Day 1: Siliguri - Bagdora - Gangtok. Arrival at the Airport Bagdora in the city Siliguri in West Bengal. From the hot plains of India we drive up to the border of West Bengal and into the former kingdom of Sikkim. The 4-hour journey leads us along the holy river Tista that originates in the high North of Sikkim, near the border to Tibet.
Day 2: Mask Dance Gangtok. Today we explore the lively capital of Sikkim, Gangtok. Early in the morning we drive up to the most beautiful viewpoint nearby, the Tashi View Point and watch the sun rise. In case of bad weather we visit Ganesh Tok-View Point from where we get a good view of Gangtok. Afterwards we visit the Buddhist monastery Enchey, a short walk or drive above Gangtok. In the afternoon we visit the Do-Drul Choerten, a Buddhist monument built in the 1940ies by the then-king. Enough time is included for individual strolling through the busy streets of Gangtok.
Day 3: Gangtok - Pemeyangtse - Pelling. We drive the scenic way up to West-Sikkim and visit the monastery Pemayangtse, one of the oldest monasteries in Sikkim. With its unique great wooden sculpture, depicting the different realms in the universe, Pamayangtse monastery is a Must for any visitor to Sikkim. The artist, a Buddhist monk is said to have worked on that piece of art for 7 years. Afterwards we go on, either by foot or by Jeep through pine forest to Pelling. In case of clear weather we can enjoy a gorgeous view onto the majestic Kanchenjunga.
Day 4: Pelling - Khechopalri - Yoksum. From Pelling the journey goes on to the holy lake Khechopalri. The locals believe that this it is a wish-fulfilling lake. According to legend birds prevent leaves from falling into the lake to keep it crystal-clear. Come and see it for yourself!
Day 5: Yoksum. Yoksum is the beginning point of our West-Sikkim-Trek. Walking we explore this small mountain village. Amongst other attractions we are going to see the coronation place of the first king of Sikkim. In the afternoon we go for a 1-hour walk up the very steep path to the oldest monastery in Sikkim.Top
Day 6: Yoksum - Tashiding - Pelling. From Yoksum our journey leads us to Tashiding. We hike up the slightly ascending path, past in stone-carved mantras to the "Heart of the World", the monastery Tashiding, on top of an egg-shaped mountain. In the evening we drive back to Pelling.
Day 7: Pelling - Dentam. Visit at the Indo-Swiss cheese factory in the heart of Skim's dairy land. Short walk to the third highest hanging bridge of Asia. Back in Pelling a typical Sikkimese dinner is waiting for us.
Day 8: Pelling - Gangtok. Rest-day and visit of the Cottage Industry where silk-paper production, woodcarving, Tank-painting and carpet weaving takes place. Handicrafts may be purchased there.
Day 9: Gangtok - Rumtek - Martam - Gangtok. Visit of the monastery Rumtek. Seat of the Kagyupa sect of the Tibetan Buddhism. This monastery was founded by the 16th Gyalwang Karmapa after he had fled Tibet due to the Chinese invasion there. Picnic at Rumtek (only in case of good weather). Drive to Martam, a picturesque village with many paddy fields.
Day 10: Gangtok - Tsomgo See - Gangtok. The local population considers Tsomgo holy. For this trip to an altitude of 3780 m (12,210 ft.) we need a minimum of 4 foreign participants in order to be granted a permit. In case of insufficient number of participant we will visit an alternative destination.
Day 11: Gangtok - Lingdum - Gangtok. Monastery Lindum was completed in spring 1999 and is an excellent example of Tibetan Monastery architecture.
Day 12: Gangtok to Siliguri - Bagdogra or continue with Kalimpong-Darjeeling-Tour, Northern Sikkim Tour.
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Asia India Local Culture Cultural Journey Pilgrimage/Spirituality
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