NJP-Gangtok-North sikkim-darjeeling- May 2013

#1 Mar 27th, 2013, 15:17
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  • Sagar.7606 is offline
#1
Hi,
I am planning for the above trip on may 2013. Below are my itinerary :

May 22 . Arriving NJP @19:10 (from chennai). Proceeding to gangtok and
stay at hotel.
Please suggest whether it is ok to travel in night to gangtok?

May 23 - Gangtok sight seeing through tour package. (Nathula pass, Lake
Tsomgo, Baba mandir) - Overnight Stay at Gangtok hotel.

May 24 - Gangtok sight seeing through tour package (Hanuman tok,
Ganesh tok,Rumtek + Enchey Monasteries,Institute of
Tibetology,Orchid Garden,Ropeway, Do Drup Chorten Monastery,
Tashi view pint) - Overnight stay at Gangtok hotel.
May 25 - After breakfast at gangtok, proceed to Lachung. Enroute visit
Singhik View point, Seven Sisters Water Falls, Naga Water Falls.
Stop on way for lunch. Reach Lachung by evening.
Overnight stay at Lachung.
May 26 - Drive to Yumthang valley and yumesamdong(Zero point) back to
hotel after lunch drive too*Lachen.
May 27 - Travel to Chopta Valley and Gurudongmar early in the morning
and return to Lachen and proceed to Darjeeling. Overnight stay at
Darjeeling.
May 28 - Local Sight seeing Darjeeling. Overnight stay at Darjeeling.
May 29 - Local sight seeing Darjeeling. Leave darjeeling and proceed to NJP
via Mirik lake, pasupathinath market and arrive at NJP.

Please clarify, some suggests first cover Darjeeling and gangtok, other i hear cover gangtok first, second north sikkim and lastly cover gangtok. Confused which one to follow.

Is it worth covering north sikkim or should i drop and proceed to kalimpong?

Also suggest good , economical , near (mall rd and MG marg) hotels in darjeeling and gangtok. Anyway, north sikkim through tour package only.

Please advice.

Thanks,
Sagar.
#2 Mar 29th, 2013, 12:53
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  • manoj ctc is offline
#2
All the best for your proposed tour. It is not clear whether you are on solo trip or it is a family trip. You can get most of the answers by going through the threads in sikkim forum. It is really helpful.

Just a few suggestions:

Quote:
May 27 - Travel to Chopta Valley and Gurudongmar early in the morning
and return to Lachen and proceed to Darjeeling. Overnight stay at
Darjeeling.
Though not an expert, but I presume May 27 itinerary seems hectic.

Quote:
Please suggest whether it is ok to travel in night to gangtok?
Though it is feasible, but my personal opinion is to avoid night journey in hilly roads on these parts particularly in May last week, because rainfall may trigger landslides and cause road blockades. This is not to discourage you, just a remote possibility.

Quote:
Is it worth covering north Sikkim or should i drop and proceed to kalimpong?
Don't even think of substituting "North Sikkim" with Kalimpong. North Sikkim - a gem in the womb of mother nature. Don't miss it.
#3 Mar 29th, 2013, 14:45
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  • Sagar.7606 is offline
#3
Thanks Manoj for your suggestion. I am going with my family. I got this plan through the forum only, so not sure whether 2 days is enough to cover north sikkim.

How about the weather condition in May 3rd and 4th week?

Can you suggest good hotels in north sikkim, darjeeling and gangtok.
#4 Mar 29th, 2013, 15:37
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  • way2go is offline
#4
Hi Sagar,

You may need to re-adjust your itinerary. Following are some of the points that I would like to mention here:

You need to be prepared for a night-halt at Siliguri on May 22. The scheduled time of arrival of your train is 19:10 and you may need to add some extra time for late running of your train. Besides this, it'll take another 20-30 minutes to come out of the platform and hire a car (you won't find shared vehicle late at evening) after negotiation. It'll take around 4+ hours to reach Gangtok from NJP. However, it may take more than that, as you will be traveling at night, as well as you need to negotiate the evening traffic of the city of Siliguri. So, in my calculation, the earliest you'll reach Gangtok would be around 1 o'clock, which should always be avoided. So, spend the night of May 22 at Siliguri and start for Gangtok on May 23 morning. I know, you are losing a day, but this is advisable for your safety as well as for the joy of your trip.

