Places of Tourist Interest in Sikkim.
Sikkim Places of Interest, Gangtok, Institute of Tibetology, Rumtek Monastery, Tsomgo Lake, Nathula, Pemayangtse Monastery, Kheocheopalri Lake,
Yuksom, Singhik, Chungthang, Lachung, Yumthang, Lachen, Guru Dongmar Lake, Dzongri, Goechela Pass, Green Lake, Tholung Gompa.
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S I K K I M
Places of Interest
D A R J E E L I N G

SIKKIM PLACES OF INTERESTS

EAST SIKKIM
WEST SIKKIM
NORTH SIKKIM
SOUTH SIKKIM

EAST SIKKIM:

Enchey Monastery :

An important seat of the Nyingma order, the Enchey Monastery meaning the Solitary temple, was originally built with the solace that no other construction would be allowed near it is built on the site blessed by Lama Druptob Karpo, a tantric master known for his flying powers. This 200-year-old Monastery has in its premises images of god, goddesses and other religious objects. Every year around January 'Chaam' or religious masked dance is performed with great fanfare for two days. it is situated adjoining the Sinolchu Tourist Lodge, 3 kms from Gangtok Town.

Enchey Monastery.

Permanent Flower Show :
White Hall, Close by the White Memorial Hall and just below the Palace Ridge park is the more recent Flower Show Hall. In recent years this show has become quite popular and famous as there are flower exhibitions throughout the year in accordance with the seasons and the flowers in bloom.

Flower Show - Gangtok.

Do-Drul Chorten ( Stupa) :
The Do-Drul Chorten or Stupa was built by the Venerable Trulshi Rimpoche, head of the Nyingma order of Tibetan Buddhism in 1945. Inside this stupa, there are complete mandala sets of Dorjee Phurba (Bajra Kilaya), a set of Kan-gyur relics ( Holy Books), complete 'Zung'( mantras) and other religious objects. Around this Chorten, which is one of the most important stupas in Sikkim, are 10 Mani-Lhakor( prayer wheels). These prayer wheels are turned by the devout Buddhist while chanting "Hail to the jewel in the Lotus", to invoke the Buddhisattva. The Chorten is surrounded by Chorten Lakhang, where there are two huge statues of Guru Rimpoche (Guru Padmasambhava).

Do-Drul Chorten Stupa.

Handloom and Handicrafts centre :
It is now known as the Directorate of Handicrafts and Handlooms as well as the Government Institute of Cottage Industries. Started during the time of the Chogyals of Sikkim, as a venture to protect and propagate the craft and skills of local and village artisans, it has become on t of the major attractions for people visiting Sikkim where traditional handcrafts, furniture, handlooms carpets and other products can be viewed and also purchased . A word of caution to the innocent guest. It is better to check whether there is a government holiday or not as the G.I.C.I. is closed on Sundays, all government declared holidays, second Saturdays and the odd unforeseen holidays.


Sikkim Research Institute of Tibetology(SRIT) :
Formerly known as the Namgyal institute of Tibetology, after the late Chogyal of Sikkim, Palden Thondup Namgyal whose brainchild it was, the Sikkim Research Institute of Technology(SRIT), has since become one of the most prestigious depository of Tibetan literature, rare manuscripts, paintings, thangkas, statues and religious objects and other works of art and history. Today, it is a renowned worldwide centre for study of Buddhist philosophy and religion.

Institute of Tibetology.

Saramsa Garden :
About 14 kms from Gangtok is the Saramsa Garden, the home of Sikkim's most exotic orchids and other rare tropical and temperate plants. Established and maintained by the Department of Forest, it is an excellent recreation and picnic spot.

Orchids at the Saramsa Garden.

Rumtek Dharma Chakra Centre :
About 45 minutes drive from Gangtok, 24 kms away, is the Rumtek Dharma Chakra Centre, the seat of the Kagyu order, one of the 4 major Tibetan Buddhist sects. Since the late 1960s, after the arrival of His Holiness the 16th Gyalwa Karmapa, the Centre houses some of the world's most unique religious scriptures and religious rare objects. Traditional in design, it is almost a replica of the original Kagyurpa Monastery in Tsurphu, Tibet.

Rumtek Monastery.

Jawaharlal Nehru Botanical Garden :
Very close by to Rumtek Monastery, and maintained by the parks and Gardens unit of the Forest Department of the Government of Sikkim, the Garden is an enchanting and soothing experience among the lush green vegetation, rare plants and trees and certain species of Himalayan flowers and Orchids.


