Darjeeling known for its tea worldwide has more to offer than just a tea plantation. This beautiful hill town has amazing opportunities for trekkers. It is said that trekking in India originated in Darjeeling when Jesuit Rev. Fr Macdonald discovered it to be ideal for trekking about 87 years ago. People from all over the world come to this hill station to experience the spectacular trek that it has to offer.
If you are a nature lover and if you love to trek then you should come to Darjeeling around 2 seasons as what they call the trekking season. One starts from mid March and ends by early June and the second being from September end to December end. During this time you should also expect a refreshing shower for a day or two.
The trekking route starts from Darjeeling to Sandakphu which is at an altitude of 12000 ft. One can reach there from two different routes. Starting
from Darjeeling, the first stop is Ghoom; from there one can take another vehicle to Sukhia Pokhari. It is from Sukhia Pokhari the actual trekking starts. Your trekking route from there is something like this – Sukhia Pokhari to Maney Bhanjyang, then to Tonglu, from Tonglu to Garibas to Sandakphu. It is a total of 59 kms from Darjeeling.
The second route also starts from Sukhia Pokhari from where you climb up to Rimbik, from Rimbik to Rammam, from Rammam to Gorkhey, from Gorkhey to Phalut and finally from Phalut to Sandakphu. The first route is the shorter one therefore many opt for this but Phalut is higher than Sandakphu at a height of 12200 ft thus some make their stoppage at Phalut itself. It makes a total of 83 kms. If you are not sure of climbing all the way up to Sandakphu or Phalut then you can always make any of the stoppage as your destination.
This Queen of Hills offers a wonderful trekking experience and all the nature lovers must not miss this. Along the way you will see some of the best sceneries you could possibly have ever seen before. The entire hills are filled with exquisite hill flowers such as Rhododendrons, Magnolias, Orchids and Primulas. You could come across some of the rare birds there while you’re on your way uphill since these hills are home to many Himalayan bird species that are rarely found elsewhere.
As you approach Sandakphu you can see the mighty Kanchenjunga staring right down at you. Sandakphu commands one of the best views from where you can see the Kanchenjunga, Mt. Everest and other peaks in their entirety. On your way up you could seek some snacks in the small tea shops. Sometimes accommodation is provided as well but it’s always better to carry your camping kit. There are Trekkers hut at few stoppages, but it is advisable to carry warm clothes too along with raincoats and hunter boots or durable sport shoes against harsh rain and snow.
If you want to be a part of this amazing experience then you can get in touch with Adventure Tourism department who can make the necessary arrangements.