Gangtok & North Sikkim - January 1st 2010 - Need help planning

#1 Nov 24th, 2009, 14:03
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  • Travel to freedom is offline
#1
Planning to travel around 31st-1st to Gangtok & North Sikkim.Have always flown to the opposite of the trend and hence travelling to Sikkim at this time.

My Plan :2-3 Duos - All in their early or just 30s,for 4-5 days,excluding travel start and end dates.

Volvo from Kolkata - Any choices/Suggestions
Silliguri/NJP to - Gangtok,what will be the fare considering off season.

Reach Gangtok @ 15:00 sh - Best place for lunch? ______,good Tibetian stuff.I'm game for Momos & Local Beer if any by the way .

Suggestions for Hotel - Budget 1000-1500 considering off season.Expecting a 3k hotel to be available for 1.5 -2k in this time of the year.Shortlist - Hotel-Tibet/Sonam Delek,Cherry Guest House.

Any Places we can catch-up with, in the evening - considering the place ,is early entry to hotel advised,lets say 19:00 hrs.

Book for next day - Nathula,Tsango lake,Baba Mandir,other suggestions pls, to be covered in one trip worth visiting.
Any car driver suggestions,cost suggestions - in advent of,off- season.

Retire in Evening - Shopping - Any Special Shops for junk stuffs local specialities.

Next Day Plan for North trip - Any booking Suggestions of Car Guys.

Next day
In North - to enjoy the most,Stay two nights- Where do you guys suggest we should stay.Lachung,Lachen,Yumthang.
What are our options - any suggestions - Price advise.
Places to eat & off course drink.Any unbeaten paths here?

Which Places to cover- Considering two days including reaching day,excluding return start day to gangtok.Can we cover places on our way to Lachung from Gangtok.

Last night at Gangtok - Take off next day for Silliguri/Kolkata.

Please try and be tooth & nail in details for the journey.Would really appreciate that.Please also advise if anyone feels the itenrary needs to be amended for better benefits .Thanks in advance.
#2 Nov 25th, 2009, 14:20
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  • ARPAND is offline
#2

Smile

Dear Freedom....
Pls find the reply to ur queries first and then my suggestions:

Volvo from Kolkata - Any choices/Suggestions - Royal Cruiser or Jai DADA ...... two best operators

Silliguri/NJP to - Gangtok,what will be the fare considering off season. - If u take a full cab it will be 800-1000 max. If u share its 80 - 100 per head

Reach Gangtok @ 15:00 sh - Best place for lunch? ______,good Tibetian stuff.I'm game for Momos & Local Beer if any by the way. - Visit Hungry Jack near the Bus Stand .... Good Stuff.

Suggestions for Hotel - Budget 1000-1500 considering off season.Expecting a 3k hotel to be available for 1.5 -2k in this time of the year.Shortlist - Hotel-Tibet/Sonam Delek,Cherry Guest House. - Hotel Tibet or Superview or Tashi Delek

Any Places we can catch-up with, in the evening - considering the place ,is early entry to hotel advised,lets say 19:00 hrs. - Don't know for sure but there's a new casino which was supposed 2 open there......can visit if u like it and got some moolah .......else just shop around and take a walk around.......

Book for next day - Nathula,Tsango lake,Baba Mandir,other suggestions pls, to be covered in one trip worth visiting.
Any car driver suggestions,cost suggestions - in advent of,off- season. - the plan is okay....try to coax the driver to visit Indo China Border Trade Market......just a 2 min walk from Nathula


Next Day Plan for North trip - Any booking Suggestions of Car Guys. - Shop around a bit.....finalize this trip in ur first evening at Gangtok....Yak and Yeti is the best but costly......local operators are plenty......but bargain hard

Next day
In North - to enjoy the most,Stay two nights- Where do you guys suggest we should stay.Lachung,Lachen,Yumthang.
What are our options - any suggestions - Price advise.
Places to eat & off course drink.Any unbeaten paths here? - 2N/3D package will include stay at both Lachen and Lachung......one nite each.......pls cover all the places which I am writing here.....Lachung, Yumthang Valley, Hot Spring at Yumthang Valley, Zero Point, Katao, Lachen, Chopta Valley and Gurudongmar Lake......DONT MISS ANY OF THEM


Last night at Gangtok - Take off next day for Silliguri/Kolkata.

