Recently on my brother’s insistence, I with my family took a trip to shankarpur,a place on the outskirts of the renowned tourist destination of West Bengal,Digha .The way my brother described it, we hoped for a beautiful & busy sea beach, brimming with Indian tourists(mostly Bengalis) & scantily clad foreigners, to the delight of Indian men 😀 .
We started our journey at 9am & reached around 1pm.It takes only 2 hours but the worsening condition of the road slowed us down. Our journey took us through rural Bengal. It was a serene sight to us, but to the localites, it’s all about toiling in the scorching sun & sweating profusely. The sight was made up of thatched huts in the backdrop of dense vegetation & a small pond. West Bengal is teaming with ponds at every nook & corner. I am sure the rural Bengal is perfect for a painter’s canvas.
Shankarpur has only 2 good hotels-Sandy Bay & Nest. But when we reached there, we saw other hotels too, but sadly, their state of affairs marked the absence of tourists in their rooms. We had a booking in Sandy Bay. My brother preferred Nest but I ruled it out. My only reason-Sandy bay is on the beach & its rooms are sea facing. Our room was on the top floor & it was comfortable. I went into the balcony & was satisfied at the sea facing room. I could see the sea, could hear the roaring water too, could see the palm trees .It was indeed beautiful scenery. We lunched on sea fishes whose names I am unaware of. In the evening we walked to the beach. I was jumping with excitement. Being a Piscean, I am a water baby. 😉
To my utmost disappointment, we can’t even touch water. The entire beach was being protected as shown above. You can say there was no beach in practical. There were some small shops, selling snacks & cold drinks. We had some tea from one of the shops & from there we got to know, about the cause of such a dismal sight.
During high tide, water used to enter the villages of shankarpur.Water filled the low lying areas forming ponds. During low tide, these ponds got empty. The villagers built small dams so that water stayed in the ponds. They started fisheries in those. Because of these developments, the water couldn’t enter the villages & due to back pressure (apologies for a scientific term, but in detail, just Google it), the water lashed violently at the beaches, carrying away the sand with it to the depths. Due to this, the beaches were getting destroyed. So the Govt.decided to protect the beaches by erecting thick structures on it & putting mounds of boulders. You must have seen the Mumbai beach, it’s the same.What i believe is, truly,man made activities hamper the natural water cycle,causing harm to both nature & us!!! 😦
It’s not just in shankarpur, even in digha; the beach has been cordoned off. L
So for the tourists, the govt. developed a new spot & named it new digha beach. It’s like any other beach-sand, water, tourists & foreigners. 😛 We had a great time walking on the beach of New Digha.Mandarmoni is more secluded like shankarpur & is ideal for people who seek relaxation & peace, but the beach here is same as New digha.
I would recommend Mandarmoni & new digha to you for great hoards of fun 😀 have a safe journey.