Tsomgo Lake / Nathula Pass / Baba Mandir / Saramsa - These are the most visited places in Gangtok and its surrounding region. A permit are required to be made and is done by us provided the ID card and passport size photograph for restricted area is handed over to us on the previous evening. Worth visiting but limited travelers are issued pass per day
Tsomgo Lake - Tsogmo Lake or Changu Lake is a glacial lake in the East Sikkim, India, approximately 40 kilometers / 25 miles away from Gangtok at altitude of nearly 3780 meters / 12400 feet. The road to Nathu La passes the lake on north side. The Chinese border crossing is only some 5 Indian Postal Service released a commemorative stamp on the lake on 6th November, 2006. Average depth of the lake is 15 meters / 50 feet and the Coordinates are 27° 22′ 31″ N 88° 45′ 50″ E. In Bhutia language it literally known as source of the lake and is situated 2 hours drive from Gangtok, the capital of the state. The lake is about a kilometer is length and oval in shape. It is considered sacred by the local people and it applies to most of the high altitude lake in Sikkim. Home of brahminy ducks, red panda and various species of birds. It's cool, placid water harmonizes with the scenic beauty around. A small temple of lord Siva is constructed on the lake side. This lake remains frozen during then blooms, including the rhododendrons, various species of primulas, blue and yellow poppies, irises etc. The Tsomgo lake derives its water from the melting snow on the mountains around. River Lungtze Chu originates from the Tsomgo lake Sikkim and meets the Rangpo-chu further down its course. During the olden days lamas used to study the colour of the water of the lake and forecast the future. If the waters of the Tsomgo lake had a dark tinge, it foreshadowed a period of difficult time and unrest in the region. The lake has a trout’s and among them is the rainbow trout and if one is lucky you may catch a glimpse at them.
Nathula Pass / Nathu La – Nathu La is a mountain pass in the Himalayas connecting the Indian state of Sikkim with China's Tibet Autonomous Region. The pass is situated at an altitude of 4310 meters / 14140 feet). It forms a part of an offshoot of the ancient Silk Road. Nathu means "listening ears" and La means "pass" in Tibetan. This pass is situatednearly 56 kilometers from Gangtok, the capital of Indian state of Sikkim on Jawaharlal Nehru Marg. Only citizens of India can visit the pass, that too after obtaining a permit in Gangtok. Nathu La is one of the three open trading border posts between China and India, the other two are Shipkila in Himachal Pradesh and Lipulekh (or Lipulech) in Uttarakhand. Sealed after 1962 Sino-Indian War, Nathu La was re-opened in 2006 following bilateral trade agreements. The opening also shortens the travel distance to important Hindu and Buddhist pilgrimage sites in the region.
It has one of the highest motor able roads and is richly covered with varieties of alpine flora and fauna other than the snow. On the Tibetan side two highways i.e. from Kangmar to Yadong and from Yadong to Nathu La are listed in the 2006 construction plans. The nearest railheads are New Jalpaiguri Station in India and Lhasa in China. A tranquil place to visit, Nathu La is open only for Indian Nationals on Wednesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday. The visitors have to get a permit from the Tourism Department through a registered travel agency including us. With effect from 6 July 2006 trade between border residents of Sikkim Tibet region has been resumed. Tourist expects that touring Tibet will be on the card very soon.
Baba Mandir – "Baba" Harbhajan Singh (August 3, 1941 – October 4, 1968) was an Indian army soldier who died near the Nathula Pass in India. He was revered by the soldiers of the Indian army who have built a shrine in his honour near the Lake at an altitude of around 4000 meters / 13123 feet. Legend has it that he appeared in a dream a few days after he went missing while patrolling the border, and expressed a desire that a monument be built his memory. His fellow soldiers then built a monument that has over the years acquired the status of a pilgrimage centre. Believers leave a bottle to be collected a week later to be used for its healing powers.
Harbhajan Singh was born into a Sikh family on August 3, 1941 in Punjab (India). In June 1956 he enrolled himself as a soldier in Amritsar and joined the Corps of Signals. He was later granted a commission and posted to the 14 Rajput regiment. During the 1965 Indo-Pakistan war he served as an Adjutant of his unit. Later he was transferred to 18 Rajput. It was with this regiment that he met his end on October 4, 1965 in Sikkim.
The Mandir has two approach able road one via Gangtok the other is via Rongli. This temple has gained popularity in the last few years due to its history and belief of the followers. According to army folklore was a stickler for discipline and is known to admonish those who do not toe this line. A camp bed is kept for him and his boots are polished and uniform kept ready every night. The sheets are reportedly crumpled every morning and boots muddy by evening. Legend also has it that in the event of a war between India and China, Baba would warn the Indian soldiers three days in advance. Every year on September 14, a jeep departs with his personal belongings to the nearest railway station, New Jalpaiguri, where it is then sent by train to the village of Kuka, in Kapurthala district in Punjab. As per train rule the train reserved seat never left blank, but for Baba reservation is done to travel him at his home town every year with soldiers to drop Baba at his home town
Saramsa - Saramsa Garden is a open to public and is approximately 14 kilometers east of Gangtok, the capital of Sikkim, India. It was established in 1922, the garden has served a variety of purposes. The Main purpose was growing different fruits like pineapple, guava, varieties of oranges and lychee for the British Political officer and the Palace, the garden developed into a main center for introduction of fruits.
From growing fruit for the local colonial officers and it continued the practice of growing fruits till 1940, it later became known for cultivating the medicinal plant Ipecacuanha, the Forest Department introduced Ipecacuanha from Zohore in Malaysia. and much later the garden hosted the International Flori Show, an event promoted by the Government of Sikkim to promote the region as a centre of floriculture. For this reason the garden is also known as Ipecac Garden. When the growing of Ipecacuanha was discontinued, the garden was repurposed as an orchidarium and a recreational garden for picnickers. In 2008, the garden hosted the International Floriculture Show, attracting 50,000 visitors on each of its three days. Saramsa Garden / Ipecac Garden is nestled between the hill slopes of Gangtok and Pakyong. Offbeat destinations have limited hotels, resorts or home stay hence early bookings are solicited. Vehicle for sightseeing, Stay and Transfer are all arranged by us hence to avoid disappointment.