels near Shantiniketan are Camellia Hotel & Resort (033 23960432), Rater Tara Diner Rabi Guest House (033 23960432)