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Sikkim - North East India

Rumtek Monastry , gangtok, SikkimSikkim lies in the Eastern Himalayas. Being a region which had its geophysical uniqueness owing to its location and climate conditions, human inhabitation was sparse. The population inhabiting this area were of Indo-Mongoloid, Tibetan or Nepalese origin. The population of the region is rural and tribal. The influence of the Buddhism has created a unique culture, different from other parts of the country. The tribals had little contact with the other parts of the country. Agriculture through jhum cultivation besides animal rearing formed their important occupation.

Sikkim Tourism

Sikkim is a land of immense scenic beauty, natural charm and a variety of fauna and flora. It is small but beautiful. The third highest mountain in the world Kanchanjunga (8,586 meteres) is situated here. 'Sikkim' commonly attributed to the Tsong word 'Su-Khim' means New or Happy House. Sikkim has a lot of open monasteries, chortens, flying prayer flags and lofty stupas all giving a tinge of mysticism.

Major Hill Stations in Sikkim


Tourist attractions in Sikkim

Gangtok City : The capital city of the state is now a sprawling urban settlement. Quaint pagoda-roofed houses and colorful monasteries teeming with red-robed lamas sum up Gangtok.

Rumtek Monastery : Only 24 kms from Gangtok, the magnificent monastery is one of the biggest tourist attractions in Gangtok.

Tsomgo Lake : Some 40 kms from Gangtok, Tosmgo is a tranquil lake surrounded by frozen hillsides. A drive further uphill would take to the Nathula Pass, which gives a bird's eye view of Indo-China frontier.

Pelling (Pemyangtse) : In the western district of Sikkim, Pemyangtse is a picture perfect destination. It offers a breathtaking view of the world's 3rd highest peak of Mount Kanchendzonga.

Pemyangtse Monastery : It is one of the oldest monasteries in Sikkim, located on a hilltop at a height of 6840 ft.

Khechepalri Lake : The sacred lake has crystal clear water. They say that the birds do not permit even a single leaf to float on the lake surface.

Alongside the above, tourist attractions in Sikkim include, plethora of Alpine flora and fauna. Sikkim is also a trekkers' paradise.

Foreigners Entry Formalities:

Visa & Permits : In addition to an Indian visa, foreigners must obtain Inner Line Permit (ILP) to visit Sikkim. The permits can be obtained from all Indian missions, Tourism Office, New Delhi, Sikkim Tourism Office, Calcutta and Sikkim Tourism Office, Siliguri on the strength of an Indian Visa.

Foreigners are issued  a permit for initial period of 15 days duration on the spot without any delay provided photocopies of Passport and Visa details along with two passport photos of applicants are made available then and there. It can be extended for further 30 days of 15 days each.

For those interested in going for trekking in the interior regions of the state, you also require a Restricted Area Permit (RAP) OR Protected Area Permit(PAP) which is obtainable in Gangtok from the Police Check Post and Department of Tourism  which is available for certain specified area for groups consisting of 4 or more foreigners subject to the condition that the trekking program is arranged through a registered travel agency.

Hotels in Sikkim

There are number of categories of hotels, resorts, lodges and guest houses in Gangtok and in other tourist destinations within the State to suit the taste and budget of individual tourist...

Sikkim Climate:

Cold Winters in the month of November to February with minimum temperatures dipping to 4 centigrade during January - February. Though summer is officially from May to October, Sikkim is almost always wet due to the heavy monsoons, with rains at times continuing for days on ends. Actually experiences a cold winter from end of November to February and monsoons throughout the year with a little respite during May - June and October - November.

How to reach Sikkim :

By Air : The town of Bagdogra at a distance of 124 km from Gangtok has the nearest airport.
By Rail : The nearest railway stations from Gangtok are New Jalpaiguri (125 km) and Siliguri (144 km).
Helicopter Service: The Bagdogra airport is connected to Gangtok by a helicopter service which takes approx. 30 minutes to reach Gangtok.
By Road : Gangtok is connected by road to Darjeeling, Kalimpong, and Siliguri. Cars, luxury coaches and jeeps are available for hire in the town.

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North Sikkim
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North Sikkim - Yumthang valley

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