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Old 1st January 2010, 13:16   #1
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Default Travel Information for Gangtok !!

Hi all,

My wife was always on seventh cloud while we plan for a holiday, She was always tipping "Gangtok" as the Option no. 1. But somehow I never felt so much comfortable getting out of North India Hill stations. This time I am planning to surprise her and fly her down to Gangtok... Finally !! As 24th is Sunday and 26th is an holiday, I'll take off for 23rd and 25th and we'll have 4 days at leisure i.e. It will be a tour from 23/1/2010 - 26/1/2010.

Now my knowledge is very very limited for Gangtok, have only heard about it in books and over the websites only. So I will be requiring advices in planning the eternity, places to see, recommended hotels... I am all ears guys.


Cheers
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Old 1st January 2010, 19:09   #2
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Had been there some three years back. If you are looking for a good hotel, try Nor-Khill. Its a heritage hotel. On the costlier side, but good service.

The Nor-Khill - Luxury Heritage Hotels in Sikkim Himalayas, Gangtok India
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Old 1st January 2010, 19:50   #3
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Gangtok is a great place at this time of the year...but cold though. Went there in 07. Don't know about hotels since I stayed with the Army. After getting down at Bagdogra, you'll have to take a cab to Gangtok a journey which will take you 2.5 - 3 hrs or else you can take the chopper from Bagdogra to Gangtok.. It is a very scenic ride, so you might want to keep your camera handy. About places to stay, the net will be a good place to tie things up. Try sikkim info- Everything about Sikkim Tourism Travel Tour Trek Trekking Maps Guide Hotels Gangtok for more info.

In 4 days, you'll only be able to go around Sikkim, so the places you would probably want to visit, other than the places in/around Gangtok, will be the Nathu-La Pass with Changu lake in between and the Rumtek Monastery. For Rumtek, try and find out the prayer timings and go during/slightly before that time, the chanting is quite divine!!

There might be a fair amount of snow there, so take clothing accordingly!!

Last edited by neel385 : 1st January 2010 at 19:52.
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Old 1st January 2010, 19:59   #4
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Dear Ashish, if you are the adventurous type, you can always find superb accommodation close to the city centre, MG Road. You will be able to eliminate middle men and won't be stuck with an over-priced room in a resort far away from the city. This is just my opinion, as it has always worked for me.

I am working on a short itinerary for you. I will post it soon.
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Old 1st January 2010, 20:38   #5
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I was in Gangtok for many months just a few years back.Lovely place and still lovely for tourism.The air connection is Delhi-Guwahati-Bagdogra as most flights go via Guwahati.The flight becomes nauseating as it takes more than two and a half hours.Air pockets on the route between Guwahati and Bagdogra rattle the plane no end.
From Bagdogra Gangtok is connected via Siliguri (NH 31).At Bagdogra taxis are'nt plentifully available.So presuming you will go by air, from Bagdogra airport you can take a taxi and reach New Jalpaiguri Rly Station.If you come by train the Delhi-Guwahati Rajdhani Express halts at New Jalpaiguri.From this place you can get pre-paid taxis (Sumos, Taveras etc) to go to Gangtok.Try and book a hotel through the internet. This is not a tourist season and the rates are at the rock bottom. You can bargain and get a discount.Yes as someone said you can stay at or MG Road as all your movements for tourism will be convenient from this city centre.
Rumtek (25 kms) and places around Gangtok (the zoological park, Hanuman Tok and the Buddhist temples around the city) can all be seen in one day.
Changu Lake, Nathula Pass (Chinese border) and scenic spots en route can be seen the next day. And North Sikkim is icy and very cold now but if you so desire talk with the taxi operators who may guide you as to whether its fit for visiting?That needs two days as one must night halt.
Next you can pack up from Gangtok and go to Geyzing and do a night halt in a good hotel by taking a Kanchenjonga mountain facing room (get it booked from Gangtok).The taxi can take you via the Temi Tea garden from Gangtok.The place has lots of tea gardens and is very picturesque. There's one good hotel (3 Star) owned by actor Danny Dengzopa at Geyzing . After a night halt, at dawn you can view the Kanchenjonga (if the sky is clear) and go around the Geyzing town.From here you can move back to Bagdogra(if moving by air) or New Jalpaiguri (rail).
If you wish to see Darjeeling then please tell the taxi driver to take you via Darjeeling.But Darjeeling fades in scenic beauty and everything else before Sikkim.
However please note that there is some unrest at Darjeeling-Siliguri now for some separate state which affects the traffic.In this event you can take the helicopter from Bagdogra to Gangtok and back.

