Recognition is motivation....
And for all the views & likes I have received for my posts I want to thank you all. And with this I decided to share more of my riding experiences.
So this trip is all about riding in Hills & exploring Sikkim & Gorkhaland in just two days:
Since this was just 02 days trip we choose to spend more time on road & exploring than visiting to so called tourist spots on Day-02.
But if you like to explore places around then I would suggest plan the trip like this:
Day-01 – Siliguri to Namchi (Night Stay at Namchi) (03 hours)
Day-02-- Namchi to Darjeeling (Night Stay at Darjeeling)—Via Jorethang (03 Hours)
Day-03-- Darjeeling to Mirik (De-tour to Pasupatinagar Indo Nepal Border) – Night Stay at Mirik (02 Hours)
Day-04-- Mirik to Siliguri (50 Kms—2hrs maximum)
Since me and my co-rider Shashwath reside in Kolkata we came up with a unique plan to Explore Sikkim & North Bengal (Gorkhaland) on weekends. There was nothing much to see in Kolkata & there was this call from hills where there is so much to see. So we send our bike on train to Siliguri. Did our 1st weekend ride of Silk Route and left our bike in Siliguri with a friend. Then next weekend we travelled again on Friday night & started our trip to Namchi.
Namchi – The Capital of South Sikkim—House of Baichung Bhutia is at 5500ft. Its 90 kms from Siliguri. When riding to Namchi suggest to take the longer hilly route via Melli Bazaar. Keep asking locals for the best routes. Namchi is like the queen of Hills and there is so much to see for Hindus & Buddhist. Look for Ralong monastery and Tendong Hill. Also ride till Statue of Guru Rinpoche (120ft). Also don’t miss going for Siddhesvara Dhaam famously called as (Char Dham) where you get to see replicated temples of Four Dhaams, 12 Jyotirlingas, and The main attraction is 87 ft statue of Lord Shiva. Drive 5kms up for the helipad and from there you can have a clear view of Mt. Kanchanzonga.
The best experience was to stay at "Seven Hills Resort". Its 2kms up from the main road. Ask for routes till you reach the juncture. And yes if you don’t have the confidence or a four wheel drive don’t dare to take the bike up till the resort. I had to come back from half the way. It was dark by the time we reached. Roads were absolutely stiff and rocky. Riding was really risky with all the luggage. But the hotel send a four wheel jeep to pick us up. And it was worth the effort. Rooms were spacious, best hospitality, food was mouth melting, and the view of Seven Hills in the morning was mesmerising. Book in advance (Only 12 cottages are there.)
Day: 02 – Very critical day for us since we had to drive till Darjeeling visit the famous Zoo & Gompa, go to Pasupatinagar (Indo- Nepal Border), reach Siliguri & board the train. We started as early as 6am. And people suggested the normal route of going back to Malli & take a safer route to Darjeeling. But who wants to ride the same route again. So we choose the route via Jorethang. And riding on Iron Bridges, on muddy roads, then through the Tea Gardens was worth it. The pictures will say it all. We did little bit of sightseeing in Darjeeling & kick started to enter Nepal. And surprisingly the roads were perfect and we reached Nepal border in 2 hours flat. Entering Nepal was really easy. We showed our Driving License & entered Nepal on our Bikes. Did little bit of shopping & came back in 30 mins. Then came the ride till Mirik. Man I wish I had some more time, I would have surely stayed in a resort near Mirik. Tea Gardens all around. Unlike Darjeeling very few tourists and gives you the feeling of a typical small hilly town. A must stay for people who like exploring & need some peace after experiencing the hustle bustle of Darjeeling. Since we didn’t have much time we kept moving till Siliguri. Reached right one hour before the train time. Boarded our bikes on the train.
The only pain was to see our tickets not getting confirmed….so with a smile on our face we adjusted ourselves in the Cabin of the AC attendant. In that small cabin I kept thinking I wish I had stayed one more weekend and explored more of hills.
Places to See:
Darjeeling: Darjeeling Zoo (Don’t miss the Red Panda, Barking Deer, Snow Leopard), Toy Train Ride (Batasia Loop), Tiger Hill, Japanese Temple & Peace Pagoda, Tibetan Refugee Self Help Centre, Ghoom Monastry, Tea Garden (If you are not tired seeing it throughout your ride)
Food: Don't miss breakfast at Keventer's and cookies and pastries at Glenary's. Lunch and Dinner at Sonam's kitchen, Gatty's cafe, Kunga resturant
Mirik: Strolling around Mirik Lake, Bokar Monastery, Tingling Viewing gallery (You can experience while going back to Siliguri)
Namchi: Char Dham, Tendong Hill, Ngadak Monastery,along monastery and Tendong Hill. Also ride till Statue of Guru Rinpoche (120ft).
With this I sign off for the day...Will share more rides...sooon.