Embarking on a solitary adventure unfolds a captivating mix of self-reflection and thrill. Intrigued by the allure of nature and the allure of seclusion, I found myself drawn to the captivating Buxa Tiger Reserve National Park, a well-kept secret nestled in the Eastern Himalayas of West Bengal. As I anticipated my visit, I imagined the excitement of encountering diverse wildlife and the tranquillity of unspoiled landscapes. The prospect of escaping the urban bustle and immersing myself in nature’s embrace filled me with an exhilarating sense of anticipation.

Unforgettable Solo Adventure to Lepchaka and Jayanti Village

Buxa Tiger Reserve National Park is nestled in the scenic Alipurduar district

The Buxa Tiger Reserve National Park is nestled in the scenic Alipurduar district, spanning over 760 square kilometres. This biodiverse haven is home to a rich tapestry of flora and fauna, boasting a population of the majestic Bengal tiger, Asian elephants, elusive leopards, and a diverse array of bird species. The park’s captivating landscape features lush greenery, undulating hills, and tranquil rivers, providing an idyllic setting for both thrilling adventures and serene contemplation.

Journey to Santalbari


The journey commenced with the first light of dawn breaking over my hometown, casting a warm glow on the familiar streets as I eagerly prepared for my adventure. As I meticulously went through my backpack, I made sure to pack all the essentials: my trusty hiking boots, a high-quality camera to capture the memories, a journal to record my thoughts and experiences, and a variety of snacks to keep me energized throughout the journey. With everything in place, I set out to catch the evening train that would take me to Cooch Behar Junction, the closest railway station to the renowned Buxa Tiger Reserve. As I stepped onto the train from Howrah Railway Junction, a wave of anticipation and excitement washed over me, signalling the beginning of an unforgettable expedition.

Travel Mode

local transport to take me to the Cooch Behar bus depot

Arrival at Cooch Behar Junction

My journey to Buxa Tiger Reserve National Park began with an early morning arrival at Cooch Behar Junction. The train pulled into the station at precisely 4 am, and despite the early hour, the excitement of the adventure ahead kept me wide awake. The station was relatively quiet, with a few early risers and fellow travellers bustling about.

Shared Auto to Cooch Behar Bus Depot

Upon exiting the station, I immediately looked for local transport to take me to the Cooch Behar bus depot. I found a shared auto-rickshaw waiting outside the station. The fare was quite reasonable at just Rs. 20. As we navigated through the early morning streets of Cooch Behar, I got a glimpse of the town waking up to a new day. The ride was short and smooth, and within minutes, I arrived at the bus depot.

Boarding the NBSTC Bus

At the Cooch Behar bus depot, I quickly located the bus stand for the NBSTC (North Bengal State Transport Corporation) buses. I had planned to catch the 6 AM bus to Santalbari, which was known for its punctuality and comfort. The ticket cost was Rs. 50, a modest fare for the journey ahead. I purchased my ticket and waited at the depot, soaking in the early morning ambience and the gradual hustle and bustle of commuters.

The Bus Journey to Santalbari

The NBSTC bus departed promptly at 6 AM. The ride from Cooch Behar to Santalbari was scenic and comfortable, offering glimpses of the picturesque landscapes of West Bengal. As the bus made its way through lush greenery and quaint villages, I could feel the excitement building up. The cool morning breeze and the rhythmic hum of the bus created a perfect setting for the journey.

First Impressions

The journey to Santalbari felt like crossing a threshold into an entirely different realm. As I stepped into this hidden gem, I was greeted by a breath of air so pure and invigorating, laden with the earthy fragrance of the surrounding forest. The village itself, cradled at the base of the majestic Buxa range, was enveloped by lush, vibrant foliage. The tranquillity of the surroundings, interwoven with the melodic symphony of chirping birds and dancing leaves, washed over me, instantly easing any lingering tension. Santalbari’s peaceful aura stood in stark juxtaposition to the frenetic energy of urban life, rendering it the ideal genesis for my solo escapade.

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Trek to Lepchaka

hike to Lepchaka, a quaint village


The following day, I readied myself for the hike to Lepchaka, a quaint village nestled atop a hill. This trail was renowned for its breathtaking vistas and diverse wildlife. I meticulously gathered my supplies, which included water, a first-aid kit, and a detailed map of the route. Prior to setting off, I met with a knowledgeable local guide to ensure that I had all the necessary details for a secure and gratifying trek.

Trek Experience

Trekking in the Buxa Tiger Reserve National Park

Trekking in the Buxa Tiger Reserve National Park is an adventure that blends history, nature, and culture. The trek from Zero Point to Lepchaka, passing through the historic Buxa Fort, offers an unparalleled experience for nature enthusiasts and history buffs alike. This journey through lush forests and hilly terrains is not just a physical challenge but a soulful retreat.

