Siliguri is a bustling little town, nestled in the lush foothills of the Eastern Himalayas. Along with its twin city New Jalpaiguri, Siliguri links the rest of West Bengal to the verdant Dooars and the mountainous terrain of North Bengal. But it would be unfair to treat this town as just a gateway as it has so much more to offer. Siliguri boasts several tourist attractions that warrant more than a day’s stay. The best time to visit Siliguri is during the winter season, from November to February. The pleasant weather during these months makes for an amazing experience while exploring the city. From local hidden gems to famous tourist spots, here are the top 15 places to see in Siliguri.
1. Bengal Safari Park, Siliguri
Bengal Safari Park is an ideal destination for a day out with the family in the wild. The park showcases the richness and diversity of the flora and fauna of North Bengal. It also happens to be the first park in the region where animal safari expeditions were launched, which helped spur tourism in this area. Sprawled over 700 acres, the park is a part of the lush forested area of Mahananda Wildlife Sanctuary.
The park is also said to be rich in medicinal plants and herbs, but it is the elephant rides and wildlife safaris that draw the most visitors. Visitors can choose from the Mixed Herbivore Safari, Royal Bengal Tiger Safari, Asiatic Black Bear Safari, Leopard Safari, Aviary Foot Trail, Lesser Cat Enclosure Trail, etc. There is also a children’s play area, a souvenir shop and a food court within the park.
- Timings: 8:30 am – 5:00 pm (all days except Monday)
- Ticket price: For 12 years and above – Rs 30
- For children between 5-12 years – Rs 10
- For senior citizens – Rs 10
- For the physically challenged – Rs 10
- For children below 5 years – Free
- The safari and ride tickets are additional and vary depending on the package you choose. You can check the official website of Bengal Safari Park for more details.
- Duration: 2-3 hours
2. Mahananda Wildlife Sanctuary, Siliguri
Mahananda Wildlife Sanctuary sprawls over a massive 158 sq. km. swathe of land, sandwiched between the rivers Teesta and Mahananda. The fact that Bengal Safari Park only accounts for roughly 2% of its area would give you an idea about how vast and naturally rich in flora and fauna this sanctuary is. Sukna, a small village in the Darjeeling district, is the main gateway to the sanctuary.
Due to the diversity of vegetation and elevation, the faunal species found in the region are widely varied. A haven for Indian bison and Royal Bengal tiger, the sanctuary is also home to wild animals like elephants, gaurs, wild boars, leopards, spotted deer, barking deer, sambar, wild cats, and exotic species like Himalayan serow, Himalayan porcupine, Himalayan black bear, and even rarer species like Binturong and Clouded Leopard. The park also boasts a rich variety of birds. It plays host to winged visitors like swallows, swifts, babblers, sunbirds, minivets, etc. along with some endangered species like Oriental Pied Hornbill, Great Hornbill and Rufous-necked Hornbill.
- Timings: 08:00 am – 04:00 pm
- Ticket Price: Rs.50
- Duration: 3-4 hours
3. Sepoy Dhura Tea Garden, Siliguri
Sepoy Dhura Tea Garden is one of the unexplored places in Siliguri as well as underrated. Located next to the more popular Tindharia Tea Garden, this tea garden is set in the Shivkhola Hills and offers you a glimpse of the raw natural beauty of the region. You can easily trek to this tea garden from the nearby village as it makes for a perfect one-day idyllic escape from Siliguri. If you want to visit attractions in the vicinity, book your stay at any of the homestays available in the area.
Take a relaxing stroll through the garden, breathe in the fresh air, and savour the spectacular panoramic views. You can also watch the tea picking process up close and even join in if you’re so inclined.
- Timings: 10:00 am – 06:00 pm
- Duration: 1 hour – 1 day
4. Chilapata Forest, Siliguri
A part of Jaldapara National Park in Dooars, Chilapata Forest is a densely wooded national forest in Alipurduar district. Located alongside the banks of Torsha and Bania rivers, the jungle plays host to an astonishingly diverse collection of flora and fauna. Forming an elephant corridor between Jaldapara National Park and Buxa Tiger Reserve, this forest is rich in wildlife, where new species crop up now and then. Home to the endangered one-horn rhinoceros, bison, leopards and wild pigs, Chilapata forest also has a large variety of butterflies and over 20 species of snakes.
The watchtower along River Torsha is the best spot to observe wildlife and enjoy an unparalleled view of the virginal beauty of the area. Moreover, you can also visit the ruins of Nalraja Garh, constructed in the 5th century AD, surrounded by the mythical Ram Guna Trees or ‘the bleeding trees’. To experience the mystical charm of the forest, go for a safari or elephant ride, and spend a night at West Bengal State Forest Development Agency’s charming ecotourism resort.
