West Sikkim is a tourist destination which is rich in its historical heritage and is also rich in sacred untouched greenery and the beautiful landscape. The Khangchendzonga National Park which lies in West Sikkim is regarded as one of the most important hotspots of biodiversity and a reservoir of a variety of flora and fauna. The West Sikkim is spread across a variety of ecological zones which ranges from temperate to alpine. West Sikkim, which is located at the foothills of Mount Kanchenjunga, offers one of the best views of Mt. Kanchenjunga from its perfectly placed destination. Along with sightseeing, West Sikkim is also a great option for bird watching, pilgrimage tours, trekking, Mountaineering, Paragliding, Village tours and local sightseeing tours.
Around 33 km from Pelling, lies the beautiful Yuksom whose name translates to the ‘ meeting place of three lamas’. The place is important to the Sikkimese as the first Chogyal was crowned here in the year 1642. You can explore in details the history of the Chogyals here and also stay in a homestay which is popular here and is a good way of getting the taste of the local life.
Established in the year 1701, under the reign of Chogyal Namgyal, it is considered the oldest monastery to be built in Sikkim. It has a great historical significance and the meaning od DUBDI means a Retreat which is evident through its location among the mesmerizing hilltop, tall trees, stone path and a panoramic view of the valley and greenery.
The Lake is a sacred pilgrimage site which is considered sacred by both the Hindus and the Buddhist devotees. The lake is decorated to the sight of the prayer flags that flutter with the wind and the sound of bells brings the whole surrounding of the place alive. The devotees believe the water of the Lake to have some wish fulfilling powers and the most amazing fact about the lake is that everytime a leaf falls on the lake, it is quickly removed by the birds around.
Traveling must be adventurous as well as informative which may include some knowledge about the local cultures that you are visiting. The Darap around 20 minutes drive on the way to Yuksom is a village which is inhabited by locals belonging to various diverse communities like Bhutias, Chettris, Rais, Gurungs, and Lepchas along with Limboos. It is a great place to stay in several homestay facilities that you can choose from, to have a great experience of living like a local for a few days.
Belonging to the Nyingmapa sect of Mahayana Buddhism, the Pemayangtse monastery situated in Pelling is one of the oldest and the most important cultural structures of Sikkim. It was built in the year 1705 and was founded by Gyalwa Lhatsum Chempo, one of the three lamas who had performed the crowning ceremony of the first Chogyal at Yuksom. The monastery houses a collection of wall paintings, sculptures, thangkas and a huge statue of Guru Padmasambhava which is gold plated.
The Hill is a popular viewpoint which provides excellent views of the captivating hills and valleys around. It is located above Damthang and is also surrounded by lush greeneries. This place is a perfect spot for all those who love appreciating the wonderful landscape of the green and fresh surroundings. From here you are delightfully treated with the beautiful sight of the NAmchi hill and besides sightseeing, this place is also a popular trekking spot.
It is believed to be the second capital of the Kingdom which was ruled by the King of Sikkim until the year 1814 AD. The ruins are a great historical evidence of the Kingdom that existed here and lies a few kilometers away from the main road and the beautiful view that is seen from here is a memorable experience which cannot be missed at any cost.
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