We offer 9 nights and 10 days in the North East paradise - Sikkim. The itinerary has been designed to offer our guest the most exquisite experience of Sikkim, which establishes a very personal connection between you and the land of Gods. The itinerary covers Gangtok, places like Lachung, Lachen and Yumthang valley that are a collective heaven. It also covers the famed Tshangu lake.
DAY 01 – 7th May - ARRIVAL NJP RAILWAY STATION / (IXB) BAGDOGRA AIRPORT - GANGTOK
On arrival at NJP Railway Station / (IXB) Bagdogra Airport, (413ft) you will meet our local representative who will assist you to board your vehicle to Gangtok (5412ft - 130kms/04 to 05 hours)
Overnight at the hotel.
DAY 02 - 8th May - GANGTOK to TSHANGU LAKE & BABA MANDIR EXCURSION
After breakfast, in the morning, start for excursion to Tshangu Lake (12,400ft - 43kms in 3hrs one way from Gangtok) & Baba Mandir (13,100ft - 16kms in 1 hour one way from Tshangu Lake). Situated at a height of 12400ft and 43Kms (appox 3hrs) one way, with an average depth of 50 ft. The cool water of the lake is perfectly attuned with the scenic beauty around. Back to Gangtok and overnight at hotel.
DAY 03 - 9th May - GANGTOK – LACHEN
Pick up from Gangtok Hotel and transfer to Lachen (9500ft - 130kms approx 6 to 7 hours). On the way visit Tashi view point, Seven Sister’s water fall (subjected the vehicle take the normal route. This sightseeing points are included on complimentary basis & in case of diversions these points will be missed. There will be no refund in such case). Overnight at hotel.
Day 04 – 10th May - LACHEN – GORUDONGMAR LAKE EXCURSION – LACHUNG
Today excursion to Chopta valley & Gorudongmar. Gurudongmar lake at a height of 17,100 ft, is among the top 15 highest lakes in the world and is the second highest lake in Sikkim as well as in India. Named after Guru Dongmar, the lake has a religious appeal. The view of Mount Siniolchu and Khanchendzonga is breathtaking from that point. The beauty of the lake is awesome and is an out of the world spectacle. Surrounded by snow clad mountains and crystal clear icy water, it is considered to be a very sacred lake.
Transfer to Lachung (8,000ft / 2439 - 60 Kms approx 3 to 4 hours). Overnight at hotel.
DAY 05 – 11th May - LACHUNG - YUMTHANG EXCURSION
Early morning proceed on a half day excursion to Yumthang Valley (11,800ft - 25kms approx1 ½ hours one way) which is an attraction for tourist visiting this region. The colorful Singba Rhododendron Sanctuary bloom between April to June. The soaring snow-capped peaks, and herds of wandering yaks makes this a Himalayan paradise. The valley is also known for its hot spring. Although the water is quite dirty, many locals from the area visit to get themselves soaked & cured as believed. Overnight at hotel.
DAY 06 - 12th May - LACHUNG – GANGTOK
After breakfast transfer to Gangtok (5412ft - 124kms approx 5 ½ to 6 ½ hrs). Overnight at hotel.
DAY 07 – 13th May – GANGTOK
Go for a full day sightseeing covering Rumtek Monastery, Jhakri Water Fall, Do-rul Chhorten, Research Institute of Tibetology, Directorate of Handicraft & Handloom and Flower Show. Overnight at hotel.
Day 8 – 14th May – BON FARMHOUSE
Post breakfast leave for Bon Farm House in Kewzing Village. Experience of staying in a typical village farm ambience of Sikkim in Kewzing Village with a Bonpo Family. The farmhouse stay is different from a typical hotel or a resort mainly because you can enjoy the comforts of a homely environment the best part being all meals prepared from freshly grown organic vegetables from the nearby fields.
Day 9 – 15th May - BON FARMHOUSE
Post Breakfast indulge in activities like nature walk, bird watching and hot stone spa treatment.
