12 Places To Visit In Sikkim For A Spiritual Sojourn
Sikkim, one of the most beautiful and untouched states of India, is probably the best place to plan your trip for this year. There are plenty of places to shop, places to eat and places to visit in Sikkim that will leave you wanting more.
So this season, pack your bags and take your Sikkim Tour Packages to explore the untouched land of the Northeast, which is also one of the dramatic states with a blend of Nepal, Bhutan, and Tibet.
Located on the foothills of the Himalayan region, Sikkim is one of the very beautiful states that is totally worth the visit. The magnificent landscape with breathtaking backdrops makes Sikkim one heck of a beautiful place.
Since a large population of Sikkim follows Buddhism, you can find several monasteries in Sikkim and see the spiritual side of the state. This is the best place to be especially when you need some spiritual trip, to unwind and rejuvenate your mind and soul.
12 Places To Visit In Sikkim In 2023
Popular known as the Gateway to Sikkim, Gangtok is one of the best places to visit in Sikkim.
It is the capital of Sikkim, and it is incredibly alluring, blessed with abundant scenic beauty.
You can witness Mt. Kanchenjunga Peak at a towering elevation of 1560 meters above sea level. On top of that, if you are an adventure enthusiast, then you are in for a major treat because Gangtok is a hub for adventure activities, including trekking, paragliding, and mountain biking activities are carried out here in Gangtok, making it so much fun for the thrill seekers.
Some of the most popular treks starting from Gangtok are Dzongri Trek, Varsay Trek, and Tholong Trek, and adventurers don’t miss the chance of undertaking the trek for there is nothing more thrilling than climbing the mountains in a land of abundant beauty.
Surprisingly Gangtok is also famous for its very happening nightlife. Several restaurants and pubs in Gangtok remain open till 11 pm. It is also a perfect place for shoppers because the market offers plenty of things to buy for your friends and family back home.
Places to visit in Gangtok are:
- Nathula Pass
- MG Road
- Rumtek Monastery
- Tsomgo Lake
- Namgyal Institute of Technology
- Baba Harbhajan Singh Temple
- Himalayan Zoological Park
Suggested Read: 12 Sikkim Travel Tips For A Wanderlusting Getaway
After Gangtok, Pelling has become the next largest tourist destination in Sikkim. This beautiful town is located at an elevation of 2150 meters above sea level. It gives out the most breathtaking views of the Himalayas, including the Kanchenjunga Peak, which is the third-highest mountain in the world.
Previously the place was covered by dense forest, but today it is one of the most loved places of tourists. The surrounding areas of Pelling are still unexplored and are virgin territory, mainly covered in wild vegetation and lined with small waterfalls.
It is also a hub for adventure activities such as trekking, motorbiking, village tours, mountain biking, and other activities as well. The town is also home to several Buddhist monasteries and temples, such as Pemayangtse Monastery.
Popular attractions in Pelling include Khecheopalri Lake, which is considered sacred, dense forests surrounded by the lake, and also the ruins of Rabdentse, which was once the capital of Sikkim Kingdom.
Pelling is a must-visit Sikkim tourist place for a thrilling adventure.
Suggested Read: Adventurous Things To Do In Sikkim
Lachung is a tiny little town in North Sikkim and is perched at an elevation of 8858 ft above sea level. Situated in the deep and rugged river valley, Lachung is one of the must-visit Sikkim tourist places.
It boasts of snow-capped mountains, waterfalls, beautiful streams, and apple, peach, and apricot orchards that will be a treat to your eyes. Located at a distance of 116 km from the Capital of Sikkim, and is one of the best places to visit in Sikkim, liked by most travellers.
You can find adventure activities throughout the state of Sikkim. In Lachung, you can indulge in various adventure activities, including trekking, mountain biking, paragliding, and rock climbing. You can feel the culture and traditions of Sikkim in the air in Lachung.
