A Trip To Chabimura In Tripura: Co-existence of Nature And History

The state of Tripura is an amalgamation of natural beauty and historical places. Unlike other the northeastern Indian states, which are more famous for their scenic beauty, Tripura attracts tourists of a different category. It offers a variety of sites catering to every traveler’s needs. While Jampui Hill allures travelers for its dense forest and hills, its temples attract tourists for their religious beliefs. The state also has numerous archaeological sites like Unakoti and Pilak Archaeological Site and hosts the second largest lake in north-east India. My trip to Tripura comprised of exploring most of the famous places in the state, and this article deals with one such site in Tripura. Upon arriving at Udaipur, I visited the Tripura Sundari Temple and later headed to Chabimura. Chabimura is famous for its rock-cut sculptures carved on the steep hills on the banks of Gomati River. During my Trip to Chabimura in Tripura, I explored the Chabhimura rock-cut carvings via a boat ride. There is no doubt in saying that my boat ride in Chabimura was one of the best in my life. Viewing the idols engraved on a rock amid dense jungle gave me the feeling that I am playing the central character of the Indiana Jones Movie. It was the second time I was mesmerized by the rich history of the state and forced me to visit the other archeological sites in Tripura. In this article, I will be sharing important information related to planning a trip to Chabimura in Tripura. I will also be sharing information on how to visit Chabimura and accommodation facilities in the area. In the later part of the article, I will try to narrate my trip to Chabimura and how I explored one of the underrated yet beautiful sites in Tripura. 

Why Plan A Trip To Chabimura In Tripura?

The best thing about traveling in Tripura is the easy accessibility to various tourist sites in the state. The same rule applies to Chabimura too, as it lies close to the town of Udaipur famous for Tripura Sundari Temple and Neer Mahal Palace. Anyone touring Agartala or Udaipur can easily visit Chabimura on the same day. Although accessibility is a significant factor, the main reason Chabimura is famous for is its rock-cut sculptures. The site has numerous images of Hindu God and Goddess carved out on a rock. The prominent among all the carving is the sculpture of Goddess Durga in the form of Mahishasurmardini (slayer of Mahishasur, a demon king). Local people worship the statue as CHAKRAK-MA, and it is the largest antiques of Goddess Durga present in the country. The Mahishasurmardini statue is 11 meters in height and 8 meters in width. It is carved 10 meters above on the steep bank of the Gomati river, displaying the artistic creation of native people. Apart from the Mahishasurmardini statue, it also hosts large images of Lord Shiva, Vishnu, and Kartika. 

Also Read: Trip To Bhojeshwara Shiv Temple: Largest Shiv Lingam In India

Boat Ride On A Trip To Chabimura In Tripura
Boat Ride On A Trip To Chabimura In Tripura

Apart from the idols carved on the river bank, the entire area offers a pristine scenery with dense forest and the Gomati River flowing in its full might. Gomati River is the largest river of the state that originates from the Damboor Lake. Most of the course of the river is turbulent, but at Chabimura, the water is calm, favoring boating. Gomati river at Chabimura is at its maximum width, and the dense forest creates a scene of a boat ride like some Anaconda movie of Hollywood. Chabimura offers a blend of religion and history with nature and explains how Hinduism is deeply connected with nature. I will recommend visiting Chabimura to any traveler planning to visit Tripura. Also, a trip to Chabimura allows exploring Damboor Lake, the biggest lake in the state. 

Where Is Chabimura Situated?

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Chabimura lies in the Gomati district of Tripura, which is one of the eight districts of the state. It lies close to the town of Amarpur, which is a subdivision of the Gomati District. Chabimura lies 90 kilometers from the state capital Agartala and 35 kilometers from the district headquarters Udaipur. Amarpur is the nearest big town en route Chabimura, which lies 9 kilometers from the starting point of the boat ride, also known as Debtamura Hills.  

A signboard showing the direction of Chabimura in Tripura
A signboard showing the direction of Chabimura in Tripura

How To Reach Chabimura In Tripura?

