Day one of the five-day leg challenge on the Silk Route starts now.Aritar to Phadamchen (4600 ft- 8000 ft)Distance: 36.7kmThe trip was flagged off from the Lampokhri Lake on 1 April and then began the first downhill ride to Rongli, along the shade of the dark bamboo thickets. The 15km downhill ride till the Rongli Bridge was the easier initial stretch and then began the first uphill struggle to Phadamchen. All riders took it slow and some kids running alongside us and matching our pace for miles, kept us entertained.Our homestays along this route were rather memorable and on the first pitstop at Phadamchen, we were welcomed with a hot gundruk (dried radish) soup and beats of old Bollywood songs for a perfect karaoke night. It's a well-kept secret that karaoke scenes thrive in these far flung villages of Sikkim and most homestays on the route have a functional karaoke setup.
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On the way, you can also halt for some time to get some snaps with Changey Falls. You will get many falls like this in Pelling. Changey falls from a height of about 300m and is a treat to watch when there is bright sunshine.Then we headed towards Uttarey village. The height of Uttarey is about 6600 ft. The main attraction here is the beautiful view of the valley with stunning backdrop and a park created in the memory of Tenzing-Hillery.
Aritar Gumpa Monastery
Aritar Lake also called Ghati-Tso is a recently created visitor destination, where, for the first time in the state, the boating service has been introduced. The traditional towns and religious communities, for example, Lingsay, Inn Chittiz situated close to the old silk course to Tibet are nearby attractions. Aritar lake is very well connected with the state capital, Gangtok, by street. The destination can be reached to by taxis and leased autos from Gangtok, which is arranged at a separation of 63 km. It takes around four hours to drive from Gangtok to Aritar Lake, which lies on the principle course connecting Pakyong or Rangpo. The nearest airplane terminal and Railway Station is arranged in Siliguri which is situated at around 123 km from Aritar Lake. Aritar Lake can be visited all round the year, aside from the pouring season, which is not suitable for outside activities. One must pay a visit to this lake during the month of September.