Suggestions - If u can try to visit Pelling or Ravangla......3 hrs from gangtok......u will find the most awesome view of Khangchendzonga from there........stay at any hotel in Upper Pelling, on the Helipad ground.......the view from there is best......hotels plenty....depends on Budget......if u want to splurge, stay at Mt Pandim (Best Hotel)in Pelling near Pemyangtse Monastery......a must visit along with Rabdentse ruins.....old capital of sikkim.....
#3 Nov 25th, 2009, 15:34
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  • Travel to freedom is offline
#3
Thanks Arpan,Plan in process.Will let everyone know how things turn out.Any more suggestion guys...
#4 Dec 11th, 2009, 22:02
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  • amitavo is offline
#4

hey

i don't think you can go beyong lachung and here tsongo lake bcoz when last i visit tehre in january 2007 it was full of snow but for cheapest hotel if ur budget is more than 500 per day it is more than enough
#5 Dec 15th, 2009, 13:03
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  • vinaysinha is offline
#5
A trip to North Sikkim must include Chopta Valley and Gurudongmar Lake. See if you can manage to squeeze in these two.
#6 Dec 23rd, 2009, 02:12
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  • codeexp1` is offline
#6
Hi

I came across your blog. We are also planning the same. I have purchased Buss ticket for 2nd Jan. We might make the trip together if you wish.

Debashis Bose
9804600501

Please call me.


Quote:
Originally Posted by Travel to freedom View Post Planning to travel around 31st-1st to Gangtok & North Sikkim.Have always flown to the opposite of the trend and hence travelling to Sikkim at this time.

My Plan :2-3 Duos - All in their early or just 30s,for 4-5 days,excluding travel start and end dates.

Volvo from Kolkata - Any choices/Suggestions
Silliguri/NJP to - Gangtok,what will be the fare considering off season.

Reach Gangtok @ 15:00 sh - Best place for lunch? ______,good Tibetian stuff.I'm game for Momos & Local Beer if any by the way .

Suggestions for Hotel - Budget 1000-1500 considering off season.Expecting a 3k hotel to be available for 1.5 -2k in this time of the year.Shortlist - Hotel-Tibet/Sonam Delek,Cherry Guest House.

Any Places we can catch-up with, in the evening - considering the place ,is early entry to hotel advised,lets say 19:00 hrs.

Book for next day - Nathula,Tsango lake,Baba Mandir,other suggestions pls, to be covered in one trip worth visiting.
Any car driver suggestions,cost suggestions - in advent of,off- season.

Retire in Evening - Shopping - Any Special Shops for junk stuffs local specialities.

Next Day Plan for North trip - Any booking Suggestions of Car Guys.

Next day
In North - to enjoy the most,Stay two nights- Where do you guys suggest we should stay.Lachung,Lachen,Yumthang.
What are our options - any suggestions - Price advise.
Places to eat & off course drink.Any unbeaten paths here?

Which Places to cover- Considering two days including reaching day,excluding return start day to gangtok.Can we cover places on our way to Lachung from Gangtok.

Last night at Gangtok - Take off next day for Silliguri/Kolkata.

Please try and be tooth & nail in details for the journey.Would really appreciate that.Please also advise if anyone feels the itenrary needs to be amended for better benefits .Thanks in advance.
#7 Jul 11th, 2011, 14:20
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  • indranidas is offline
#7
Hie to all...
I am also planning to go in January 2012. Please give me some suggestion about the under mentioned question please please
1) Is it possible for us to cover ZERO POINT in 2nd week of JAN?
2) As we are 12 or 13 Heads then what will b the possible way to visit north Sikkim? What should b the Planning of Car? ( One or Two) and what will b the budget per head for this Trip 2N/3D?
3) can u all give me some no of the Tor Operators and Hotels?
4) what would b the budget cost for us to visit the Changu Lake and Baba mandir? is it possible to go Nathula?
5)can we get the snow in yungthum?
6)is the Gangtok side-seen attractive ? (10 or 7 pints)
#8 Jul 11th, 2011, 14:46
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  • sagarneel is offline
#8
Hello and welcome to IM, Indrani. As regards to your questions:

