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Home Stay - Sustainable Tourism - Eco-Tourism

Dooars originally belonged to the Kamata Kingdom under the Koch dynasty but due to its weakness of the Koch kingdom, Bhutan took possession of the Dooars. It was subsequently annexed by the British in 1865 after the Bhutan War. After the end of the British rule in India, the Dooars acceded into the dominion of India and it merged with the Union of India in 1949. It also is the gate to Northeast India. Dooars politically constitutes the plains of Darjeeling District, the whole of Jalpaiguri district, Cooch Behar district and Alipurduar district in West Bengal, and the districts of Kokrajhar and Bongaigaon in the state of Assam. Dooar / Duars is well connected with the rest of the country by road and railway and is the business hub of the region. Major cities or towns are Siliguri, Jalpaiguri, Cooch Behar, Alipurduar, Dhupguri, Malbazar, Mainaguri, Falakata, and Birpara in West Bengal & Phuentsholling in Bhutan.  Town or cities like Kokrajhar, Bongaigaon, Goalpara, Barpeta, and Dhubri in Assam. 

It is the floodplains in eastern-northeastern India in the foothills of the Himalayas. The region is approximately a width of 40 kilometers stretch which extends from Nepal to Assam covering part of West Bengal & Bhutan. Duars is part of the Terai-Duar savanna and grasslands. In the state of West Bengal, districts of Kalimpong, Darjeeling, Alipurduar, Jalpaiguri are in Dooars. Dooars means 'Duar or door' in Assamese, Bengali, Sanskrit languages. This region is divided by the Sankosh River into Eastern and Western Dooars, consisting of an area of roughly over 100 square kilometers. The Western Dooars is also known as the Bengal Dooars, and the Eastern Dooars also as the Assam Dooars. Dooars is analogous with the Terai in northern India and southern Nepal. Natural splendours include wildlife and the foothills of the lower Himalaya. The charm and appeal are the magnificent heritage architecture, colourful folk festivals, beautiful arts and crafts, traditional and contemporary music, and delicious ethnic specialties of various tribes and part of West Bengal. It is truly a brilliant experience offering unique diversities. The stretch is from Chitwan in Nepal to Manas in Assam. The major rivers are the Brahmaputra and Manas in Assam. In West Bengal, the major river is Teesta, Jaldhaka, Murti, Torsha, Sankosh, Dyna, Karatoya, Raidak, and Kalchini rivers. The region is home to National Park & Sanctuary or Reserve. The economy of the region is dependent on agriculture, Tea, Tourism, and Timber.
Dooars is an attraction in Northeast India. Bhutan, Nepal, Sikkim, Seven Sisters of North East, Sikkim & part of West Bengal is known for its diverse geography, history, soothing season, local people, colourful festival, Tea estate, and wildlife. The region is home to many a tribe. These tribes have their unique cultures and architecture and are generally reflected in various structures they built, Homestay they make, and the local shopping centers.  Their life comes alive in the form of song, dance, and celebration during the festivals, we try to promote such packages which cover these festivals. These are nature lovers and include various forms of natural ingredients in their rituals and festivals. As almost all tribes are nature lovers and worship nature also. But the best part is their dance form, Colourful dresses and the style of enjoyment. 

The Duar Or Dooars valley is especially noted for its wildlife sanctuaries, like the National Park of Gorumara, Chapramari forests, the Buxa Tiger Reserve, and the Jaldapara Sanctuary. Mahananda Wildlife Sanctuary, Neora Valley National Park, Kulik Bird Sanctuary, Chapramari Forest, Manas National Park are also part of the region. They offer fascinating diversity of flora and fauna. The vast texture of massive trees sheltering varieties of orchids and resounded with the chirping of birds and wild animals, along with the stretches of Tea Estate make it a paradise for nature lovers, travelers & tourists. Rare one-horned rhinoceros, bison, leopard, spotted deer, sambar, hog deer, reptiles, huge wild tuskers, wild boars, and birds including plenty of peacocks. Elephant riding Or Jungle Safari through the forest in search of wild animals, particularly the one-horned rhinos, has become a craze among tourists. One can spot Bengal tiger, Indian rhinoceros, Indian elephant, chital, sambar, clouded leopard, Indian leopard, gaur, Indian peacock and great Indian hornbill, monitor lizard, Indian Python, Indian cobra, reticulated python. Bear species like sloth bear and Himalayan black bear live up north. Red panda, rhesus macaque, gray langur, binturong, pygmy hog and Indian boar can be found. Indian fox, the Indian wolf, spotted linsang are some of the predators. The hispid hare is a very rare species that is found here. Leopard cat and Asian golden cat have been recorded. Himalayan tahr, Bhutan takin, Himalayan goral and Himalayan serow are found.

Other places of attraction in and around the region include Jayanti - a beautiful spot encircled by Jayanti River and hills around; Bhutanghat, famous for scenic beauty beside River Raidak bordering Bhutan; Buxa Fort, famous for the ruins of the Detention Camp for freedom fighters of our country; Rajabhatkhawa, attractive for the nature information centre; Murti, beside Murti River, attractive for the forest resort; Malbazar, attractive for tea gardens and scenic spots around and as a base of starting package tours to the hills and other places around; Chalsa, famous for scenic beauty and the star category resort; Teesta Barrage, emerging and being developed as a tourist attraction; Samsing beside Jaldhaka River, attractive for orange plantation and forest resort; Toto Para, a small village on the bank of River Torsha near Bhutan border, famous for the Dooars aboriginals - the Totos; Phuntsholling, on the Border of Bhutan, a major gateway to Bhutan are some of the attraction of the region. 

