Today we leave the state West Bengal and enter into Sikkim. Sikkim is the 2nd smallest state in India. Sikkim, in the East Himalayas is sandwiched between Nepal to its W and Bhutan to the E. In the N is Tibet - China. Sikkim has so rich of flora, fauna and a diverse ethnic and cultural population as no other state in India. We drive through the forests and tea gardens and proceed to our todays destination Pemayangtse (The perfect Sublime Lotus). We visit the headquarter of the Nyingama sect in Pemmayangtse.
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. We visit Tsuk-la-Khang, the royal chapel which is standing on a high bridge. This is the major place of worship and has a large and impressive collection of scriptures. We also visit the institute of cottage industries which is an attraction as a wide range of local handicrafts in Lepcha style are produced here.
Today we drive to the monastery of Enchey. This monastery is believed to be 200 years old. The monks of this monastery belong to the Mahayana Buddhism. After the visit of Enchey monastery we proceed to Martham Village Resort, where we have afternoon at leisure. Here one can have nice walks or have a ride on the local horses of this area.
Today 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. We also visit orchid Sanctuary which is laying south of the institute. This Sanctuary contains over 450 indigenous species. Sikkim is considered paradise for orchid lovers. After the visit of sanctuary we walk through the bazaar of Gangtok through the area of old palace and visit the monastery Gylwa. The main attraction of our excursion remains today the monastery of Rumtek.
We drive today through the south of Sikkim from Gangtok 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. We visit the monastery Tharpa Choeling at Tripai which houses a library of tibetan manuscripts and Tankhas. It belongs to the yellow Hat sect. We drive up to Darpin Dara, the highest point in Kalimpong with superb views over the plains.
This morning is at leisure. Afternoon sightseeing in Old Delhi. We take a Rickshaw Ride parallel to the Red Fort through the old city and famous Silk Road and Silver Bazaar. Sightseeing of Old Delhi includes "Rajghat", the place where Mahatma Gandhi was cremated and Jama Masjid, the great mosque of old Delhi. Today we also visit the famous Humayun Tomb which is the first substantial example of Mughal architecture in India. Before we proceed to the hotel we drive through the embassy area in New Delhi where we visit the India Gate and see some impressive Government Buildings. The rest of the day at leisure (opportunity for the last shopping or enjoy a massage in the Hotel). After Dinner we leave the hotel for the Airport.