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West Bengal : Nandikeshwari
Sainthia railway station, a 179 km away place from Howrah, is the destination for you if you have planned to visit Nandikeshwari temple. The temple, lies at the opposite side of the Sainthia railway station, was built in 1320 (According to the Bengali calendar). It is thought that the bone of the neckline of Sati had fallen at Sainthia, previously known as Nandipur and it became another Sakti Pitha of Hindu community. Nandini temple doesn’t pull much of a crowd now but still it is seen that devotees come here occasionally to worship the Deity. A piece of rock, placed in between the pipul and banyan tree, is worshipped by the followers. Nandikeshwar, the consort of the Devi, is also worshipped here but there is no idol as such. There are also deities of other gods and goddesses like Sri Krishna, Devi Sitala, Ganesh, Gouri and many more. It is nice to see the Rakhakali temple at the opposite side of Nandikeshwari temple. A fair is arranged once a year on the last day of Durga Puja, Bijaya Dashami.
If you have time you can get down at Mallarpur, on the way to Nandikeshwari temple. The aat chala temple of Malleshwar Shiva in Mallarpur is surrounded by 25 more temples. The architectural vistas of these temples are really impressive.
How to reach: Sainthia railway station can be accessed by many Trains which start from Howrah and Sealdah railway station, Kolkata. But the numbers of trains available from Howrah to Sainthia are many more compared to the trains starting from Sealdah. You can also take you car and visit places like Santiniketan, Kankali Pith and Nandikeshwari temple at one go.
Where to stay: The best place to stay here is the Ashrama of Mother Balananda in Sainthia. 20 rooms are available here. You can also get more beds inside your room if you pay 10 rupees extra for each bed. Pwd bungalow, Dutta boarding house and happy lodge are the other available options of Sainthia.