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Rumtek Monastery

The Rumtek monastery is the most important and revered monastery in Sikkim. It is situated at a distance of 26 kilometres from Gangtok and it takes an hour to reach on a four wheeler. Most tourists staying in Gangtok visit Rumtek as part of a day sightseeing itinerary. You may also stay at one of the nearby resorts such as the Teentaley Eco Resort which is within walking distance from the Monastery.

If you plan to visit Rumte, try to keep the visit in the first half of the day as during the second half, the monastery closes for visitors early in the afternoon.

Rumktek is considered the most important monastery in the world second only to the original Kagyu headquarters situated in Tibet. The monastery is the seat of the Karmapa Lama, the head of one of the main four branches Tibetan Buddhist Sects. There is a huge collection of rare religious scripts and objects at the monastery.

The new structure of the monastery was built in 1960. A thirty-minute downhill walk from the new building will take you to the older monastery that was built in 1730 and was destroyed in a fire. In the existing monastery there is a stupa of the XVI Gyalwa Karmapa, which is inlaid with gold plates and precious stones.

Each year before Losar - the Tibetan New Year - in the Month of February a celebratory dance called Chaam is organized in the Monastery premises. 

Zuluk

At an altitude of 9,100 feet, Zuluk is a small village near the Indo - Tibet boarder in East Sikkim. The area has recently opened for tourism activity with special permits to visit the border area. The region offers great views comparable to North Sikkim, yet Zuluk is accessible relatively easily as it is much closer to the major towns of the region such as Darjeeling, Gangtok and Kalimpong. The road to Zuluk is also much better and less prone to landslide compared to North Sikkim.

The road through Zuluk further proceeds to Gnathang Valley, Kupup and Memenchu lake and then to Gangtok via Tsongmo lake. Tourist infrastructure is still at a nascent stage but fast developing. The infrastructural short coming is well made up by the helpful local people and the great views of the mountain range.

Permits

Tourist permit is given at Rongli police station about 35 kms before Zuluk. Alternatively permits can also be arranged from Gangtok. Normally permit is given for one or two nights stay in the protected area. Get in touch with our experts for more information on documentary requirement and permits.

Weather

The weather at Zuluk is mostly cold but comfortable. But since in your Zuluk trip you are quite likely to travel further North East to higher altitude, you should be well prepared to face the cold. Snowfall is common in the winter even in Zuluk. In higher altitude snow remains almost throughout the year. Rainy season may witness heavy to very heavy rainfall especially during July and August. Landslide during these two months is common.

Map of Rumtek

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