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Offbeat Places to visit in Sikkim
The Best 13 Offbeat Places to Visit in Sikkim 2024
Sikkim, the land of towering Himalayas and mystical allure, has things to offer that go beyond the conventional tourist attractions. You may be familiar with some of Sikkim's most renowned tourist hotspots, like Gangtok and Pelling. However, because these sites are crowded, you might not get a true escape from your hectic life.
It's time to awaken your inner explorer and explore Sikkim's hidden beauties in 2024. While the conventional places have undeniable allure, Sikkim's genuine magic is hidden in secluded valleys, mystical temples, and pristine landscapes.
Here’s a list of the top offbeat places to visit in Sikkim in 2024.
Offbeat Places to Visit in Sikkim for Adventurers
1.1 Dzongu Valley - The Nature’s Gift
Dzongu, located in Sikkim's North district, is the final barrier before the majestic Himalayas. This wild terrain, unspoiled by commercialisation, is home to the native Sikkimese inhabitants, the Lepchas. It has been a special reserve for the Lepcha community since 1960, ensuring a balanced cohabitation with nature.
If you are an adventurous person, Dzongu is one of the top offbeat places in Sikkim you must go to. Explore hidden routes through thick forests to find breathtaking vistas, face the thrilling waves of the Teesta River, and recharge in natural hot springs surrounded by tumbling waterfalls. Dzongu preserves the rich culture of the Lepcha way of life while offering an undisturbed Himalayan haven.
1.2 Goechala Trek - The Himalayan Expedition
Looking for some real adventure? Then Goechala Trek is the answer for you. Boasting an exhilarating journey into the heart of the Himalayas, this hike offers a closer look into Sikkim’s offbeat places. The 77-90 kilometres route takes in a wide range of scenery, from deep woods covered with rhododendrons to brilliant alpine meadows.
The trek lasts 8-11 days and culminates at the Goechala Viewpoint, which stands at 15,100 feet. The best times to go on this excursion are spring and post-monsoon. Explore the pristine beauty of this offbeat place in Sikkim while encountering rare species and immersing yourself in the region's rich culture.
1.3 Gangtok Ropeway - Fantastic Cable Car Excursion
Another thing to do in Sikkim you shouldn’t miss. Hop on the Gangtok Ropeway for an exciting journey with spectacular views. Glide through Gangtok's bustling neighbourhoods and catch breathtaking views of valleys and the towering Himalayas. Gangtok, the capital and a popular tourist destination, not only entices with its picturesque beauty but also acts as a base for hikers exploring the Himalayas.
The ropeway, which begins at Deorali Bazar, conveniently connects to the Tashiling Secretariat via the Sikkim Legislative Assembly. You can view the entire Gangtok while also helping to decongest the city by effortlessly commuting between two regions of the city utilising this fascinating ropeway.
1.4 Aritar - Hidden Gem in East Sikkim
Aritar is another one of the best offbeat places in Sikkim where you can escape the noise of modern life and immerse yourself in the serenity of dense forests, glacial lakes, and snow-capped peaks.
Perfect for off-the-beaten-track explorers, Aritar offers adventure sports and trekking along the Silk Route. Experience the enchanting winter wonderland in January or April-June. Dive into spiritual serenity at Parbateyswar Shivalaya Mandir or enjoy boating on the scenic Lampokhari Lake, surrounded by lush greenery. Don't miss the vibrant Lampokhari Festival in April & May, celebrating local culture.
Offbeat Places to Visit in Sikkim for Nature Lovers
2.1 Singtham Village - A Serence Place With Timeless Charm
Singtham means Orange Farms in the Lepcha language. This is one of the must-visit Sikkim offbeat places, where nature unfolds in emerald valleys and rivers sing melodies. Located about 30 kilometres away from Sikkim, Singtham is easily reachable. Take a hike through colourful rhododendron trails or enjoy a serene kayak ride on the turquoise Teesta River.
But that's not all—try your hand at fishing in Khalej Khola, a short 2km away, or delight in birdwatching amidst lush greenery. Lace-up your boots for forest treks, whether it's conquering Maenam la with clouds as companions or exploring the dense beauty of Tendong Hill, an extinct volcano standing tall and silent.
2.2 Rinchingpong - A Beauty Amidst the Mountains
Nestled in the serene foothills of West Sikkim, Rinchenpong unfolds its charm just 40 km west of Gangtok. This small town, situated at an elevation of 5576 feet, is ideal for nature lovers. The beautiful Kanchenjunga range spreads before you in the peacefulness of Rinchenpong, providing relief from the hustle and bustle of city life. The beautiful Atibuddha statue, housed in Rinchenpong Monastery, provides serenity in the peaceful embrace of Maggi Dara.
If you are a history enthusiast, then hop to the Poison Lake. Here historical narratives intertwine with connections to British invasions, while ruins of a bygone British Bungalow await exploration. Explore cultural richness at Sirijunga Temple, and enjoy a delightful evening amidst the scenic beauty of Chayatal Lake.
2.3 Kaluk - One of the Windiest Places in Sikkim
Located at 1620 ft. in the Himalayan Mountains of West Sikkim, Kaluk is a peaceful hamlet known for its natural beauty. Kaluk offers beautiful views of Mt. Kanchenjunga, making it an ideal getaway from city life. Rich in flora and fauna, this eco-tourism area preserves the cultural heritage of the Lepcha people.