Other than homestay and private hotels, resorts and lodges, tourist lodges are run by West Bengal Tourism Development Corporation / West Bengal Forest Development Corporation at Malbazar, Jalpaiguri, Jaldapara, Hollong, Madarihat, Gorumara, Samsing, and Jayanti. Besides, there are quite a good number of hotels, resorts, guest houses, etc. at Malbazar, Jalpaiguri, Lava, Alipurduar & Cooch Behar. We are trying to develop sustainable village tourism as a tool and have taken extra care to spread awareness of local culture and lifestyle.  We as a tourism house did not discover the destination we just developed a network of small operators and knowledgeable/passionate individuals to develop homestay so that our activities help local people socially and economically. Interaction with travelers and the knowledge that they are visiting for the richness in the culture brings in a sense of pride amongst the people and also brings in supplementary sources of income hence it makes economic sense to the villagers as well. We use our time and patience to identify our partners in each destination. The focus was always on finding partners who are already involved in working with local people. Homestay or tea tourism is two of the options most popular among our guests. The stay is with very basic facilities and creates less impact environmentally.

Cooch Behar was dominated by dynasties including the Muslims & the British, it is a land of mixed cultures, similar to those of West Bengal and Bangladesh. Various castes & creeds (Muslims, Christians, and Sikhs) inhabit here along with the Hindus. Native people of this region generally have Mongoloid features. There are many tribes, including the Bodo in Assam, and the Rabha, the Mech, the Toto, the Koch Rajbongshi, the Tamang/Murmi, the Limbu, the Lepcha in Bengal. Hindu Bengali predominates here. Social set-up is based mainly on the Bengali culture. Madan Mohan Temple, Bara Debi Bari, Debi Chaudhurani, Jalpesh Temple, Rajmata Temple, Baneswar Temple are a few of the notable centers of religious and cultural importance.

Some of the popular festivals of the Seven Sisters of Northeast India including Dooars are Durga Puja Or Dusshera in October along with Raas Purnima i.e. a big fair is organized adjacent to the famous Madan Mohan Temple in the town. Raas Mela is the oldest in the North Bengal region. Other major festivals include Poyla Baishakh (Bengali New Year), Rathayatra, Dolyatra or Basanta-Utsab, Diwali, Poush Parbone, Christmas, Eid ul-Fitr, Eid uz-Zuha, and Muharram. Generally, most festivals are equally colorful and are accompanied by dance, food and music. 

We are trying to develop a sustainable village tourism package. It is a tool and has taken extra care to spread awareness of local culture and lifestyle. We as a tourism house try to just promote these homestays and communities as they are economically backward.  Recent time knowledgeable, passionate, nature lovers enquire about such places. There are much organization, individuals, Tea Estate or even Government officials help to develop homestay so that our activities help local people socially and economically. Interaction with travelers and the knowledge that they are visiting for the richness in the culture brings in a sense of pride amongst the people and also brings in supplementary sources of income. We use our time and patience to identify our partners i.e. Homestay owners in each destination. Our focus was always on finding partners who are already involved in working with local people. Homestay or tea tourism is two of the options most popular among our guests. 

The concept of ecotourism is fast catching up locally and internationally. Dooars / Duars is not far behind. Birding, short trails, angling are part of the stay and are not spoken or written separately, it is part of the concept. With basic infrastructure, enjoying local cultures and a green environment makes the tour exciting. A local guide from the destination will help guests with their cultures and ways of life far better and earn a much-needed income. There are festivals and special arrangement for guest who wants more. Staying in cottages, fishing, small walks, cooking, or simply doing nothing are some of the options travelers ask for. Village or Home Stay popularity is fast catching up and many of the places in this region are setting up such facilities with some form of adventure for the guest. The guest visit helps the economy, buying local products, buying art materials, and using local villagers as a guide or help.

These are newly developed units for the last two decades. Homestay is scattered all over the hills among various tribes and communities.  We prefer a sustainable community and their homestay. Homestay made out of illegal tree cutting and stolen timber is generally not appreciated. Neither do we offer our guests such a stay. Homestay or Eco stay are places to relax. Good Host, Peace-loving villages, Tea Estates, Tea Factories, Valley, Beautiful Locations, decent food, activities, safety, and security are the major factors attracting guests. 

The host Or locals are quite hospitable and offer their best possible food and comfort to guests. The Homestay is generally clean & hygienic run by the family. Guests Activities are based on the homestay and its location. Our vehicle generally is available in all homestay. Homestay packages are generally with food. Dreamway Destinations also arrange for angling apart from the usual hikes, picnics, and sightseeing tours.

The benefits are participating in Sustainable village tourism, observe about the lifestyle of the group/tribe, guest can spread their own message, Teach and learn environmental issues, Gain knowledge about a particular place /region/people, Enjoy an idea of culture, religion, etc, visiting Offbeat destination, learn cooking, agriculture, angling, etc and Participate in local festivals. Few travelers are like to visit Uttarey in monsoon, for the lush green valley with different tests and discounts, it is recommended for other travelers to avoid the rainy season.

Roads are the only reliable and essential mode of transportation here. Railway lines just cut across most of the sanctuary & national parks of the region. Malbazar, Chalsa, Hashimara, Sukhna, Sevoke, Rajabhatkhawa, Madarihat, Alipurduar & Cooch Behar are important station in this region.  Bagdogra Airport (IXB) is the biggest and nearest Airport to Dooars. Major Railway Station is New Jalpaiguri Railway Station (NJP). 


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