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Gangtok


Gangtok

Near Tsongo LakeThe state capital situated in East Sikkim is a sizzling modern town, perched on a ridge at a height of 5300 ft. Being the capital of Sikkim and set amidst the typical Himalayan landscape, Gangtok is the prime tourism destination in the state. The identity of this town is largely depended upon natural beauty and ethnic people, which combine with the modern city life. The brightly painted pagoda-like wooden houses, whipping prayer flags, Lamas spinning wheels, views of snow-capped peaks and the smiling faces of local people will make you understand that you have entered into the mystic town.

The cool and calm lifestyle of Sikkimese, the monasteries and the enormous Kunchenjunga have always attracted the tourists from all over India as well as from other countries. The scenic beauty of the town is spectacular. There is excellent view of the entire Kanchanjangha snow range from many points of the city. Within the city and its immediate environs are some fascinating places to visit. Rich with culture and natural beauties these places are the prime tourism attractions for the traveler.

Tourism
Gangtok has the best tourism infrastructure in the state including some very good hotels. The people of the town are also largely dependent on tourism. A number of good hotels are available to cater to the increasing demand of tourists. Many of them luxuriously built and decorated and offer services which is a mixture of traditional hospitality and modern professionalism. Most of the hotels have their own restaurant serving local, Indian, Chinese and Continental cuisine.

There are also a number of good food counters and bar around, where all types of packed and cooked food are available. Sikkim is a heaven for the wine lovers. Gangtok, being a capital town, holds the maximum number of bar counters, where all types of drinks are available at a relatively cheaper price, due to lesser govt tax compared to neighboring states.

A number of foreign exchange counters and ATM counters have come up for the convenience of tourists.

Transportation

Gangtok is also the transport hub of the state. There are several taxi stands all over the town catering to people travelling to different destinations. Inside the town, tourist taxi vehicles are not allowed to ply to reduce congestion. There are smaller Maruti Van taxis available for travelling within the town.

The Deorali mainline taxi stand caters to people travelling to Bengal, West or South Sikkim. On the North of the town a separate taxi stands take tourists to North Sikkim. There are other stands in the town of relatively lesser importance.

Things to buy:
Shopping is another prime attraction in Gangtok. The most favored shopping destination is perhaps the government run handicraft center near Zero point. There is a cottage industry cum training center cum selling counter, which is a specialist in making of Tibetan handicrafts like carpets, blankets, shawls, masks and other traditional crafts.

Climate:
Due to its altitude Gangtok enjoys a neither-hot-nor-too-cold climate throughout the year. The temperature does not rise more than 25 degrees centigrade in the summer. The winter can be cold during January. The temperature may go down close to freezing point, but snow fall does not take place in the town.

In the upper ridges of the town occasional snowfalls occurs during December to February. The monsoon arrives in the region in the mid July and continues till mid September. Gangtok can be visited throughout the year.

Getting There: The capital town can be conveniently reached by National Highway 31A from Siliguri, in West Bengal. The distance from Siliguri is 120kms. The nearest railhead NJP that connects all the important Indian cities by regular train service is in Siliguri and the Bagdogra Airport having several daily flights to different parts of India and abroad is 12 kms from Siliguri town.

Tourist Attractions in Gangtok

There are a number of scenic places in and around Gangtok with natural, historical and religious value. This makes Gangtok the most popular tourist destination of Sikkim

Rumtek monastery - 45 minutes drive from Gangtok will take you to Rumtek monastery. The monastery is considered one of the most important in the world. More information

Tashi View Point: The viewpoint is situated at a distance of 6 kilometers from Gangtok on the way to North Sikkim. The viewpoint offers excellent views of Mt. Kunchenjunga and Mt. Siniolchu. Tourists generally come here in the early morning to experience the exotic scenes of the mountains. The viewpoint was named after Tashi Namgyal, the King of Sikkim.

Deer Park: Rustomji Park or Deer Park is where you can see the rare species of animals of the Himalayas like red pandas, Himalayan bears etc. The big statue of Lord Buddha at the entrance and the eternal butter lamp speaks about the noble truths of life. The rich collections of flora and fauna enhances the beauty of the park. The view of mountains surrounding the town is an added attraction for the tourists.

