Bishnupur is a city and a municipality of Bankura district in the state of West Bengal, India. It is the headquarters of the Bishnupur subdivision. It is famous for its terracotta temples and the Baluchari sarees. Terracotta is characteristic of Bishnupur. Apart from the temples, terracotta pottery, artefacts and even jewellery made in this very traditional material are famous. The most famous of the terracotta products are the hand made beautiful jars, disks and the more famous of them are the terracotta horses, elephants, Ganesha, and Nataraj. But nowadays the skilled artists and potters are not present and also they make different products like faces, men, wall hangings and also the mini-sized Dal Madal Kaman (cannon). The potters here derive their inspiration from the glorious history of kings, soldiers, and wars ‘Dokra’, one kind of metalcraft is also famous. Bishnupur is also famous for Baluchari Sari and Mallabhum Sari made of Tassar silk and was for almost a thousand years the capital of the Malla kings of Mallabhum. Woven on Jacquard punch-card looms, these sarees have episodes from the Mahabharata woven into the border and pallu. Bellmetalware, conch-shell and terracotta jewellery is also available here. The “Dashavatar Taas”, kind of playing cards depicting ten avatars of Hindu god Vishnu, is drawn by hand. It is a rare art piece not to be found anywhere else in India.
History: Bishnupurwas ruled under the Gupta period by local Hindu kings who paid tribute to Samudra Gupta. Following a long period of obscurity, where the land oscillated between being a minor independent principality and a vassal state. The land is also called Mallabhum after the Malla rulers of this place. The Malla rulers were Vaishnavites and built the famous terracotta temples during the 17th and 18th century at this place. The legends of Bipodtarini Devi are associated with Malla Kings of Bishnupur.
For almost a thousand years it was the capital of the Malla kings of Mallabhum, of which Bankura was a part, till their power waned during the times when Mughal Empire weakened under the last monarchs of the dynasty. The patronage of Malla king Veer Hambir and his successors Raja Raghunath Singha Dev and Bir Singha Dev made Bishnupur one of the principal centres of culture in Bengal.
*(All the above information are from Wikipedia.)
Airport: Netaji Subhash International airport in Kolkata in the nearest airport located at a distance of 140 km.
Rail: Bishnupur is well-connected by rail to the rest of the country via Kharagpur and Adra. Express and mail trains ply between Kolkata and Bishnupur on a regular basis. The Rupashi Bangla Express, Aranyak Express and the Purulia Express are the most convenient trains to reach Bishnupur from Kolkata; these trains come via Kharagpur and take approx 3:30 to 4:15 hours to reach Bishnupur from Kolkata.
Road: It is connected to almost all major places of Bengal. Long-distance buses connect Bishnupur to places like Arambag, Durgapur, Asansol, Kolkata etc. There are regular and frequent bus services available between Kolkata and Bishnupur. The buses usually leave Kolkata from the Esplanade bus stand. The journey takes about 4 hours and 45 minutes.
Local: Within the city of Bishnupur, private auto-rickshaws and cycle-rickshaws are the most convenient mode of communication. Vehicles are also available on hire from the city.
This is a terracotta temple town and is filled with temples in the vicinity of each other. The main attractions here are many such terracotta temples within the city like Madanmohan temple, Rasmancha, Chinnamasta temple, Dalmadal canon, Gumghar, Shyamrai temple, Jorbangla temple, Radheshyam temple, Mrinmoyee temple, Lalji temple,Patharer Darwaja.
All the places in Bishnupur are located close to each other and can be covered in a day.
Hotels: There are few private hotels in Bishnupur. The West Bengal Government Tourist Lodge has many variety of rooms to meet different needs.