Netarhat is an aesthetic space, surrounded by low hills, forests, and hilly springs, lest to be not known so far. Well, this space was initially the residing homeland for several tribes, until of course it was converted into a hill station by British colonizers. However, Netarhat is far from colonizing memories today and is also referred to as the ‘Queen of Chhota Nagpur’. This hill station is much acclaimed for its aesthetics, rejuvenating essence, and a public residential school that was established in 1954. Moreover, Netarhat is the perfect weekend getaway from Ranchi, the state capital, about 150km away by road.
How To Reach, Where To Stay!
Well, the process of reaching Netarhat from the plains is rather fun. The beautiful hills are showered with the gleaming presence of lush green sal, Palash, and manhwa trees. The steep hill road (‘ghat’ road) cuts through the forests, runs past some sharp bends, finally steeping into a plateau on which nestles Netarhat at a height of 1,250 meters, (surrounded by cypress and pine trees). A humongous gate welcomes you to the town.
The tourist lodge run by state tourism is indeed the best place to stay at Netarhat. The lodge is called ‘Prabhat Vihar’ for it rather maneuvers the best view of the sunrise across the hills. This place is the least crowded and therefore the best choice you can make at Netarhat.
Places To See
- The Netarhat Vidyalaya (a residential school) is about 2km from the tourist lodge. You can also check out the old British building, the Chalet House which is less than a kilometer from the school. The Jharkhand Government is meaning to give away the building to the school authorities for restoration purposes.
- About 2km from the Netarhat bus stand is a dam built during the British period. This place forms a stupendous picnic spot for tourists during winters.
- Magnolia Point/ Suicide point is where you can catch the best sunset view. For early birds, the Koel river holds some promising views and aesthetics. The river can be seen meandering through the verdant hills below. However, there are several restrictions here as of course, it’s a suicide point.
- The hills surrounding Netarhat are blessed with hilly springs and waterfalls. The waterfall, Upper Ghagri ls is about 6km from Netarhat. Lower Ghagri is another 4km away from here. The area has many orchards that are blooming with pear fruit. Also, both the waterfalls require you to walk and not drive.
- You can always drive down to the Lodh waterfalls for a longer outing. The Lodh waterfalls are said to be the highest waterfall of Jharkhand, about 62km from Netarhat (via Mahuadanr town). It is also known as Burhan Ghagh (that is the local term for waterfalls). The waterfalls jump down over 140 meters into a pool that disappears in the forest. It is advisable to be cautious since the rocks can be slippery. Also, avoid going too near the base of the falls.
Things To Keep In Mind
- Netarhat is about 156km west of Ranchi, the nearest airport and rail station.
- Tourists often like to combine a visit to Netarhat with Betla National Park (about 115km away via Mahuadanr town).
- Seemingly, since Netarhat is rather an off-beat tourist destination, it is advisable not to stand long in deserted areas even when you are traveling in a group.
- Cell phone connectivity is poor to non-existent.
- Ask for permission before taking photographs of tribal people.
- Best time to visit: November to March.
- Woolens required in winter.
- Carry mosquito/insect repellents and essential medicines.
Well, there’s not one but a thousand reasons as to why you should visit this fabulous hill station. Netarhat is rather quiet and calming at dusk, once tourists recede back to their lodgings. Enjoy the serenity of this hill station in Jharkhand and try to visit it ASAP!!