Arriving at Chabimura is the most straightforward task as Amarpur is well connected with the capital city Agartala via road. As mentioned earlier, Chabimura lies 90 kilometers from Agartala, and all it takes is a three-hour drive to reach Chabhimura. The National Highway 8 connects Agartala to Udaipur; the district headquarter of Gomati district. From Udaipur, Amarpur is 25 kilometers and requires an hour of drive. Once reached Amarpur, Chabimura is only 9 kilometers and can be reached in 10-15 minutes. I have also mentioned the condition of the road from Agartala to Amarpur in my article on Damboor Lake, which users can read to get a better idea about the status of the road while planing a trip to Chabimura in Tripura. 

Also Read: A Detailed Travel Guide On Planning A Trip To Damboor Lake

Agartala Airport, also known as Maharaja Bir Bikram Airport.
Agartala Airport, also known as Maharaja Bir Bikram Airport.

Regarding the connectivity, The nearest airport to Chabimura is the Agartala Airport, also known as Maharaja Bir Bikram Airport. The airport lies in the city of Agartala and is 120 kilometers from the town. In terms of railways, the nearest railway station is the Udaipur railway station situated near Matabari. The Udaipur railway station lies on the Lumding–Sabroom section, which comes under the Lumding railway division of the Northeast Frontier Railway.

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Accommodation Facility At Chabimura In Tripura

If you had read my article on planning a trip to Damboor Lake, in that post, I mentioned about the best accommodation facility in Amarpur. The Tripura State Government Guest House, also knows as Sagarika Parjatan Niwas, is the cheapest and best accommodation facility at Chabimura. Apart from Sagarika Parjatan Niwas, there might be a few more hotels in the town, but the government tourist house is value for money. In case anyone is looking for more options or fancy hotels, I would recommend staying at Udaipur town.  

Sagarika Parjatan Niwas A Tourist Guest House Managed By Tripura Government In Amarpur
Sagarika Parjatan Niwas A Tourist Guest House Managed By Tripura Government In Amarpur

Other Facilities At Chabimura In Tripura

Amarpur is a small town, yet it has almost all the facilities from a traveler’s perspective. The town has decent accommodation, bus stand, and connectivity to the major cities of Tripura. It has a few small eateries and shops for daily needs. In case one is looking for any specific facility, do let me know and I will try to help based on my trip to Chabimura in Tripura.

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What To Do On A Trip To Chabimura In Tripura

Although exploring a place depends on the time, but two things are mandatory for any traveler visiting Chabimura. One the boat ride from Devtamura to Mahishasurmardini Statue and second exploring the sculptures from a close distance. The boat ride takes 45 minutes to an hour, depending on the type of boat, and returns from the main idol of Mahishasurmardini. In case anyone is interested in going further, he/she needs to check with the boatman and concerned authorities. Chabimura is also famous for hiking, but treks need to be carried out under the supervision of a guide. The hills and forest of Tripura are renowned for their unexplored terrain; therefore, a guide becomes mandatory.  

While visiting Chabimura, one can also explore the town of Amarpur and visit Damboor Lake, which lies 50 kilometers from the city. When I visited Chabimura, I did the boat ride in the evening, stayed at Sagarika Parjatan Niwas, and visited Damboor Lake the next morning. Also, Udaipur lies near to Amarpur and is famous for Tripura Sundari Temple and Neer Mahal Palace, which are a must to visit places on a trip to Chabimura. 

My Trip To Chabimura In Tripura And How I Explored The Site

During my sixty-day trip to north-east India, I relied on different means of transport. I used Royal Enfiled Motorcycle in Meghalaya and Honda Activa Scooter for other states. When I visited Tripura, I relied on public transport. The reason for public transport was my desire to travel on the Guwahati-Lumding-Haflong-Agartala Train route, which is one of the scenic and most beautiful train routes in India. Once I arrived in Agartala, I headed to Udaipur and visited the Tripura Sundari Temple. I planned to visit the Neermahal while returning and decided to visit Chabimura. By the time I reached Udaipur, it was already noon. As I was relying on public transport, I headed to the Udaipur Bus Stand. All the buses to Amarpur were full, and I decided to travel on a local jeep. It charged 40 rupees, and after an hour-long bumpy drive through the hills and forest, I reached Amarpur. 

