The capital of Sikkim is a charming and picturesque town, straddling with striking houses spilling down the hillside. The city has a fusion of traditional customs and modern way of living which makes the place unique. It's a beautiful town with all modern amenities that one can ask for.
This was the first capital of Sikkim, where historical records say that the first divine ruler of Sikkim was sanctified in 1641 by the three learned lamas. The evidence of the ceremony is still present in Norbugang Chorten. The place is considered sacred since the history of Sikkim began from here. It's also the base camp for the trek to the famous Mt. Kanchenjunga.
Places to See in Gangtok
The lake is about a kilometer long, oval in shape and is considered very holy by the locals. Between May to August, the lake area is spectacular with a display of rare flowers including the primulas, iris and blue & yellow poppies. The lake has a number of aquatic and aerial species and is a perfect habitat for the red panda. The lake freezes in winter.
Baba Harbhajan MandirNestled in the high hills on Nathu La – Jalep La road Baba Harbhajan Singh Memorial has been built in the memory of Harbhajan Singh, a Sepoy in the 23rd Regiment, who died near the Nathu La during Indo – China war in 1962. This temple was built and is maintained by Indian Army. The Legend appeared in a dream a few days after he went missing and expressed the desire that a monument be built in his memory. His fellow soldiers then built a monument that has over the years acquired the status of a pilgrimage. A camp bed is kept for him and his boots are polished and uniform kept ready every night. The sheets are reportedly crumpled every morning and boots muddy by evening. This memorial is just 18 kms away from Tsomgo Lake on the bifurcated road to Nathu La.
At an altitude of 14200 ft, the pass is located on the Indo-China border and connects Sikkim to Tibet Autonomous Region in China. The journey itself is an exhilarating experience, with mist covered peaks, zigzag roads and roaring waterfalls, the passage is simply amazing. Visitors are required to get a permit to visit the place.
This magnificent monastery is among the top tourist attractions in Sikkim. It provides as a residence for the 16th Gyalwa Karmapa. The Monastery features some of the extraordinary works of art. The Golden Stupa is the most significant segment of the monastery.
Built by the head of Nyingma order of Tibetan Buddhism in 1945, it has one of the most beautiful Stupas of Sikkim consisting of 108 prayer wheels. It stores various Mandala sets, a set of relics and some other religious possessions. Statues of Gurus are also present there.
Sikkim Research Institute of Tibetology
It is a nationally well known centre of Tibetan Studies & Research. The institute is renowned for its huge collection of rare manuscripts, Buddhist books and icons. The building is an excellent example of Tibetan architecture, surrounded by small forests of oak and birch trees. The institute also houses religious works of art and amazing silk embroidered paintings.
It is located about 14kms from Gangtok Town and near Ranipool, a vast stretch of landscaped garden ideal for leisure, recreation and picnic. Saramsa Garden was established in 1922 by the Sikkim Forest Department initially to grow fruits for the erstwhile Namgyal Royal family.
Tashi View Point
Situated along the North Sikkim highway, from this point you get a breathtaking view of Mount Kanchenjunga and Mt. Siniolchu, one of the most graceful peaks in the world.