- Best time to visit: March-April is the best time for spotting wildlife. The forest remains closed during the monsoon season
- Safari Timings: 05:00 am and 03:00 pm
- Ticket price: The ticket prices of car safaris and elephant ride vary depending on the route. Refer to the WBSFDA website for more details
- Duration: 2 hours – 1 day
5. Hong Kong Market, Siliguri
Hong Kong Market is a popular shopping destination in Siliguri. Located right in the heart of the city, the bustling market is decked with colourful lights and festooned with bright banners, making for a great exploratory walk.
Being a shopaholic’s and foodie’s paradise, the large market offers a plethora of goods and commodities at pocket-friendly prices. From authentic Tibetan trinkets to delicate bone china, latest gadgets to fancy clothing, traditional Buddhist cultural artefacts to touristy souvenirs, this is the one place to find it all.
- Timings: 9:00 am – 10:00 pm (all days)
6. North Bengal Science Centre, Siliguri
Established in 1997, North Bengal Science Centre is the first and only science centre in Siliguri. Located in Matigara, the quirky giant T-Rex statue on the premises is one of the most prominent landmarks in the area. The complex also boasts a museum with a digital planetarium and a Nature Interpretation Centre.
The well-manicured lawns are decked with swings, seesaws, pendulums, eco tubes, periscopes, etc. that should keep your kids occupied. Don’t miss the chance to get them to feed some cute rabbits and guinea pigs as well. The diverse exhibits and fun science shows are quite informative and will keep them enthralled. The science centre is surely one of the best places to visit in Siliguri.
- Timings: 10:30 am – 6:00 pm (all days)
- Ticket price: Entry fee- Rs 25
Tickets for the digital planetarium, science shows, 3D film shows and other shows will need to be purchased separately. Check the official site for more details
7. Savin Kingdom, Siliguri
Savin Kingdom is a 10-acre castle-themed amusement park in Siliguri, featuring rides, entertainment zones, a large pool, banquets, a hotel, restaurants, and more. This makes it one of the most popular family getaway destinations for locals and tourists alike.
While the amusement park is packed with fun rides, the large pool at the water park with wave pool, water sports and other activities, attracts people of all age groups. The exciting adventure rides and sports are perfect for youngsters. Several engaging activities like henna painting, pottery making, magic shows, and fortune-telling are also offered. Savin Plaza, located on the premises, includes restaurants and a multiplex. The banquet section offers event and party spaces, while deluxe accommodations are provided by the 3-star resort, Savin Retreat.
- Timings: 10:30 am – 6:30 pm for the water park, and 11:30 am – 7:30 pm for the amusement park (all days)
- Ticket Price: For children (weekdays) – Rs 70
- For children (weekends) – Rs 90
- For adults (weekdays) – Rs 80
- For adults (weekends) – Rs 100
The details of additional ride charges can be viewed on the official website of Savin Kingdom
8. Dreamland Amusement Park, Siliguri
Dreamland Amusement Park caters to tourists seeking some excitement in Siliguri. With its huge open spaces, safe kids’ zone, and cleanliness, it is one of the most popular destinations among the locals. Besides the fun activities and rides for both adults and children, you can enjoy a picnic basket with your loved ones on the lawns or head to the food court or banquet areas instead.
Rides like the Flying Eagle, Cup & Saucer, Cable Car, Caterpillar, Water Coaster and the rain dance area are the main attractions at this amusement park. You can also go for a relaxing ride in pedal boats across a large pond in the park.
- Timings: 10:00 am – 6:30 pm (all days)
- Ticket Price: Entry fee – Rs 130
The fare for each ride is charged separately and vary depending on the selected package. Check the official website for more details
9. ISKCON Temple, Siliguri
The ISKCON temple of Siliguri is the biggest Krishna Consciousness centre in northeast India. It is one of the prime religious sites for pilgrims and devotees and a prominent Vedic cultural research centre. Located in the middle of a vast and well-manicured garden, the main structure of the temple has a tranquil aura of purity.
After joining the transcendental worship session, you can enjoy a serene boat ride on the manmade emerald lake as well. There is also a restaurant that serves Indian, Italian, Chinese, and Thai cuisines. The temple guest house within the premises will provide you with comfortable accommodation at a minimal rate of Rs 800 per day.
- Timings: 4:30 am – 8:30 am (all days)
10. Salugara Monastery, Siliguri
Located on the outskirts of Siliguri, Salugara Monastery is a prominent Buddhist shrine. Founded by the followers of His Holiness Dalai Lama, this colourful monastery is one of the most hallowed sites for Buddhist pilgrims.