Lachung, primarily inhabited by the Bhutias and Lepchas, the followers of Buddhism, has a local market where you can buy unique things, including handwoven rugs and blankets, handicrafts and plenty of other things, making it one of the best shopping places to visit in Sikkim.
The most important tip on visiting Lachung is that it should be covered on foot, because that is the best way to explore Lachung.
Suggested Read: 12 Restaurants In Sikkim To Experience Culture On A Platter
Lachen is one of the most beautiful towns and a must-visit Sikkim tourist places. It is an attractive spot, popularly known for its Lachung Monastery. Full of natural beauty, it is one of the less explored places to see in Sikkim. The serene surroundings, the calm of the still atmosphere, with very few people is one of the best part of the entire trip to Sikkim.
It is considered one of the noteworthy places for Buddhist pilgrims. So if you are looking for a relaxing and calming holiday, with very few people around, then Lachen is the best place for you.
It is also a gateway to Gurudogmar and Tso Lhamu Lakes. The black cliffs of snowy mountains and the alpine-covered valley starts from Sikkim, for the rest of the place in Sikkim is known for its lush green grasslands and vegetation.
It is also the base area from where trekking starts, so adventure enthusiasts are in for a treat. Treks that can be undertaken from here are the Kenchunjuga National Park Trek and the Famous Green Lake Trek.
Zuluk, also known as Dzuluk, has its name etched in the history for the Zuluk route was also the silk route from where silk used to be traded between Tibet and India. Located at an elevation of 10100 feet above sea level, which was once the silk route’s transit point, is now one of the emerging destinations of Sikkim and one of the most beautiful places to see in Sikkim.
You can have a stunning panoramic view of the Mount Kanchenjunga range from the Thambi viewpoint, which is located at a distance of 14 km from Zuluk.
Dense forest areas surround the place, and you can spot red pandas, wild dogs, and Himalayan bears. Some tigers have also been spotted at this place. You can also spot variety of birds here, such as Blood Pheasant, Kalij Pheasant, Snow Pheasant, Himalayan Monal, and so on.
You can see vibrant colours as the rhododendrons are found here in varieties. Zuluk may be one of the must-visit Sikkim tourist places, but one thing that you should know before visiting Zuluk is that it is also one of the sensitive regions. Thus, you are going to need a special Inner Line Permit to enter Zuluk. Make sure you carry your Adhaar or your voter Id Card, or your passport with you.
6. Nathang Valley
Nathang Valley is an offbeat paradise with snow-covered peaks, stunning waterfalls, and tea gardens everywhere. This town used to be the residence of Yak herders. However, several streams ruined the valley over the period of time and it is also known as the remotest Tibetan residence of the Eastern Himalayas.
You can find homestays that are both traditional and modern. The modern Pucca-based homestays have all the modern facilities, such as solar water heaters, 24-hour electricity, integrated beds and so on.
The months between April to May are the best time to visit Nathang Valley, so you can plan your trip to Sikkim during this time of the month.
7. Nathula Pass
Nathula Pass, one of the best Sikkim tourist places, is also one of the highest motorable roads, which also has contributions in joining Sikkim to China. This pass is one of the important passes in the country, for it has three open trading borders posts between China and India.
The temperature of the Nathula Pass remains low almost throughout the year, and its picturesque beauty has made it a tourist hotspot.
Tourists flock here to enjoy trekking activities and also treat their eyes with the scenic beauty of the valley. While moving from Gangtok to Nathula, you will come across a number of beautiful gushing waterfalls, with surroundings covered with snow-capped peaks.
The area also supports Tibetan wildlife, Tibetan wolves, snow leopards, Yaks, Tibetan Gazelle, and so on, making Nathula a pass not one of the best places to visit in Sikkim in 2023.
Nathula Pass experiences heavy rainfall during winters, with temperatures dropping to -25 degrees Celcius, and if you like snow, then you can visit the Nathula Pass during winter but make sure you are carrying heavy woollen clothes because without that surviving the harsh cold will not be possible.
