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Netarhat pine forest

Netarhat : The Queen of Chhotanagpur

  • Post author:Suvankar Das
  • Post last modified:December 4, 2022
  • Reading time:16 mins read

Enveloped in pristine forest of sal, pine, and eucalyptus, Netarhat is a quaint hill station in the heart of Chota Nagpur Plateau. Although this place is away from the limelight, the absolute tranquility, greenery, and splendid landscapes of Netarhat make it an ideal gateway for nature lovers. Due to the adequate beauty of this place, it is also known as the Queen of Chhotanagpur.

Till Before we reached the place, we didn’t really have many expectations, but the after-trip experience was totally different; in fact, it’s amazing! To be honest, I never thought Netarhat could be so beautiful! I believe, this place is a fair competitor to several top-listed destinations in India.

Let’s share my experience so that you can plan a fantastic trip to Netarhat and its outskirt.

Netarhat: A brief introduction

Situating at an altitude of 3696 feet, Netarhat offers pleasant weather throughout the year, except in the hot summer. Due to the same reason, once it was a popular holiday destination for the British officers of Bihar & Bengal (During the British reign in India).

A few years after the independence of the Nation (India), the place lost its tourist friendliness due to certain political disturbances. Only a few enthusiastic tourists, police, and forest officers used to visit there, even until 2015; in those days, Netarhat forest range and surroundings were mostly occupied by the wilds and tribal civilians.

Since last 5-6 years, situations are under control; also, the tourism of Netarhat has started growing. However, due to limited exposure, most Netarhat tourists still belongs to nearby regions; The majority of them are from Jharkhand, and the rest of the tourist comes from West Bengal and Bihar.

Related: Dassam Falls: The pride of Jharkhand

Things to do in Netarhat

Netarhat is an ideal place to experience refreshing and ever-remembering holidays. You don’t have many things to do in Netarhat, except resting and lazing into real green, discovering mother nature, watching sunrise and sunset, and feeling the absolute tranquility of this magical place.

Let’s elaborate…

Roadtrip through the hill forest

Driving through the hill forest is the major excitement of Netarhat trip, which initiats far before reaching the main town.

After a long run across the paddy field of plane land, you’ll enter the route toward Netarhat. The serpentine road suddenly hikes upwards; deep forest of sal, pine, and eucalyptus starts to grab the road from left and right, the beautiful green valley of plane land gives you farewell from far below.

Roadtrip to Netarhat

Take a break when you reach deep into the forest, stop your car engine, step out of your car, and feel the moment! The jingling sound of crickets makes you speechless, a colder feeling gasps you suddenly! The sunlight sparingly dissolves there through the tall trees; amazing views await at every turn.

The hilly jungle road is almost 24 km long, which gives you lots of excitement before reaching Netarhat town. There are several picturesque viewpoints and two small water streams on the way, you can have some snaps there.

Netarhat hill forest is a safe home of wilds including foxes, Jackels, wolves, hyenas, sloth beer, leopards, langurs, four-horned antelopes, and rabbits, though they rarely come on the roadside. If you are lucky, you can see wild foxes and langurs during your trip.

I have traveled across several hill stations so far, but I was rarely driven through such a deep hill forest, except in Meghalaya. Indeed, driving through Netarhat hill forest is a lifetime experience.

You may find interesting: The Garden of Caves — Explore the Gem of Meghalaya near Cherrapunji

Koyel View Point

Koyel Viewpoint.

It’s a picturesque pine forest at the western edge of Netarhat. The absolute serenity of Koyel View point fairly insists you lazing there hour after hour, watching the endless valley, feeling the hide and seek of the morning sun, and listening to the singing birds.

The western edge of Koyel viewpoint steeply meets the ground far below, widespread green valley raises at your eye front, beautiful Koyel River flows across the valley on her own way.

Sunrise and sunset from Netarhat

You can experience picturesque sunrise and sunset from two different spots of Netarhat. The sunrise point is close to the Koyel viewpoint which you can access easily from any hotel in Netarhat.

The sunset point of Netarhat is known as Mongolia sunset point, which is approx. 9 km away from the town. Beautifully decorated this park area is also a popular tourist spot.

The undefined sight of the setting sun hiding behind Vindhya hills followed by a fabulous evening glow across the entire valley create a romantic ambiance at Mongolia sunset point; you shouldn’t miss this nostalgia during your Netarhat trip.

Note: Sunset point lacks adequate parking space, which may be chaotic for you, especially on holidays/ weekends. So, arrive there a bit early, mainly to park your car without any hassle.

Also read: Tendrabong: The Offbeat Wonder of North Bengal

Upper Ghagri Falls and Lower Ghaghri Falls

These twin falls are another two good places to visit near Netarhat.

The Upper Ghaghri falls is approx 4 km away from the town and known to be a unique picnic spot. It’s a small waterfall initiated from Netarhat Dam.

Lower Ghagri falls

Lower Ghaghri Falls is much bigger; situating inside the dense forest of Netarhat plateau the upper Ghaghri falls touches the ground from an elevation of 320 ft, presenting a magnificent sight. Starting from the town center, you have to drive approx. 10 km to experience this uneven beauty.