A trip to North Sikkim (Yumthang, Zero point etc.) is highly unlikely during that time, as the rods tend to get covered with snow during Mid Jan. I'd suggest that you have a plan B in place. Tsomgo lake is doable in January, however, Nathu la again has a 50-50 chance depnding on the amount of snowfall. Just a point of thought, Nathula is closed on Mondays and Tuesdays, hence plan your trip accordingly.
Everybody is a genius. But if you judge a fish by its ability to climb a tree, it will live its whole life believing that it is stupid Albert Einstein


Trip reports:

Syalsaur/ Deoria taal/ Chopta trip report, West and South Sikkim trip report , Puri/ Konark trip report
#9 Jul 15th, 2011, 13:41
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  • indranidas is offline
#9
thanx for the reply Sagar..
actually some of our frnds will b here only on late Jan so we havn't any chances to change our schedule in dec or march...
and we havn't any previous experiance in sikkim.
so can u plz give me some information & suggestion about what r the problems we would face in Jan-tour and how can we overcome those... plzz plzz.waiting for your reply...

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#10 Jul 15th, 2011, 15:37
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  • sagarneel is offline
#10
Quote:
Originally Posted by indranidas View Post so can u plz give me some information & suggestion about what r the problems we would face in Jan-tour
Since Yumthang/ Nathu la are at pretty high altitudes, the road leading upto these places tend to shut down due to heavy snowfall. January is the time when the maximum snowfall occurs and the rods get buried under heaps of hard snow, on which vehicles acnnot ply. Now, since the road to Nathu la is maintained by the army, any blockage is cleared off pretty fast, but that's not the case with the road to Yumthang. Hence, I advised you to keep plan B in place in case (which is very likely) you can't reach Yumthang.


Quote:
Originally Posted by indranidas View Post and how can we overcome those... plzz plzz.waiting for your reply...
Unfortunately there's no mechanism to 'overcome' the problem of a roadblock due to snow. I can only suggest you a few options :

1. Talk to multiple travel agents and find out if they offer North Sikkim packages during that time. They might be inclined to tell you 'Yes we do' in order to snatch out money, hence be cautious and get a clarification on whether they will refund you the money in case you cannot reach Yumthang.

2. You can think of curtailing your plan for North Sikkim this time around. Every part of Sikkim is beautiful. You can think of adding East/ West Sikkim instead. Trust me you won't be disappointed. Additionally you can also think of exploring the relatively unknown lower reaches of North Sikkim (Dzongu, Singhik etc.). Let me know if you are interested in this alternative plan, and I can come up with an itinerary for you.

Hope this helps,
Sagarneel.
#11 Jul 15th, 2011, 15:53
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  • ghosh.ruchira is offline
#11
This year we visited Gangtok in January.
The road to Yumthang was clear at that time. But the road to Nathula was blocked though the road to Baba Mandir was open.

But, the travel agents we contatced did not tell us that the road to Nathula is closed, instead told that it is dependant on the situation of the particular time and if the driver feels he can take us to Nathula he would do that.
The difference of the charge for the trip was Rs 250 p.h for Tsomgo Lake,Baba Mandir and Rs 700 for if you include Nathula and the condition was one can not claim if the driver could not make it.

The manager of the hotel we stayed at told us that the road to Nathula is closed and all the travel agents told that it was not. So we contacted the Sikkim Tourism Office at M.G.Marg and they assured that no permossion for Nathula is being issued since last few days.
#12 Jul 15th, 2011, 17:34
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#12
Hi!!
I guess sagar Babu and Ruchira have already covered most points that are to be considered for a North trip. Talking of personal experience, I had covered North Sikkim in the first week of January in 2006. Yumthang was wide open at that time. We even managed to reach Zero point but our vehicle slipped at one point as the road was covered with a layer of snow and it was too slippery even to walk over it.
The basic point is that there are some chances of covering these places by 1st or may be even 2nd week of January. But after that, it becomes a tad too risky. Also one more point is that one cannot predict the exact behaviour of weather in Himalayas. For example, we could cover North in january 2006, but the same route was closed on 2nd of january this year due to heavy snowfall. So it's better to follow Sagar Babu's advice and have a plan B or even a plan C in hand.
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#13 Jul 15th, 2011, 17:39
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#14 Jul 15th, 2011, 17:54
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#15 Jul 15th, 2011, 19:31
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