Rumtek Monastery - A Must Visit in Sikkim!

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The gong at the entrance of the Rumtek Monastery

Photo of Rumtek Monastery - A Must Visit in Sikkim! by Sushantika

If you're visiting the North East parts of India, and love the serenity of the hills, don't forget to visit the beautiful Rumtek Monastery, situated close to Gangtok. 

You can plan your first day in Sikkim by first visiting the lovely monastery and then heading to your hotel for the evening. 

The Rumtek Monastery is situated at an elevation. One has to climb a bit before you can make it to the top, where the monastery is actually located. The upside to this walk is the numerous prayer wheels that make you forget about your aching knees, if you haven't been exercising for awhile, like me! 

Once you make it to the top, you will encounter a few doors, leaving you slightly confused as to which part is the entrance. When we arrived, it was about to rain, leaving the monastery less crowded. 

The best way to look out for the entrance, is to watch-out for the flag and then make your way towards the entrance. If all else fails, you can look out for some of the fluffy dogs who spend their blissful moments at the lovely place. 

The entrance tickets are minimal and allow you access inside the beautiful space. The moment you enter, you're taken up by the beautiful, bright red pillars with paintings on them. As you make your way towards the entrance, you'll find yourself catching your breath, as you gasp at the wonder which is this gorgeous locations. 

The beautiful architecture draws you in, as if Buddha himself bekons you to into his peaceful abode. 

As you make your way into the monastery, you will be met by fabric that is alluring, gorgeous and extremely large in number! It gives you sense of being tiny which is a welcome experience. 

As you make your way around the structure, you will find paintings embracing the walls. 

Dotted with golden paint, they seem to be creating a pathway towards the lovely Buddha with his calming eyes. Take in the moment as you experience the vastness of this picturesque interior - home to the golden Buddha which brings an immediate sense of peace. 

Despite the heavy downpour outside, one feels secure and protected under Buddha's watch. You can escape into various corners of the monastery, seeking out lovely elements housed within the monastery. 

Once you've explored the peaceful interiors, you'll find yourself following the inviting, red corridors that surround the main building. 

Not only are the corridors beautiful, but they are lined with doors that add a spark of joy through the burst of red hues. It makes you wonder what stories might unfold, if you were to open one of them. 

The doors range from simple to intricate patterns and tassles. Even the doors without much detailing leave you mesmerized. 

Once you are done exploring the 'red palace' of the Buddha, you will be led by the corridors to an aerial view of the city of Sikkim - one of the other reasons I enjoyed visiting this beautiful place, so much! 

The flags flutter on, as they dance to the tempo of the wind. Bright, light and airy, they seem to help you offload your burdens and just be still for a few minutes. You can sit here at one of the many benches provided, to enjoy the view. If it's raining though, you can make your way to the little restaurants that serve up delicious momos and other local treats. 

The people at the monastery are generous with their servings and serve up the lightest, tastiest momos I'd come across! 

If you're in the mood for a larger, more fulfilling meal, step outside the walls of the monastery and on to the road. You'll find a cute little restaurant with the day's specials, warmly listed on a black board with chalk. 

The welcoming hosts of the Vajra Hotel will help you choose the right dish and guide you in terms of your preferences. They also sell snacks for the drive to your hotel room, if you still have room for more!

Don't forget to shop at the gift shops within the monastery. They sell the most reasonable trinkets that make excellent gifts. They're also extremely honest about the materials used and help you choose well. 

Follow me on Instagram for more images and updates on Rumtek! Look forward to hearing from you on your experiences too. 

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