West Champaran, an administrative district of the state of Bihar, is home for a number of tourist attractions. Nature’s scenic beauty is unfolded in its lush green forests and highly fertile plain. A wide variety of wild animals and birds are sheltered in the dense forests and wildlife sanctuary of the district. West Champaran offers its tourists the choice of exploring the picturesque beauty that is spread over the entire district. Places of historic importance of the district are also worth visiting. Given below is the description about the places to see in West Champaran.
Places to See
Valmikinagar, formerly known as Bhainsa Lotan, is one of the famous tourist attractions of West Champaran. Surrounded by the picturesque beauty of the countryside, the tourist spot is a visual treat for nature and wildlife lovers. It is abode of a dam built on river Gandak. The dam and its channels have been irrigating the northwestern part of Bihar and some portions of eastern Uttar Pradesh. Valmiki wildlife sanctuary, spread across 544sq km, is a home for myriad wild animals and birds. Magnificent Himalayas provide a backdrop for this calm wild land. The historic Valmiki Ashram, located in the forests adjacent to the sanctuary, is also worth paying a visit.
Bank Of Triveni (Confluence)
Bank of Triveni is located about five miles above the Valmikinagar dam. Positioned in the Indo-Nepal border, the Bank of Triveni offers its visitors the unique vision of confluence of river Gandak, Panchanand and Sonaha. The confluence is mentioned in Hindu Holy book – “Srimad Bhagwat”, according to which, the thousand years battle between Gaj (Elephant) and Grah (Crocodile) was commenced at this place. An annual fair is held at this holy place on the eve of “Magh Sankranti” in the 11th month of the Hindu Lunar calendar. This occasion is also known as ‘bathing festival in holy rivers’. Thousands of devotees visit this place on this fair, to take a holy dip in this confluence.
Bawangarhi is a village located about 8 km from the Bank of Triveni. The village is known as Bawangarhi because it is a site for the remains of 52 forts. (‘Bawan’ means 52 and ‘Garh’ means fort). The village is sometimes referred to as Tripan Bazar, since it is a location for the ruins of 53 bazar.
Bhiknatohari is a beautiful place situated in the Gaunaha block on the northern part of West Champaran. A number of tourists visit this place during winter to catch a glimpse of the snow capped Himalayas and the Annapurna peak. Bhiknatohari is also significant because King George V once visited this place for hunting.
Nandangarh and Chankigarh
Nandangarh is located in Lauria block while Chankigarh is situated in Narkatiaganj block of West Champaran. These big mounds are the remains of palaces of Nanda Dynasty and Chanakya, the renowned economist. Historical significance of these places makes them a must-visit destination for archaeologists.
Lauria, situated on kilometer east of Nandangarh, is a tourist place of historical significance. The 2300-years-old lion pillar of Ashoka is located in Lauria. The base diameter of the 35-feet tall pillar is 35 inches and its upper diameter is 22 inches. The exquisitely finished massive pillar stands as the best example of the dexterity of workers in Ashokan Age. Two more such pillars have been excavated in Rampurwa village, adjacent to Gandhiji’s Bhitiharawa Ashram in Gaunaha block of West Champaran.
Sumeswar hills are located at a height of 2884 feet above sea level in Ramnagar Block of the district. There is a fort on the edge of a sharp cliff at the summit of Sumeswar hills. The ruined Fort Sumeswar is abode of a number of reservoirs made out of solid rocks, which were used to store water for the use of its residents. The ridge, upon which the fort is located, provides a clear view of the great Himalayan peaks of Dhoulagiri, Gosainthan and Gaurishanker. It forms the boundary between West Champaran and Nepal.