The first thing that comes to my mind when I think of North East India is its pure and unadulterated beauty. The beauty of Sikkim is beyond words. Sikkim is the first fully organic state of India, Sikkim is also the first state to win the war against plastic and to achieve the status of a plastic bag free state, thus setting an example for the other Indian states.
Sikkim is a traveler’s paradise. It has glittering glacial lakes, snow-capped mountains, lush green hills, majestic waterfalls, serene monasteries, scenic drivers and pretty much everything to soothe a traveler’s soul.
I have been to Sikkim twice and it still continues to be my favorite travel destination in India. So here’s a detailed guide for you if you plan to visit Sikkim soon.
Reaching Sikkim :
Sikkim now has its own airport called Pakyong Aiport. Another close airport is the Bagdogra airport in West Bengal, which has direct flights from all major cities of India.
By rail : The nearest railway station is the NJP station in Bengal. Gangtok, the capital city of Sikkim is just a 4 hours drive from NJP.
Traveling in Sikkim :
The best part about traveling in Sikkim is the shared cabs, these cabs are super cheap and available between all major parts of Sikkim. One can get a shared sumo from NJP to Gangtok for just 250 rupees, this is another reason why Sikkim is a heaven for Solo Backpackers.
Sikkim Tourism :
Sikkim is divided into 4 districts- North, South, East and West. While each part of Sikkim is different from another, one cannot compare its beauty as every part has something unique.
North Sikkim :
This part of Sikkim offers one of the most breathtaking landscapes of India. North Sikkim is own for Lachung and Lachen. The tour to North Sikkim is for two nights and includes several hours of drive, but one cannot get bored of the view. Lachung brings you close to some of the frozen peaks of the Shivalik hills. When visiting North Sikkim one must definitely stay in a homestay. The people here are very heartwarming and happy, their rich culture and values will make you fond of this place. One should not miss Yumthang Valley and Zero Point when in Lachung and Gurudongmar Lake when in Lachen. Both these places remain frozen and snow covered during winter months.
East Sikkim :
Gangtok : Gangtok sightseeing can easily be covered in one full day. The top places to visit in Gangtok are Ban Jhakri waterfalls, Ganesh Tok, Ropeway, Tashi view point and monasteries.
Nathu La Pass : You can visit the Indo-China Border from Gangtok. The trip to Nathu La pass is a day trip, you need a special permit to visit the border, any local tour operator can help you with the document formalities.
Tsomgo Lake : Also known as Changu Lake is a glacial lake in East Sikkim. It remains completely frozen during winter months. An interesting fact about this lake is that it reflects different colours in different seasons. You can go for a Yak ride here.
West Sikkim :
Pelling : Pelling is a beautiful town in West Sikkim and is gradually becoming the most visited place after Gangtok because it offers breathtaking view of Kanchenjunga and other peaks. Pelling is famous for the magnificent Kanchenjunga falls.
South Sikkim :
Ravangla : Ravangla to me is synonymous to Buddha Park. Ravangla is the place to be in if you wish to relax in a place faraway from the maddening crowd.
Namchi : This place has a religious touch to it. One place which you should definitely visit here is Char Dham. This place is beautiful constructed and is a replica of the Char Dhams in India.
If you want to witness the blooming natural beauty of Sikkim then the best season would be Spring. If you are more of a Snow lover then you should visit during winters.
Sikkim is known for its unparalleled natural beauty. You need ten days to explore all the parts of this paradise and to soak in its natural beauty. I still relish the memories of the amazing time I had in Sikkim, Sikkim has my heart ❤
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