8. Changu Lake/Tsogmo Lake
Perched at an elevation of 12400 ft above sea level, Changu Lake, also known as the Tsogmo Lake, is a high-altitude lake in India, situated on the Gangtok Nathula Highway. The charming beauty of Changu Lake will leave you in awe.
You can see the snow-capped mountains, a lush green carpet of alpine forests, and the entire area surrounded by immense beauty.
This Changu Lake is a glacial lake, which gets its water from the melting of the snow and is popularly known for its colour-changing properties. During the monsoon season, you can see an aquamarine lake, and during winters, you can see that the lake freezes and gives out translucent ice. As summer approaches, flowers grow on the edges of the lake, bringing out vibrant hues in the surroundings.
This lake is also one of the most sacred lakes for the Bhutia people and is of great significance to the people of Sikkim. The lake is associated with many myths and legends and was carefully observed by the Buddhists to predict the forecast according to the colour of the lake.
This is one of the Sikkim tourist places that will make your vacation worthwhile, for it is definitely one of the best places to visit in Sikkim.
One thing that you should know about Changu Lake is that it falls in one of the restricted areas, so you have to get permits to visit the lake, and foreign nationals need special permits to visit the lake. These permits are available online. However, you have to go through some tour operator or a travel company, who will arrange the permits for you.
Aritar is among the most fascinating Sikkim tourist places, popularly known for its pristine beauty, monasteries, and temples. The town is covered with beautiful landscapes of lush greenery and stunning waterfalls.
If you are looking for a calm place, Aritar is one of the must-visit Sikkim tourist places you should explore. This soul-enchanting place is like a luxury without materialism. The luxurious trees, the greenery, and the landscapes are so stunning that they will compel you to think about the existence of God.
It is the untouched and unspoiled land located in Sikkim. Since it is an off-beat location, the beauty of this place has remained intact ever since its inception.
You can find wild animals here as well, so if you like watching animals, then this is definitely the place for you.
There are very few places to eat in Aritar, you will find only a few places where you can eat, but the food is prepared in the traditional style, and you can taste the most delicious Sikkim food here. You can also have Chang, a locally produced beverage, here.
Popular Sikkim tourist places may not include Ravangla, yet it is one of the best places to visit in Sikkim. It has a phenomenal view of the hills, and tiny village huts, making it one of the ideal Sikkim Tourist Places.
It is situated at the base of the Menam Hills, providing shelter to the hermitage. It offers breathtaking sights of Mount Kanchenjunga, along with the peaks of Pandim and Kabru, Sinialchu, and others as well.
You will find rich flora and fauna in the thick forest, scenic tea gardens, waterfalls, mountains and every beautiful thing you can imagine.
Perched at an elevation of 7000 ft above sea level, Ravangla gives out stunning views of the Greater Himalayas. The beauty through which Ravangla is surrounded is what makes it one the best places to visit in Sikkim.
Ravangla also organises an annual festival, of Pang Lhabsol Festival, in the months of August and September. You can also visit the Rayong Sunrise Viewpoint, providing beautiful views of the first rays of the sun on snow peaks.
You can also find the market of Kewzing, which is an old historical market of Sikkim. You can also find a few caves here which are mysterious attractions here.
11. Gurudogmar Lake
Gurudogmar Lake, perched at an elevation of 17100 feet above sea level, is the second-highest lake in the world, making it one of the best Sikkim tourist places.
Apart from being one of the most beautiful lakes in the country, Gudogmar Lake also has great religious significance attached to it.
The beautiful views of Mount Kanchenjunga and Mount Siniolchu from the lake are a treat to the eyes and a sight to behold. The water of the Gurudogmar Lake is said to have healing powers, and tourists who visit the lake carry the water of the lake in their bottles.
There is also a Sarva Dharma Sthal, which is a worship place for people from all religions, and this lake is located in Lachen. If you are at Gurudogmar Lake, then you should definitely spend the night here for the views at night are beyond the power of words to express.
