14 ways why SIKKIM, DARJEELING and KALIMPONG are an ideal gateway for a BADA WEEKEND BREAK

Tripoto

1.JUICY MOMOS AND FLAVORFUL THUPKA

Everyone loves momos and a plate of hot sizzling momos remains a firm favourite of every youngster. Momos is a staple food item of north - eastern part of India , so if you ever had a chance to visit Sikkim or its nearby places , just tuck into a plate of hot chicken or pork momos and steaming hot THUPKA to relish the authencity of north - eastern cuisine.

2.WISHING LAKE IN Pelling (SIKKIM )

There is a lake in PELLING also known as KHACHEOPALRI LAKE or the WISHING LAKE. It is said to fulfill one's wishes one should visit this lake and pray while turning the prayer wheels. It has a legend attached to it that the lake looks like the footprint of LORD SHIVA. So the lake is considered very sacred and to maintain its sanctity, removal of shoes before reaching the lake is very important. The locals around the lake says that the lake is so serene and pure that the birds around here pick up even a single leaf that falls on the surface of lake. Perhaps we as superior species need to learn a lot from these birds.

3.MOUNTAIN BIKING IN RIGID TERRAIN OF Gangtok

Mountain Biking is one of the most popular outdoor activities in Gangtok. The route bears at the BHAKTUM POINT of higher KANCHENJUNGA RANGES and winds down for 25 kms to the Gangtok Market. The route is not particularly tough so anyone can give a shot to it even if one is an amateur biker.

4.THE Darjeeling TOY TRAIN

For all the nature lover's , one should take this train ride at least once in your lifetime. It is one of the UNESCO WORLD'S HERITAGE SITE and provides some excellent views of MOUNT KANCHENJUNGA RANGES. The TOY TRAIN halts for a 10 minute stoppage at BATASIA LOOP where you can rejuvenate yourself by indulging in clicking pictures or dressing in a tea - picker's attire and much more. The route of TOY TRAIN comes to the highest stations in the world known as GHUM. You can take this train ride from NEW Jalpaiguri station which is very well connected to all the major cities in INDIA.

5.TIGER HILL VIEW

For all the adventure freaks , DARJEELING provides you with an oppurtunity to fulfill all your desire's by visiting the TIGER HILL situated in DARJEELING. If you want to have some excellent views , leave early in the morning for TIGER HILL and soak in some panoromic views of MOUNT KANCHENJUNGA - THE 3RD HIGHEST PEAK IN THE WORLD.

6.TEA ESTATES OF DARJEELING

We usually begin our morning's with a cup of tea but wouldn't it be interesting to know what goes in the making of our morning cuppa. Tea estates of DARJEELING provide you with an oppurtunity to see how the tea - pluckers come and pick about 4kgs - 9kgs of tea leaves every day. This is a very fine skill and requires a keen eye. The worn out skin of fingers of these tea - pluckers is a proof of dedication to their work.

7.DELIGHTFUL RESTAURANTS OF DARJEELING

DARJEELING is famous for its various eating joints but still I would like to recommend some of my favourites.Firstly the KEVENTER'S - which is known for its hearty and scrumptious breakfast.It is a paradise for meat lovers and as well as vegetarians too , as they provide with so much variety in their menu and everything is so fresh and hot that no one can resist it. Next is GLENARY'S which is one of the finest and old bakeries of Darjeeling. It is famous for its some mouth watering pastries like THE RUM BALL, THE LIQUOR CHOCOLATES and various non - veg pickles like the BEEF and  BALLICHOW PICKLES. Lastly THE HOT STIMULATING CAFE is also a great place to enjoy some picturesque views while feasting on the momos & thupka with one's friends and family. Also try the BAMBOO BEER also known as TUMBA which is made from fermented millet grains and is specially very good for lactating mothers.

8.TSOMGO LAKE - FROZEN LAKE IN SIKKIM

Tsomgo or the CHANGU lake is one of the frozen lakes of north - eastern INDIA. It is around 42 kms from GANGTOK on the GANGTOK - NATHULA HIGHWAY. The lake is frozen for most part of the year. It is a sight to behold and is aptly known as Switzerland OF THE EAST. The locals around consider this lake very sacred as the lake have some medicinal and healing properties. You can also enjoy a yak ride around the lake. For visiting this lake you should be completely packed up with a pair of gumboots , jacket , gloves and a cap.

9.MONASTRIES

North - east is peppered with the most impressive monastries but however the PEMAYANGTSE MONASTRY in Pelling is one of the most magnificient monastries. This monastry belongs to THA-SANG-LAMAS - monks without any physical deformities.This is a three - storeyed building and is decorated with wall-paintings and houses a great collegend of ancient scriptures. From February to March the monastry sees the celebration for Losar with masked dances , culminating with the unfurling of gyokn and the ritualistic slaying of demons with a fire - ball.

10.TO ONCE WEAR THE TRADITIONAL SIKKIMESE OUTFIT

Visiting the locals is a good idea to soak in the culture of a place. Sikkimese people are very warm and friendly . They welcome their guests with a cup of tea. Don't miss the oppurtunity to try the traditional Sikkimese outfit which is very colourful and usually woven but has some tough names like the KUSHAIN , the ANJU , the ZEEPARU , the KHOB and the PANGIM which is usually wore by the married women.

11.TO ENJOY THE BEAUTY OF Kalimpong

Kalimpong is a beutiful and quiet hill station situated just an hour away from Darjeeling. Kalimpong is one of the leading producers of orchids , gladioli , ferns and other ornamental plants. Visit one of the town's numerous nurseries to see some of the beautiful varieties of flowers like the orchids. Kalimong also provide with some amazing and serene views of Mount Kanchenjunga.

12.TASHI VIEW POINT IN SIKKIM

Sikkim has various view points like the LOVER'S POINT , the SUICIDE POINT , the SHANTI POINT , and the TASHI VIEW POINT. The Tashi view point is made up by one of the rulers of Sikkim named TASHI NAMGYAL. The Tashi view point provides you with some exotic views of the color changing snow if the weather is clear and some interesting views of MOUNT PANDIM , MOUNT KABU and other higher ranges.

13.THE MEETING POINT OF RANJEET AND TEESTA RIVER

The confluence of Ranjeet and Teesta rivers is in itself a landmark which divides the land in 3 parts and they are SIKKIM, WEST BENGAL and part of India which is used to be in territory of Bhutan. There are various legends attached to it that the Ranjeet is the male river and Teesta is the female river. They used to be lovers and as they cannot remain with each other in their lifetime so they transformed into rivers and start flowing towards each other and formed a sight to behold.

14.ETERNAL BEAUTY OF NORTH SIKKIM

The pristine mountains of North Sikkim are home to two of the Eastern Himalayas most picturesque valleys, TSOPTA AND Yumthang. Travel further upto the spectacular Gurudomgar Lake to experience the feeling of having arrive at the end of the world.

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