Chamurchi is a small village in the Banarhat area of the Jalpaiguri district. The place is close to the Bhutan border and is known for its scenic beauty. Chamurchi and its surrounding area are not visited by too many tourists as it is a little off the main tourist route of Dooars. But a visit to the area can be worthwhile for nature lovers.
The Chamurchi Mahakal trek originates on the Diana riverbed where you can park your vehicle. Walk for about 3 km through the riverbed and you will be at the base of the hill which contains Chamurchi Mahakal. Uphill trek for a while leads you to the cave with its Stalactite Stalagmite formations. The inside of the cave is slippery and narrow. Locals consider the cave as a temple of Lord Shiva and a large number of people visit the cave temple, especially during the Shivaratri festival period.
Visit Samchi (Bhutan)
Chamurchi and Samchi (also written as Samtse) are in India and Bhutan respectively with a Bhutan gate separating the two. Historically this is one of the 18 gates through which the Bhutanese used to travel to the plains of India. These gates or Dwars have given rise to the name Dooars. One can cross the border and visit the Bhutanese city, there are not many restrictions in place here for Indian and Bhutanese people to cross the border. There is also a monastery at Samchi which is worth a visit.
The nearest rail station is Banarhat where a couple of passenger and DMU trains stop. From Banarhat take the northbound road and drive for about 10 km to reach Chamurchi. Road travellers driving through Dooars by National Highway 31 also have to take a detour at Banarhat to reach here. There is also an alternative route that starts on the East side of the Diana river bridge. This route is slightly shorter.