MAHALDIRAM (MALDIRAM) – Offbeat Weekend Getaway near Kurseong

by Weekend Getaways from Kolkata, West Bengal28 comments

Home > Weekend Getaways from Kolkata > MAHALDIRAM (MALDIRAM) – Offbeat Weekend Getaway near Kurseong

Last Updated on: Sep 23, 2021 |

About this blog: Mahaldiram or Maldiram is an offbeat tourist destination in the Shelpu Hills of Kurseong. The place is known for its picturesque natural beauty, tea gardens and panoramic views of the mountains and plains. We had visited Mahaldiram on a weekend and simply loved this place. This blog is about our experience there, how to reach, where to stay and what to do at Maldiram.

It was after a long time we were travelling again. It was going to be a short trip just to get out of the daily rut.  Several discussions and research later, we decided on going to North Bengal again. There are several beautiful and offbeat places in North Bengal that are not only bestowed with great natural beauty, but also away from the crowds. Just what we needed at that time! We finally decided to visit Mahaldiram or Maldiram near Kurseong, all for our love for tea gardens and the mountains.

View of Teesta River from Maldiram Homestay

Once decided, we booked out train tickets, arranged for the stay and were all set to travel again. We did not find much information on Maldiram on the reliable internet. We found out that this place was located somewhere near Bagora, another beautiful Himalayan hamlet we had visited a long time back. Well, I was fretting about what to expect at Mahaldiram, but Agni, while enjoying my flustered state, also reminded me of the joys of unexpectedness. So here we were travelling to a place without having much idea what to expect. We only knew that there are tea gardens and the place was beautiful!

The Beautiful Mahaldiram (Maldiram)

Mahaldiram (Maldiram) actually made me realize the beauty of unexpectedness. The moment we reached the place, we were simply awestruck. The homestay, Mahaldiram Salamander Jungle Camp, was located just beside the tea gardens. From the homestay itself, we could see the vast expanse of tea gardens, rolling green hills and the vast plains of Siliguri. The place was simply breathtakingly beautiful. So well, we found out another weekend getaway from Kolkata that had simply bowled us over.

View of mountains from Maldiram

We reached New Jalpaiguri Station at around 8:30 AM and took a shared jeep towards Darjeeling. We asked the driver to drop us at Dilaram, from where we had to take another car to reach Maldiram. By the time we reached Dilaram, it was almost noon. We hired another car from Dilaram and travelled towards our destination.

Mahaldiram homestay

The road towards Maldiram is a beautiful one. Both sides were surrounded by dense pine and oak forest. The car moved slowly through the serpentine mountain roads. On our way, we crossed Bagora as we remembered fondly of our time spent there. The road continued through the hills and often passed some small villages. The last part of the road was quite bad. Our driver informed us that there was a bike accident a few days before on this road.

Tea gardens and plains from Mahaldiram

Finally we reached our homestay – Mahaldiram Salamander Jungle Camp. Although it is named ‘camp’, there is actually no camping involved here. The homestay was a quaint two-storied building having a beautiful terrace with great views.

Our Experience

Let me just share our experience of spending 2 days at Maldiram.

When we reached the homestay, it was already past 1 PM, so we had a sumptuous Bengali lunch and then decided to go out for a walk along the tea gardens. But nature had different plans for us. It started raining heavily and we were stuck in our rooms only. It was only in the evening when the rain stopped and so all our plans to explore the place in the afternoon were cancelled.

Tea gardens at Maldiram

But the rains that day cleared the sky the next day. We woke up to a bright and sunny morning. The sky was blue with white clouds and thankfully there was no fog and we could see the plains and the hills quite clearly. Only the Kanchenjunga ranges were not visible. Yes, you actually get a very good view of the Kanchenjunga ranges from Maldiram!

Photographing Mahaldiram offbeat place near Kurseong

After breakfast, we decided to go out and explore the place. Just then, the mighty Kanchenjunga decided to give us all an appearance. We could see the peaks amidst the clouds. There is something about viewing the Kanchenjunga ranges when you are near Darjeeling. It is like an emotion. We always feel that a view of the mighty mountains always makes the day better.

Glimpse of kanchenjunga from Mahaldiram

So we went out, explored the tea gardens, the nearby villages, took photographs and finally reached back to our homestay before lunch.

What to do at Maldiram?

Tea garden workers at Mahaldiram

Mahaldiram is a place where you can simply sit and enjoy the surrounding natural beauty. Infact that is what we spent doing most of the time. We simply sat down at the terrace and enjoyed the views, the peace and quiet. After all, that was what we were looking for in this weekend trip. And if you want some activity, then you can definitely go the following –

  • Walk through the tea gardens
  • Explore the villages
  • Visit the nearby monastery. We did not visit the monastery though.
  • Being a part of the Senchal Wildlife Sanctuary, you will find a number of Himalayan birds at Maldiram. So if you love bird watching, this is a great place to be.
  • You can also go for a Kurseong sightseeing tour from here.

Nearby places to visit from Maldiram

Mountain view from Mahaldiram

Like I mentioned before, Bagora and Chimeni is located quite close to Maldiram. And so are Chatakpur, Latpanchar, Ahaldara and Sitong. If you have time, you can club these places and visit together.

Namthing Pokhri is also located about 7 km from Maldiram. This is a beautiful lake and is a natural habitat of a number of Himalayan birds. We had previously visited this lake during our Latpanchar and Ahaldara trip.

View of Siliguri from Maldiram

How to reach Maldiram?

Maldiram is located about 70 km from Siliguri and about 20 km from Kurseong.

The nearest railway station is New Jalpaiguri (NJP) and if you are flying in, then you have to reach Bagdogra.

