Sikkim's First Ever Backpacker Hostel Is Here And We Can't Recommend It More

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India's domestic travelling population is slowly getting younger. The 20-something millenial travellers might often be broke but they have statistically the most amount of leisure time that can be spent travelling. It can be seen all over Instagram where everyday we see increasing number of millennials identifying themselves as wanderers and travellers.

We have backpacker hostel chains like Zostel opening up at newer and offbeat Indian destinations now for these budget travellers. Following this new trend of travel hostel accommodation for backpackers, Tag Along Backpackers became Sikkim's first backpacker hostel in Gangtok and I had a chance to stay there on the way to North Sikkim.

Our travel group at Tag Along Backpackers. Photo Credits: Sambit Dattachaudhuri

Photo of Gangtok, Sikkim, India by Disha Kapkoti

How did I land up there?

I've been to Sikkim thrice in the last two years and for a solo traveller, houses of a some friends or the cheap lodges at the Tibet road are the best option for accommodation when in Gangtok.

But this December on my way to North Sikkim with a group of 5 people, we opted for the newly opened Tag Along Backpackers centrally located at the Development Area in Gangtok. The hostel is ideal for a group travelling together and most cost-effective when you're planning to travel solo.

Photos of the dormitory at Tag Along Backpackers.

Photo of Sikkim's First Ever Backpacker Hostel Is Here And We Can't Recommend It More by Disha Kapkoti

The Space

The hostel has six well-lit and refreshingly colourful dormitories on the first and the second floor. Two rooms accommodate 6 people and other four rooms accommodate 4 people on sturdy bunk beds. Expect clean bed linen and spic-and-span rooms during your stay here.

One dormitory suited us well while travelling in a group of 5. The bunk beds provide enough storage space for the luggage and the colour-coordinated linens give a pleasant feel to the surroundings.

Tariff: Rs 800/- includes free wifi, complimentary breakfast, tea/coffee.

Upcoming travel cafe: On the first floor, there's an under-construction travel cafe that will open sometime in 2018. The cafe will also have a live travel desk that can guide travellers reaching this place about the best places to explore across Sikkim.

Six person mixed Dormitory.

Photo of Sikkim's First Ever Backpacker Hostel Is Here And We Can't Recommend It More by Disha Kapkoti

Four person girls dormitory.

Photo of Sikkim's First Ever Backpacker Hostel Is Here And We Can't Recommend It More by Disha Kapkoti

Living room at the hostel

Photo of Sikkim's First Ever Backpacker Hostel Is Here And We Can't Recommend It More by Disha Kapkoti

Living room at the hostel

Photo of Sikkim's First Ever Backpacker Hostel Is Here And We Can't Recommend It More by Disha Kapkoti

Photos at the hostel from all the trip around Sikkim.

Photo of Sikkim's First Ever Backpacker Hostel Is Here And We Can't Recommend It More by Disha Kapkoti

Where is Tag Along Backpackers?

Address: Next to National School of Drama- Sikkim Centre, Development Area, Gangtok, 737101

How to reach?

By Air: Bagdogra at a distance of 123km is the closest airport to Gangtok. Private taxis can be hired from the airport all the way to Gangtok or to SNT Taxi stand in Siliguri. Travellers can take a shared cab from SNT taxi Stand to Gangtok. Local taxis are available from Gangtok Taxi Stand that can drop you to the hostel.

By Train: New Jalpaiguri is the closest train station and is well-connected to all major cities of India. It is 157 km away from Gangtok and shared taxis are available from New Jalpaiguri Railway station to Gangtok or Siliguri. Taxis can be hired throughout the day from SNT Taxi stand to Gangtok.

Where to eat?

Home-cooked breakfast is available during your stay at Tag Along Backpackers. The in-house travel cafe will also offer a freshly made limited menu for travellers who arrive here. Here are a few other places to eat near the hostel that any food lover in Gangtok must try out.

Tripti's Bakery: Just across the road from the hostel, Tripti's Bakery in the Development Area serves delectable bakery items. The cheese puffs that arrive at the bakery at 7am in the morning are something that I highly recommend as breakfast quickies.

Rachna Books: For the book lovers who are on a lookout for a cosy space with coffee and books, Rachna Books and Cafe Fiction is just the idea hangout spot.

Thakali: To try out the authentic Nepali Thali when in Gangtok, head to Thakali at MG Marg. This could be your chance to get introduced to the local cuisine of the Nepali community in Sikkim.

Here's what the traditional Nepali Thali looks like. It includes rice, traditional Thakali Dal, Tori ko Saag, aloo Tareko, spiced karela, moola and golbera achhar.

Thakali Thali

Photo of Sikkim's First Ever Backpacker Hostel Is Here And We Can't Recommend It More by Disha Kapkoti

Also read: 10 Best Cafes in Gangtok To Experience The Best of Local And International Cuisine

Experiences at Tag Along Backpackers

Go for a city tour around Gangtok to Enchey Monastery, Hanuman Tok, Ganesh Tok, Namyal Institute of Tibetology. You can also take a day tour to the nearby Rumtek Monastery and spend a day away from the city.

You can also club your stay with one of the travel experiences offered by Tag Along. Your host at Tag Along Backpackers, Manisha Sharma, is an adventure lover who would guide you through through these tours.

Goechela Trek: On this 8-day long trek you're headed straight to the lap of Kanchenjunga starting from Yuksom. The trekkers need to be familiar with high altitude. Geochela gives you a chance to witness 14 mighty Himalayan peaks during this experience.

Phoktey Dara Trek: A 7 day 6 night trek along the Barsey Rhododendron Sanctuary through one of the least explored forest trails of Sikkim.

Pang Lhabsol Expeience: During August every year Pang Labhsol is celebrated in Sikkim, a festival that commemorates Kanchenjunga as the guardian deity of Sikkim. The warrior dances during the festival makes it a spectacular site for the visitors.

Ride the Silk: An epic 6-day cycling journey along the ancient Silk Route in East Sikkim that will change your perception towards high-altitude cycling forever. From Aritar to Gangtok via Nathu La, this is an exclusive experience for adventure enthusiasts to cycle along the silk route in East Sikkim.

Ride The Silk: Cycling To Nathu La Along The Ancient Silk Route Of Sikkim

Photo of Sikkim's First Ever Backpacker Hostel Is Here And We Can't Recommend It More by Disha Kapkoti

For other exclusive experiences around Sikkim you can get in touch with your host prior to your visit.

How to book?

You can get on touch with your host by visiting their website or follow them on facebook and instagram to send your queries.

When are you travelling to Gangtok next? Tell us about your travel plan in the comments section below and check out Tag Along Backpackers on your next trip to Sikkim.

Photographs by Sambit Dattachaudhuri

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