East - EAST INDIA - MASTER PIECE OF THE CREATOR
Gangtok, Darjeeling, Kalimpong, Pemayangtse, Lachung
The fascination of the Eastern Himalayas has always bewitched people from all corners of the globe. The mountainous range and panaroma is beyond one's imagination but at the same time upholds one's belief in the marvelous Hand of the Creator. Cradled within the precints of the Great Himalayas, explore the well known Eastern Himalayan hill stations of Darjeeling, Kalimpong and the mythical Eastern Himalayan Kingdom of Sikkim.
Gangtok is the capital city of Sikkim and is famous for its many important monasteries, picturesque views of the Himalayas. It houses sites like Do Drul Chorten, the Enchey Monastery and the marvelous collection of orchids in the Orchid Sanctuary. Tshangu Lake is regarded extremely holy and one of the major tourist attraction. Rumtek exhibits Tibetan monastic art in Sikkim known for its unique traditional architecture, beautifully carved and painted woodwork and splendid murals.
Perched in the foothills of the Himalayas and surrounded by tea plantations, Darjeeling is the legendary British hill station situated at 2134 m above sea level and is blessed with a cool climate and a panoramic view of the Himalayas. It is most famous for its magnificent tea estates. Major attractions of Darjeeling include Tiger Hill from where one gets to witness the spectacular sunrise over Kanchenjunga range, Ghoom Monastery, Batasia Loop War Memorial, Padmaja Naidu Zoological Garden, Himalayan Mountaineering Institute and the Tibetian refugee self-help centre.
The Lepcha meaning of Kalimpong is 'playground on the ridge'. The dense forests of golden oak trees offset by the rich undergrowth of moss and lichen provide an ideal setting for balmy walks on thick cushions of russet-brown leaves in an around Kalimpong. Monasteries in Kalimpong date back to 1836 and the town is also famous for its flower nurseries housing rare orchids and cactus.
Pemayangtse - the laid back, scenic but rapidly swelling hamlet is situated at 2,085 m above sea level. High above the forest covered hills, in an amphitheatre of cloud, snow and rock, it offers a spectacular view of Mount Khangchendzonga. Pemayangtse has in its vicinity numerous waterfalls, soft trek routes, monasteries objects of worship, wall paintings sculptures, villages and soothing atmosphere for the discerning traveler. The Khecheopalri Lake is a tranquil lake surrounded by verdant forests and is considered as one of the most sacred lakes in Sikkim.
Lachung is an idyllic valley surrounded by mist-shrouded mountains and great waterfalls. It is called as the flower valley, replete with 500 waterfalls, hot springs, glaciers and the majestic snow covered Himalayas. Shingba Rhododendron Sanctuary located in Lachung (Yumthang Valley) is noted for its abundance of Rhododendron trees. A number of hot springs are scattered in the valley providing an unexpected opportunity to feel the warmth of the water even in freezing temperatures.