Water Garden :
Water Garden at Martam Khola is on the 31-A National Highway some 16 kms. south of Gangtok. It is an ideal spot for picnic with a small swimming pool for children.


Tsomgo Lake :
Tsomgo lake is only 40 kms. from Gangtok town and is situated at an altitude of 12,210 ft. The drive from Gangtok takes about 2½ hours by bus. The lake is bout 1 km. long and oval in shape, 50ft. deep and is regarded extremely Holy. It is also a home of Brahmini ducks besides stopover for various migratory ducks.

Tsomgo Lake.

Between May and August, it is possible to see variety of flowers in bloom, including the rhododendrons, various species of primulas, blue and yellow poppies, iris and many other species of floras. It is alson an ideal habitat of the Red Panda and various species of birds. Open for both the Foreign and Indian nationals. Foreign visitors have to be in a group of two or more and have to apply for the visitors permit through a registered Travel agency.

Nathula :
56 kms from Gangtok is a 'Nathula' Pass at an altitude of 14,200 ft. bordering between India and China in the Tibetan Plateau. It is one of the highest motorable roads and richly covered by many varities of alpine flora and fauna. A tranquil place to visit. Nathula is open only for Indian nationals on Wednesdays, Thursdays, Saturdays and Sundays. The visitors have to get the permit to visit the place by applying to the Tourism Department through a registered Travel Agency.


Tashi View Point :
Built by the late King of Sikkim Sri. Tashi Namgyal, it is situated 4 km from Gangtok town from where one can have a clear view of opposite hills, besides Mt. Kanchandzonga. This site offers a breathtaking panorama of the majestic Mt. Kanchandzonga and surrounding hills.

Tashi View Point.

Ganesh Tok :
It is a very small temple of Ganesh, a God worshipped by Hindus. It is on a hillock on Gangtok-Nathula Road. A Sikkim Government nursery is just nearby.

Ganesh Tok.

Sa-Ngor-Chotshog Centre :
It is a Tibetan refugee monastic institution established in 1961 by his Eminence Luding Khen Rimpoche, Head of Ngorpa, sub-sect of the Sakya Order, with the blessing of H.H. Sakya Trizin and H.H. the Dalai Lama. This is the only monastery of the Sakya Order of Tibetan Buddhism in Sikkim. It is located on a beautiful hill-top just 5 kms away from Gangtok Sikkim.

Student Monks.

WEST SIKKIM:

Pemayangtse Monastery:

Pemayangtse Monastery is one of the oldest monasteries in the State. Orginally established by Lhatsun Chempo, one of the revered Lamas to have performed the consecration ceremony of the first Chogyal ( Religious Monarch) of Sikkim. This ancient monastery belongs to the Nyingma Buddhism and has been considered as one of the premier monasteries in the State, having been entrusted with the task to perform all religious functions of the erstwhile monarch. The Monastery, located on a hill top at an altitude of 6840 ft. commands a magnificent panoramic view of the Himalayan ranges and the surrounding hills and country-side.

Pemayangtse Monastery.

Rabdentse Ruins:
This was the second capital of the erstwhile Kingdom of Sikkim after Yuksom and till the year 1814 AD, the Kings of Sikkim had ruled the State from this place. Today, the ruins lie hidden from the main road at a walking distance from the Pemayangtse Monastery. The scenic view from the top of the ruins scanning across the deep valley to the mystic heights of Khangchendzonga ranges is something to be cherished and etched in memory.

Rabdentse Ruins.

Sanga-Choling Monastery:
This monastery is situated on a ridge above Pelling and the famous Pemayangtse Monastery. Built in 1697 AD, it is considered to be the oldest monasteries in Sikkim. In order to reach this Monastery one has to be prepared to spend at least 40 nminutes walking up the steep hilly slope which leads through rich forest covers.

Sanga Choling Monastery.

Khecheopalri Lake:
Khecheopalri Lake is considered to be one of the sacred lakes of Sikkim both by the Buddhist and the Hindus. The lake remains hidden in the rich forest cover. It is believed that birds do not permit even a single leaf to float on the lake surface. There is a motorable road from Pemayangtse right up to the lake area.


For those interested in spending a night or two in the peaceful environment a trekker's hut has been provided by the Tourism Department. The hut is presently managed by a local person and provides comfortable stay providing a taste of local Sikkimese -Nepalese cusines.There is also a pilgrim's hut, managed by Tourism Department, which is meant to provide accomodation to the people who come on pilgrimage tours.

Yuksam:
This was the first capital of Sikkim, where according to the historical records, the first Chogyal of the Kingdom of Sikkim was consecrated in the 1641 AD by three learned lamas. The evidence