In an early story of Satyajit Ray’s Feluda, the detective alights at Bagdogra airport along with his cousin and is asked by a fellow traveller, “Kang? Gang? Dang?”. In short, Kalimpong, Gangtok or Darjeeling? As you get down at Bagdogra airport to begin your adventure in Northeast India, you could very well be asking yourself the same thing. Which way do we go? Do we explore the exhilarating sounds of Gangtok, the capital of Sikkim, a land filled with monasteries, old school villas and traditional houses coupled with spectacular views of the Himalayas? Do we experience the quiet life in the tea estates of Kalimpong? Do we experience the hustle and bustle of hill station life in Darjeeling?
Born Voyager’s 6 nights/7 days package is your answer. Dividing your stay between Gangtok, Kalimpong and Darjeeling, 2 days per location, our package gives you plenty of time to check out the sights and sounds of the place while experiencing a slice of local life.
Come, explore the Northeast, only with Born Voyager
Fly in to Bagdogra airport. Post disembarkation formalities, our representative will transfer you to Gangtok. The drive takes anywhere between 3 – 5 hours depending on the state of the road, but the ride through the mountains offers some remarkable views of picturesque and isolated villages, the occasional monastery and ta breaks at some quaint, roadside tea stalls. Upon arrival in Gangtok, our representative will escort you to your hotel and assist with check-in formalities. After settling in to your room, take some time to relax and acclimatize yourself to the altitude. Weather permitting, you will be treated to some spectacular views of the surrounding Himalayan landscape. On your first day in Gangtok, explore the city at leisure. Take a walk along Raj Bhavan to get a full view of Gangtok city. For those with an adventurous bent of mind, a ropeway stretches between the Bidhan Sabha building to Deorali. The ropeway offers spectacular, birds eye views of the entire region and is a must-see for tourists. You can explore pleasant side alleys off the main road, MG Marg, or take a stroll along the city centre to take in a glimpse of local life. Grab a meal at one of the small restaurants along the city centre or grab a glass of the locally brewed beer to complete the Gangtok experience. Head back to your hotel and relax. Overnight stay in Gangtok.
Wake up early and get a glimpse of the summit of Mt.Kanchenjunga, the highest mountain in India. On a fine day, you can see the summit slowly come into view as the sun rises. After breakfast at the hotel, strap in for a day of exploration and wonder. Our tour takes us to the beautifully and culturally significant Changu Lake (Tsomgo Lake to the locals). Located 40 kilometres away from Gangtok, the lake remains frozen during the winter season but is in full flow during the summer and monsoon months. The lake surface reflects different colours with the changing seasons, and served as a meteorological indication to the monks in the past. The periphery of the lake sees plenty of rhododendrons during the summer months, while the Alpine forests neighboring the lake house some fantastic flora and fauna. Try and catch a sight of the famous Brahminy ducks or the elusive Red Panda. Take a joy ride on a yak by the riverside, or grab a meal at one of the many kiosks along the lake. Transfer back to Gangtok, and head out to get in some last minute shopping for some traditional Sikkimese souvenirs at one of the local stalls near MG Marg. Grab a meal at a local restaurant and then head back to your hotel and relax. Overnight stay in Gangtok (In case of any natural emergencies such as landslides or mudslides, we will offer an alternative destination for sightseeing on this day).
On Day 3, after breakfast, get set for a half-day sightseeing tour, followed by a transfer to Kalimpong. The tour starts off with a visit to the world famous Ban Jhakri Falls Energy Park. The name takes inspiration from the local words for forest priests, and as such, you will find many statues celebrating famous forest sages. The park has got well laid out walking trails, picturesque gazebos, a spash pool with a dragon in the centre, and of course, the lovely, cascading falls. The next stop on the tour is the famous Dro-dul Chorten Stupa, the largest and most prominent Stupa in Sikkim, capped with a gold-plated steeple. The Stupa houses several important relics to Buddhism and remains culturally significant for the devout Buddhist population. The tour also includes visits to the Directorate of Handicraft and Handloom, take in a local Flower Show and the Research institute of Tibetology. After this, get ready for the transfer to Kalimpong. The 74 kilometer trip takes anywhere between 2.5 – 4 hours depending on the road and weather conditions. Enjoy the high mountain terrain, beautiful views and isolated settlements on the way. Upon reaching Kalimpong, our representative will escort you to your hotel and assist you with the check-in formalities. Light and weather permitting, explore the city centre, or just curl up on your balcony with a cup of tea, a book and enjoy being in the midst of nature, high up in the mountains. Overnight stay in Kalimpong.