Starting Point: Zero Point

Zero Point, easily accessible from Santalbari,

The trek begins at Zero Point, the starting point for many trails within the Buxa Tiger Reserve. Zero Point, easily accessible from Santalbari, is the gateway to an array of trekking routes. It’s essential to prepare adequately for the trek by packing essentials like water, snacks, a first-aid kit, and sturdy trekking shoes. Meeting with local guides at Zero Point provides valuable insights and ensures a safer journey.

The Trail to Buxa Fort

greenery, offering trekkers a chance to immerse themselves in nature

The initial part of the trek involves a steady ascent through dense forests. The trail is well-marked and enveloped in greenery, offering trekkers a chance to immerse themselves in nature. The sound of rustling leaves and chirping birds create a serene ambience. Along the way, trekkers might encounter various species of flora and fauna, adding to the enchantment of the journey.

As the path meanders through the forest, glimpses of the historic Buxa Fort begin to appear. The fort, perched on a hilltop, served as a strategic point during the British colonial era. It’s a symbol of resilience and a testament to the region’s rich history.

Exploring Buxa Fort

Buxa Fort is a significant milestone in the trek

Reaching Buxa Fort is a significant milestone in the trek. The fort, with its ancient ruins and historical significance, offers a glimpse into the past. Walking through its remnants, one can almost hear the echoes of history. The fort’s strategic location provides stunning panoramic views of the surrounding hills and valleys.

The fort was once a prison during British rule, holding many freedom fighters. Exploring its corridors and rooms, one can feel the weight of history and the stories of those who once fought for freedom. The fort also served as a refuge for Tibetan monks, adding to its historical and cultural significance.

Trekking from Buxa Fort to Lepchaka

Trekking from Buxa Fort to Lepchaka

After exploring Buxa Fort, the trek continues towards Lepchaka. The trail from the fort to Lepchaka is relatively moderate, with occasional steep sections. The path winds through picturesque landscapes, offering breathtaking views at every turn. Trekkers are treated to sights of cascading streams, verdant valleys, and diverse wildlife.

As you ascend, the air becomes cooler, and the vistas more spectacular. The tranquillity of the forest and the distant sounds of nature create a meditative atmosphere. The trek, though physically demanding at times, is immensely rewarding with the beauty and serenity it offers.

Reaching Lepchaka

Arriving at Lepchaka- Little Bhutan In India

Arriving at Lepchaka felt like stumbling upon a well-hidden treasure trove. The village, adorned with charming traditional wooden houses and terraced fields, provided a breathtaking vista of the rolling hills that enveloped it. The locals welcomed me with open arms, regaling me with tales of their land and their way of life. The strong sense of unity and the beauty of their simple lifestyle left a heartening impression. As the day drew to a close, I basked in the mesmerizing scenery, capturing the sun’s gentle descent behind the hills with both my camera and my heart.


buddhist stupa lepchakha

The evening in Lepchaka was serene and reflective. I shared a simple meal with the locals, savouring the flavours of home-cooked food. The sunset painted the sky in hues of orange and pink, casting a magical glow over the landscape. Sitting by the fire, I reflected on the day’s journey, feeling a deep sense of gratitude for the experience. The clear night sky, dotted with countless stars, added to the sense of wonder and tranquillity.

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Exploring Jayanti Riverbed

Exploring Jayanti Riverbed

Morning Departure

The next morning, I bid farewell to Lepchaka and hiked back to Santalbari. From there, I took a short drive to Jayanti, a picturesque village by the riverbed. The journey was smooth, with the anticipation of new adventures keeping my spirits high.

Arrival at Jayanti

Arrival at Jayanti Village

Upon my arrival in Jayanti, I was instantly enamoured by the tranquil and awe-inspiring landscape. The village itself was nestled amidst lush, vibrant forests and gentle, undulating hills, creating a truly picturesque and serene environment that seemed tailor-made for a rejuvenating retreat. Throughout my stay, I was fortunate to secure accommodation in a delightful and snug homestay, strategically located near the peaceful, dry riverbed. This proximity allowed me to fully immerse myself in the natural ambience and be serenaded by the joyous melodic symphony of the surrounding avian residents. The appeal of Jayanti lies in its simple yet captivating charm, which is inherently embedded in the unadulterated beauty and tranquillity of the natural surroundings.

Safari Preparation

In the afternoon, I eagerly rendezvoused with the experienced safari guide as we prepared for an exhilarating adventure into the captivating Buxa Tiger Reserve. Following a comprehensive safety briefing, we eagerly boarded the safari vehicle, brimming with anticipation to immerse ourselves in the untamed beauty of the park. The palpable sense of excitement, heightened by the possibility of encountering majestic elephants and a myriad of other extraordinary wildlife, infused the air with an infectious thrill that set our spirits soaring.

Thrilling Safari

Thrilling Safari journey through Buxa Tiger Reserve

Our journey through Buxa Tiger Reserve remains vivid in my memory as an extraordinary and unparalleled experience. As we pressed on through the lush forest, the verdant foliage and majestic trees evoked a sense of mystique and eager anticipation. The guide’s profound understanding of the terrain and its diverse wildlife was truly admirable. Our sightings included an array of captivating creatures, from graceful deer and resplendent peacocks to delicate butterflies. The exhilarating thrill of the safari, intertwined with the park’s breathtaking natural allure, rendered it an unforgettable and truly remarkable escapade.

