Gangtok: A Mesmerising Clump
Every year, come monsoons and the Sikkim glistens as never before! It takes a heart-warming look that has never been captured ever in the eyes of man and that which can only be termed as sheer symphony of nature. Gangtok ─ a hilly town in the lap of Eastern Himalayas ─ straddling at a height of 1,547 mt is prettified with tiny wood mansions spilling on to the ridges and natural treasures of undulations empurpled with emblazoning Orchids, rhododendrons and local blooms. The state capital of Sikkim, Gangtok is enriched with monks’ settlements, Tibetian and Buddhist Lamasery, Do Drul Chorten, Lal Bazaar, Deorali Orchid Sanctuary, Rumtek Monastery et al. An all enlightening visits to Rumtek Monastery and famed Nathula Pass is a rewarding experience.
When in Gangtok, tourists must not miss dining those finger-licking Sikkimese delicacies at Yuntang Restaurant at up-market Chumbi Residency. Trying out ‘Chang’, a local brew prepared out of fermented millet. A famed beverage, Chang is a signature brew of Gangtok, known to not cause any hangover syndrome those common with alcoholic drink.
The recent inception of Heli-tourism in Gangtok is a fillip for tourist where they can whole-heartedly get engaged into bird-view sighting of mountains. The most sought-after is the 90-min ride to Kanchenjunga mounts that allows a sneak-peek into the arduous mount at close quarter. Other rides involve Yumthang and West Sikkim. Visitors who have bought tickets for Mountain Ride are offered free-pick ups from Sikkim Tourism Office to helipad and back.
Monsoons in Sikkim
Monsoons are resplendent in the valley of Gangtok. In the monsoon, Yumthang in North Sikkim at an altitude of 3,685 mt, mesmerises with its grazing yaks on flower-carpeted meadows against the backdrop of towering peaks. Monsoon breaks in Gangtok is all about having a bowl of steaming thupka, taking a swing of the local brew ‘chang’, going souvenir shopping in Lal Bazaar, strolling in the Orchids Sanctuary and visiting the Rumtek Monastery.