You can hire a car from NJP, Bagdogra or Siliguri to Mahaldiram. A small car will charge you about INR 4000 – 4500.

Mahaldiram - offbeat place near Kurseong

How to reach Maldiram by shared cab?

If you are on budget, then you can take a shared jeep from either NJP or Siliguri Junction towards Darjeeling. A shared jeep will cost you Rs400 per seat. Buses are also available from Siliguri towards Darjeeling. To reach Maldiram, you have to get down at Dilaram.

From Dilaram, you have to hire a cab to reach Maldiram. The car will take around Rs 700.00 – 800.00

Where to stay – Homestay at Maldiram

Mahaldiram Salamander Jungle Camp

The best place to stay is the Mahaldiram Salamander Jungle Camp. The homestay is located at a place known as Hawa Dara (‘hawa’ means wind and ‘dara’ means mountain).

This beautiful homestay has 6 rooms in total. It has a lovely terrace from where the entire vista can be seen. You can see the Chatakpur hills, Latpanchar, Sittong and the SIliguri plains from here. On a very clear day, the Kanchenjunga ranges, Nathula Pass and Sikkim can also been seen from the terrace of the homestay.

View from Mahaldiram homestay

The stay cost Rs 1600 per head per day at the time we visited. This includes stay along with the food (breakfast, lunch, evening tea and dinner). The rooms are cosy, though I would say that they require a bit of maintenance.

The food is quite homely and tasty. We had very tasty Bengali cuisine for lunch, aloo paratha for breakfast and chicken and rice at night.

There is another homestay nearby as well – Sonam Homestay.

Tea gardens near Kurseong

We spent a very relaxing time at Mahaldiram. Mountains, tea gardens and great views – the place had all. Infact, it is one of the places that we have thought of revisiting again!

A Few More pictures of Maldiram to Entice You

Night view of Siliguri from Mahaldiram
Tea garden workers at Mahaldiram
View of the tea gardens and Siliguri from Maldiram
Tea garden workers at Maldiram
Women woking at tea gardens
Tea gardens of Maldiram

What do you think of Mahaldiram? Have you stayed in a tea garden before? Let us know in the comments below.

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Mahaldiram - North Bengal Tourism
Tea Tourism in North Bengal
Agni Amrita 2 Backpackers

by Agni Amrita

We are Agni and Amrita, the story-telling team behind Tale of 2 Backpackers and partners in crime in travel and (mis)adventures of life. We have been travelling together for more than a decade looking for immersive experiences while enjoying the little beauties of life.

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28 Comments

  1. you two are doing wonderful work. i have followed your Daringbari coverage too. your choice of location, images, video and all information given is highly appreciated. keep travelling and sharing.

    Reply
    • Thank you so much for your kind words. Stay safe and keep travel bug alive.

      Reply
  2. It would have been better had the photos been captioned.

    Reply
    • Will keep it in mind. Thank you for your feedback.

      Reply
  3. This is why I love your blog so much… you guys always find aome offbeat destination…This is on my list now when I travel to Kurseong next…

    Reply
    • Thank you so much, Tanayesh!

      Reply
  4. The pictures are just so amazing. This offbeat location looks perfect to dip yourself in the beauty of nature.

    Reply
    • Thank you so much, Manisha!

      Reply
  5. Mahaldiram looks serene and beautiful. I love those tea estates. I have been to Siliguri and this is just 70 kilometres from there. Hopefully I can visit it someday soon.

    Reply
    • Thank you Raksha! Hope you visit here soon! It would be great to show you around. 🙂

      Reply
  6. What a gorgeous gem this place is! Too pretty to be true. So close to nature and serenity at its best. Thank you for making us see this beauty so vividly through your eyes.

    Reply
    • Thanks Priyal!

      Reply
  7. Maldiram looks so pretty and picturesque. I would love to stay at the camp for few days. But the question is there wifi or network system is good enough to stay and do some online work?

    Reply
    • Thank you Pamela! However, Maldiram does not have a good network. Only Jio worked when we visited and Airtel had intermittent signal. There was no Vodafone signal. This is a place to just relax!

      Reply
  8. This is such a beautiful place. Loved the post, and specially the photos. Would love to visit Mahaldiram one day.

    Reply
    • Thank you Farhat!

      Reply
  9. This is such a beautiful and serene place.
    Would love to visit during my next trip to Kolkata.

    Reply
    • Yes, that is true! Thank you, Sanjay.

      Reply
  10. Thank you for this amazing destination in the hills from Siliguri. Putting this on my bucket list of travel.

    Reply
    • Thanks Bedabarata! I am sure you will like this place.

      Reply
  11. I would love to experience a homestay, as I have always stayed in hotels. Yes, Mahaldiram has really impressed me. Seeing so many shades of green for the first time in my life.

    Reply
    • Thank you Anahita! Maldiram is so beautiful.

      Reply
  12. I have been to Jalpaiguri and seen the tea gardens. But didnt know about Maldiram. It looks like heaven. Such a pristine area.

    Reply
    • Yes, Maldiram is quite pristine and not many know about this place. Hope you visit the place some time.

      Reply
  13. Wow, this is actually an offbeat place to visit. The photographs are so beautiful and appealing, making me want to visit. I an going to share with my family

    Reply
    • Thank you dear!

      Reply
  14. Mahaldiram is breath taking! It is one of those destinations where I will be perfectly happy curled with a book in the midst of nature. It looks so serene and peaceful.

    Reply
    • That is exactly what I thought! Thanks Khushboo for the comment.

      Reply

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Agni Amrita 2 Backpackers

Hi! we’re Agni & Amrita.

A creative couple, explorer and the team behind Tale of 2 Backpackers.

Find more about us.

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