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Sikkim is the second smallest Indian state and is indeed the Indian land of happiness. With its diversified terrain of snow-capped mountains to cascading waterfalls, this landlocked state is no less than the fictitious Pixie-Hollow (ref: the Disney fairies franchise ) where the fairies dwell. Nestled in the lap of Mt. Kanchendzonga, the state tops the list of the vacationers- a picture perfect destination for the travelers with its stepped hamlets, colourful monasteries, varied flora and fauna, and definitely the rugged snowy terrain along the borderline. The people are also known for their hospitality; a little respect from your side and trust me, their hospitality quadruples.
The serene Gurudongmar Lake at North Sikkim @DoiBedouin
Gurudongmar Lake




Gangtok

The land of tinker fairies; the Tinker Nook- the busiest part of the State with all hustle and bustle and everyone busy working.


Being the capital city Gangtok is the most versatile location of Sikkim. Herefrom all the four districts can be easily availed. The border areas need permits for the visits. Mahatma Gandhi Marg is the most renowned point for a little stroll through the boulevard; the mall is having a number of benches so that the pedestrians can sit and enjoy the ambiance of the place. The ropeway is at the end of the mal road. The place is apt for buying souvenirs and warm clothes. However the best timing is the evening when the marg lit up by the lights of the surrounding buildings.

M. G. Marg of Gangtok at Sikkim @DoiBedouin
M. G. Marg 


As for the transport the taxi stand for sharing long journeys is just below the M. G. Marg; the local taxi stand is a bit uphill from the marketplace and the North Sikkim taxi stand is quite a distance away from the place.

Besides the market place, Gangtok is also known for the cultural tribunes namely Rumtek Monastery, Ranka Monastery and Enchey Monastery. The Namgyal Institute of Tibetology is an old institute acting as the reminiscence of Tibetan culture. Banjhakri falls and Bakthang falls are the renowned waterfalls here. The former is a park exemplifying renewable energy resources. Sikkim Himalayan zoo is a must visit as it homes incredible species of flora and fauna. Other notable places include Hanuman Tok, Ganesh Tok and Tashi view point.
Rumtek Monastery at Sikkim @DoiBedouin
Rumtek Monastery





South Sikkim District

The land of the Water fairies; with the twining rivers of Rangeet and Teesta and considerably higher amount of rainfall

South Sikkim marks the entry to the State through Rangpo. It is marked by hilly hamlets of Singtam, Namchi and Ravangla. Singtam located on the banks of River Rangeet connects the district to the capital. Temi tea garden is located here in the southern district. Temi is worldly known for its aromatic organic tea product; the sprawling garden stretches on the hillside and the connecting roadway is a natural beauty. Given the visit is in correct season, the beauty of the valley is enhanced by the cherry blossoms.

Namchi and Ravangla together marks the spiritual trail of Sikkim. Namchi boasts of Char Dham Siddhesvara Temple where all four demi dhams are present with a centered statue of Lord Shiva. The opposite hillock holds the shrine of Lord Padmashambhava on Samdruptse Hill. Ravangla nestled on the lap of Maenam Hill, similarly is a home to the statue of Lord Buddha or Tathagatha. Besides the statues, the southern region is a home to a number of old monasteries namely Rabong, Ralang, Bon and Tahiding.  One can also trek Maenam Hill which has the base at Ravangla.
Scenic Ravangla at Sikkim @DoiBedouin
Scenic Ravangla



West Sikkim District


The land of Garden fairies; with the bunch of rhododendron sanctuaries. The district headquarter Gyalshing itself means ‘The King’s Garden’

The true destination for nature lovers with a number of gushing waterfalls amidst the lush greeneries. The tranquillity is broken only by the flowing streams or the frothing waterfalls. Pelling and Yuksom are the main attractions. Pelling is the home to the well-known falls like Kanchendzonga Falls, Phamrong Falls and Changey Falls while Yuksom is the basecamp to few celebrated treks like Dzongri and Goechala trek. Yuksom is also famous for the rhododendron sanctuary trek and so is Varsey and Uttarey. Since the western region shares borders with Nepal, it is quite obvious that the idyllic view of Mt. Kanchendzonga is the refreshing element herein. Rinchenpong and Kuluk are viilages offering such refreshments. Besides the natural allures, Pelling is famous for Rabdentse ruins, Peymangste Monastery and Singshore Bridge, Asia’s second highest suspension bridge.
Cascades of Pelling at Sikkim @DoiBedouin
Cascades of Pelling




East Sikkim District


The combined sector of the Winterwoods and the Fast-flying fairies

The eastern region shares the border with China; Nathu La is one of the oldest trading border posts, the historical transaction link of silk trading between the two countries. The silk route covers some breathtakingly beautiful places like the twining and looping Zuluk,  serene and pacific Gnathang Valley, culminating with riverside camping at Rishikhola and visit to Sillerygaon and Icchegaon. The East Sikkim also has mesmerising lakes- Tsomgo/Changu, Nathula lake, Kupup Lake and Aritar Lake. Aritar Lake is also famous for hosting the adventure activities during the Lampokhari festival.
Icy Terrain of Nathula at Sikkim @DoiBedouin
Icy Terrain of Nathula




North Sikkim District


Welcome to the Winterwoods- the land of Winter fairies. Less dwellings and yet marvellous terrains. Always save the best for last.

