Tourist attractions of Sikkim

Sikkim

Sikkim is one of the most popular tourist destinations in India due to its natural beauty, culture, and biodiversity. Your trip to the Himalayas will be complete when you come to this beautiful and geographically diverse state. One of the smallest states of India Sikkim is the perfect destination for tourists to rest and recreate in the midst of Himalayas. Sikkim, the land of beautiful scenic views has unlimited reasons to attract tourists from all over the world. Lovely Monasteries, temples, stupas and lush greenery catch everybody’s attention. Tour to Sikkim mesmerize the tourists with its spectacular natural beauty like dense forests and bald tablelands, flower-bedecked meadows, shrubs and grasslands, mountain peaks, lush valleys, deep gorges and snow-clad peaks, emerald green wooden slopes and glistering glaciers, mountainous terrains, torrential streams and meandering rivers.

Situated at the foot of Mount Kanchendzonga, Sikkim is a small stretch of land sandwiched between the Kingdom of Nepal in the West and the Kingdom of Bhutan in the East. Sikkim also shares its border with West Bengal. The word Sikkim is derived from the two words Limbu “Su” which means “new” and “Khyim” means “place” or “house”, so the word combinedly means new place or house. Sikkim is an adorable place replete with lofty snow-capped mountains, green-colored rolling slopes, the gushing hills streams, scenic landscape, sparkling orchids, placid lakes and picturesque glaciers. The natural beauty of tiny Sikkim attracts tourists in large numbers. The snow clad Himalayan mountain ranges and virgin forests gives the landscape a mesmerizing look. Some of the highest mountains of the world are located in the state. Kanchenjunga, the third largest peak in the world is located in West Sikkim. Nepalese, English, Bhutia, Lepcha and Limbu languages are commonly used in the state. Gangtok is the state capital. The Nepalese constitute about 80 per cent of the total population of the state.

Picturesque Sikkim has a myriad of tourist attractions. Capital Gangtok is one of eastern India’s most picturesque hill stations. The prime attractions of the hill station are snow clad mountains, rich flora and magnificent Buddhist monasteries. Other than the natural beauty and places of religious importance, the orchid garden of Gangtok is one of its kind in the state. It has 454 different varieties of orchids. In north Sikkim, a visit to Chungthang is a rewarding experience. Chungthang is the origin of river Teesta with great scenic beauty. Other attractions in northern Sikkim are Yumthang, Singba Rhododendron Sanctuary and Kanchenjunga National Park.

Gangatok

[Gangtok: — It is the capital and principal town of Sikkim, tucked away in the clouds, spread out on the ridge, 5000 feet above sea level. It is a big urban area. Picturesque monasteries and charming pagoda-roofed homes are attractive features of this city. Gangatok is a destination that would lure anyone who has a taste for natural beauty and an inclination or interest in the Buddhist religion and culture. The state secretariat and all the important government offices are located in Gangtok. The Mahatma Gandhi Road (MG Road) is located at the centre of the town and most tourist activity is centered around MG Road. Most of the important hotels are also located around MG Road and its adjacent Tibet Road. This area also has several shops and travel offices including the office of the Sikkim Tourism. The bus and taxi stand is located nearby. It’s a beautiful town with broad roads, flyovers, posh markets, fast food outlets, discotheques and all other modern amenities that one can ask for. Hotel ‘The Royal Plaza’ at Gangtok has India’s first land based live casino, and is the only place besides Goa to brag a casino in India. The tastefully lit and decorated and absolutely no traffic M.G Marg (street) is an ideal place to spend the evenings in the town.Around Gangtok there is a number of places of tourist attraction including the Rumtek Monastery, Tashi View point, Sikkim Research Institute of Tibetology(SRIT), Do Drul Chorten, Saramsa Garden, Memencho lake, Tsongo lake and Nathula Pass. Most of the sight seeing can be covered in a single day.

Tsomgo Lake

Tsomgo Lake:– The lake is about 40 km from Gangtok and situated at an altitude of 12210 ft. It takes about 2 hours drive to reach the lake from Gangtok. It is regarded extremely holy by the locals. The lake is at its scenic best between May and August for an array of rare flowers including the rhododendrons, primulas, iris and blue and yellow poppies bloom here during this period. An ideal habitat of the Red Panda, the lake also shelters a number of other birds and aquatic species. The Tsomgo lake side is also characterized by a small temple dedicated to Lord Shiva. The temple serves as a famous pilgrimage centre for Shaivites vsisting Sikkim. The lake remains frozen during the winter. Every day a large number of tourist vehicles ferry tourists to the lake on a half day sight seeing tour. Migratory birds coming to the plains of Bengal from Tibet during the winter months, are known to stop over at the tsongo lake. There are a few shops and Yak owners around the lake providing for tourist support. There is no overnight accommodation at the place.

Nathula pass

Nathula Pass:– Around 56 Km east of Gangtok, Nathula Pass in Himalayas is located on Indo – China border and connects Indian state Sikkim to Tibet Autonomous Region in China. The best part of traveling to Nathula pass is the travel itself. Once you start your journey from Gangtok, it is virtually a journey through heaven. The mist shrouded peaks, the zig zag roads, roaring waterfalls, all become your partners for the entire trip. The Indo-Chinese boarder here was used for trade between Tibet and India till the war of 1965. Since then the boarder remained heavily guarded and closed. During 2006 the boarder has been reopened and trade between the two countries has restarted. Since then, it sees a huge number of tourist visiting the pass every day.

