When the intellectual Bengali culture takes a break to welcome the colourful amalgamation of Gorkha and Bhutanese cultures, Darjeeling happens. Spread like the party ribbons over a steep mountain ridge, engulfed by the vibrant emerald tea plantations, mounted on the lofty Kanchenjunga, Darjeeling is one of the best hill stations in India. That we all know, right? But what most of us don’t know is that not just mountains, Darjeeling offers immense diversity in it’s in and around places. Just a few mainstream places that most tourists visit here are not what a true explorer looks for. This blog is constructed thinking about those few gadabouts who are seeking chastity, looking out for unique places, and want to taste the culture relish at every step. From the best place to stay in Darjeeling to the gobbling of the succulent Tibetan foods, we have talked about every basic and most unique activity you can look forward to when visiting Darjeeling.
Before you can take the first breath of the morning, you view the vast tea estates in Darjeeling - Sounds too filmy? You can actually experience the same and even more here. While sensing the enchanting spell of the orchids, pines, & rhododendrons, you can start your day rocking in the lap of euphoria. Let us now go down to the list of activities that will surely make you include Darjeeling in your travel bucket list, at least once every year. Hey, you globetrotter, pack your bags because your journey starts here:
Tiger Hill – the hypnotic colours of Sunshine:
How much time crunch you have or you are on a hurricane tour, do not miss this view because that’s going to last in your mind for the lifetime. Get up in the early morning and visit the Tiger Hill to salute the rising sun. Here the sunlight kisses the snow-clad mountain peak and their love making is witnessed by nature. The reflecting colour from this phenomenon – what to say, its thought even makes one speechless. Once you visit, you will be sure that all that glitter aren’t gold, some are sunrays over the Tiger Hill too. Don’t go back to sleep, coz on the same day you can explore the mesmerising Yumthang valley and Tsomgo Lake (of course if time permits). To save time, you must halt at the nearest and the best place to stay in Darjeeling. You can even open your eyes to the most tempting view if you book the Chamong Chiabari resort. Now, this is what we call ecstasy!
Kalimpong – A Synthesis of Serenity & Spirituality
‘Mare Pachi Dumai Raaja’ – In Nepali, this means ‘Who cares after death!’ Keeping up with this philosophy, you must live in moments and follow your heart. Kalimpong brings you the scope of living a lifetime in every breath. The monastery enfolds immense cultural significance as it is a witness to many rare scriptures, brought to India after the Tibetan invasion. Make your mind immerse into the placidity of these sanctuaries. Even if you are staying at the tea estates in Darjeeling, you can visit Kalimpong on a day’s trip.
Batasia Loop – Blend in the history & patriotism
Travelling via toy train or walking back from the Tiger Hill you can peep out for this famous railway loop, Batasia. The loop stands hugging the open air Gorkha War Memorial, established in the honour of the brave Gorkha soldiers who have laid their lives in WWI and WWII. You can ride over the exciting toy train for the most cherished experience there. The resplendent mountains in the backdrop and the hearth full of patriotism – It shivers me already!
Teesta – Splendid White water Rafting
If Chamong Chiabari is the best place to stay in Darjeeling then Teesta River rafting is the best thing to do here. So, you adrenaline junkies get set and go rafting in the white water of Teesta. Series of rapids and varying intensities that are raging from grade 1 to 4 can make you go insane out of zeal and thrill.
Keventers & Local Food – Appeasing a foodie
All your questions to the hunger pangs have a perfect answer and that’s Darjeeling. Variety of scrumptious Thukpa and momos are a foodie’s love and the juicy delicacies are perfect for the amazing weather there. If you are a food enthusiast then the street food here is your ultimate paradise. Float on the smell of the delicacies and the bursting flavors are sure to give you a high five inside your mouth. Looking for something elegant and romantic? Try out Keventers Restaurant for the tempting cheese toast and many other signature dishes to satiate your palate.
We have many more in our bucket for a quintessential Darjeeling trip but the foremost thing that you must look forward to is the tea estates in Darjeeling. Stay there to experience the best of Darjeeling and you never know you might find out the best in you too.