images/explorenepal/explorenepal1.jpg
images/explorenepal/explorenepal3.jpg
images/explorenepal/explorenepal4.jpg
images/explorenepal/explorenepal5.jpg
images/explorenepal/explorenepal6.jpg
images/explorenepal/explorenepal7.jpg
images/explorenepal/explorenepal8.jpg
images/explorenepal/explorenepal9.jpg
images/explorenepal/helicopter tours.jpg
images/explorenepal/lake banner.jpg
images/explorenepal/monkeybanner.jpg
images/explorenepal/nepalchitwan1.jpg
images/explorenepal/nepalchitwan2.jpg
images/explorenepal/nepalchitwan3.jpg
images/explorenepal/nepalkathmandu1.jpg
images/explorenepal/nepalriverrafting.jpg
images/explorenepal/obhutan1.jpg
images/explorenepal/paragliding for joomla.jpg
images/explorenepal/pbhutan.jpg
images/explorenepal/poonhill banner.jpg
images/explorenepal/qtibet.jpg
images/explorenepal/resort banner.jpg
images/explorenepal/sunrise banner.jpg
images/explorenepal/ptibetslide.png

Sikkim

User Rating: / 2
PoorBest 

"Sikkim presents a unique experience of a lifetime also called the hidden paradise. "

Nestled high above the Teesta river valley a little delightful state of Sikkim lies in the eastern end of the Himalayan massifs. Nepal in the west Bhutan in the east and Tibet in the northern border, this fascinating Himalayan land is becoming a favourite destinations for visitors from round the globe in the recent years. The area of Sikkim is 7,096 square kms and measures approximately about 110 kms from north to south and about 64 kms from the east to the west. And the elevation ranges from 224kms to over 8590 mtr above sea level which gives this land a huge range of flora and fauna. Magnificent Mt.Khangchenzonga (8598 mtr) towering high above the northern range, age old monasteries on every hill top, its richness in culture, religion,natural beauty, adventure and friendly welcoming people.

Gangtok
Situated at the height of 5500 ft and the population of approximately 50,000 is the capital of Sikkim. In 19th century it became the state capital, since then this town has gone through many changes in its effort to a cosmopolitan outlook. Once a silk road and a trade route with Tibet, today Gangtok has really become the centre for visitors from round the globe to plan their trips and explore in and around this amazing Sikkim. There are no shortage of facilities for visitors in terms of accommodation, tours, communication and adventures.

Sikkim Facts

Population50,000

STD Code03592

Area15 2 km (approx.)

Elevation5,480 ft (1780 m)

Climate Summer:Min- 13o C Max-21o C / Winter: Min-10 C Max -05 C

Annual Rainfall3894 mm

Tourist SeasonApril to Mid-June; Mid September to November

Best Mountain ViewsMid Sept. - Mid Dec

Recommended ClothingLight woollens in summer, heavy wollen in winter

Language SpokenEnglish, Nepali, Hindi, Bhutia, Lepcha and Tibetan

Places of Interest

Tashi View Point

This view point was built by the late King Tashi Namgyal, which is situated about 6 kms from Gangtok and lies on the north Sikkim highway. It offers a magnificient view of Mt.Khangchenzonga and surrounding hills. Phodong and Labrang Monasteries can also be seen from this point. Ideal for picnic.

Hanuman Tok
It is situated on the Gangtok-Nathula highway, a temple worshipped by the Hindus devoted to Hanuman. Great view of the Khangchenzonga range and Gangtok town below. Also birds eye view of the Selep water works which supplies drinking water to Gangtok.

Himalayan Zoological Park
The park covers an area of 205 hectares and situated road opposite Ganesh Tok. Also Known as Bulbuley ,one can spot the red pandas, barking deers, beers and many other animals in semi natural habitat. Patience is needed to spot these animals as the park covers a huge area.

Enchey Monastery
Situated above Gangtok town on a hilltop this monastery was rebuilt in 1910 which belongs to the Nyingmapa order and was once the hermitage site of lama Drupthob karpo, a tantric master renowned for his power of flying. Every year during January, inside this 200 years old monastery religious mask dance is performed which last for two days with plenty of fan fare.

Do-Drul Chorten (Stupa)
Encircled by 108 prayer wheels built by late Trulsi Rimpoche in 1945-46. This is one of the most important and biggest stupas found in Sikkim.The Do-Drul Chorten or Stupa was built by the venerable Trulshi Rimpoche, head of the Nyingma order of Tibetan Buddhism in 1945. Inside this stupa, there are complete mandala sets of Dorjee Phurba (Bajra Kilaya), a set of Kan-gyur relics (Holy Books), complete 'Zung' (mantras) and other religious objects. Around this Chorten, which is one of the most important stupas in Sikkim, are 10 Mani-Lhakor (prayerwheels). These prayer wheels are turned by the devout Buddhist while chanting "Hail to the jewel in the Lotus", to invoke the Buddhisattva. The Chorten is surrounded by Chorten Lakhang, where there are two huge statues of Guru Rimpoche (Guru Padmasambhava).