After breakfast, get set to explore the idyllic hill station. Start off with a visit to Deolo Hill. If you are there early enough, you could be graced with a spectacular view of Kanchenjunga. Even if you miss that particular sight, the hill offers a beautiful view of the Teesta Valley and of Kalimpong itself. The best times to visit are at sunrise or sunset, but the spot remains popular among photo enthusiasts throughout the day because of the view. Proceed to Dr. Graham’s Homes, a school established in 1900 by the Scottish missionary, Dr. Anderson Graham, built for the Eurasian destitute children of the area. The beautiful school is spread across 500 acres and is built in a traditional Scottish style. The school also houses a small museum for visitors. After this, head to one of the many flower nurseries in the town, famous for their collections of exotic and beautiful flowers. The tour also stops at the famous Jang Dong Palriffo Brang Gompa, consecrated by the Dalai Lama six years after its inception. The monastery is important for the sacred Kunguyar, housed within. The monastery is a good example of the Buddhist architectural style and impressive wall paintings. The last stop on the tour is the Durpin Dura, one of the two hills on which the town of Kalimpong stands. The hill is 4,501 feet above sea level and offers a panoramic view of the Teesta Valley and the Jelepla Pass in the distance. At night, head out to one of the local restaurants and have a local meal. Head back to your hotel room and relax. Overnight stay in Kalimpong.
Today, after breakfast, transfer to Darjeeling. Originally just a cluster of villages intermittently administered by Nepal and Sikkim, Darjeeling grew in prominence during the mid 19th Century when, because of its climate, the British first established a hill station there. The town is famous for its tea estates, breath-taking valley views and the world famous toy train ride. Upon arrival in Darjeeling, our representative will escort you to your hotel and assist you with the check in formalities. Afterwards, relax in your room with a hot, steaming cup of the world famous Darjeeling tea and take in the natural beauty of the area. In the evening, head down to the Mall, also known as the town center or the social center of Darjeeling. According to most locals, this is the place to come and experience the true feel of Darjeeling. Take a seat on one of the many benches and enjoy the sights and sounds of a bustling hill station. At night, head down to one of the local restaurants and grab a bite to eat and then head back to your hotel and relax. Overnight stay in Darjeeling.
An early morning start will take you to the top of Tiger Hills. Located at a height of 8,364 feet, it offers a spectacular view of the sun rising over the Himalayas. Watch the mountains change colours as the sun rises over them. On the way back to the hotel, stop off at the Ghoom Monastery, at an elevation of 8,000 feet and the Batasia Loop War memorial, designed to commemorate the Gurkha soldiers who gave their lives in service of the Indian Army. Head back to your hotel for breakfast. After breakfast, head out again to the Japanese Peace Pagoda. Located just 10 minutes from Darjeeling, the Pagoda was built under the guidance of Japanese monk Nichidatsu Fujii, and serves as a symbol for people of all races and creeds to unite in their search for World Peace. The tour then heads off to the Padmaja Naidu Himalayan Zoological park, known locally as the Darjeeling Zoo. The zoo specializes in programs designed to breed animals adapted to Alpine conditions. Over the years it has successfully bred the endangered snow leopards, red pandas and Himalayan wolves. Next stop on the tour is the famous Darjeeling Mountaineering Institute, established in 1954 to encourage mountaineering as a sport in India. The institute also has a memorial to Tenzing Norgay, one of the first men to ascend Mt. Everest, and the first field director of the institute. Try to ascend the Tenzing rock within the campus, or just admire the facilities dedicated to help mountaineers hone their skills. Stop off at the Tibetan Refugee Self Help Centre, a rehabilitation centre for Tibetan refugees who were fleeing their homeland and ends up with a panoramic view of the surrounding tea estates from a vantage point. At night, grab a local meal and then head back to your hotel to relax. Overnight stay in Darjeeling.