Riverbed Walk

Riverbed Walk Buxa Tiger Reserve

After an exhilarating safari expedition, I decided to take a serene stroll along the sun-drenched, arid riverbed of Jayanti. The landscape was utterly captivating, adorned with smooth, multicoloured pebbles and sporadic, weathered rocks, creating a visually stunning tapestry of nature’s artistry. The tranquil solitude of the riverbed, accompanied only by the melodic symphony of the natural world, enveloped me in a profound sense of calm and serenity. I savoured the opportunity to leisurely explore the surroundings, marvelling at the diverse and unique flora while being engulfed by the soothing and peaceful ambience. This experience was truly the epitome of a harmonious blend of exhilarating adventure and soul-soothing tranquillity.

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Leaving Jayanti

Leaving Jayanti Village with its lush and tranquil landscape

Morning Activities

The next morning, as the sun began to rise, I took a leisurely walk by the riverside, savouring the quiet and serene atmosphere. Around 6 am, I carefully packed my belongings, taking in the sights and sounds of the peaceful surroundings for one last time. The picturesque beauty of Jayanti, with its lush and tranquil landscape, and the warm hospitality of the local residents, made a deep and lasting impression on me. I spent some time exploring the charming village, immersing myself in the local culture and eagerly anticipated the arrival of the first NBSTC bus to Alipurduar Junction at 9 am.


offbeat destinations and reconnect with nature regularly Buxa Tiger Reserve

As I reluctantly said goodbye to Jayanti, a whirlwind of conflicting emotions swept over me. The village, cradled in the lush embrace of nature and radiating an aura of peace, had been a sanctuary of tranquillity for me. I took the time to express my deep gratitude to the warm-hearted locals, promising them that I would return to this idyllic haven in the days to come. The journey back to Alipurduar Junction became a period of deep reflection, during which I fondly recalled the countless meaningful encounters and treasured moments that had coloured my time spent in the village.

Journey Back

The ride back to Alipurduar Junction was a time of reflection. I arrived at Jayanti Village Mor early in the morning to catch the first NBSTC bus departing at 9 am. The fare for the ride was only Rs. 25. The journey through the lush landscape, with memories of the trek, the safari, and the tranquil riverbed, filled me with a sense of accomplishment and peace. The anticipation of returning home was now accompanied by a renewed appreciation for nature and solitude.


The solo adventure to Buxa Tiger Reserve National Park was a journey of personal growth and discovery. The connection with nature, the encounters with wildlife, and the interactions with locals enriched my understanding of the world and myself. The experience taught me the value of solitude, the beauty of simplicity, and the importance of preserving nature.

Future Plans

The trip inspired a desire to explore more offbeat destinations and reconnect with nature regularly. Buxa Tiger Reserve, with its untouched beauty and rich biodiversity, remains a place I aspire to revisit. The adventure has ignited a passion for solo travel, encouraging me to seek new experiences and embrace the unknown.

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Practical Tips for Future Travelers

Travel Essentials

For those planning a trip to Buxa Tiger Reserve, it’s essential to pack wisely. Sturdy hiking boots, comfortable clothing, a first-aid kit, and sufficient water are crucial. A good camera to capture the breathtaking views and wildlife is highly recommended. It’s also important to carry some snacks and a map of the area.

Best Times to Visit

The best time to visit Buxa Tiger Reserve is from October to March when the weather is pleasant, and the chances of spotting wildlife are higher. The monsoon season should be avoided due to heavy rains and slippery trails. The safari remains closed from 15th June to 15th September.

Safety Tips

Safety should always be a priority. Hiring a local guide for treks and safaris ensures a safe and informative experience. It’s important to respect the wildlife and maintain a safe distance. Staying on marked trails and following park regulations is crucial for a safe and enjoyable visit.

Local Interactions

Respecting local culture and traditions enhances the travel experience. Engaging with locals, learning about their way of life, and supporting local businesses contribute to sustainable tourism. It’s important to be mindful of the environment, avoiding littering and minimizing the use of plastics.


solo adventure to Buxa Tiger Reserve National Park

For those hesitant to embark on solo adventures, Buxa Tiger Reserve offers a perfect starting point. The journey, filled with natural beauty, wildlife encounters, and peaceful retreats, promises an enriching experience. Embrace the solitude, connect with nature, and discover the hidden treasures of Buxa Tiger Reserve National Park.

In conclusion, my solo adventure to Buxa Tiger Reserve National Park was a journey of a lifetime. The serene landscapes, thrilling wildlife encounters, and the tranquillity of the forest offered a perfect escape from the mundane. The experience not only enriched my love for nature but also instilled a deeper sense of appreciation for solitude and self-discovery. I encourage all nature enthusiasts and solo travellers to explore this hidden gem and create unforgettable memories.

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