Himalayan Zoological Park: Spreaded over an area of 205 hectares,the Himalayan Zoological Park is a nice place for watching the Red pandas, barking and spotted dears. The place is also known as Bulbulay.

Hanuman Tok: This is a Hindu Temple where everyday a number of devotees come to offer their prayer. The temple, situated at a distance of 11 kilometers from the Gangtok town, offers beautiful spectacle of the mountains down the horizon in the sunny morning. The place is also noted for observing Sunrise over the mountain.

Ganesh Tok: This is also a place of worship for the Hindus. The scene of the entire Gangtok town is one of the main attractions of this temple. The temple is situated at a distance of 8 kilometers from the town.

Saramsa Garden: This is a Park situated on the Ranipul River bank about 14 kilometers from Gangtok. The Department of Forest looks after this garden, which is the collection center of different types of orchids and rare plants found in Sikkim. The garden is also known as a picnic spot and a place of recreation.

Namgyal Research Institute of Tibetology (NRIT): This is probably India's most famous and important center of study on Buddhism. The statues and Thankas (Tapestries used in Buddhist liturgy), which are stored here have a great importance both from the religious and historic point of view. One can spot about 200 Buddhist icons and other prized objects of art. In this institute there is a great collection of manuscripts on the philosophies of Lepcha, Tibetan and Sanskrit.

Orchid sanctuary & Flower Exhibition Center: In the Flower Show Venue the flower exhibition is held round the year. This is situated near the White Hall Complex. This is a 'must visit' place for the orchid lovers. The center has an astounding collection of more than 450 species of rare and endangered orchids available in the Himalayas. The best time to visit the sanctuary is April-May when the flowers are in full bloom.

Enchey Monastery: Situated above the Gangtok town the Enchey Monastery is well worth a visit. Lama Drupthob Karpo first built the monastery 200 years ago. The existing monastery was built during the reign of the Sidyong Tulku in 1910. The shape of the monastery is like a Chinese pagoda. There are about 90 monks in the monastery and they follow the Nyingma Order. The Cham is an annual festival of this monastery and it can be seen in the month of January. To preserve the beauty of the monastery the Government has imposed restrictions for any constructions near the monastery.

Gangtok Town View of Gangtok Town Road inside the town Riding Yak and Tsongo Lake
Near Tsongo Lake Snow covered houses near Gangtok Gangtok Town Inside Rumtek Monastery
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Accommodation in Gangtok

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Mayfair Spa Resort

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Arguably the best place to stay in Gangtok and also the most expensive. The resort is located about 8 kilometers from Gangtok town.

Category: Luxury Plus (A+)        Reviews: 1

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Misty Oaks

Hotel Misty Oaks Gangtok

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Comfort Inn Gangtok

Comfort Inn, Gangtok is the next best thing from a home away stay. The hotel is located along the national highway and is just 2 kms away from the city center. The hotel is comfortably situated away from the hustle of the city.

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Hotel Norkhill

Hotel Norkhill is one of the best hotels in Gangtok. Centrally located close to the Paljor stadium, this was the guest house of the King of Sikkim.

Category: Luxury (A)        Reviews: 0

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Royal Plaza

Royal Plaza is one of the luxurious hotels of Gangtok. its a 4-Star equivalent hotel located in a breath taking topography and misty mountain.

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Denzong Regency

Denzong Regency is a Welcome Heritage Group hotel in Gangtok wth all kinds of mordern facilities.

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Orange Village Resort

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Code orange is one of the few Discos in Gangtok. The place is quite popular among the locals as well as visiting guests. The resort also offers facilities such as gym and curio shop.

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Mount Siniolchu

Hotel Mount Siniolchu is a 3 star hotel viewing the mountains and with all kind of modern amenities and facilities. The hotel also offers special care to physically challenged children or people.

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Tamarind Hotel

The Tamarind Residency is a good hotel that will arouse your senses for a perfect dream holiday in lavish Sikkimese hospitality. The food and the management makes it value for money.

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Suhim Portico

A 3-star hotel with good rooms and facilities. The hotel ensures one with comfort, and value of money.

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