Pelling

Pelling: — Located in the western district of the state, Pelling is a very popular tourist destination. Elevated to the height of 6,800 ft Pelling is the best place to get a close view of the entire mountain range of Mt. Kanchenjunga.It is a beautiful hill-station, nestled between the snow-covered peaks of Sikkim. Located at a distance of 10kms from Geyzing, Pelling is renowned for being the nearest site to Mt. Kanchenjunga. Pelling is a small township that is getting popular for its ultimate natural beauty. The hill-station offers a panoramic view, where clouds, snow and rocks appear to be a figment of your imagination, since they look perfect. Apart from its natural beauty, the attractions in Pelling include Sanga-Choeling Monastery that is reachable after a casual walk through a steep hilly slope. Pemayangtse Monastery and Khecheopalri Lake are other attractions. Pelling houses a variety of tourist attractions that draw significant numbers of people round the year.
The Rumtek Monastery:– The Rumtek Monastery is just 24 km from Gangtok. This wonderful monastery is one of the top tourist attractions in the state. It serves as the residence of the 16th Gyalwa Karmapa. Rumtek Monastery features some of the rarest works of art. The Golden Stupa is the most important portion of the compound.

kochepalari lake

Khecheopalri Lake:–A sacred lake, considered pious by both Buddhists and Hindus, it is situated in East Sikkim inmidst of thick forest cover. It is said that the birds of the region have never allowed a single leaf to fall on the lake water.

Do-Drul Chorten (Stupa):– It is another famous tourist attraction at Sikkim. One of the most attractive stupas of Sikkim having 108 prayer wheels, Do Drul Chorten is a store house of Mandala sets of Dorjee Phurba (Bajra Kilaya), a set of Kan-Gyur relics, ‘Zung’ (mantras) and some other religious paraphernalia. Colossal statues of Guru Padmasambhava are also present in the chorten. It was built by Trulshi Rimpoche, the head ruler of Nyingma order of Tibetan Buddhism school of thought, in 1945.

International Flower Festival: — A flower show of different varieties of flowers, orchids and other rare plants in Sikkim is very popular among tourist which held every summer during the peak flowering season. This spectacular event attracts people from all over the country.
The beautiful state of Sikkim, famous for its flora which is in full bloom during March-May offers around 600 species of orchids, 240 species of trees, 150 varieties of gladioli, 46 types of rhododendrons along with a variety of magnolias and many other foliage plants. Orchids, Gladioli, Roses, Cacti, Alpine Plants, Creepers, Climbers, Ferns and Herbs are the main flowers which displays in the flower show. Seminars and lectures organized by experts also can be attained in the show.

Jawaharlal Nehru Botanical Garden Located at an altitude ranging between1800 meters to 2200 meters, Jawaharlal Nehru Botanical Garden of Gangtok is 24 kms from the capital city. Established in the year 1987, the garden is characterized by lush forest of Oak and more than 50 different kinds of trees.

Sikkim Research Institute of Tibetology is a nationally renowned centre of Tibetan Studies & Research. Popular for its vast collection of rare Buddhist books, manuscripts and more than 200 Buddhist icons, the institute is located about a kilometer downhill from the main market of Gangtok. Surrounded by small forests of oak, magnolia and birch trees, this building is a rare example of Tibetan architecture. The institute is also home to several rare religious works of art and amazingly executed silk embroidered Thangkas.

Kanchanjunga

Alongside the above, tourist attractions in Sikkim include, plethora of Alpine flora and fauna. Sikkim is also a trekkers’ paradise. You can do mountaineering in numerous peaks in and around the state or do white water rafting along the turbulent rivers of the Teesta and the Rangit. If you are looking for a perfect place in India to explore, see and treasure something different that what other tourism destinations can offer? Then Sikkim is an ideal destination for those who love nature and its different elements that make this planet earth a prettier place to live and enjoy moments of lifetime with fun and great delights. Visit to Sikkim offer s tourists to enjoy memorable vacations in a delightful and memorable way.

Best Time to visit Sikkim:–
Dec to February is cold chilly months. The entire valley receives heavy snowfall during this period and is snow covered, which is also a major attraction for the tourists if roads are open. The best time to visit Sikkim is between mid-March to Mid June but especially, April and May, when the rhododendrons and orchids are in full bloom. The best time to explore the region is from November to mid June.Most of the time the weather is unpredictable.

How to reach Sikkim:–

Nearest airport for Sikkim is Bagdogra, near Siliguri in North Bengal, which is 124 km and approximately four hours drive from Gangtok. Indian Airlines, Jet Airways, Kingfisher, SpiceJet, Go Air etc. service Bagdogra linking it with other major airport in India (including Guwahati). You can also take a helicopter from Bagdogra to Gangtok.

Gangtok, the capital of Sikkim is connected by all weather road to Darjeeling, Kalimpong, Siliguri and also to all the District headquarters within Sikkim. Two nearest railway station are at Siliguri (114 km) and New Jalpaiguri (125 km) stabilizing link to Calcutta, Delhi, Guwahati, Lucknow and other important cities in India
A taxi from airport to Siliguri is Rs.140. From the airport you can get a taxi to Bagdogra Bazaar (Rs. 40, 3 km) and from there, you can get a local bus to Siliguri too.
Foreigners Entry Formalities:

Visa & Permits : In addition to an Indian visa, foreigners must obtain Inner Line Permit (ILP) to visit Sikkim. The permits can be obtained from all Indian missions, Tourism Office, New Delhi, Sikkim Tourism Office, Calcutta and Sikkim Tourism Office, Siliguri on the strength of an Indian Visa.

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5 Responses to Tourist attractions of Sikkim

  1. Martin Epperson says:

    Those alpine formations are majestic and glorious! I’ll definitely go there after our amazing and Great Nazca Tours this month! 🙂
    Martin Epperson

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  4. Traveloc says:

    very nice information. wanna go there after read your post. thank you!

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