Last edited by anjan_c2007 : 1st January 2010 at 20:46.
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Old 2nd January 2010, 09:51   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ampere View Post
Had been there some three years back. If you are looking for a good hotel, try Nor-Khill. Its a heritage hotel. On the costlier side, but good service.

The Nor-Khill - Luxury Heritage Hotels in Sikkim Himalayas, Gangtok India
Thanks for the info.


Quote:
Originally Posted by neel385 View Post
Gangtok is a great place at this time of the year...but cold though. Went there in 07. Don't know about hotels since I stayed with the Army. After getting down at Bagdogra, you'll have to take a cab to Gangtok a journey which will take you 2.5 - 3 hrs or else you can take the chopper from Bagdogra to Gangtok.. It is a very scenic ride, so you might want to keep your camera handy. About places to stay, the net will be a good place to tie things up. Try sikkim info- Everything about Sikkim Tourism Travel Tour Trek Trekking Maps Guide Hotels Gangtok for more info.

In 4 days, you'll only be able to go around Sikkim, so the places you would probably want to visit, other than the places in/around Gangtok, will be the Nathu-La Pass with Changu lake in between and the Rumtek Monastery. For Rumtek, try and find out the prayer timings and go during/slightly before that time, the chanting is quite divine!!

There might be a fair amount of snow there, so take clothing accordingly!!
Sikkiminfo.net is real gem of information, thanks for sharing. It will defeinetly clear many confusions & doubts.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Chevy_lover View Post
Dear Ashish, if you are the adventurous type, you can always find superb accommodation close to the city centre, MG Road. You will be able to eliminate middle men and won't be stuck with an over-priced room in a resort far away from the city. This is just my opinion, as it has always worked for me.

I am working on a short itinerary for you. I will post it soon.
Thanks coral, that's so kind of you.

Quote:
Originally Posted by anjan_c2007 View Post
I was in Gangtok for many months just a few years back.Lovely place and still lovely for tourism.The air connection is Delhi-Guwahati-Bagdogra as most flights go via Guwahati.The flight becomes nauseating as it takes more than two and a half hours.Air pockets on the route between Guwahati and Bagdogra rattle the plane no end.
From Bagdogra Gangtok is connected via Siliguri (NH 31).At Bagdogra taxis are'nt plentifully available.So presuming you will go by air, from Bagdogra airport you can take a taxi and reach New Jalpaiguri Rly Station.If you come by train the Delhi-Guwahati Rajdhani Express halts at New Jalpaiguri.From this place you can get pre-paid taxis (Sumos, Taveras etc) to go to Gangtok.Try and book a hotel through the internet. This is not a tourist season and the rates are at the rock bottom. You can bargain and get a discount.Yes as someone said you can stay at or MG Road as all your movements for tourism will be convenient from this city centre.
Rumtek (25 kms) and places around Gangtok (the zoological park, Hanuman Tok and the Buddhist temples around the city) can all be seen in one day.
Changu Lake, Nathula Pass (Chinese border) and scenic spots en route can be seen the next day. And North Sikkim is icy and very cold now but if you so desire talk with the taxi operators who may guide you as to whether its fit for visiting?That needs two days as one must night halt.
Next you can pack up from Gangtok and go to Geyzing and do a night halt in a good hotel by taking a Kanchenjonga mountain facing room (get it booked from Gangtok).The taxi can take you via the Temi Tea garden from Gangtok.The place has lots of tea gardens and is very picturesque. There's one good hotel (3 Star) owned by actor Danny Dengzopa at Geyzing . After a night halt, at dawn you can view the Kanchenjonga (if the sky is clear) and go around the Geyzing town.From here you can move back to Bagdogra(if moving by air) or New Jalpaiguri (rail).
If you wish to see Darjeeling then please tell the taxi driver to take you via Darjeeling.But Darjeeling fades in scenic beauty and everything else before Sikkim.
However please note that there is some unrest at Darjeeling-Siliguri now for some separate state which affects the traffic.In this event you can take the helicopter from Bagdogra to Gangtok and back.
Whew... that's the first hand information i was looking for. Thanks for sharing Anjan

Pardon for my ignorance, but what is going on in Darjeeling-Siliguri ??
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Old 2nd January 2010, 10:36   #7
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Call me when u wanna plan!

