Around midnight arrival in New Delhi. The cosmopolitan city and capital Delhi is the main gateway for travellers. Upon arrival, you will be met by an Indo Vacations representative and transferred to the hotel.
In the morning we drive to the airport for the flight to Bagdogra. After the arrival in Bagdogra we proceed north of the state through the coniferous forests and terraced tea gardens to Darjeeling. Darjeeling (place of the thunderbolt) has spectacular scenery. Due to its altitude of 2134 m and soothing temperature in summers Darjeeling has become a famous hill resort in India. Upon arrival, you will be transferred to the hotel in Darjeeling. In the evening enjoy the beautiful surroundings at Darjeeling.
Very early in the morning we drive to Tiger Hill (around 11 km) to enjoy the sunrise. Tiger Hill (2590 m) is the highest point in this area. There is a breathtaking view of the sunrise on the Kanchenjunga mountains. Mount Everest (8842 m) is also visible on a clear day. The moments of sunrise from Tiger Hill are described by most of the visitors as unforgettable. After viewing the Tiger Hill we drive back to the hotel and after having breakfast we explore Darjeeling and its surroundings. In the evening we visit the village Lablong and the institute of mountaineering where we get the detailed information about the natural surrounding and the habitants of this area.
In the morning drive from Darjeeling to Manaybhanjang. From Darjeeling Manaybhanjang is around 21 kms. We will start our trekking tour from Manaybhanjang. A near vertical climb enables one to reach Tonglu which is 11 kms away. It is situated at an altitude of about 9000 feet. Tonglu provides an excellent view of the Kanchenjunga range.
Today we start our trekking from Tonglu to Sandakphu. From Tonglu to Sandakphu the trekking involves many ascents and descents. From Tonglu to Gairbas the track is easy on a flat road. After having a small rest at Gairbas we will have a steep climb to Sandakphu. Sandakphu is situated at an altitude of about 12000 feet at the beginning of the Singelila ridge. It offers the best view of the Mount Everest and Kanchenjunga range. In the evening we reach Sandakphu and have an overnight stay there only.
Today from Sandakphu to Phalut we will have an easy trek. As one does not have to cross many ascents and descents. The trekking will be on more or less flat road on the Singelila ridge. The landscape is lifeless yet so beautiful. After having lunch and rest at Phalut we trek towards our today's destination to Ramam Valley. In the evening we will reach Ramam Valley.
Today we will start our trekking to our trekking's last destination which is Rimbik. Rimbik is a small village and has a hydro-electric power station. The track is more or less flat and meanders past meadows and small villages. In the evening drive from Rimbik to Darjeeling.
Today we leave the state of West Bengal and drive through the forests and tea gardens and proceed to our today's destination Pemayangtse (The perfect Sublime Lotus) in Sikkim. Sikkim is the second smallest state in India. Sikkim, in the East Himalayas is sandwiched between Nepal to its west and Bhutan to its east. Sikkim has so rich of flora, fauna and a diverse ethnic and cultural population as no other state in India.
Day 10: Pemayangtse - Kechopari - Yuksom (about 133 Km)
Today after having breakfast we visit the headquarter of the Nyingama sect in Pemayangtse. Then we will drive further to Kechopari Lake. Kechopari means the wishing lake. The water in this lake is placid and crystal clear. This lake is situated on the road to Yuksum. After visiting the lake we drive to Yuksum, the trekking base of Sikkim. Enroute we come across some tea estates and coniferous forests. In the evening arrive in Yuksom. Yuksom was the first capital of Sikkim and it was here that the first Chogyal was consecrated by the three holy Lamas. The place where the ceremony take place in the year 1642 can still be seen there.
Today we begin our trekking tour from Yuksom to Tshoka. On the way you will come across the sky embracing trees and meadows and meandering past huts. After a six to seven hours long trekking we reach Tshoka and have an overnight stay there only. Tshoka is a small village which consist of various small houses and a monastery.
