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13 September - 2010
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Sikkim Darjeeling Tour

Trip Facts

Program Code: ATH-IS 03 | Duration: 5 days | Program Type: Tour | Maximum Altitude: 3500m | Minimum pax: 2+ | Mode of Travel: Flight/Land | Start Trip: Bhadrapur | End Trip: Bagdogra | Program Grading: gradegradegrade
Sikkim Darjeeling Tour

Trip Overview

On the west of Kanchanjunga Himalayan range is Nepal and in the east is Sikkim. To the north is Tibet and eastern border has Bhutan. The tiny Himalayan kingdom was merged with India about two decades ago. Before that Sikkimese kings, descendents of Choygal, ruled it. Mountain of Sikkim is famous for its rhododendron and orchids flowers, which blooms in spring. The Kanchanjunga range in the west and several snow-capped peaks to the north makes Sikkim a special place for tourist. It is rich in cultural heritage with mixed of Lepcha, Bhotia, Limbus, and many other Nepalese ethnic groups. Buddhist Gompas and Hindus shrines are everywhere in this tiny Himalayan State. Some of the best known monasteries are Ralong, Phodang, Rumtek, Phensong, Enchhey, and Tashiding. Among them Rumtek is most popular monastery. Rumtek monastery is located 23 km. from Gangtok. It is the seat of the Kargyu order of Tibetan Buddhism. Gyalwa Karmapa, the 16th reincarnate Lama, built the monastery at Rumtek after he escaped from Tibet and settled in Sikkim. After Gyalwa Karmapa died 17thKarmapa was reborn in Tibet. Since then Rumtek monastery has become controversy for the actual Karmapa. Like Mani Rimdu in Thyangboche (Nepal), Rumtek monastery is famous for its ritual lama dance and opera performed by the lamas.

Sikkim was chosen by Padmasambhava, propagator and initiator of Tantric Buddhism in the Himalayan kingdom, as one of the valley (bey-yul) to preserve Buddhist scriptures for posterity. History of Buddhism in the Himalayan is incomplete without Sikkim.

Outline Itinerary

Day 1: Transfer from hotel to airport for Bhadrapur and proceed by car/coach to Gangtok via Teesta (4 hrs). Overnight at Gangtok.
Day 2: Full day Sightseeing of Tsangu Lake, Ganesh Tok, Hanuman Tok, and Tashi view point
Day 3: Sightseeing in Gangtok- visit Directorate of Handicrafts and Handlooms, Research Institute of Tibetology, Chortens (Stupa), Rumtek Monastery and Botanical Garden. Afternoon- Drive to Darjeeling. Overnight in Darjeeling.
Day 4: Sightseeing in Darjeeling-includes Tiger Hill, Batasia Loop, War Memorial, Ghoom Monastery, Himalayan Mountaineering Institute, Padmaja Naidu Himalayan Zoological Par, Ropeway, Tea Garden (Rangeet valley), etc.
Day 5: After breakfast drive for Bagdogra. Arrive Bagdogra and depart to next destination.
Bhutan Extension can be done: Siliguri-Thimpu-Paro-Siliguri. See in Bhutan portion.

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