In April, the valley transforms into a vibrant sea of scarlet thanks to the spectacular rhododendron bloom. Some popular must-see attractions in Kaluk include the old Pemyangtse Monastery, the historical Rabdentse Ruins, and the exciting Singshore Bridge, Asia's second-highest bridge, which offers panoramic vistas and a thrilling experience.
2.4 Sumbuk - An Unexplored Destination With Vast Pine Forests
Lush pine forests, Gladiolas farms, gushing waterfalls, countless butterflies and the mighty Rangit River paint a breathtaking backdrop for your adventure in Sumbuk. Located in South Sikkim, Sumbuk is one of the lesser-known Sikkim offbeat places.
To witness a pristine natural beauty, you can visit Mungram Village (also known as Phool Dinara) where you’ll find wide varieties of Rhododendron, Pines, Wild Strawberries and Wild Orchids. Here you can raft through roaring rapids, trek amidst fragrant gladiola fields, or discover a serene lake reflecting the majestic Kanchenjunga.
Tarey Bhir is another prominent attraction in Sumbuk. It is a 3 km long stone ridge in the nearby village Sadam on which pedestrian footsteps are created to climb the steep ridge. While strolling on the ridge, you can see Teesta, Darjeeling, Nathula, and the majestic Kanchenjunga.
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Offbeat Places to Visit in Sikkim for Cultural Experiences
3.1 Yuksom - Former Capital of Sikkim
One of the top reasons to visit Sikkim is its cultural richness and the places that offer it. Yuksom is one such place. A charming town in West Sikkim, Yuksom, exudes a historical charm. Serving as the Gateway to Mt. Kangchendzongha, Yuksom offers enchanting trails and a rich tapestry of ancient monasteries, landmarks, and serene natural attractions in Sikkim.
Dive into history with visits to the Dubdi Monastery, the oldest in Sikkim, and the Pemayangtse Monastery, perched atop a mountaintop with breathtaking views. Tashi Tenka, once a royal palace complex, now provides a mesmerizing panoramic view of surrounding wonders.
3.2 Ravangla - An Upcoming Eco-tourism Hub
Nestled between Pelling and Gangtok, Ravangla offers a serene escape in South Sikkim. At 7000 ft. above sea level, this laid-back town offers a haven for those seeking a slower pace amid the mountains. Rich in flora, fauna, and cultural vibrancy, it offers a unique blend of old monasteries, local lifestyles, and traditional festivals celebrated with zeal.
As a base for exploring offbeat places in Sikkim, Ravangla invites you to discover its charm through short treks and cultural immersions. Don't miss the Buddha Park, a spiritual oasis with a towering statue of Gautam Buddha, or the Bon Monastery in Kewzing, offering insights into Bon's teachings.
Ralong Monastery, accessible only by trekking, stands as a symbol of Buddhist opulence and hosts the vibrant Pang Lhabsol festival. For a therapeutic retreat, dip into the Ralong Hot Springs - natural saunas surrounded by scenic beauty.
3.3 Singhik - Offbeat Destination in North Sikkim
For cultural enthusiasts seeking a delightful escape, Singhik is one of the best places to visit in Sikkim. Just 4 km from Mangan, this charming town offers more than panoramic views of Mt. Kanchenjunga from the Singhik View Point. Delve into Sikkim's rich heritage at Labrang Monastery, a historical site dating back to 1814, and explore the nearby Phadong Monastery that echoes the region's Buddhist roots.
Singhik offers an in-depth glimpse into Tibetan Buddhist culture. You can witness the vibrant cultural richness at Rong Lungten Lee, a traditional Lepcha house, and partake in the festivities at Sirijonga Yuma Mangheem. Singhik isn't just a visual treat with its natural beauty; it's a cultural sanctuary inviting enthusiasts to explore Sikkim's distinctive traditions and history firsthand.
3.4 Gyalshing - A Serene Town in West Sikkim
Situated at 6,500 feet, Geyzing, also known as Gyalshing, is surrounded by the Himalayas, with the Rangeet River flowing in the west. Serving as the district headquarters, it's a cultural hub.
This tranquil retreat is 107 km away from Gangtok. Gyalshing is famed for its holy monasteries, including Pemayangtse and Sangachoeling, offering a spiritual escape. You can explore the historic ruins of the Chogyal Kingdom's first palace at the monastery.
For a panoramic view, head to Yangtey, a hilltop just a few kilometres away. Marvel at the Kanchenjunga Mountains and the meandering Rangeet River below.
3.5 Tashiding - A Spiritual Lighthouse
Looking for Sikkim offbeat places that radiate enlightenment and spirituality? Step into the timeless charm and serene ambience of Tashiding Monastery. This ancient Buddhist sanctuary, dating back to the 17th century, graces a hill nestled between the picturesque Rangit and Rathong rivers. With its captivating architecture against a backdrop of majestic mountain peaks, Tashiding is a must-visit for all travellers.
Belonging to the Nyingmapa tradition, the monastery is revered for purifying the sins of seekers seeking forgiveness. Don't miss the vibrant celebration of Bhumchhu, a sacred water ceremony joyously observed on the 14th and 15th days of the first month in the Tibetan calendar. Adorned with fluttering prayer flags and sacred stupas, Tashiding Monastery is a spiritual haven, currently home to 60 to 70 dedicated monks.
These are just a few suggestions to get you started. Remember, the beauty of offbeat travel lies in discovering hidden gems and unexpected encounters. If you're worried about how to reach these places and the costs involved, just book an affordable Sikkim tour package from Holidays Crowd. So, pack your bags, be open to new experiences, and let Sikkim's wonders amaze you!