Sikkim: The Experience of a Lifetime

4 mn read

Sikkim is a landlocked state in north eastern India. I visited this awe-inspiring place in the summer of 2022 and it was easily the most incredible experience I’ve had in all my years. I travelled here with my younger brother and my mother and we all had a ball of a time. The trip lasted for five glorious days, with us landing up in a different part of Sikkim on each day. I shall be sharing the details of our exciting little getaway in this article.

Day 1: Gangtok

We landed in Gangtok in late afternoon and from there took a cab till our hotel. It took us about five hours of hilly driving and we reached in the evening. The three of us were quite spent from all the travel but that didn’t stop us from having a mini photoshoot the very second we finished unpacking. We were riding high on adrenaline! After having a scrumptious meal, we spent the night there and were off to our next destination at the crack of dawn.

Day 2: Lachen

The drive to Lachen is something I won’t ever forget. If you’re planning on embarking on this journey I highly recommend the following:

• Carry earphones and have your favourite playlists downloaded for a fantabulous main character moment. Plug in, disconnect from the outside world and experience pure bliss.
• Bring your own water bottles as plastic is completely banned from this point onwards.
• Check out local eating joints for the best local cuisines.
• Keep extra jackets with you since it can get cold.
• Make sure your phone/camera is charged because you’ll be seeing waterfalls on the way at every waking minute and you wouldn’t want to miss capturing them. Be careful if you decide to get close to admire them though, the rocks and surrounding area is slippery and you might hurt yourself. My mother got a bit enthusiastic at one point and had to learn that the hard way. We didn’t get to explore Lachen as we reached pretty late and had yet another early morning.

Day 3: Gurudongmar Lake

This place is nothing less than a little drop of heaven. At one end there are mountains with rough terrain, at the other snowy peaks can be seen and in the midst of this, lies Gurudongmar lake in all its glory. At a startling height of 17,800 feet, it is the highest lake in all of India. It is in a “low oxygen” zone and so oxygen masks might be required. It is also important to drink a good amount of water a day before since it creates oxygen in your body. You need to really layer up as it is extremely cold up there. Gurudongmar Lake has deep cultural roots as well. It is said that Guru Nanak broke the layer of ice using his stick which is why a portion of the lake doesn’t freeze during winters. To reach at a good time, you need to leave from Lachen by 5am latest, and then it’ll take you about 4 hours to get there. The journey to this lake is not easy, but it is so worth it!

Day 4: Lachung and Yumthang Valley

After coming back from Gurudongmar, we took our things and hit the road once again to go to Lachung. The next morning we woke up early and started our journey up to Yumthang Valley. It is known as the “flower valley” of Sikkim. Unfortunately the flowers weren’t in bloom when we visited but it was still a sight to behold. We saw dozens of yaks grazing here. Turns out, yaks are actually quite timid, at least the ones we encountered. If you step within 4 feet of them, they’ll whimper and try to put distance between you and themselves. Now calling them scaredy-cats or vigilant creatures depends entirely on your perspective. It was drizzling the whole time we were there and even though the weather was icy, we got some beautiful shots of the place.

Day 5: Back to Gangtok

On our last day in Sikkim, we went to Enchey Monastry and collected some good karma. After this we spent the day set off on a food tour of Gangtok. All day we went to different cafes and restaurants and tried their specialties. Ice cream, momos, thalis, local drinks, specialties, more momos, you name it, and we’ve tried it!
By the end of the day all of us were so stuffed we could barely even walk back to the car
that would take us back to the hotel. Gangtok has some amazing eating joints that you need to check out such as Baker’s Café, Shuffle Momos, Tashi Delek, and many more. Our trip to Sikkim was extremely special and memorable. Not one of us had the heart to leave! We had a blast and it was indeed a vacation to remember. Just writing about it all makes me want to pack my bags and go back for round two!

Hi! I’m a fifteen-year-old student. There is nothing I love more than music! I dance, sing, and play the violin. My ideal day involves sweatpants, a cup of coffee, and my current read. I have a deep passion for writing and it’s an integral part of my routine, being my go-to detox activity.

Article written by:
Nayanika Aggarwal

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