Shyamnagar is a small thriving town of Bengal and is located around 30 KM north of Kolkata. Though the town is tucked away from the hustles bustles of the city, it has immense historical importance both in terms of economic contribution and cultural richness. During the colonial era, the town was a major industrial hub as many British Jute mills operated from there. During the early 18th century it was a major place for indigo plantation. But shyamnagar’s history pre-dates colonial times and reflections of this can be seen in nooks and corners of the city.

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Long before the British had set foot on Shyamnagar , the place was a small and prosperous village known as the Mulajore. The then king of Krishnanagar, Raja Krishna Chandra bestowed this village along with the title Roy Gunakar to his court poet Shri Bharat Chandra Roy. Today in his honor there is a library but sadly not in a very good condition. It is said that famous reformists such as Vidyasagar and Bankim Chandra used to visit the village as it once regarded as an important center to impart sankskrit teachings.

IMG_3837A quite  popular and historic place to visit in this small town of Shyamnagar is the Mulajore Kalibari.  The temple priests claim that this temple has been established in the bengali year 1219, i.e. some 200 years back since this is the bengali year 1422 running. Also, this temple was set up by the famous Tagore family member of  Noble Laureate Rabindranath Tagore. However, it is a known fact that the famous poet was against idol worship and an ardent follower of Brahmo Samaj principles,  so his involvement is debatable.

Even today, the deity presiding this temple is highly revered and pilgrims from all part of this region come and pay a visit whenever they can.

Various shiva lingas at the display for sale.
Various shiva lingas at the display for sale.
The site for animal sacrifice at the temple premises.
The site for animal sacrifice at the temple premises.
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The top of the Mulajore Kalibari as seen from the adjoining field.
The ruins of the stable which once formed a part of the Shyamnagar Rajbari. Now this dilapidated structure is almost covered by wild bushes and is sadly used as public urinal for the laborers working around.
The ruins of the stable which once formed a part of the Shyamnagar Rajbari. Now this dilapidated structure is almost covered by wild bushes and is sadly used as public urinal by the laborers working around.
A lazy sunday of this dreary summer is always the perfect time to take a short nap.
A lazy sunday of this dreary summer is always the perfect time to take a short nap.
Birds perched on a branch of tree somewhere along the bank of the mighty river Ganges.
Birds perched on a branch of tree somewhere along the bank of the mighty river Ganges.

While Shyamnagar might not be a very popular tourist destination, however, there are numerous things to enjoy a weekend. There are few guest houses available, if one requires to stay for a day or two. A weekend is perfect to explore this small town perched on the banks of the Hooghly River, which is the Bengal’s extension of the River Ganges. With very few options for recreation available, one gets ample chances to soak in the natural beauty of the countryside. If running short on time, a single day return trip is also enough as you will feel recharged at the end of the day.

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