Khecheopari Lake
This tranquil lake surrounded by beautiful forest is considered as one of the sacred lakes of Sikkim both by Buddhist and Hindus. It is believed that birds pick even a single leaf that falls on this lake.It is easily accessible by motorable road right up to the lake area. Trekkers hut has been provided by the Tourist Department and also a pilgrim’s hut managed by the Department of Tourism. The hut is run by local people which provides a comfortable stay and a typical local cuisine.

Pelling
It is 117 kms from Gangtok at an altitude of 2,085 mtr and liest on west Sikkim. In the recent years it has become a bustling tourist attraction. A visit to the famous Pmayangtse Monastery in this quiet village is worthwhile. The sublime lotus, the premier monastery in Sikkim belonging to Nyingmapa sect. The view is magnificient as Mt.Khangchenzonga soars high above the clouds followed by Pandim and Siniolchu ranges.

Tsomgo Lake
It also means „Source of the Lake“ in Bhutia language. It is situated at an altitudeof 3,780 mtr, 1km long, oval in shape and it is 15 mtrs in depth. Located between Gangtok and Nathula highway which was once a silk route between India and China. On the way to Tsomgo Lake also lies the unique high altitude Kyongnosla Alpine Scntuary which homes the Red panda and Blood Phesant. The distance covers only about 40 kms and it takes 2 hrs to get there by vehicle through steep climb and breath-taking view of the valley below. Once in the surrounding of Tsomgo lake, one have ample time to explore and even go for a small trek up the western ridge to enjoy a lovely view of this serene sacred lake.

Yumthang Distance: 145 kms, Altitude: 3636 mt
Its beauty in flora and fauna is surely a paradise for nature lovers. Also called Valley of Flowers as in the season there blossoms colourful Rhododendrons, Chimals , blue Poppies and this landscape is scattered with 108 different types of Orchids which bloom in different colours from April to May. During November to March this region is usually covered with snow. Passing the Shingba Rhododendron Sanctuary on the left bank of Lachung Chu one can experience anatural hotspring well known for its healing power for ahces , pains and skin ailments. The drive itself is very scenic.

Namchi
It lies 78 kms south of Sikkim at an elevation of 14oo mtr and the name Namchi means Sky High. Surrounded by panoramic view of Darjeeling, Kalimpong and lush valleys it is becoming very much a destination for tourist. One can simply sit back and enjoy the lovely surroundings or go for short treks to explore and to learn the way of life in the villages.

Rumtek Monastery
On the hill opposite Gangtok about 45 mins drive lies Rumtek Monastery, the Dharma Chakra Centre and the seat of His Holiness, the Gyalwa Karmapa, head of the Kagyupa order of Tibetan Buddhism. Built in 1960 by His Holiness the late 16th Gyalwa Karmapa it is a replica of the original Kagyurpa

Monastery in Tsurphu, It has over 300 centres overseas attracting many students from round the globe and functions as the headquarters of the Dharma Chakra Religious Centre. The centre houses some of the world’s most unique religious scriptures, manuscripts and religious artobjects. It is a perfect spot to view Gangtok by night.

Temi Tea Garden
This Tea garden was established in the 1960’s by the last King, Chogyal palden Thondup Namgyal. It produces high quality tea for International market. Tea processing in the factory can also be observed by the visitors and purchase fresh tea from the sales counter. It is situated on a gentle slope which gives an impressive view of Gangtok by night .

How to get there

By Air
Bagdogra is the nearest Airport which is located in Siliguri in West Bengal. The distance from the Airport to Gangtok is 124kms and it takes about 4 hours driving through the mountaneous road.. There are scheduled flights operating from Calcutta, Delhi and Guwahati.

Flights from Kathmandu
There are also scheduled flights daily from Kathmandu to Badrapur and Biratnagar, which is nearest to the Nepal/India border-east of Nepal.Badrapur to Kakarbhitta- (Nepal/India border) – 35 kms – drive 30 mins. Biratnagar to kakarbhitta –95 kms – drive 2 hours

Helicopter service
This service is connected daily from Badrapur to Gangtok and back. The flight duration is approximately 30 mins through the plains of Siliguri and towards the foothills and mountains of Sikkim. It offers mountain flight and other tours in and around Sikkim aswell.

Daily flight service
Gangtok to Bagdogra - 11:00 A.M
Bagdogra to Gangtok - 2 : 00 P.M

Road
There are no shortages of Jeeps, Taxies and Buses plying regurlarly on the Gangtok-Siliguri highway. Due to the mountain terrain it takes 1 hours to cover the distance of 25 kms. Gangtok also offers the main transit point and it is well connected by road with Bhutan (6hrs), Kalimpong (3hrs) and Darjeeling (4 hrs).

Entry formalities
Foreigner require Inner Line Permit (ILP) to enter Sikkim. The permits can be obtained from all Indian missions abroad and in India. Tourism office in New Delhi, Sikkim Tourism office, Siliguri Tourism office, and the border town of Rongpo after acquiring Indian visa. The 15 days duration inner line permit is issued without any delay then and there. Photocopies of passport, visa details along with two passport photos of the applicants are required. The extension of permits can be obtained from FRO at Gangtok, Superintendent of Police on the North, West and South districts.Department of Tourism issues (PAP) Protected Area Permit at Gangtok for those interested in trekking, consisting of two or more visitors subject to the conditions that the trekking is organised through a registered travel agency.