The beautiful attractions and the stunning views of the proximity of the Gurudogmar Lake make it one of the best places to visit in Sikkim.
An important fact about the Gurudogmar Lake is that you will need a special permit to visit the lake due to its close proximity to the Tibet-China border. Foreigners are allowed to visit only up to Chopta Valley and Yumthang, however, Indians can see the gorgeous Gurudogmar Lake, but with a permit.
The best time to visit this lake is between November to June.
12. Kanchenjunga National Park
Kanchenjunga National Park is located on the North Sikkim side and is named after the third-highest peak in the world. It is a high-altitude National Park nestled in the lap of the Himalayas in Sikkim.
Perched at an elevation of 8858 meters above sea level, Kanchenjunga National Park is partly in Nepal and partly in Sikkim. It is also a mixed heritage that the country has seen for the first time.
With a diverse landscape, it is a breathtakingly beautiful place and haven for trekkers.
It is home to some of the very rare species of flora and fauna, including the Himalayan Tahr and Snow Leopard. Besides, there are numerous glaciers across the National Park, including the Zemu Glacier, which has a length of 26 km.
The best time to visit the Kanchenjunga National Park is between March to May and September to mid-December. The forests department organises the treks after carefully assessing the weather conditions.
Frequently Asked Questions About Places To Visit In Sikkim
1. What are the top tourist destinations in Sikkim?
Sikkim is one of the most beautiful places in India, with plenty of places to explore. You will see lush greenery and enchanting waterfalls surrounding the state, making it one of Sikkim’s best places to visit. Some of the popular Sikkim tourist places include Gangtok, which is the capital city of Sikkim, Pelling, Lachung, Lachen, Kanchenjunga National Park, Aritar, Ravangla, Gurudogmar Lake, Changu Lake/Tsogmo Lake, Nathula Pass, Nathang Valley, Zuluk, and the list goes on. No matter wherever you go, you will find beauty all over the place.
2. What is the best time to visit Sikkim?
If we talk about travelling to any place in general, it totally depends on what it is that you are seeking from the place. Similarly, the best time to visit Sikkim tourist places depends on your preferences and your expectations from the trip. One of the best places to visit in Sikkim needs you to explore them, so the tourist season is between March to May and then from October to mid-December. From March to May, you witness the Spring as the flowers bloom, and makes all these Sikkim tourist places worth visiting and it will be a little difficult to decide the best places to visit in Sikkim. The temperature of Sikkim goes as high as 26 Degrees Celcius during the summer months and drops as low as 7 Degrees Celcius in the winter months. So you can plan your trip accordingly.
3. What are some must-visit monasteries in Sikkim?
Sikkim, one of the most beautiful states of India, is also one of the popular states where there is a large number of followers of Buddhism. Thus there are several numbers of monasteries present, which are one of the great tourist attractions here. Some of the famous monasteries in Sikkim include Enchey Monastery, Phensang Monastery, Rumtek Monastery, Pemeyengtse Monastery, Phodang Monastery, Tashiding Monastery, Lachen Monastery, Dubdi Monastery, Ralang Monastery, Sangachoeling Monastery, Labrang Monastery, and Kartok Monastery, etc are some of the best monasteries in Sikkim.
4. What are some popular waterfalls in Sikkim?
Sikkim is one of the most beautiful states and is covered with lush greenery that surrounds the state, snow-capped peaks, enchanting valleys, stunning landscapes, and some of the most impressive waterfalls. Some popular waterfalls in Sikkim include Banjhakri Water Falls, Seven Sisters Waterfall, Bhim Nala Falls, Naga Falls, Kanchenjunga Waterfall, Bakthang Falls, Rimbi Waterfall, Sangay Falls, Kyongnosla Waterfall, Kali Khola Waterfall. So you can visit some of these waterfalls and witness the most serene, calm and tranquillising environment.