Around the slopes of Sikkim, the monsoon season begins in June. The fog and the sun are always playing hide-and-seek. The mountains are enveloped in mist one minute, then the mist clears and the sun shines brightly on the rain-soaked trees that carpet the gorgeous highlands the next. Despite the fact that most visitors avoid Sikkim during the rainy season, residents go about their daily lives as usual. In fact, at this time of year, the hills take on a particular appeal of their own. During the monsoons, rivers and waterfalls are at their most beautiful.
If you want to avoid the crowds, June is the best month to visit Sikkim.
The Fluffy Sky of East Sikkim
The capital city of Gangtok is still comfortable, with temperatures ranging from 17 to 21 degrees Celsius. Take a leisurely stroll down M.G Marg, Gangtok’s main thoroughfare. Cafes, restaurants, gift stores, and bars fill the street. To get to Deorali, which is around 2 kilometres from the city centre, take a taxi or walk. Spend a wet afternoon at the Namgyal Institute of Tibetology, snuggled together. If you’re interested in Sikkimese Buddhist culture, it offers a fantastic library as well as a museum with some of the most rare sculptures, coins, and thangkas. Take a stroll to the Do Drul Chorten, a massive stupa erected by Trulshig Rinpoche to ward off bad spirits. Visit the Banjhakri Waterfall, which is 100 feet tall and is set in a planted forest approximately 7 miles away.
Enchey Monastery, which dates back to the year 200, is about 5 kilometres distant. Lama Drupthob Karpo, a tantric practitioner also known as the flying monk, blessed the monastery, which belongs to the Nyingma sect. Gangtok is roughly 23 kilometres from the famous Rumtek Monastery. You can’t afford to miss one of the best examples of Tibetan Buddhist architecture, as well as the seat of the Black Hat Order.
Hire a cab to drive you to Nathula, a high Himalayan pass that was originally part of the historic Silk Route connecting India and Tibet. The pass, which is located at a height of nearly 14,000 feet, is covered in snow all year and offers a spectacular view of the surrounding peaks. The weather in June ranges from -2°C to 5°C, so bring plenty of warm clothing. Tourists and locals alike go to the Baba Harbhajan Singh Temple in Nathula. The shrine is dedicated to an Indian army sepoy who died while on service in Nathula. His spirit, according to believers, continues to protect the troops from harm. Don’t forget to stop at Lake Tsomgo en route to Nathula.
The Sunshine Daydreams of North Sikkim
After you’ve had your fill of Gangtok, make your way to North Sikkim. At an elevation of 8,610 feet, the little town of Lachung is surrounded by snow-capped mountains and flowing waterfalls. Spend a day visiting the charming Lachung Monastery, which is nestled in an apple orchard. The temperature fluctuates from 14 to 23 degrees Celsius. Lachung is also an excellent starting point for visiting Yumthang Valley, often known as the Valley of Flowers. Yumesamdong or Zero Point, located 23 kilometres from Yumthang and at a startling height of 15,000 feet, is a snow lover’s delight. The location is perpetually snow-covered due to its elevation. China is only a short distance away.
Lachen, a picturesque town around 47 kilometres from Lachung, is another ideal destination to spend a quiet holiday. Visit the Lachen Monastery in Sikkim to get a picture of rural life—Lachen is ideal for individuals who enjoy unhurried travel. It also serves as an entrance to Gurudongmar Lake, which is roughly 66 kilometres distant. Lachen is the starting point for a variety of renowned trekking routes in North Sikkim, however due to the rains, it may not be a good idea to visit in June.
Waning Summer Delights of South Sikkim
If you’re planning a trip to South Sikkim, Namchi is a must-see. The temperature varies between 15°C to 23°C in June. Namchi, Sikkim’s cultural centre, is home to the world’s highest statue of Guru Padmasambhava, Sikkim’s guardian saint. As you approach the city, keep an eye out for the statue on Samdruptse Hill. You may also pay a visit to the monastery perched atop the hill. The Namchi Rock Garden is a must-see. Waterbodies, gazebos, lily ponds, and a plethora of unusual flowers make it an ideal spot for a picnic. The Temi Tea Estate, Sikkim’s lone tea estate, is approximately 18 kilometres from Namchi and is ideal for a day excursion.
The Magical June Forests of West Sikkim
If you are a history fan, a journey to the state would be incomplete without a stop in West Sikkim. Travel to Pelling, a little town 113 kilometres from Gangtok. In the month of June, the temperature stays in the comfortable range of 10°C to 20°C. Rabdentse’s mediaeval remains are around 9 kilometres distant. For over 200 years, Rabdentse was the kingdom of Sikkim’s second capital. The ruins of the old palace, which are encircled by a dense forest, appear like something out of a fairy tale. The Pemayangtse Monastery, one of Sikkim’s oldest and most prominent monasteries, is only 2 kilometres from Rabdentse. Khecheopalri Lake, 30 kilometres from Pelling, is a must-see. It’s also known as the wish-fulfilling machine.
Overall, June is a fantastic month to visit Sikkim since the rains provide fresh life to the Himalayan state’s mountains.
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