Darjeeling is considered to be one of the most scenic and popular hill stations in India and is rightfully known as the “Queen of Hills”. It is located in the state of North Bengal at an altitude of 2,150 metres. Wonderful summers and crackling winters are supposed to be the best times for visiting the hill station. It needs to be mentioned in this regard that the months of monsoon that is from June to August should be avoided.
There are quite some places in and around Darjeeling which should be compulsorily visited while visiting the hill station and they are:
Toy Train Ride
Darjeeling Toy Rain is officially referred to as the Darjeeling Himalayan Railway and is considered to be an UNESCO World Heritage Ride. The operation of the train started in the year 1881. A short ride in the toy train from the station to the Batasia
Loop is highly recommended as it guarantees a spectacular experience.
Tiger Hill is believed to be the best view point in Darjeeling and offers breathtaking views of sunrise and the complete Himalayan range. The Tiger Hill is located at an altitude of 7407 feet.
Padmaja Naidu Himalayan Zoological Park
This is a zoological park with natural habitat and is regarded as one of the best zoos in India owing to its inclusion of some rare animals such as the Red Pandas, Siberian Tigers, Snow Leopards and Tibetan Wolves. It would be a wonderful experience to be here to see the various species of rare and endangered species of animals, especially from the Himalayan region being taken care of for conservation and re-introduction of endangered species.
Himalayan Mountaineering Institute (HMI)
The HMI is counted amongst the oldest mountaineering institutes of India which also includes a museum which houses few of the equipments which were used by Tenzing Norgay and Edmund Hillary while scaling the famous Mount Everest. One can even indulge in the activity of rock climbing here.
Tea Plantation Tour
Darjeeling is known to the world because of its tea gardens and unmatched quality of tea. One can take a tour to one of the tea gardens for instance Happy Valley Tea Gardens and learn about varied kinds of teas while sipping on a cup of world class Darjeeling tea. One also gets to learn about the tea making process along with an interaction session with the tea workers and their way of work.
Famously known as the Ropeway, is supposed to be one of India’s most former passenger ropeway and connects Singla Bazaar with Darjeeling. It is one in a lifetime experience as one can enjoy the lovely view of the tea gardens, mountains and the emerald green hills with wooded forests.
White Water Rafting
White water rafting can be done on Teesta River which assures a lifetime experience of rafting on the bubbling river flowing down by the mountains and wooded banks. The white water rafting starts from Tarkhola and goes upto Kalijhora.
For Swimmers there are two spots that starts Melli to 29th Mile and takes approximately 1.5 hours while the other one is Melli to Kalijhora which takes around 3 hours.
Paragliding is possible in Darjeeling which offers an exotic view of the snow capped peaks of Kanchenjunga, lovely mountains and villages from the blue sky.
Hot Air Balloon Ride
The hot air balloon ride is recommended for adventure lovers in order to steal a magnificent view of the snow peaks from 300 feet above.
Trekking & Hiking
Trekking as well day hikes can be done in and around Darjeeling as well as Kurseong through the thick woods and green pastures that are rich in flowers such as magnolia, rhododendrons and orchids. Day hikes to Tiger Hill are quite popular in Darjeeling. For trekking in Darjeeling, one can go to Sandakphu which is the most popular trekking trail in Darjeeling, Phalut, Tonglu and Manebhanjan via Tumling, Village Trek and Tours, etc are the most popular trekking option in an around the town of Darjeeling.