Apart from the aforementioned spots, Netarhat Boarding School, Chalet House, and Netarhat Dam are a few other places to see in Netarhat, though it depends on your personal interest.

“Netarhat Lake” is overhyped on internet, especially by the Lake View Resort in Netarhat; For your information, it’s not a lake, but only a big water reservoir with average photogenic views (snap a photo with iconic tree background). So, you may or may not visit this place based on your tour timings; it’s not a mandatory place to visit.

Netarhat lake
This one is called Netarhat Lake

Patratu Lake and Kanke Lake (dam) in Ranchi are far better than Netarhat Lake.

Other Places to visit near Netarhat

  • Lodh Waterfalls (70 km): It’s the highest waterfall in Jharkhand (Must-Visit). {Read More about Lodh Falls}
  • Betla National Park (90 km): Experience the wilds!
  • Maromar (70 km): Spend one night at the forest rest house there.

How to Visit Netarhat

Road route is the only way to reach Netarhat. You may plan a road trip with your personal car/ bike; alternatively, you can hire a cab to enjoy the trip. You’ll get many tour operators in the nearest city, Ranchi, who can arrange a complete Netarhat tour package for you.

However, self-drive through the zigzag route of Netarhat is very exciting and enjoyable, of course, if you are a good driver. Nowadays, a large number of road trippers and bikers visit Netarhat with their own vehicles to experience the ecstasy of the trip.

So, if you own a car/bike and love long drives, it’s always a better option. With a personal vehicle, you have more freedom, you can spend more time on a spot that you love, and you can stop anywhere to capture photos. At least Netarhat trip needs such kind of Freedom.

For your very special note, you need to be extra careful while driving in the hilly forest near Netarhat; the truck drivers carrying bauxite ore (there are some bauxite mines nearby) are pretty reckless and rash, often they drive out of the track. The same is done by the public buses. Also, in some places you’ll find hanging roads; so, avoid dead edges of the road while driving.

When to visit Netarhat

Except in hot summer, you can visit Netarhat any time of the year. October to March is the best season to spend comfortable holidays there, though monsoon months (July-September) offer a different beauty.

Where to stay at Netarhat

You don’t have many choices because only a few hotels are available there.

Lake View Resort is one of the best stay options in Netarhat, which provides spacious rooms, clean ambiance, and decent food (though a bit expensive compared to quality and quantity). The staff is good also.

Hotel Ravi and Sashi is another highly recommended option to stay in Netarhat. Decent staff behavior, good food quality, overall cleanness, the vibe of the garden area, spacious parking area, and easy access to sunset point are some of the remarkable features of this hotel. You can fairly choose to stay there.

Hotel Pravat Bihar is a good stay option if the former ones are houseful. This guest house is owned by the Jharkhand government (Latehar tourism) and is located near Netarhat sunrise point. Three types of accommodation are available there; at old building, new building, and in the tent. Preferably you should choose the premium rooms in New building. Rooms in the old building are not well maintained.

Hotel Sunrise is another average option, but their services are a bit sloppy, especially with food.

For your information, you should avoid staying at Nature Hat Resort, unless you don’t get a booking at the above hotels. The location is good, also the exterior is nice, but the major negatives of this resort are unprofessionalism, food price (i.e., Rs. 800 for 10 pc chicken), hygiene (dirty tents, turbid tap water), and staff behavior.

Foods in Netarhat

Freshly cooked Deshi Chicken (non-broiler) is a must-eat dish in Netarhat as well as in entire Jharkhand. most hotels/ resorts in Netarhat are equipped with kitchen facility; generally, they start preparing food after they receive an order from you. Apart from chicken, they also serve mushroom and paneer dishes.

Also, there are several small restaurants in Netarhat and its surroundings that offer you readily cooked chicken and other recipes.

For your note, there is no foreign liquor shop in Netarhat. If you are fond of it, carry your own.

Netarhat: The Final Remarks

WE - At Netarhat Pine forest - Koyel Viewpoint

I’ll specially remark on the pollution-free green environment of the place, you can’t see a single piece of waste plastic anywhere on road, they are very sincere about making it a plastic-free zone. This is one of the very reasons, you get so fresh environment in Netarhat.

With lush green everywhere and comfortable weather, Netarhat offers an ever-remembering peaceful holiday experience in the lap of pure nature. If you are looking for an unconventional trip on your upcoming vacation, I strongly recommend you for planning a Ranchi-Netarhat trip.

Have a nice trip!

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Dr. Suvankar Das is a scientific advisor by profession, associated with a CRO organization. He pursued his doctoral degree in Chemistry in 2015. Later, he worked as a postdoctoral researcher & scientist in a couple of institutes/companies.

Besides his scientific journey, Dr. Das is also a passionate traveler and travel blogger. He loves to share all his travel experiences with other travelers so that everyone can enjoy hassle-free holidays with their own tour plans.

He believes, the most beautiful thing in this world is the WORLD itself. so there is no way to live like a clock; rather live it like a compass!

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