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One of the smallest states, Sikkim is located on the North-East side of India with Gangtok as its capital. The world’s third-highest mountain Kanchenjunga is located here. Many wild species have their homes in the forests of Sikkim Gangtok. This smallest state of North in India has all its borders in different countries.
Addressed as Drenjong by Tibets and Beyul Demazong by Bhutias, Sikkim was not a territory of India until 1975. Today, it does not feel like it was ever apart. The city welcomes tourists throughout the year and from around the globe.
Sikkim Gangtok is famous among travellers for things ranging from greenery to religion. It is particularly famous for its monasteries like Rumtek and Phodung, Kanchenjunga mountain, landscapes, and adventure opportunities. Regardless of what a traveller is looking for serenity or thrill, Sikkim Gangtok has it all covered. It is full of activity opportunities like river rafting, paragliding, trekking, cycling, yak rides, and helicopter rides. Tick off all the adventures you plan.
Nearest Airport: Bagdogra
How to reach: by air/road/train
Famous for: Kangchenjunga Mountain,
Best time to visit: October to Mid-December/March to June
WHAT TO SEE
Views of the Kanchenjunga Mountain Range,Phodong Monastery
Tsomgo Lake,Ganesh Tok,Ban Jhakri Falls,Do Drul Chorten Stupa
Rumtek Monastery,Namgyal Institute of Tibetology
Tashi Viewpoint, Bird watching at Fambong La Wildlife sanctuary
The customs and beliefs followed majorly here are that of Buddhism. In terms of languages, Sikkim Gangtok is multilingual. The languages spoken here are Nepali, Hindi, English, Tibetan, Bhutia, and Sikkamise. The dominating language is Nepali. The traditional wear is Bakhu that must be tried to connect to the culture of the state.
It is one of those states that has its environment still clean. The reason can be attributed to the fact that plastic is banned here. It is the first and single state in India that does not import inorganic food items. Moreover, honking is banned, eliminating noise pollution.
Rice is the major crop that is grown here. Tibetans call it Drenjong which means Valley of Rice. Any consumption of tobacco or farming of tobacco is banned here too.
One can find monks all around the city due to the monasteries and Institutes. The locals are very helpful and extremely tourist-friendly.
Places of Interest:
Rumtek Monastery: A trip to Gangtok is incomplete without visiting this monastery. It has a colorful and mesmerizing architectural beauty. The morning hours are the best for visiting. The monks offer their prayer at that time. It is a scene that will sink deep in the soul as it is bliss to all the senses.
Views of Kanchenjunga Mountain Range: The snow-covered mountain is the third highest in the world. It is called Kanchenjunga due to its five peaks. To see the sunrise from here is a lifetime experience. Anyone hiking on this mountain is bound to get amazed by the wilds. There are chances of finding musk deers or snow leopards.
Phodong Monastery: It is a 3 centuries old monastery of Sikkim Gangtok. It has a place among the 6 most important monasteries. The ravishing architecture of the Phodung Monastery is the major reason one should visit it. The fourth king of Sikkim, Chogyal Gyurmed had it built in 1714 AD.
Tsomgo Lake: This lake is mostly frozen and reflects different colors during different seasons. Likewise, there are different attractions for tourists visiting it. During the autumn and the summer season, the Primula flowers steal the limelight. Loads of migrating birds can be seen during October. Yak rides and ice skating become the attraction for the lake during December.
Bon Jhakri Falls: The locals consider the water of this fall to be holy. If the plan is to have a picnic with admirable scenery, this is the best spot. The only sound here is of water which is extremely soothing to the ears and soul. The best months to visit are from February to April.
Do Dul Chorten Stupa: The Stupa has a central location in Gangtok. The locals firmly believe that it protects the city against any kind of evil spirit. Make a wish and roll the prayer wheels that surround it. The place is superb for history lovers, for those looking for peace and for those who have a knack for photography.
Tashi Viewpoint: The dawn and dusk experience here will outshine any other. It provides the best view of the city. There is a binocular installed to help have a better view of the peaks. It is also an amazing stop for refreshment for it has a cafeteria.
River Rafting: Whether a new or an experienced rafter, the river rafting in Sikkim Gangtok is super fun. The Teesta River has been divided into grades to suit rafters’ requirements.
Paragliding: Yes, paragliding can be ticked off in Sikkim. There are multiple flight ranges to choose from. A paragliding expert is there to guide and ensure safety.
Goche La Trek: The Romantics and the adventurous should not miss this. Enjoy the thrill of high mountains in the lap of fascinating nature while trekking.
Cycle and Explore the Silk Route: The advent of exploring the famous silk route on the cycle begins from Sillery Gaon. The beautiful mountain ranges along with the guide will accompany the cyclist on the way.
Seven Sisters Waterfall: It is called seven sisters because 7 different falls meet here. To miss this wonderful thrilling view is a blunder.
Yak Safari at Tsomgo Lake: Many people sit on horses and elephants. A Yak safari is undisputedly unique. It is an activity that only requires the rider to sit and enjoy.
Helicopter Ride: What can be better than exploring the Himalayan Ranges from a level higher than them! It will surely make a memory for life.
Where to Stay:
Make sure, where you stay in Sikkim Gangtok is a plus point to the memories of the trip. The options available hotels and resorts can be overwhelming at times. However, the top three places recommended to stay include Mayfair Spa and Resort, The Elgin Norkhill, and Welcomheritage Denzong Regency.