Nestled in the lofty peaks of Himalayas, Gangtok is the state capital of Sikkim. Used as a stopover destination by traders traversing between India and Tibet during the British rule, the city is now a major business centre and a favourite tourist haunt. A calm and serene paradise, this district showcases an amalgam of varied communities like Nepalese, Bhutia and Lepcha. Its culture has the influence of both Hinduism and Buddhism, which makes it rich and refined. From churches to temples and monasteries to museums, Gangtok boasts of diverse tourist attractions. Interestingly, Gangtok is also known for its authentic cuisine, including delicacies like momos, wai-wai, thukpa and shah-phaley that are served in most eateries. This cosmopolitan district also houses many shopping complexes and nightclubs, which make it as effervescent as any other thriving city in the country.
Attractions in Gangtok
Lake Tsomgo/Changu Lake
Tsomgo Lake, popularly known as the Changu Lake, is situated at an altitude of 12,400 ft. About 40 km away from Gangtok, this lake is considered sacred by the local people.
Namgyal Institute Of Tibetology
The Namgyal Institute Of Tibetology is noted for its architectural grandeur that is symbolic of typical Tibetan Buddhist style of architecture. Popularly known as the Sikkim Research Institute of Tibetology, this institute has a library, museum and general reference centre.
Do-Drul Chorten is one of the biggest stupas in East Sikkim, featuring 108 prayer wheels (or Mani Lhakor). It was constructed in 1945 by the head of the Nyingma order of Tibetan Buddhism - Trulshik Rinpoche.
Directorate of Handicrafts and Handloom
Directorate of Handicrafts and Handloom represents the cultural heritage of Sikkim with its collection of thangka paintings, carpets, bamboo works, multi-craft items and embroidered products. It has 28 centres across the state, the main being situated at the Zero Point.
Set on a lofty ridge of a hill, the Enchey Monastery is a pilgrimage centre differentiated by the shining golden cupola crowning its building. Lord Buddha, Loki Sharia and Guru Padmasambhava are the deities worshipped here.
Rumtek Monastery is the nerve centre of the Kagyu (Red Hat) sect of Tibetan Buddhism or Lamaism and is mainly known for Chham- a religious mask dance. This monastery was refurbished in 1960s after being devastated by an earthquake.
Ganesh Tok and Hanuman Tok
Ganesh Tok and Hanuman Tok are two revered shrines in Gangtok devoted to namesake Hindu deities. Ganesh Tok is set on the hill neighbouring the TV Tower while Hanuman Tok is settled 5 km uphill from the White Hall, on the Gangtok-Nathula Highway.
The Ridge is a plain road encompassed by lush green plantation, located right above the town of Gangtok. It features White Hall and the Chief Minister’s official residence, along with a stopover site featuring Tibetan architecture.
Tashi View Point
A drive of 6 km from Gangtok leads to the Tashi View Point, from where visitors can behold the panorama of the Kanchenjunga range. It also offers a splendid view of Phodong and Labrang monasteries.
Phurchachu Reshi Hot Springs
Phurchachu Reshi Hot Springs are a marvel of nature, located 25 km from Gyalshing, near Reshi. One has to traverse the Rangeet River to reach these hot springs, which are famed for its medicinal value.
Our Recommended Hotels in Gangtok
Royal Plaza Hotel
Upper Syari, Deoralimore...
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Royal Plaza Hotel, situated in Gangtok, offers a beautiful view of paddy fields and undulating mountain terrains. It has 78 elegant accommodation units, classified as Deluxe Rooms (23), Club Valley View Rooms (26), Club City Facing Rooms (23), Executive Rooms (2), Deluxe Suites (2), The Royal Suite (1) and Physically-Handicapped Room (1). For a fine dining experience, guests can visit its multi-cuisine restaurant, bar and 24-hour coffee shop. There is an in-house casino, curio shop, book shop and fitness centre in the premises for recreation and entertainment. It also offers a business centre and conference halls, with audio-visual equipment, to conduct corporate meetings, seminars and social functions.
Mayfair Resort Gangtok
Lower Samdur Block, Ranipoolmore...
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Mayfair Resort Gangtok is a property situated amidst the forested and mountainous surroundings of the Sikkimese capital town. General facilities offered at the resort are concierge, travel assistance, doctor-on-call, money/currency exchange, butler service, valet, laundry, left luggage, babysitting and Wi-Fi internet. It makes arrangement for adventure tours, bonfire, outdoor games and business/social events. The resort also provides leisure facilities like spa, fitness centre, swimming pool, pool table, children's playground/playroom and recreation room.
Guests can relish Indian, Oriental and Continental delights at the on-site Orchid restaurant or try Sikkimese dishes at the Jungle Café. Hot beverages, fruit juices and exotic spirits can be enjoyed at any of the three bars and lounges here. For the purpose of comfortable accommodation, the resort features rooms, cottages, suites and villas, which are provided with necessary amenities and modern luxuries. LCD TV, safety deposit vault, tea/coffee maker, STD/ISD telephone, mini-bar, Wi-Fi internet and en suite bathroom with plush fittings and toiletries are common across all room categories.
Netuk House Gangtok
Tibet Road, Sonam Gyatso Margmore...
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Netuk House Gangtok is a heritage property that is situated in the heart of the town. It blends traditional architecture with contemporary facilities for providing guests with a comfortable stay in a pleasing ambience. They are provided with a number of facilities like free Wi-Fi, library, bonfire, barbeques, movie screenings and board games.
Guests staying here get a chance to relish delicious Himalayan cuisine and fusion dishes, which are prepared under the supervision of its owners. Duetsi – the on-site bar – serves local drinks in bamboo containers; thus offering a unique lounge experience. The resort offers accommodation in the traditionally-decorated guestrooms across its three blocks. These rooms represent various positive energies through the use of different colour themes, and come equipped with necessary modern amenities.