Day 10 – 16th May – DEPARTURE TO MUMBAI
Hotel accommodation :
GANGTOK –THE NETTLE & FERN HOTEL – Visit Website
LACHEN - APPLE ORCHARD – Visit Website
LACHUNG - MODERN RESIDENCY – Visit Website
KEWZING VILLAGE - BON FARMHOUSE – Visit Website
Trip Cost : Rs 52,000 + 3.625% Tax
- 9 nights and 10 days stay on twin shairing
- Transport as per itinerary
- Innerline permits and entry fees to places mentioned in the itinerary
- All meals
Does not include:
- Air Fare
- Any extra odrers of beverages, water bottles, softdrinks and laundry
Welcome to Sikkim: a hidden valley of rice, the garden of Indra - and experience unforgettable. Sikkim lies in the mystical Himalayan land that the Chogyals left to India just 36 years ago. Delight your senses with a view of the snow-capped mountains and moss covered trees; suprise yourself with mountain biking and Yak riding; come close to nature with birding and trekking; and revive your soul by interacting with simple folk in remote villages. Sikkim touches you in a unique way, and you will go back home a new person.
Sikkim, a small north-easterly state of India, located along the Himalayas is like being in paradise. This gentle, green state in the north-east is strategically surrounded by Nepal, Bhutan and China. Come and feel the Buddhist culture, the scenic beauty of Sikkim. Trek the mountain peaks, enjoy the sunrise of Kanchandjungha. Sikkim's natural beauty includes Alpine landscapes, thick luxuriant tropical forests, rivers, high mountain peaks and peaceful lakes – a true Shangrila.The story of Sikkim echoes the land itself - an arduous landscape of peaks and valleys that rise and fall like its tumultuous history. Tours and treks, passion for learning Buddhism form the integral part of touring Sikkim.
People Of Sikkim:
Irrespective of the tribe, class or community they belong to, Sikkimese are essentially simple folks. Like most hill-tribes they are untouched by consumerism and know how to live in harmony despite being from different communities. Sikkim is India's least populous state with the one of highest per capita income in the country. It is also one of the least densely populated states with only 76 persons per square kilometer. The people of Sikkim can be classified mainly as Lepchas, Bhutias, Nepalese and the others (Biharis, Jains, Marwaris etc.).
The Lepchas are the original inhabitants of Sikkim; they existed much before Bhutias and Nepalese. Before adopting Christianity and Buddhism, Lepchas were said to believe in the bone faith or the mune faith. This faith was based on spirits, good or bad. They worshiped spirits of the rivers, the mountains and the forests - natural for a tribe that co-existed so harmoniously with their rich natural surroundings. Their close link with nature had led them to possess a tremendous and unparalleled vocabulary. They have names and terms for every fern, bush, moss and mushroom. Lepchas are concentrated mainly in central part of Sikkim.
Nepalese came to Sikkim much after the Lepchas & Bhutias, around the 19th century. They migrated in large numbers and soon became the dominant community. The Nepalese now constitute more than 80% of the total population. The Nepali settlers introduced the terraced system of cultivation. Cardamom was an important cash crop introduced by the Nepalese. They are orthodox Hindus complete with the usual caste system.
The Bhutias are of Tibetian origin and came to Sikkim perhaps somewhere around the 15th century. Their major population is in North Sikkim, they are also known as Lachenpas and Lachungpas. They speak Sikkimese and stay in villages as big as the Lepchas. The dry land of North Sikkim is very harsh where the villages and the valleys are separated by hostile passes. They are mainly nomadic shepherds engaged in animal husbandry or trade.
Though dotted by Buddhist monasteries all over, Hinduism is the major religion in the state, followed by Buddhism. Sikkim has 75 monasteries, the oldest dating back to the 1700s. The Christians are mostly Lepcha people who were converted by British missionaries since the late 19th century. Among other minorities are Muslims of Bihari ethnicity and Jains. There has never been any communal violence in Sikkim unlike other Indian states.
Culture Of Sikkim
The Sikkimese celebrate all major Hindu festivals such as Diwali and Dussera. Nepali festivals like Tihar and Bhimsen Puja are common. Losar, Loosong, Saga Dawa, Lhabab Duechen, Drupka Teshi and Bhumchu are Buddhist festivals.
During the Losar (Tibetan New Year) most offices and educational institutions are closed for a week. Muslims celebrate Id-ul-fitr and Muharram. Christmas has also been promoted in Gangtok to attract tourists during the off-season. A favorite form of social celebration is the drinking of Shay-Chang (millet beer). Served in tall bamboo mugs, the drink is sipped through a bamboo pipe. It is made from millet grains and is non-toxic. It is reputed to be the best remedy to ward off the severe colds in the mountains and is known for its healing properties.
