North-East - Part III : Kalimpong #northeastphotos

Tripoto
8th May 2016

Hi ! Thank you for visiting this 3rd part of our 8 days’ trip to North Eastern region of our beautiful country. In first part covering 1st day, we had started our trip from Delhi and had reached Darjeeling. In the 2nd post, I narrated our experiences of Darjeeling. The story continues in this 3rd part wherein we would know and feel Kalimpong. Kalimpong, as you may be aware, is roughly 50 km from Darjeeling across Teesta river valley.

I don’t remember having ever heard the name of Kalimpong in my life before undertaking this trip and same may be the case with some of my readers also. So, it seems okay to tell a little about Kalimpong here.

Day 2

We started our journey at Happy Valley and finished it at Kalimpong

Photo of Kalimpong, West Bengal, India by Sushant Singhal

Although Darjeeling and Kalimpong are two hill districts of West Bengal, a beautiful Teesta Valley separates them. From Darjeeling we take Hill Cart Road to reach Ghoom railway station. Beyond Darjeeling, this road is identified as Highway No. 110 and connects Darjeeling with Siliguri, West Bengal. However, if we are heading towards Kalimpong, we leave Highway 110 a little after Ghoom Railway Station and take Rishi Road - another downhill road that takes us to the Teesta river valley. After crossing the river, our short but uphill journey starts for Kalimpong – situated at an altitude of 1250 meters. Kalimpong has many nurseries and is well known for its more than 300 species of orchids. Flowers are grown in Kalimpong and Sikkim on commercial scale and you find orchids everywhere - pavements, house fronts, highways and foot bridges also. It reminds me of the famous bollywood number -

फिर छिड़ी बात रात फूलों की ! रात है या बारात फूलों की !

आप का साथ, साथ फूलों का, आप की बात, बात फूलों की।

Photo of North-East - Part III : Kalimpong #northeastphotos by Sushant Singhal
Photo of North-East - Part III : Kalimpong #northeastphotos by Sushant Singhal
Photo of North-East - Part III : Kalimpong #northeastphotos by Sushant Singhal
Photo of North-East - Part III : Kalimpong #northeastphotos by Sushant Singhal

There are many more species of beautiful flowers besides cactus plants in North-East and flowers plus tourism could be the backbone of economy of this place. Of course, people visit Kalimpong for its natural beauty and temperate climate and paragliding facilities also.

Lovers Meet View Point

We had started our journey for Kalimpong at 11.30 in the morning and by 1.45 p.m. we reached a place from where we can witness the confluence of majestic Teesta river and Rangeet river. The driver of our taxi cab stopped the car at a sharp turn identified as Lovers Meet View Point and suggested us to enjoy a journey break of half an hour or so. He indicated towards a temporary wooden structure also where we could have some tea, cold drink and snacks etc. We decided to obey him and reached the roadside dhaba being managed by some local women.

Confluence of Teesta and Rangeet rivers - Lovers Meet View Point

Photo of Lovers Meet View Point, Alipurduar Road, Teesta Valley Forest, West Bengal, India by Sushant Singhal

Snacks, cold drinks, tea and coffee are available here.

Photo of Lovers Meet View Point, Alipurduar Road, Teesta Valley Forest, West Bengal, India by Sushant Singhal

As per advice of the cab driver, we had some rest and refreshed ourselves! ;-)

Photo of Lovers Meet View Point, Alipurduar Road, Teesta Valley Forest, West Bengal, India by Sushant Singhal
Photo of Lovers Meet View Point, Alipurduar Road, Teesta Valley Forest, West Bengal, India by Sushant Singhal
Photo of Lovers Meet View Point, Alipurduar Road, Teesta Valley Forest, West Bengal, India by Sushant Singhal

From landscape point of view, the harsh overhead Sun at 2 p.m. is hardly my favourite. Still, I took some pics there. After some refreshment, we resumed our journey and after crossing the Teesta bridge - roughly 3 km. further down the valley, reached our hotel – Summit Barsana Resort and Spa in Kalimpong at around 4 p.m. where we had 6 rooms waiting for us.

Summit Barsana Resort and Spa

Summit Barsana Resort and Spa at Kalimpong where we had stayed.

Photo of Summit Barsana Resort & Spa, Kalimpong, Kalimpong Khasmahal, Kalimpong, West Bengal, India by Sushant Singhal

As soon as we came out of our taxi cab, the facade of the hotel and the lush green lawns appealed to my aesthetic senses. After checking in, I found the rooms and the toilet spacious, well appointed and spotlessly clean. We got our welcome drinks and as a pleasant surprize, the lady manager came to our room with a birthday cake and greeted on behalf of the Summit Resort. Yes, it was my birthday and wedding anniversary too! :-) With this kind of lovely gesture on the part of hotel management, I had every reason to love this place. The lawns, the orchids, the staff – everything and everyone was beautiful.