In order to visit Nathula Pass, Tsangmo Lake, and Baba Mandir, you need to have prior permits. So, I'd suggest you to take the Gangtok local sight-seeing first and arrange for a hired car or shared vehicle for the next day's trip to Nathula that evening. The travel agent, who is proving you the car/shared vehicle, will arrange for your permits.

You need to modify the plans for May 27 as well. Traveling to Chopta Valley and Gurudongmar early in the morning from Lachen and then proceeding to Darjeeling on the same day won't be possible. You need to come back to Gangtok and then proceed to Darjeeling next morning.

Hope this helps. Have a happy journey.
#5 Mar 30th, 2013, 17:45
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  • Sagar.7606 is offline
#5
@way2go : Thanks a lot for your suggestion. Would definitely modify my itinerary as per your adv and come back if i have any queries.
#6 Mar 31st, 2013, 01:47
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  • switch2veg is offline
#6
Drop Darjeeling totally and concentrate on Gangtok. You are already losing the first morning to reach Gangtok. Evening free in gangtok.
From second day onwards you can start your sight seeing comfortably unless you are working on a target. North sikkim will give you enough to see. Besides in May, Darjeeling would be crowded. If at all you can save a day and don't like to be in Gangtok you can push off to Ravangla or Namchi. Kalimpong no use, unless you can proceed and find stay at Lava/Lolegaon.
#7 Apr 3rd, 2013, 22:32
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#7
My revised itinerary as per your suggestions if I drop my darjeeling plan :

May 22 - Arriving NJP @19:10 (from chennai). Overnight Stay at Siliguri.

May 23 - Proceed to Gangtok and local sight seeings
(Hanuman tok,Ganesh tok,Rumtek + Enchey Monasteries,Institute of
Tibetology,Orchid Garden,Ropeway, Do Drup Chorten Monastery,
Tashi view point) - Apply permit for nathula - Overnight stay at Gangtok hotel.

May 24 - Nathu La Pass,Lake Tsomgo,Baba Mandir + local shopping at mg marg in the evening -
Overnight stay at Gangtok hotel.

May 25 - Proceed to Lachen - Overnight stay at Lachen

May 26 - Travel to Chopta Valley, Thangu village and Gurudongmar lake. Back to Lachen and proceed to Lachung. Overnight stay at Lachung.

May 27 - Drive to Yumthang valley and yumesamdong(Zero point). Overnight stay at Lachung.

May 28 - ?

May 29 - ?

May 30 - Train @05:30 am from NJP to howrah.

Please suggest for May 28 and May 29 . Shall i again spend time in Gangtok or spend in Darjeeling since my return journey only on May 30 early morning @NJP, so by May 29 evening I should vacate from hill places?

Which route is Singhik View point, Seven Sisters Water Falls, Naga Water Falls - Is it on the way from Gangtok to Lachen/Lachung - Confused?

Is there time to visit Katao (Hotspring)?

Apart from Nathula permit, should i get permit for any other places (lachung/lachen)?

Please adv and help.
#8 Apr 4th, 2013, 12:58
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  • way2go is offline
#8
Hi Sagar,

The itinerary seems better this time. Following are some of the inputs that I wish to add here:

On May 23, along with the permit for Nathula, you also need to arrange for the car for North Sikkim (Lachen-Gurudomgmar-Lachung-Yumthang) sight-seeing. Remember, you also need permit to visit this part. The travel agent/car driver will arrange it for you.

As you will have a good night's sleep on May 22 and start from the hotel on May 23 with a fresh body and mind, if you go on a hired vehicle, you can visit the Rumtek Monastery and other surrounding places of interests before you check-in at Gangtok hotel. The reason why I'm suggesting this, is to accommodate the Rumtek Monastery in your itinerary, which is a must-visit attraction in Gangtok.

I know, this could be a bit hectic for you, but you need to take a call here. If you can visit Rumtek on May 23, this will keep May 28 free for you and you can move out to Darjeeling on that day. Else, visit Rumtek and other surrounding places on May 28. In that case, you won't have anything to do on May 29, except lazing around at Gangtok. Even if you cover Rumtek on May 28 and then move towards Darjeeling, you will reach Darjeeling late at evening and you won't be able to visit the place for lack of time. Remember, you will have to leave Darjeeling within May 29 evening (as you have the returning train on May 30 @ 5:30 am, hence you must reach Siliguri within May 29 late evening).

