|Kolkata - Basirhat Rd, Nehalpur, West Bengal 743437
|How to go:
|By road use Barasat-Taki road if you are accessing from Airport side and if you are accessing from Science city use Basanti Highway. Both comes under 62 km. use google map simple.
And by train you have to take Hasnabaad local from Sealdah and get down in Kankra Mirzanagar.. from there you will get auto or toto for Gayen bari.
|Easy to access, Local transport is also available, mobile network available
|Lack of local food shop
|What to visit ?
|People who love to explore Bengal history and old architecture
|Minimum day/time to visit:
|1 day only
|Census town in the Basirhat II CD block
|Using local transport it may cost max 500 including everything (hiring toto, food and transport)
This is another nearby destination from Kolkata which comes under the categories of daytrip. Dhanyakuria is the only one destination around West Bengal which gives you the chance of Cinderella styled castle with a fusion of Indian and European architecture which was constructed by few wealthy Zamindars who make this Sundarbans delta land made the place of human habitat in 1742. Jagannath Das was probably among the initial persons to made this land clear away from the forests and became an influencer of other rich traders families like Gayens, Sahoos, Ballavs, Mondols and few others. They developed schools, clinics, libraries, temples and mansions. That is how this place grows a rich architectural values and become a famous trading center as well within few years.
Gayen Garden House
One of the biggest attraction of Dhanyakuria is Gayen Garden house was built by Mahendranath Gayen, it has been acquired by Government in 1960. It has a huge gate beside the road and the gate has two big towers at both the end. In middle there is a arch, above that it has a figure of two men fighting with a lion. The castle like building stand on the ground inside of the gate, which has a big pond in front. The reflection is mesmerizing. If you manage to go inside of the gate you will see the toward and turrets of the building closely. You will find many European gesture and sculptures on the outside wall of that castle. Next to Gayen castle there is a modern abandoned building which has been held as a orphanage home for girls but has been abruptly shut down on 2018 due to lack of maintenance.
The fusion type light orange colored 'L' shaped building has been built in middle of 19th century by Gopichand Gayen, till date it is maintained and considered as a residence of Gayen family. The building is pretty much well maintained, it has a three storey tower with a dome on top is called Nazar Minar. It has also presiding deity of the family Shyamsundar Jiu which is very much maintained and worshiped by Hindu priest daily. The temple is also a part of attraction of their heritage. Due to the patronage of British people, they built this mansion with a mix culture of Indian and European architecture. Presently Gayen mansion is occupied and maintained by Monojit Gayen who is a school teacher by profession and belongs to the same family tree.
Like Gayen, Mondal, Ballav another family settles in 19th century in that area is Sawoo family. They also made their fortune with jute, jaggery, rice and made themselves wealthy enough to hold the same status as other traders families did. They made European style mansions which has embedded Corinthian pillars on its wall and stucco over the windows arch in exterior part. Patit Chandra Sawoo was the person who built this house around 200 years ago. Unfortunately the main family does not reside there unlike Gayen mansion. As the owner of that house settled in Kolkata, it remains locked most of the time. A caretaker stays there and he does not allow anyone to enter without permission of the owner. Only in Durgapuja they assembled in this mansion and make it alive like 200 years ago. That is the only time they allow people inside of the house. It has very a decorative Thakur Dalan where they celebrate Durga Puja.
One of the well maintained and decorated houses you can see in Dhanyakuria is Ballav Bari. Area wise it may be a bit smaller than other mansions but it's unique style of decoration in front always attracts other while passing by. It has well-decorated face with idols on the top reminds us "Putul Bari (Doll house)". There is a garden in front which is being maintained by paid gardener every time. There is a big iron decorative gate which remains open most of the time. One can go inside and have a look of the interior part of that house. It has some library which contains very authentic and old books of literature and Indian history. Like other mansions it has also a very beautiful and maintained thakur dalan. The house has its own pond in right side where you will find a ghat (passage leading down to the pond) which looks like a big ship. It is being rarely used now. The family does not stay here in the mansion excepts few caretakers. You will find another beautiful Nazar Minar outside of the house which leads to the Rash Mancha/ Mandir
Rash Mancha/ Mandir
Rash Mandir is located in few minutes walk keeping Ballav bari in left. It is basically a white colored Navaratna temple where Rash Festival is celebrated in greater manner. The Rash Mancha has five arched entrance on each of the four sides.
Except these, there are Sahoo Bagan Bari (abandoned, after Rashmancha towards Satyajit Park a few steps ahead you will find a ruined gate in right hand, follow that lane, at the end you will find this house.) Rathkhola school (established in 1884), Dhanyakuria high school (1885), Philomel public school (1894), Radhakanta temple, Satyajit Park etc. You can set the google map for all these places and make a day outing really memorable.