Darjeeling has a Gorkhaland agitation for a long time now - which is a pain - they cut off NH31 (the route from Bagdogra to Gangtok.
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Old 2nd January 2010, 21:48   #8
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Thumbs up A sample itinerary for your Gangtok trip

A sample Gangtok Itinerary:-

23 Jan 2010

Arrive in Bagdogra Airport from New Delhi (Preferable flight - Go Air G8-607 - 10:40 - New Delhi - 12:55 - Bagdogra.

Catch a taxi to Gangtok – Rate to be negotiated – Should be around Rs. 1500 – Rs. 1800 depending on the vehicle you choose.

Reach Gangtok by 5.30 pm and check into a hotel preferably near MG Road. Current tariff will be approx. Rs. 1000 for a three star hotel.

Go for a Gondola ride – Gangtok Ropeway - Gangtok city. Need to hire a local taxi for that.

Spend the evening in MG road.

Do remember to arrange a taxi for the city sightseeing tour the next day. Your hotel travel desk will be able to help you. Also enquire about the rates for trip to Nathu La, Baba Mandir and Changu Lake. Local taxi drivers near MG road can also arrange for your special permit to visit these places. You will need to carry any of your identity cards or passport. You will need to pay the driver for procuring your permits.

24 Jan 2010

Leave early in the morning for the Gangtok city tour.
Places to be covered – Tashi View Point (if you want to see the sunrise) , Ganesh Tok, Hanuman Tok, Government Institute of Cottage Industries, Rumtek Monastery, Zoological park, Enchey Monastery, Do-drul Chorten, Ipecac Garden etc

Your driver will get the permit done, while you enjoy this tour!

25 Jan 2010

Leave early in the morning to visit Nathu La, Baba Mandir, Tsango Lake and Menmecho Lake. Your driver will be carrying your travel permits.
Return by evening and spend the evening in the city. Try out the Blue Sheep Restaurant in MG Road.

Arrange a cab for return journey to Bagdogra.

26 Jan 2010

Leave Gangtok by 5.30 am.

Return on Preferred flight - Go Air G8-607 - Bagdogra - 13:20 - 17:25 - New Delhi
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Old 3rd January 2010, 16:34   #9
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Thanks a lot Coral for your kind support and expert suggestion for the eternity.
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Old 4th January 2010, 09:06   #10
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Since you are used to the hill stations of north India, I just want you to remember that Gangtok is not really a hill station in the true sense of the term. It's in a wide and flatish valley. That's quite different from a hill station. Darjeeling, in contrast, is a hill station.
It's important to remember this point. Otherwise you might feel disappointed after arrival.
The journey from Siliguri to Gangtok is very nice and worth every rupee.
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Old 4th January 2010, 11:07   #11
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That is all true but Darjeeling is an overcommercialized bustling dirty dieseled blotch on the landscape. I would anyday recommend Kalimpong over Darjeeling!

@Ash - Think of it like going to Kasauli- that's the altitude
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Old 5th January 2010, 11:24   #12
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Due to ongoing chaos at Silliguri-darjling and nearby area, the program is cancelled. However, We would be heading to some hill station.. which one ?? Still a jargon !!

Thanks for all who contributed and spl thanks to Carol and Hitanshu.
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Old 13th January 2010, 17:57   #13
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Were planning to go to Gangtok in February, it will be a 6 day trip.

In addition to what is mentioned above, can you please suggest that places to visit that have been left out? Being a 6 day trip, we might also be able to cover another place nearby for 2 days. We dont want to go to Darjeeling, heard it is over commercialized and we dont like that.

We will be flying in to Bagdogra from Chennai (via Kolkata).
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Old 13th January 2010, 18:02   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Proxima View Post
We dont want to go to Darjeeling, heard it is over commercialized and we dont like that.

We will be flying in to Bagdogra from Chennai (via Kolkata).
You can visit Darjeeling at this time. Crowd will be really less. I will suggest you to visit Darjeeling if you have not been. But remind that this time it will be too cold there. Just Exactly opp to Chennai climate

You can go to MIRIK/Kalimpong...
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Old 14th January 2010, 11:46   #15
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As per information gathered things aren't very smooth currently, however, it is completely your decision so I would not interfere there-in.

However you can pm Chevy_lover and phamilyman, they were great helper.
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