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West Bengal: Haldia
Haldia is a city and a municipality in Purba Medinipur district, West Bengal. It is a major seaport and industrial Belt, located approximately 50 km southwest of Kolkata near to the banks of the Hooghly River, one of the distributaries of the Ganges. Haldia houses the second biggest lock gate of the world which has 1010 feet length, 130 feet width and 48 feet depth.
The industrial city has 455 acre Haldia oil refinery, Haldia fertilizer, the largest petrochemical factory of Asia and many more industries. The appealing fort city looks like a picture on the canvas with its surrounding forest of Deodar, Krishnachura, and Bougainvillea. Centenary park and Vidyasagar Park near to the lock gate alongside the Hooghly River should not be missed out.
The Haldia Township is delimited by the Haldi River at the western side and Hooghly (an offshoot of the Ganges River) river at the southern side of Hadia. One can stroll down and enjoy the cool breeze alongside the river during the evenings. Haldia is also a base of Indian Coast Guard.
Nayachar, the island, is now a tourist destination. The new name of Nayachar is now Meen Island. Recently Nayachar is in news as a proposed spot for petrochemical project. Migratory birds are an additional sight for the tourists in winter.
If time permits you can also go to Tamralipta and Mahishadal.
How to reach: Haldia can be accessed both by bus and by trains from Kolkata. Buses to Haldia start from Esplanad, Kolkata and a lot of express trains are also available from Howrah railway station, Kolkata.
Where to stay: Benfish Mohana Lodge is the best option for a night stay.