Sculptures carved on the hills of Chabimura in Tripura
Sculptures carved on the hills of Chabimura in Tripura

I had already made my reservation at Sagarika Parjatan Niwas while I was in Udaipur. After completing the check-in formalities, I was ready to visit Chabimura. I would like to mention that my trip to Tripura was full of challenges. When I was in Unakoti and Jampui Hills, there were two days of internet shutdown in the state. Similarly, when I visited Chabimura, it was the 14th of January, and the state celebrates the festival of Tirthamukh. Due to the festival, there was a sea of devotees and visitor in Amarpur, and the hotel manager suggested me to travel in a rented car instead of relying on public transport. I agreed to his advice and requested him to book a cab for me. One cab driver quoted 2000 for both Chabimura and Damboor lake. It looked like a reasonable deal in such a massive tourist season, and without any bargaining, I agreed on the cost.  

I started from Sagarika Parjatan Niwas at 2:30 PM, and it took me 20 minutes to reach the point from where the boat ride starts. When I arrived at the Devtamura (starting point of boat ride), the site was packed with visitors waiting for a boat. On 14th January, not only Damboor Lake hosts the festival but also all the places through which the river Gomati flows. Luckily, the manager of the guest house knew the organizer and booked my ticker in advance. After waiting for another 30 minutes, I got a seat in one of the boats, and my boat ride to Chabimura began. As soon as the journey started, I saw the first group of sculptures carved on the rock. They looked realistic and forced me to admire the creation of local tribes. Carving out an idol on the hills and that to on a 90-degree angle is hard to imagine. Moreover, as I informed earlier, the Gomati river stretch in Chabimura has maximum water making the task further dangerous. 

Mahishasurmardini Statue at Chabimura as seen from distance
Mahishasurmardini Statue at Chabimura as seen from distance

As the ride progressed, our boat stormed through the water of the Gomati river. The entire landscape looked like a scene from a treasure hunt movie where the whole cast roams through the jungle. Our boat was motor powered and hardly faced any issues with the overflowing water of the river. Throughout the ride, I saw sculptures carved out on the hills, be it the god or goddess or images of human resembling creatures. After 15 minutes of sitting in the front of the boat, I finally reached the statue of Mahishasurmardini. Our boat stopped near the figure as it marked the halfway of the boat ride. The majority of boats return from there, and in case anyone is feeling to explore more, he/she might need to pay extra and probably hire a separate boat. 

Once I was on the banks of the river, I started clicking pictures of the idol as well as of the nearby surrounding. Although the artwork on the statue was amazing, I was more mesmerized by the natural beauty of the area. The greenish water created a camouflage with the surrounding forests with the trees and its branches trying to touch the water. I have done many boat rides during my travel to different parts of India. In Narmada River, while traveling to Jabalpur, the Ghats of Varanasi, and more during my trip in north-east India. Yet from my experience, I would say my boat ride at Chabimura was the best in my life. Not only I clicked some excellent shots of the statue but also helped a family to take their group picture. After spending 30 minutes at the banks, our boatman signaled us to return, and we all boarded the boat.

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By 4:30 PM, we started returning, and the sunset created a darker landscape. While returning, I focused more on photos and selfies as I had already shot the video on the way to the statue. The boat ride in Chabimura comprises of to and fro trip till Mahishasurmardini statue and a small trek break at nearby hills. The trek is a short walk through the rocks and a water stream. Locals say bandits earlier used the place for hiding, but to me, the site looked deserted. I tried trekking till the water source but dropped the plan as it was already late. I returned to the riverbank, joined the fellow passengers of the boat, and headed back. The boat ride finished at 5:15 PM, and it was already dark by the time. I quickly called my car driver and asked him to wait for me in the car parking. I clicked a few more pictures of the area and got an intuition that my tomorrow’s trip to Damboor Lake is not going to be an easy one.  

Devtamura (starting point of boat ride) in Chabimura
Devtamura (starting point of boat ride) in Chabimura

Upon arriving at Amarpur, I ordered my dinner at the guest house and started planning for my next day trip. My trip to Chabimura in Tripura was a special one; not only it allowed me to experience the hills but also showcased the rich archeological history of the state. Earlier while traveling in Tripura, I encountered such sites as Jampui Hills and Unakoti rock-cut cravings, but a considerable distance separated these sites. In the case of Chabimura, it is an amalgamation of both nature and history. If one is planning to visit Tripura, I will recommend visiting Chabimura to understand the state through its history and natural landscape. 

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