The 100 feet tall white ‘stupa’, with its ornate designs, is the prime attraction of the monastery. There is also a giant prayer wheel located on the premises. Soak in the lingering aroma of butter lamps, soothe your senses in the comforting ambience of the monastery, and rejuvenate your spirit before you head back to your hotel.
- Timings: 5:30 am – 6:30 pm (all days)
- Duration: 1-2 hours
11. Sevoke Kali Mandir, Siliguri
Sevokeshwari Kali Mandir or Sevoke Kali Mandir is located near Coronation Bridge along the riverbank of the mighty Teesta River. Surrounded by forests, this temple dedicated to the Goddess Kali, attracts tourists and pilgrims alike with its remote charm. Brightly painted staircases lead toward the main temple.
The astounding view of Mount Kanchenjunga looming over the meandering Teesta makes this temple one of the best tourist places in Siliguri. The mandir is open for visitors around the clock. During festivals, the calmness of the temple is replaced with the sound of tinkling prayer bells.
- Best time to visit: During Navratri, Durga Puja, and Diwali. Visit during October to December for snow-clad views of Kanchenjunga
- Duration: 1-2 hours
12. Lokenath Baba Mandir, Siliguri
Believed to be an auspicious site, Lokenath Baba Mandir in Siliguri has its own identity and importance among devotees. The beautifully built temple boasts stunning artwork and sculptures. The central attraction of the temple is a split-idol of Lord Shiva and Lokenath Baba, placed on a rock in the backdrop. The idol depicts the concept that Lokenath Baba is a form of Lord Shiva on earth.
The entrance of the temple is decorated with an idol depicting the mythic scene of ‘Lakhsmi and Narayan under Seshnag’ and a massive idol of Lord Ganesha. There is also a beautiful floating idol of Goddess Lakshmi on the pond.
13. Coronation Bridge, Siliguri
Creating a gigantic arch over the Teesta River bed, and surrounded by lush green hills, Coronation Bridge is one of the finest colonial structures and prominent landmarks in North Bengal. Also known as Sevoke Bridge and Bagh Pool to the locals, this bridge is a part of NH-17 and connects the two districts of Darjeeling and Kalimpong.
The bridge was named in 1937 to commemorate the coronation of King George VI and Queen Elizabeth. With a captivating view of the twisting Teesta River through the mountainous valley, Coronation Bridge is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful places in Siliguri. Do take out a few minutes to click some spectacular pictures at this vantage point.
14. Dudhia, Siliguri
Located on the outskirts of Siliguri, Dudhia is a serene hamlet along the roaring Balason River, on the Mirik-Siliguri Highway. With its lush landscape and tranquil ambience, Dudhia is an ideal getaway and popular picnic spot in Siliguri. This is also one of the best places to visit in Siliguri for couples to spend some quality time together.
Do make it a point to hike along Balason River to explore the impeccable natural beauty of the area. You can also enjoy a day out with your family or plan a riverside camping expedition here. Several homestays and affordable accommodations are available nearby if you are planning a night stay.
- Best time to visit: February – April and October – December
- Duration: 2 hours – 2 days
15. Darjeeling Himalayan Railway (DHR), Siliguri
Darjeeling Himalayan Railway is a 2 feet narrow-gauge train line, running between New Jalpaiguri and Darjeeling. The popular toy train ride connects Darjeeling to Siliguri through a scenic route via Kurseong. A UNESCO World Heritage Site, this toy train ride offers a one-of-a-kind experience. Along with the toy train, the heritage coaches and newly introduced luxurious Vista Dome coaches are the main tourist attractions.
The total length of NJP-Darjeeling DHR route is 88 km. The tiny 4-wheeled, 19th-century steam locomotive is a living legend, reminiscent of a bygone era. The curves, loops, Zs, and steep grades crisscrossing along the trail are a traveller’s delight, with a beautiful view of the mesmerizing mountain in the backdrop. Tourists can also visit the DHR museum at Ghum Station, Elysia Place, Kurseong, the DHR archives at Kurseong station, and the photo gallery at Sukna Railway Station.
- Timings: 08:00 am to 04:05 pm
- Ticket price: Prices vary depending on the routes, coaches and seasons. Early reservations are advisable, especially during the peak seasons. For fare details, see the official websites of DHR and Indian Railways
Despite its small size, Siliguri has plenty of attractions that cater to all sorts of tourists, whether you are a nature-lover or shopaholic, religious devotee or wildlife enthusiast. So, the above-listed Siliguri tourist places will surely provide you with a memorable experience that you will cherish for years to come. So, next time you happen to visit North Bengal, don’t just pass by. Do take out some time to add Siliguri’s sightseeing places to your itinerary.