This is the royal chapel situated in the palace complex on the Ridge.All royal ceremonies & pujas were held here. This chapel is open for
Public on Pang Lhabsol and religious days such as Kagey Thuetor The monastery houses a vast collection of Buddhist scriptures and
Namgyal Institute of Tibetology
Amidst a serene surrounding of oak, birch and ash lies the unique organization established in 1958. Built in traditional style, the Namgyal Institute of Tibetology promotes research in Mahayana Buddhism and the language and traditions of Tibet. It has one of the world’s largest collections of rare books and manuscripts on Mahayana Buddhism. The Institute also has a retail outlet where related books and commercially produced religious art and craft of Tibet can be bought. Adjacent to the Institute are two exquisite stupas, the Do Drul
Chorten, built to commemorate the victory of good over evil and the Jhang Chub Chorten, built in the memory of Thrukshik Rinpoche, an ardent devotee, a great spiritualist and interpreter of Buddhism.Near the Chorten are housed two giant statues of Lord Buddha and Guru Padmasambhava, also known as Guru Rimpoche, the patron saint of Sikkim.
Chogyal Palden Thondup Namgyal Memorial Park
At the Namgyal Institute of Tibetology complex is the Chogyal Palden Thondup Namgyal Memorial Park dedicated to the 12th and the last monarch of Namgyal dynasty. The park houses a life size bronze statue of the late Chogyal.
This Zigback cable car ferries the tourists from Deorali via Hur Huray Dara near Sikkim Legislative Assembly to Tashiling Secretariat. Besides the thrill of the ride one can also enjoy
breathtaking aerial views of the Gangtok hills.
Directorate of Handloom and Handicrafts
This directorate was set up to promote traditional Sikkimese art and handicrafts. Exquisitely carved wooden friezes intricate bamboo work, along with beautiful hand woven carpets and handlooms are on exhibit here. Visitors can not only purchase these items here but also see the artisans at work. Among others, a favourite item here is the choktse a wooden table with carved panels that can be folded into a
The Flower Show Complex
The complex is a pride and joy of Sikkim where the world-famous Orchids of Sikkim are on exhibition along with seasonal flowers and
bonsai. Various competitions are organised here periodically to adjudge the best orchids which are then placed for display. These shows generally coincide with the Tourist seasons.
The Himalayan Zoological Park
Recently set up at Bulbulay, this park comprises of 205 hectares.Endangered animals of the Eastern Himalayas are maintained in open enclosures amidst their natural habitat using the”exhibit technique”for the first time in India. Wildlife enthusiasts and visitors can observe different species of deer, Red Panda, Himalayan Black Bear Snow Leopard, Blue Sheep and other animals in this unique set up. The park also has some of the most fabulous views of the surrounding hills and the great Mt.Khangchendzonga massif.
This is a stretch of road between the White Hall and the beautiful Palace of the erstwhile Chogyals (Maharajas) of Sikkim. During the cherry blossom season, the ridge erupts in a riot of colour and 1.S favourite haunt for walks. The zen-styled Ridge Park has a unique Sikkimese style azebo, which complements the beautiful Palace Gate at the other end of the Ridge.
About 14-kms. from Gangtok towards Siliguri is the Ipecac Garden popularly known as “Sarasa Gardens named after the exotic medicinal Ipecac plant which is grown here. Also exhibited is a wide variety of other flora including numerous species of endemic orchids You can picnic here amidst the famous tree ferns of Sikkim that grow in abundance here. Found here are some of the famous butterflies of Sikkim including the “Golden Birdwing that is as endangered as the Royal Bengal Tiger.
Tashi View Point
It is about 8 kms. from Gangtok, acclaimed to be amongst the most photography points in the Sikkim Himalayas. From here, one can also see monasteries at Phodong and Labrang. An observatory tower has recently been set up. Tourists can avail of the facilities provided by a small but well-stocked cafeteria located here.
Ganesh Tok and Pinetum
A small temple, dedicated to Lord Ganesha is situated at an altitude of 6,500 fi. From here one can have a panoramic view of Gangtok town, especially spectacular at night. Adjoining the temple is the Pinetum where pine trees flourish. A little further down the road is the Smriti Van (Forest) where visitors are encouraged to plant a few saplings in the memory of loved ones.