Pang Lhabso: Lepchas celebrate Pang Lhabsol to worship Mount Khangchendzonga as the guardian deity.The combination of the masked dance and the warrior dance, is one of the famous acts during the festival. A week before the dances, the Lamas of Pemayangtse monastery offer prayers, invoking Dzonga (as Mount Khangchendzonga is popularly called) to protect the land and look after the people. This festival is held on the 15th day of the 7th month of the Tibetan calendar, corresponding to late August and early September. This festival is born out of the belief of the original faith, Bon, but now also has been included in Sikkimese Buddhism.
Sikkimese food varies as per community. Bhutias usually take rice with animal fat fried vegetables or meat. The other foods are “Momo” (steamed samosa with meat inside) and Thukpa (noodles). “Zhero” and “Khabzay” are beautiful salty tusks prepared from flour during the festivals like Losar/Loosong. The delicacy of bamboo shoots is the Lepchas offering to world cuisine.
The Nepali folk dances and song related to cultivating and harvesting seasons add another dimension to the lush heritage of Sikkim. One such popular dance is 'Dhan Naach' , which projects the colorful cultural heritage of this community. 'Maruni' is one of the oldest dances in which young girls adorned with colorful costumes and rich ornaments perform dance with a graceful demeanor and a lyrical style on festive occasions.
In And Around Sikkim:
Botanical Garden : The Jawaharlal Nehru botanical garden comprises of virgin temperate forests of oaks and as many as 50 different kinds of tree species. The garden is situated at a place where it adjoins Rumtek Monastery and Fambongla Wildlife Sanctuary, with enough serene sights for a relaxing evening.
Do- Drul Chorten: Encircled by 108 prayer wheels or Mani Lhakor, the Chorten Stupa was built by Trullshi Rinpoche, head of the Nyingma order of Tibetan Buddhism in 1945. This is one of the most important Stupas in Sikkim. The stupa is surrounded by Chorten Lakahang and Guru Lakhang, where two statues of Guru Rinpoche are present. The renowned chorten has a gold-plated steeple. Devotees and pilgrims from all parts of the state and from other states come to pay homage at this sacred stupa.
Namgyal Institute of Tibetology : Its was founded by the ruler of Sikkim- Chogyal Tashi Namgyal in 1958. It houses rare collections of Lepcha, Tibetian and Sanskrit manuscripts, statues and rare Thankas. It houses an impressive museum- which boasts of collection of more than 200 Buddhist icons and other artifacts. The NIT's library holds one of the largest collection of Tibetan works in the world outside Tibet and a museum of Tibetan iconography and religious art. The building is an imposing structure and an impressive display of Sikkimese architecture.
Flower exhibition : Flower exhibitions are organized many times during the course of the year- in accordance to the seasons and flowers in bloom, at the Flower show venue in Gangtok. Orchid shows held during the spring tourist season is one of the popular shows organized in the state.
Tashi View Point : About 6 or 7 kilometer from Gangtok town, Near Pangthang is Tashi View Point. It was built by the late Chogyal Tashi Namgyal and it is offers panoramic view of the Kangchendzonga and its surrounding hills. On the opposite hill, the Phodong and the Labrang monasteries can be seen.
Hanuman Tok : Located at 7200 ft, is a Temple dedicated to the Hindu Lord- Hanuman. It offers spectacular view of the Kangchendzonga range, though various points on the way to the Temple also offer magnificent scenery. A short distance before the stair case leading to the Hanuman Temple is the cremation ground of the erstwhile royal family of Sikkim. The Temple is maintained by the Indian Army.
Shanti View point : This view point offers picturesque view of the Gangtok valley.
Ganesh Tok : Another Hindu Lord Ganesha's Temple is located at 6500 ft, uphill from Gangtok. It is known mainly for its view point.
Burtuk Waterfalls : At a mere 20 min drive from Gangtok lies the beautiful waterfalls of Burtuk. Ratey Chu, the water reservoir for Gangtok is also the water source for these falls. Of breathtaking beauty and serenity, the falls are a great place for capturing the flavor of Sikkim's natural beauty.
Baba ka Mandir
Trip Cost: Rs 52,000 + 3.625% Tax
Trip Dates: 7th to 16th May, 2016
Weather Link For Gangtok
Trip Leader: Kaustubh Upadhye