Hotel Reception at Summit Barsana Resort and Spa, Kalimpong

Photo of Kalimpong, West Bengal, India by Sushant Singhal
Photo of Summit Barsana Resort & Spa, Kalimpong, Kalimpong Khasmahal, Kalimpong, West Bengal, India by Sushant Singhal
Photo of Summit Barsana Resort & Spa, Kalimpong, Kalimpong Khasmahal, Kalimpong, West Bengal, India by Sushant Singhal
Photo of Summit Barsana Resort & Spa, Kalimpong, Kalimpong Khasmahal, Kalimpong, West Bengal, India by Sushant Singhal
Photo of Summit Barsana Resort & Spa, Kalimpong, Kalimpong Khasmahal, Kalimpong, West Bengal, India by Sushant Singhal
Photo of Summit Barsana Resort & Spa, Kalimpong, Kalimpong Khasmahal, Kalimpong, West Bengal, India by Sushant Singhal

Well equipped attached toilet

Photo of Summit Barsana Resort & Spa, Kalimpong, Kalimpong Khasmahal, Kalimpong, West Bengal, India by Sushant Singhal

Spa / massage room

Photo of Summit Barsana Resort & Spa, Kalimpong, Kalimpong Khasmahal, Kalimpong, West Bengal, India by Sushant Singhal
Photo of Summit Barsana Resort & Spa, Kalimpong, Kalimpong Khasmahal, Kalimpong, West Bengal, India by Sushant Singhal

There was just one sore point - their food. Although we took our dinner in their dining hall at around 8 p.m. most of the items mentioned in their menu which we requested for, were either finished / unavailable or were not to our taste. Hotel Summit Golden Crescent Gangtok, on the other hand offered us wonderful meals and was in every way, far better. We thoroughly enjoyed our 3 days stay there.

Well, in the evening, we went to market for no particular reason and returned with aching feet. Spent some time in the lawns and retired in our respective rooms.

Photo of Clock Tower Kalimpong, Unnamed Road, Strawberry, Kalimpong, West Bengal, India by Sushant Singhal
Day 3

Next morning, we visited Pine view Cactus nursery which was perhaps less than one km from our hotel and were taken aback at the vast range of cactus plants over there. Founded by Late Mohan Shamsher Pradhan ( 1946 – 2012), the nursery is being lovingly managed by his family members. There was a marble statue also of the founder there.

Photo of Pineview Nursery, Kalimpong Khasmahal, Kalimpong, West Bengal, India by Sushant Singhal
Photo of Pineview Nursery, Kalimpong Khasmahal, Kalimpong, West Bengal, India by Sushant Singhal
Photo of Pineview Nursery, Kalimpong Khasmahal, Kalimpong, West Bengal, India by Sushant Singhal
Photo of Pineview Nursery, Kalimpong Khasmahal, Kalimpong, West Bengal, India by Sushant Singhal
Photo of Pineview Nursery, Kalimpong Khasmahal, Kalimpong, West Bengal, India by Sushant Singhal
Photo of Pineview Nursery, Kalimpong Khasmahal, Kalimpong, West Bengal, India by Sushant Singhal
Photo of Pineview Nursery, Kalimpong Khasmahal, Kalimpong, West Bengal, India by Sushant Singhal
Photo of Pineview Nursery, Kalimpong Khasmahal, Kalimpong, West Bengal, India by Sushant Singhal
Photo of Pineview Nursery, Kalimpong Khasmahal, Kalimpong, West Bengal, India by Sushant Singhal
Photo of Pineview Nursery, Kalimpong Khasmahal, Kalimpong, West Bengal, India by Sushant Singhal
Photo of Pineview Nursery, Kalimpong Khasmahal, Kalimpong, West Bengal, India by Sushant Singhal

It was nearly 9 a.m. when we left the nursery and headed towards Deolo Hill – the highest point in Kalimpong at mean altitude of 1704 meters above sea level. When we reached there through frequently winding and uphill zig zag road, we were greeted by a bugyal type plain area where a wonderful flower garden has been developed. There was the Alpine Paragliding Booking Centre in a wooden room-cum-dhaba like structure. A boy was making making preparations for momos in it. It was a nice picnic place with staying facility also.

Paragliding booking centre at Deolo Hills, Kalimpong

Photo of Deolo, Kalimpong, West Bengal, India by Sushant Singhal

Deolo is the ridge whereas Relli is the valley far below.

Photo of Deolo, Kalimpong, West Bengal, India by Sushant Singhal

You can stay here at Deolo Hills.

Photo of Deolo, Kalimpong, West Bengal, India by Sushant Singhal

Beautiful gardens are being maintained here at Deolo Hills.

Photo of Deolo, Kalimpong, West Bengal, India by Sushant Singhal

Tourist influx is increasing here year after year.

Photo of Deolo, Kalimpong, West Bengal, India by Sushant Singhal
Photo of Deolo, Kalimpong, West Bengal, India by Sushant Singhal

There was a temple very nearby but we just folded our hands to pay respect and drove by it. After staying for not more than half an hour, we returned to the town and continued our journey towards Namchi which has suddenly come into great prominence because of development of incredible Siddhesvara Dham (popularly known as Char Dham). But let us talk about Namchi in the next post. Please stay tuned. Will come shortly again. Thanks a ton for coming to this post and staying with me till the end of it. Please continue reading further if you have liked this story. Here is the link below:

North East - IV : Namchi

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