It is the largest district and the least populated region. Although the initial journey is through clouds and dense roadside forest, it would finally end up with the white rocky mountain peaks. Rough rugged terrains skirts the highway to one of the highest lake in India, Gurudongmar Lake at 17.300ft. The horizons are marked by snow-capped peaks, the pine-covered mountains are greenish white, yaks grazing the meadows enclosed by the high held mountains, the frozen waterfall; this is a kind of paradise that makes all the murk go away. However the snow would never fade away. One would never fail to utter- this is bliss. At places the mountains are like giants looking down upon us- they blurred the sky up ahead. The cold breeze would numb you out, yet the place would never fail mesmerizing you. Such is the beauty!
Shades of green in Yumthang Valley at Sikkim @DoiBedouin
Shades of green in Yumthang Valley


The places that would leave you speechless are Lachung valley, Yumthang Valley, Yumsamdeong, Lachen, Gurudongmar and Kala Patthar. At Kala Patthar, one could literally slide down the snowy slopes of the mountain.
Kala Patthar at Sikkim @DoiBedouin
Kala Patthar 


So there goes the handy Pixie-Hollow of Tinker Bell.

Find the itinerary here. 

32 comments:

  1. Oh !!! I am in love with the write-up....I feel like this is a magical land

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    1. This is a new place for me - thank you for introducing it to me! We loved our trip around southern India last year and fully intend to return to explore the north.

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  2. Incredible photos!! I've never heard of this place before, but it looks so great for hiking, camping, and being outdoors. I am saving up for a big trip to India, and would love to be here one day!

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  3. Awesome photos I would absolutely love to visit Sikkim.Your blog has definitely inspired me to add these places to my bucket list for sure.

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  4. We have amazing fond memories of Sikkim and whole of North East India that it inspired us to write our first travelogue - Backpacking North East India: A Curious Journey. Even though we were in Sikkim for good 10-12 days, we could not move beyond Gangtok back then. We look forward to going back there again.. soon!

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  5. This certainly looks like a nature lovers paradise! Those waterfalls are beautiful

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  6. Wow this is such a beautiful post with those amazing photographs. Sometimes I just feel I have seen so little of India in spite of being an Indian. So many more places to see.

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  7. wow the eastern and northern areas of Sikkim look absolutely beautiful! it must be incredible to hike there!

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  8. That waterfall in Pelling is just amazing. This is a beautiful area I've never heard of. India is just so full of unique and picturesque areas.

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  9. Great post and your photos are fantastic. There is so much diversity in natural features in India. The waterfalls look so amazing.

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  10. Beautiful mountains and streets. This looks like an interesting travel destination. to be honest, never heard about Gangtok before.

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    1. You should definitely come to Gangtok and other parts of Sikkim

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  11. This looks so absolutely stunning I'm a little stunned. Thank you for sharing!

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  12. The nature is endless here. Your pictures are lovely and your descriptions make it feel like I'm on the journey with you. Thank you for sharing.

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  13. No matter how much I read about India, there are still places I've never heard of and that seem to be so beautiful. Sikkim seems to be one of those. Especially Nathu La looks really fascinating.

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  14. This is so amazing and there seems nothing about Sikkim that one won't love..Also the shots are very beautifully captured.

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  15. Have been to Sikkim and I can totally understand you. Sikkim is like being in nature's lap and you never want to leave it for as long as you can. Yumthang was our favourite among everything Sikkim has in offer. Loved your Pelling waterfall picture. Can look at it for hours.

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  16. I have never heard of this place!! It looks lovely & I am always up for a less bustling area!!

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  17. That's nice to know. It's a country's pride when their people is hospitable. Even if a place is not too beautiful when it's people our so hospitable, i will still definitely love the place.

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  18. Wow this place looks incredible. There’s so much to do and see there! Looks like a brilliant place to take the whole family

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  19. Oh wow! I’m not sure I could ever leave that place. it is absolutely the most gorgeous place I’ve ever seen.

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  20. Indian land of happiness looks absolutley amazing! such an incredible place to adventure!

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  21. This looks and sounds like a beautiful place to visit and explore!

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  22. This place is absolutely beautiful and I love the sceneary here. Will certainly need to add it to my places I want to visit.

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  23. there's something for everyone. east Sikkim would be my place to go

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  24. Wow..all these places looks amazing..I don't get enough words to say. Those lake and Yumthang valley are fabulous looking. I really want to go there.

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