How To Plan A Trip To Darjeeling And My Experience
Darjeeling is popularly known as “Queen of the Hills” and produces the famous Darjeeling Tea, one of the world’s finest teas. It is also home to the Darjeeling Himalayan Railways, a World Heritage Site. Darjeeling with its natural beauty provides a wide variety of activities from leisurely site seeing to more adventurous activities such as Trekking and river rafting. So let me share with you all How To Plan A Trip To Darjeeling And My Experience.
How to reach Darjeeling by flight, train or Bus
Flight : The nearest airport to Darjeeling is Bagdogra about 94-96 kms away from Darjeeling. You can get direct taxis/cabs to Darjeeling from Bagdogra. You can also go to Siliguri first and hire a jeep/cab @ 120/- per passenger for a 3 hour ride to Darjeeling.
Train : The nearest broad gage railway station New Jalpaiguri (NJP) is about 88 kms away from Darjeeling. There is a prepaid taxi stand outside the Station. You can hire your car from this stand, other wise Note that if you arrive too late for the jeep to make a return journey from Darjeeling, you may end up paying more, e.g. Rs.200 per person. 2nd option is, you may take an auto upto Siliguri taxi stand and proceed to Darjeeling by jeep/car.
By Bus : There is a regular bus service from Silguri to Darjeeling but they are quite slow due to twisty climb up to Darjeeling. Shared jeeps are cheap, and faster (we went in shared Jeep).
Toy Train : From NJP you can also go the Darjeeling by the famous Darjeeling Himalayan Railway ‘Toy Train’ through beautiful mountain scenic and very romantic beauty of this hill station. This Toy Train is a world heritage train and is very popular with tourists.
These are the places I went-
At Tiger Hill
Viewing the sunrise on Kanchenjunga at Tiger hill is a lifetime experience. To have this experience it is advisable you book a taxi previous night and be ready at 4am next morning. I am not sure about the exact distance but it will take time 1.5hr approx to reach Tiger hill from Darjeeling.
It is the heart of the town where every visitor is seen relaxing, shopping and roaming hands in hands with their partners. From here Kanchenjunga mountains can be seen easily (but only when there is no fog). A walk along the Mall Road opens a beautiful view of the surrounding hills.
Dense fog at the Mall
Joy Train –
The steam train ‘Joy train’ runs from Darjeeling Stn to Ghoom Stn and back. Ghoom station is the highest station of the world. On the way the train stops at famous Batasia Loop, a must visit site for a any tourists.
Me at Ghoom Station enjoying toy train ride
Me at Batasia Loop
Natural History Museum –
Near the Mall is the Museum of Natural History. There are collections of the fauna (plant etc..), specimens of of all birds’ species, reptiles and animals of different altitudes in the region are kept here. I was soo busy looking at them that I forgot to click pic!
Padmaja Naidu Himalayan Zoological Park
This is the only Zoo in the world to breed Tibetan Wolf in Captivity and the first South Asian Zoo to breed Snow Leopard and Siberian Tiger (the guide said so). This zoo in Darjeeling is the only specialized zoo in the country and is internationally recognized because of conservation breeding of Snow Leopard and Red Panda.
This beautiful park is situated on the top of a hill, on the way to the Padmaja Naidu Himalayan Zoological Park. A magnificent view of Kanchenjunga Range and Singla Valley from here is unforgettable.
Me at Nightingale Park
The monastery is said to be built in 1875. It is considered to be one of the holiest monasteries as this was personally blessed by the renowned Tomo Geshe Rimpoche of Tibet. It is also said that the monastey keeps rare books on Buddhism . The monastery has a statue of the Ã¢â‚¬ËœComing BuddhaÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ known as Maitreye Buddha. (Maitreye reminds me of our Maitreye Mitra, LolzÃ¢â‚¬Â¦, sorry Mitra for kidding)
If you want to share any of your trip or exertion experience then mail us at anamika(at)wiseshe(dot)com.
You might like reading these also:-
Goa Beaches – How To Plan A Trip To Goa and my experience
Skin care and Make up essential while traveling
Srisalam – My trip to Srisailam temple and more