On May 27, I would suggest you not to stay at Lachung, but to come down to Gangtok in the evening. By this way, you can start for Darjeeling pretty early in the next morning.

On May 28, you can now move out of Gangtok and head towards Darjeeling. Earlier you leave, better it is for you. You will have full second half of the day to explore Darjeeling. Zoo, Rock Garden and HMI are the must visit. So, try to accommodate these three in the 2 days you stay at Darjeeling (May be the zoo on May 28 and the others on the next day or vice versa - it completely depends upon the time you have and how do you feel it to). Also arrange for the car to visit Tiger Hill next morning (need to leave at 4 am). Also arrange for the car (the same car that will take you to Tiger Hill, or you may choose to hire another car) to cover the local sight-seeing. It would be better if this car drops you to Siliguri at the evening. At the evening, stroll around the mall, go for some shopping. And one tip - during your stay at Darjeeling, you must have some black coffe at Keventer's and a sumptuous dinner at the Glenary's.

On May 29, at early morning, go to Tiger Hill. After returning, go for the toy train ride (Joy Ride), which will take you to Batasia Loop and Ghum and then will take you back to Darjeeling in around 2 hours. It is advisable to book tickets in advance. You can book your tickets from IRCTC website. Remember to give the source station as "Darjeeling (DJ)" and destination station as "To Darjeeling (DJRZ)" while searching for trains. After returning, have your lunch and then cover the rest of the local sight-seeing. The same car will drop you to Siliguri late at the evening.

So, in a nutshell, you can cover Darjeeling in the available time, it is certainly doable, however, it could be a bit hectic at the same time. So, it's completely up to how you want to shape up your itinerary. If you don't want to move around so much and spend you time in leisure, drop the Darjeeling plan for the time being. And if you feel it too tough to resist, then go for the Plan B. So, think about it and take your decision.

Hope this helps.
#9 Apr 5th, 2013, 15:01
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#9
Way2go,

Thanks for your suggestion. Will change my plan as per your adv. For safer side, I have booked ticket for Toy train at darjeeling. Depending on N.Sikkim tour and our health conditions, i will decide whether to proceed to darjeeling or drop. Anyway thanks once again. Will come back if i have any doubt.
#10 Apr 8th, 2013, 12:06
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  • way2go is offline
#10
You are welcome, Sagar. Hope you have an enjoyable trip. Would love to offer my inputs if you have any further doubt. Bon Voyage.
#11 Apr 12th, 2013, 20:37
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  • Sagar.7606 is offline
#11
I got a quote from different tour operators with different rates for North Sikkim. But I decided to go for Omega tours based on the positive feedback I received. Deepak rai from omega quoted 23000/- net for 2D/3N .

They offer hotels Mount View in Lachen and Chomu Inn in Lachung.

Any idea on the above hotels? How about omega tours?

Other quotes as below :
-----------------------
Galaxy travels -> 21,400 => Hotels - Kanchendzonga Regency at Lachung and Twin Peak at Lachen.

Prabir Sen-> 33,000 => Hotels -Lachen--View point,Lachung-- Fortuna lachung

Cherry-> 28,000.

Any suggestions welcome .
#12 Apr 24th, 2013, 09:36
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  • amritangshu is offline
#12
Weather is very unpredictable in Hill areas so this is not advisable to have an advance booking for North Sikim. If weather is not supportive then you will lose a lot therefore plan Lachen and Lachung from Gangtok as spot reservation should be an issue.
#13 Apr 24th, 2013, 15:02
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  • achalarr is offline
#13
Thank you sagar for the plan..i was planning for a vacation got to see yours ..there will be change in dates
#14 Apr 25th, 2013, 10:38
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  • achalarr is offline
#14

Taking 8 month old baby is not good idea?

Hi I need info on whether we can take 8 month old baby to this trip..Gangtok- nathula- Darjeeling - lachen- lachung

Pls suggest


Mod note : Do not use SMS abbreviations such as 'pls' when posting. Please use the full spelling.
Last edited by Dave W; Apr 25th, 2013 at 16:17..
#15 Apr 25th, 2013, 16:11
a LEARNER here......be careful or ignore his posts
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  • PKanti is offline
#15
follow your doctor's advice
.


Totaly confused how to explore the beautiful earth when one life is too short to complete my great India


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