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Home   »  Top India Destinations   »  Darjeeling

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A Rendezvous With Darjeeling
Ritco ToursLocated strategically near the Indo-Nepal and Indo-Bhutan borders, Darjeeling in India's eastern state of West Bengal is one of the country's finest hill stations. Known for its natural beauty, tall fresh mountains and the smiling resilient people for whom hospitality is their greatest asset, Darjeeling is visited by large number of tourists all throughout the year. Many opine that in Darjeeling, nature is at its best. The annual Teesta Tea and Tourism Festival in winters also attracts many tourists. The toy train that snakes through picturesque mountains and valleys to reach Darjeeling from New Jalpaiguri is sure to be an experience of a lifetime.

Things You Can Do In Darjeeling
» Sightseeing : Darjeeling has a variety of tourist attractions. Set amidst the natural surroundings with a pleasant atmosphere pampering you from all sides, Darjeeling offer something to every visitor. The sight which Darjeeling provides to its beholders is rarely seen elsewhere. Visiting the tea gardens is also an enthralling experience.

» Shopping : The main business centres in Darjeeling are Chowrasta and Nehru Road. The popular items of Darjeeling include thangkas, brass statues, religious objects, jewelry, wood carving, woven fabrics and carpets.

» Eating-out : More than solid cuisine, a sip of Darjeeling tea is what tourists prefer in this hill station. Famous the world over for taste and flavour, a cup of tea with light items like pastries, momos, ham, bacon and sausages is most liked by tourists.

» Adventure Sports : Darjeeling is also a favorite destination for mountaineering, trekking, rock climbing and nature walks.

Sightseeing in Darjeeling
» Ghoom Monastery : No visit to Darjeeling is complete without a visit to the Ghoom monastery. There is an imposing 4.5-metre tall image of the Maitreya Buddha in the monastery. Ghoom, at an altitude of about 2,407 meters, offers a spectacular view of Darjeeling town.

» Bhutia Busti : Situated at the backdrop of the Kanchenjunga, this beautiful Gompa has an impressive collection of Buddhist texts in its library. A copy of the Tibetan Book of the Dead is the prime attraction of the library. The Gompa is a branch of the Nyingmapa sect's Phodang Monastery in Sikkim. The monastery has been decorated very tastefully.

» Dhirdham Temple : The Dhirdham Temple is situated at the very heart of Darjeeling town near the railway station. The temple is similar in its architecture to the famous Pashupatinath Temple of Kathmandu. Due to its central location, it receives visitors in large numbers.

» Tiger Hills : To watch the spectacular sunrise of Darjeeling, tourists throng the Tiger Hill from 3 A.M in the morning. Located at an altitude of 2,590 meters, a magnificent view of the rising sun over the snow-capped Mt. Kanchenjunga is available from the hills. On a clear day, Himalayan peaks could also be seen clearly.

» Observatory Hill : The view of the magnificent Mt. Kanchenjunga and the entire landscape below is a site worth seeing from atop the observatory hills. There are also a few temples and monasteries atop the hill. The hill is also inhabited by a group of playful monkeys.

Ritco Tours» Zoological Gardens : The Zoological Gardens are located on the outskirts of Darjeeling town. The zoo houses some rare varieties of Himalayan flora and fauna species. The zoo also has the rare distinction of having Siberian Tigers. Another attraction of the zoo is the Red Panda. Snow Leopards, Great Grey Birds and Snow Yaks have also been kept in good numbers.

» Tea Gardens : The lush green tea gardens at high altitudes is another attraction for tourists. Out of over seventy tea gardens in Darjeeling, tour operators provide travelling facilities to some of them. An enchanting Darjeeling tour could be rounded up by having a taste of the toy train ride. Snaking through picturesque hills at snail's pace, a toy train ride provides an experience of a lifetime.

Excursions from Darjeeling
It is a lesser known fact that many small picturesque hill stations are located near Darjeeling. Kalimpong at a distance of 51 kms is famous for flower nurseries and monasteries. Kurseong is another beautiful hill station at a distance of 32 kms. Mirik at a distance of 49 kms is known for its lake, boating facilities and plantations of oranges, cardamom and pine. Takdah is a great choice to have a glimpse of some rare orchid varieties.

Most Ideal Time To Visit
The best time to visit this place is during March-May and September-November. The hill station is a very cold place where winter temperatures may drop to a low of 2 degrees. In summers, the temperature remains in the range of 15-25 degrees. Monsoon rains start by the end of May and continues for a few months. This place requires warm cloths any time of the year and do not forget to carry a umbrella to this place.

Getting There
» By Trains : The nearest railhead is New Jalpaiguri at a distance of 88 kms. Trains from all parts of the country coming to Guwahati halt at New Jalpaiguri. Darjeeling is also served by the toy train of Darjeeling Hill Railway. Selected for the world heritage site, the journey from Siliguri (New Jalpaiguri Station) takes over 6 hours. It is more of a sightseeing tour than a means of transport.

» By Road : This is most advisable, from the New Jalpaiguri Railway Station or the Siliguri Central Bus Stand to take a bus, mini bus, taxi or landrover and thus proceed to Darjeeling. There are direct bus services to Darjeeling from Siliguri. The distance from Siliguri to Darjeeling is about 80 kms and takes about 3 hours. Though the terrain is hilly, the state highway is maintained in good condition and the journey is quite comfortable and enjoyable. Seasonal fog and mist sometimes creates problems. Vehicles proceeding to Darjeeling normally halt at Kurseong for refreshments. Major road distances from Darjeeling are - Kolkata (606 km), Patna (466 km), Gangtok (114 km), Shillong (578 km) and Kathmandu (550 km).

Anchoring in Darjeeling
Ritco ToursThough Darjeeling is a town of West Bengal, it has its own culture and appearance. At the very first appearance you will never come to know that Darjeeling is a part of West Bengal, unless and until your history and geography is strong. The culture, the cuisine, the costumes, language, and appearance of this hill resort is more closer to the Northeastern states of India.

Known as the Queen of Hill stations, Darjeeling captivates every nature lover to its salubrious and soothing confines. Set amidst majestic snow clad mountain ranges, some of which are world's highest peaks, and stretches of tea plantation, which has made Darjeeling world renowned for its high revenue generating Darjeeling tea, Darjeeling is one most sought after destination for the tourists heading towards the eastern part of India.

Reaching Darjeeling is very exciting. The rail route it owns is of narrow gauge for toy trains, which was established in the British period. The toy train travel is a must try thing. A toy train tour will add more thrills to your hill station tour. It will be an exceptional experience, the one which you will cherish throughout your life. And once you are in Darjeeling, you will be wrapped in natural beauty, the kind which will leave you bewildered.

The people of Darjeeling are very friendly and cooperative. The hotel business is booming in Darjeeling and tourists can find hotels of all categories. The streets amidst natural beauty are good option for nature walks.

To steer you clear of any problems in Darjeeling, we are always there. You can book with us anytime for your Darjeeling rendezvous. We have a fleet of luxury cabs to take you to all the major attractions of the hill station and also tie ups with the best hotels of the place to make your stay comfortable. We also offer the most competitive rates.

Darjeeling has plenty of hotels and guest houses to cater to the accommodation needs of tourists. It is worth mentionable that many of the old villas and estates of the British period that passed into Indian hands after independence have been converted into high-end hotels and guest houses.

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