Today we begin our trek to Dzongri. From Tshoka the trekking to Dzongri will be for about four to five hours. By the late afternoon you will be able to reach Dzongri. From the Dzongri Pass the view of the mountain ranges is heavenly. In the front you will be able to view the Kabur Dome and piercing the sky is the Mount Pandim. In the north you will be able to view Mount Kanchenjunga and the other mountain peaks. Overnight stay in Dzongri.
Today we return back to our trekking base camp at Yuksom. After a six to seven hours long trekking we reach Yuksom. After having lunch at Yuksom we drive to Gangtok. The capital of Sikkim 'Gangtok' lies on a ridge overlooking the Ranipool river. Gangtok ("High Hill") lies at an altitude of 1760 m. Gangtok is surrounded by the mountains, especially from Kanchenjunga range. Upon arrival, you will be transferred to the hotel in Gangtok.
Today we drive to the Enchey monastery. This monastery is believed to be 200 years old. The monks of this monastery belong to the Mahayana Buddhism. After visiting the monastery we visit the institute of cottage industries which is an attraction as a wide range of local handicrafts in Lepcha style are produced here. In the evening we visit the unique Research Institute of Tibetology on a hilltop which was established in 1958 to promote research on Tibet and Mahayana Buddhism. Here we will see the biggest collection of tibetan scripts and an excellent collection of rare Tankhas, bronze and cult objects.
Today we drive further to visit Phodong Monastery. Phodong Monastery which belongs to the Karugpa Sect (Karmapa) is situated about a kilometer uphill by a jeepable road on the North Sikkim highway. Phodong monastery was built by the chogyal Gyurmed Namgyal somewhere in the first quarter of the eighteenth century. After visiting this monastery on the same way we visit the Labrang monastery. This monastery was built about 100 years later but belongs to the Nyingmapa sect. After visiting this monastery we return to Gangtok in the evening.
Today we drive to Kalimpong. Kalimpong, a remote hill station has been a meeting point of the once "three closed lands" on the trade route to Tibet. The beautiful mountain scenery and the abundance of flowers have made Kalimpong an attractive resort. The lifestyle of the local people reflect the social and religious influences of its neighbouring nations, Nepal, Tibet and Bhutan. In the evening arrive in Kalimpong.
In the morning after having breakfast we visit the monastery of Tharpa Choeling at Tripai which houses a library of tibetan manuscripts and Tankhas. It belongs to the yellow Hat sect. After visiting the monastery we drive to the Bagdogra airport for the flight to Kolkata. Kolkata is the cosmopolitan city and capital of West Bengal. Kolkata is the largest city of India. Kolkata is an extraordinarily vibrant and lively city. This city was once the colonial city of British in India.
Today we explore this vibrant and lively city. We visit the Victoria Memorial and magnificent buildings in the area of Chowringhee and Dalhousie Square. We also visit the Jain Temple and the Fort Williams. In the area of Joransanko we have the opportunity to visit the family house of the famous Indian writer Rabindranath Tagore.
In the morning from Kolkata we will drive to Basanti Port for Sundarbans National Park. From Basanti by a motor launch we will move towards Sunderbans National Park. "Sunderbans" means beautiful tigers. Sunderbans with their mangrove swamps covering around 2500 square km in the Ganga Brahmaputra delta spread across to Bangladesh. These are the largest estuarine forests in the world. This reserve has over 200 Bengal tigers, Spotted Deer, Wild Boar, Monkeys, Snakes and Crocodiles. We will visit the park in a motor launch.
In the morning we will visit Ravindranath Tagore Society to see the rural development project. Return back to Basanti Port by the afternoon. From Basanti Port we will drive to Kolkata. Arrive in Kolkata by the evening.
In the morning we will have a flight from Kolkata to Delhi. In the afternoon arrive in New Delhi. Rooms are available to get refresh before departing for the airport. The rest of the day at leisure. After dinner we leave the hotel for the airport.