Scrupulously and appropriately maintained by resident units of the Indian Army this is a temple dedicated to Lord Hanuman which is situated about 9 kms uphin from Gangtok at an altitude of 7,200 ft. Popular belief has it that wishes made here are fulfilled.
The main thoroughfare of Gangtok Town. Slightly less than a kilometer in length and lined with shops, hotels, restaurants, bars bakeries, studios, cyber cafes, pool rooms and curio shops, this stretch of road constitutes the commercial hub of Gangtok. Near the Thakurbari Temple overlooking the Tourism Information Centre the Statue of Unity, depicting the meeting of the Bhutia Chiefto Khye Bumsa with the Lepcha leader Thekong Tek.
The Lal Bazaar is an eclectic mix of sights, sounds and smells Sundays are traditionally the Haat or market days, and the wares on sale are as varied and colourful as the sellers themselves.
White Water Rafting
For the adventurous, a trip to Sikkim would be incomplete without experiencing the thrill of riding the turbulent waters of the mighty Teesta. Put-in point is at Bardang, which is about an hour and a half’s drive from Gangtok. Feel the adrenalin pump as you roll over the white waters down to Rangpo on the Sikkim-West Bengal border.
Nehru Botanical Garden
Half a kilometer before Rumtek Monastery, on the highway, is the a mixture of well-tended tropical and temperate plants and trees with a huge greenhouse containing many species of orchids.
35 kms from Gangtok at an altitude of 12,400 feet is the beautiful Tsomgo Lake, which freezes over in winter. The lake derives its waters from melting snows off the surrounding mountains. Legends say that lamas could forecast the future by studying the color of the lake’s waters. Fishing is totally prohibited and all are requested not to dirty the environs of the Lake to maintain its sanctity. Above the 15th Mile Sikkim Police check post lies the unique high altitude Kyongnosla Alpine Sanctuary, home of the Red Panda and the Blood Pheasant, which are the state animal and the state bird respectively.
Baba Harbajan Singh Memorial
Built in the memory of Harbhajan Singh, a sepoy in the 23rd Punjab Regiment, the Baba Harbhajan Singh Mandir lies between the Nathu-La and the Jelep-La Passes. Legend has it that he appeared in a dream a few days after he went missing and expressed the desire that a monument be built in his memory. His fellow-soldiers then built a monument that has over the years acquired the status of a pilgrimage. Believers leave a bottle of water, which they collect a few days later to take back home.
Open now for domestic tourists Nathu-La is at an altitude over 14,000 feet. This is the highest point that tourists other than trekkers and mountaineers can reach without much exertion However visitors prone to heart problems and high-altitude sickness are advised to avoid this trip. Traders and porters crossed this gateway to Tibet in early days of the fabled Silk Route. Visitors are advised to start for Nathula as early in the day as possible to avoid inclement weather that is normal in the latter half of the day. The stark alpine landscape is interspersed with delicate primulae blossoms and the unique Himalayan Rhubarb. At Nathula, visitors can walk up to the Army viewpoint and look beyond into China Watching the green uniformed Chinese army personnel with red- stars on their caps is an experience worth relating back home.
This Monastery is just half an hour’s drive from Gangtok Town. It is a subsect of the Sakyasect of Tibetan Buddhism. Established in the 1980s the head of this monastery is the Venerable Khen Loding Rinpoche.
Fambhong Lho Wildlife
Located about 20 kms. from Gangtok, the Fambhong Lho Wildlife Sanctuary spreads over an area of about 5,200 hectares between Singtam and Dikchu. A spectacular view awaits those who can make it to the observatory tower at Tinjurey. Among others, the sanctuary is the home of the Himalayan Black Bear, Red Panda and Civet cat.Bakthong Kyong Chhu is a small waterfall between Gangtok and Tashi View Point.
About 4 hours drive from Gangtok is this quiet place called Aritar.The Aritar Lake (Ghati-Tso) is worth visiting. A night or two can be spent in the peaceful environment. A trekker’s hut, few lodges and a resort is available. Experience the village life in Aritar.
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