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Tsomgo Lake

East Sikkim,one of four administrative districts of Sikkim, UN award receiver for being World's first 100% organic state, cleanest state of country by NSSO and many more.

When we heard about Sikkim, its all about Gangtok, capital city of East Sikkim but it have much more in terms of mystic beauty, Yak safari, dedicated monks attired in red robes, snow laden passes, frozen lakes, delicious Thukpa, aromatic tea etc.


I went solo so approximate cost comes to Rs13000/- as my total expense includes accommodation,transportation and food. Cost can vary on mode of transport, accommodation, peak time. As i am solo traveller so prefers public transport wherever I could.

Best time to visit

March to June

September to December

I went there in last week of April'19 for excursion of 03days. Avoid travelling in monsoon as Gangtok route witnesses problem of landslide.

How to reach

By Air:Nearest airport is Bagdogra International airport which is 128km from Gangtok and tooks 4-5hrs depends on traffic.Another nearest airport is Pakyong Airport is 28.7km and took 1.5-2hrs. Regular flights from Delhi and Kolkata are available for above airports.

By Rail: Nearest Railway station is New Jalpaiguri Junction(NJP) which is 119.2km or Siliguri Junction(SJU) which is 113km.

By Road:One can easily get reserved(Rs 3000-6000/-) as well as shared(Rs 200-300/-) cabs from Bagdogra airport and NJP/SJU railway station to Gangtok. From Pakyong airport, cost will be less.

#Generally it is advisable to opt for Sikkim State registered vehicle instead of West Bengal State registered to avoid hassles of transferring to another vehicle at Deorali to get to Gangtok.

Top Places

1.Tsomgo/Changu Lake

2.Nathu La Pass(was closed at my visit due to heavy snow)

3.Baba Harbhajan Singh Mandir

4.MG Marg

5.Banjhakri Falls(entry fee 50/-)

6.Do Drul Chorten

7.Namgyal Institute of Tibetology


9.Gonjang Monastery

10.Ganesh Tok

11.Flower exhibition centre(entry fee 20/-)

12.Tashi View Point

13.Bakthang waterfall

14.Lhasa waterfall

Day 1:Siliguri Junction to Gangtok

I reached Siliguri Junction in the morning although my train need to stop at NJP station but due to unclear track, it stops at Siliguri Junction. There are lots of dhabas and small shops outside station to get your tummy filled with delicious puris and sabji with masala tea.

Small tourist shops with tour agents are also there who books your trip on spot. I talked to one of agent but i find them bit higly priced in terms of accommodation(low stared hotels while i booked good hotel for same price at my own). Well, I feels quite restricted for sightseeing and time with tour operator bookings so i decided to explore at my own.

Enroute to Gangtok

I looked for a shared cab from Siliguri Junction taxi stand which charged me Rs 300/-. I don't prefer shared cabs but i was travelling solo so just got seated in a Bolero with other 10 co-passengers and a driver. They used to align passengers in a way(4 at back, 4 in middle and 2 at front adjacent to driver).

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Way to Gangtok is really pretty with view of hills on one side and flowing river Teesta on other side.

After apprx 2hours of journey, driver halted at Melli for refreshments.I ate Pineapple chaat.

River rafting at Melli

River rafting at River Teesta in Melli is one of the most adventurous you can have while travelling to Gangtok. I didn't opted for that but my co-passengers went there.

Then we came across a checkpost at Rangpo, gateway to Sikkim and all vehicles entering Sikkim have to stop here.Finally, I reached Gangtok after 6hours of journey amidst of hustle bustle and traffic.Car dropped me at Taxi stand near MG Marg.I booked a cab(150/-) to hotel.


I stayed at Hotel Snow Lion(3 star rating, Rs 2000/-), located at Tibet road at a walking distance with MG Marg. Rooms of hotel features beautiful Tibetan decor with colourful artwork on walls.The stylish dressing table with colourful Tibetan symbols adds up to the overall charm of the room.

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Dressing table

Day 2:Gangtok-Tsomgo-Baba Harbhajan mandir

Next morning. I did breakfast and started my trip to Baba Harbhajan Singh Mandir. I asked Hotel to arrange shared cab for snow laden excursion along with permit.

Note:Permit is required for Nathu la and Baba Harbhajan mandir and one need to submit 02 nos passport sized photographs and ID proof.

Booked cab(150/-) from hotel to Chandmari taxi stand where my shared cab(500/-) was waiting.

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There were hundreds of cars waiting at checkpost to get permit checked. I along with co-passengers waited for 1-1.5hours in car itself.

Mandakini Waterfall

We halted at Mandakini fall after 1hour of journey for refreshments.

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Again we stopped at a point after 1hour of journey for refreshments. I ate Bread omlet with tea as it was getting cold as we were approaching towards destination. We were asked to carry snow boots to avoid freezing of feet so I took one pair on rent(100/-)

After 3hours of journey from Gangtok, I reached Baba Harbhajan Singh Mandir.

Baba harbhajan Singh, served Indian army as sepoy in East Sikkim.The death occurred when he slipped and fall in nullah.

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Legends behind shrine

1. It is widely believed that sepoy appeared in his colleague dream and requested to construct 'samadhi'.

2.During flag meetings between two nations at nathu la,Chinese set a chair aside to honour him.

3.Every year on sep 11, his belongings are sent to his hometown(Punjab). The berth is reserved in his name from NJP station and his left empty for entire journey.Team of soldiers accompanies him till his hometown.The army is on high alert when Baba is on leave.

4.He still draws a major's salary every month.

5.He still gets two months of leave every year.

6.Baba warns the soldiers of any impending attacks at least 3days in advance.He is still guarding international border of two countries.

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Office of Baba
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Living room,cleaned every morning. On some mornings, soldiers have found crumpled bedsheet and his muddy shoes in room
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Spiritual water,it is believed that water kept at shrine and later consumed by ailing person cures him.so devotees place bottle of water in the name of ailing person and later take it way.
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Beautiful snow laden mountains at Baba mandir

Snow Play

After staying apprx half an hour at Baba mandir, we left the place to experience chilling snow enroute back to Tsomgo lake.

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Lake surface reflects different colours with change of seasons, venue for guru purnima festival/raksha bandan when faith healers of Sikkim assemble to drive benefits from healing qualities of lake water.

Lake is famous for Yak riding. I was so scared for yak ride(100/- for 5 clicks) that I just sat on his back for few clicks but Yak was so sweet and calm..lol.

Photo of TSOMGO LAKE, Sikkim by Restless Exploration

After returning back to hotel,I went for walk at MG Marg under drizzling sky.This place is "must visit" because without it a visit to Gangtok is incomplete.The road is lined up with glittering shops, cafes, restaurants on both side.One can sit on benches and watch street activities. It is a pedestrian zone where no vehicles are allowed.

Photo of MG Marg, Vishal Gaon, Gangtok, Sikkim, India by Restless Exploration

Do no miss this cafe while going to MG Marg. It's like a heaven for tea lovers with so many varieties such as Strawberry, chocolate twist, orange blossom,vanilla bliss etc flavoured tea, masala tea, green tea and many more.I tried Rose nectar tea which tasted as if i am drinking hot rose syrup.

watching over MG Marg

Photo of Chai Chun, Mahatma Gandhi Marg, near titanic park, Arithang, Gangtok, Sikkim, India by Restless Exploration

Day 3:Exploring Gangtok city