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Top 10 Things to Do when in Sikkim

Posted By : Abhishek Chaudhary

Posted On : Tue Jun 09, 2015 4:23 am

Right from colourful nightlife to the vibrant festivals celebrated, the shopping expedition and relaxing spas, the land of Sikkim promises the best of touring experience to you. Here are top 10 things to do when in the wonderland of North East India – Sikkim:
1. Best of Trekking
Flanked by magnanimous Himalayan mountain ranges from all sides, Sikkim promises excellent trekking opportunities. Right from novices to the experienced trekker, anyone can trek and enjoy the thrill of going on an adventure tour with minimum precaution. The Goecha La high altitude Himalayan trek promises excellent fun. Here, you can walk through awe-inspiring Tshoka Rhododendron forests. Initiating from Yuksom (5700 ft) and running through the dense Sachen forest, scenic Tshoka Monastery, Dzongri meadows, Kokchurung, and Thangsing, the trek finally reaches Lamuney. Enchanting vista of sunrise from Dzongri Top is something you should not miss!
2. Enjoy Bird Watching in Kewzing
Sikkim is undoubtedly a birding paradise especially if you visit Kewzing. The dense, beautiful, and mysterious forest promises awesome fun and opportunities for both normal birder and ornithologist. Serving abode to over two hundred species of birds (many are indigenous to Sikkim), a visit to Kewzing will satiate your birding desires. Visit the popular Maenam Wildlife Sanctuary and you will get to see the Satyr Tragopan, a rare pheasant species of Eastern Himalaya. The Sultan Tit, Fire-tailed Myzornis, Puff-throated Babbler, and Streaked Spiderhunter, are some of the commonly found species here.
3. Go River Rafting on the Teesta
Teesta is one of the most beautiful rivers of Sikkim and the best spot to try out adventure activities. This river promises excellent rapids tamed and enjoyed by ardent rafters holding ample experience. This place promises the world to thrill seeking souls. With adequate tides to experience adrenaline rush, the Teesta rapids are apt for both beginners and the experienced.
4. Cable Car Ride in Gangtok
The famous cable car ride in Gangtok promises opportunity to witness the captivating views of scenic Gangtok town from the highest point of the city. For more info, see Gangtok tour packages here. Covering a distance of around 1 km in 7 minute, one can get a bird's eye view of the city.
5. Experience the Grandeur of Sikkim Festivals
When travelling to Sikkim, you must experience the exuberance, grandeur, and vibrance of the festivals celebrated here. Although most of these are religion centric, the customs and rituals associated will mesmerise tourists. You would love to be a part of their beliefs, ethnic practices, traditional dance, songs, and costumes. Some of the most popular fesivals celebrate here include Sikkim Saga Dawa. It is deemed as the holiest. The seasonal festivals celebrated with great pomp and show include:
  • Tharpu Monsoon Festival (August)
  • Gangtok Winter Festival (Dec 9- Jan 11)
  • Losar Festival (February)

6. Caving in Lha-ri-nying phu
Widely known as the Old Caves of God’s Hill, this famous cave is deemed to be one of the holiest in the state. Visitors can get ample opportunity to witness the interiors of the Himalaya. Situated to the northern Tashiding, a 3-day walk will take you to the cave's mouth. Here, you can seek blessings of the local deity. Some of the other best caving destinations of Sikkim include:
  • Kahdosangphu (cave of the fairies)
  • Pephu (secret cave)
  • Dechenphu (The cave of happiness)

7. Go Organic with the Pioneers
Did you know Sikkim is the first state in India to realize the importance of going organic? No wonder the local markets of Sikkim have started to sell organic items. In fact, the Sikkim government has officially declared its decision to convert the entire state into organic land in 2015. When here, don't forget to get the taste of organic foods. Also shop for some organic products from here.
8. Activate your Religious Self
Well, it is not about transforming yourself into someone else. It is simply about realizing the divine presence of the supreme soul. A visit to the monasteries with deep religious belief intact will make you feel wonderful. Some of the other things you need to do include meditating inside an old Buddhist Gompa, paying respect to the residing deity in the shrines of Namchi temple. Also light a butter lamp upon your visit to a monastery to welcome love, peace, and prosperity to your life.
9. Experience the Thrill of Paragliding
If you have ever felt the desire to glide like an eagle, simply indulge in paragliding. It will be more than thrill to witnessing the hypnagogic beauty of this bewitching land while flying above the lofty hills amidst greenery. You will come out as a rejuvenated being with awesome memories to cherish for a life time. For the best paragliding experience, simply visit the annual Sikkim Paragliding Festival held in Gangtok during October and November. And don't forget to capture the moment in camera.
10. Shop Till You Drop - MG Road
A visit to Sikkim is incomplete without shopping expedition. When in Gangtok, you must purchase Chinese Feng Shui items such as the New Year Lamp, laughing Buddha, Dragons, etc. Ethnic dresses worn on Tibetan festivals are also a huge hit among people tourists. MG Market is the best place to shop. It is a hub for quality Sikkimese ethnic items. Some of the must buy items here is the uniquely designed cup. These are integrated with special Sikkimese designs. Go for local artefacts, bamboo items, hand woven blanket, woven, carpet, and many more. Try and bargain a lot when you buy from local vendors. For authentic items, head straight to the Tibetan Handicrafts Centre.
So now that you know what to do precisely when in the beautiful land of Sikkim, it is time for you ti pack your bag to head to the wonderland of North-East India. You must get special permit from the Police Check Post in Gangtok for visiting specific places such as Lachung, Tsomgo Lake, Yumthang Valley, Gurudongmar Lake etc. Happy Touring!

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