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East Sikkim
Gangtok: Here is the capital of Sikkim and an urban hub. It is here that you board off and begin to sense the rhapsody of confronting an age old civilization. It is here that you begin to acquaint another scent of the Himalayas . It is here that you begin to gather hints of what you would soon yearn to explore. The air around this Himalayan town is still hugely breathable -you can shop, bank, loaf and also spend nights hip-shaking and happily drunk. Everything goes, yet you can still feel that sobriety of an ancient culture and that, perhaps, would be the next best thing you befriend. Historically, Gangtok became the capital only in 1894 when the then Chogyal (A ruler of the erstwhile Chogyal dynasty of Sikkim )Thutob Namgyal shifted the capital from Tumlong.
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.
 

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.
 
 
     

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 Bodhisattva. The Chorten is surrounded by Chorten Lakhang, where there are two huge statues of Guru Rimpoche (Guru Padmasambhava).

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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.

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. One can have a spectacular of the Gangtok Town from here.

Gangtok Ropeway: Inaugurated on 7th Dec 2003, the ropeway operates between the Main Secretariat Deer Park, Sikkim Legislative Assembly and the Tibetology at Deorali. The two cable cars have a capacity of accommodating 25 passengers each. The ride gives a breathtaking view of the river about 1000 metres below as well as the Deorali Bazar

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Regd with Tourism Deptt.
Govt of Sikkim
Regn No. : 250/TD/E/11/TA

 

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