Why should the rain ruin your Sikkim vacation plans? The monsoon is in full force in September, but towards the end of the month, traces of fall are beginning to appear all throughout this magnificent mountain state. After a downpour, the flora gleams, birds flap their wet wings, and Sikkim is a sight to behold.
First and foremost, ensure that you arrive prepared for a downpour. Rubber boots, a raincoat, and a wide umbrella will keep you dry and entertained while you wait for the rain to stop.
Peek-a-boo Autumn in East Sikkim
In the declining monsoon, Gangtok is your base for exploring eastern Sikkim. The weather in the capital is excellent, with temperatures ranging from 15-20°C, and you should start by strolling down M.G. Marg, which is lined with cafés, bars, restaurants, and souvenir booths. The Namgyal Institute of Tibetology is located 2 kilometres from M.G. Marg. The museum and library here are excellent resources for learning about Tibetan Buddhism and Sikkimese culture. The museum has a vast collection of Buddhist art, including statuettes, paintings, coins, and thangkas. Do Drul Chorten, a huge stupa placed in a park excellent for a stroll, is just a short distance from the institute.
The Enchey Monastery, which is 10 kilometres from Banjhakri Falls, may be visited on the same day. This temple was built in the 1840s, and while it doesn’t have the same dominating presence as other gompas, it does provide spectacular views of Kanchenjunga. The Tsuklakhang Monastery in Gangtok is not to be missed. In the middle of Gangtok’s hustle and bustle, this royal temple will transfer you to a more tranquil spot. Rumtek Monastery is located 23 kilometres from the city on a hilltop at a height of 5,500 feet. This gompa of the Kagyu sect overlooks Gangtok and has intriguing paintings for art lovers. 40 kilometres from Gangtok, Phodang Monastery is an 18th-century shrine with exceedingly ancient frescoed artwork.
In Sikkim, September marks the end of the monsoon season. Because of the severe rain, the 14,140-foot Nathu La Pass may be closed to travellers. If the roads are passable and you manage to make the trek, be prepared to see the mountains of eastern Sikkim bathed in a glistening green. Nathu La, 60 kilometres from Gangtok, was formerly part of the old Silk Route that connected India and Tibet.
At 12,310 feet, Tsomgo or Changu Lake is on the way to Nathu La. The quiet waters of this lake are lovely in September. This oval-shaped waterbody, 40 kilometres from Gangtok, may provide a remarkable experience if the clouds keep their water. The Baba Mandir is located 15 kilometres from Changu Lake. Harbhajan Singh’s memory is commemorated at this 13,000-foot memorial. He was a soldier who died in the army, and it is stated that his soul protects the troops stationed at Nathu La. The views from this temple are stunningly spectacular on a clear September day.
The Liquid Sunshine of North Sikkim
In September, North Sikkim comes to life. On clear days, the massive peaks and the flora gleaming in the liquid sunshine may be seen. In the monsoon, Lachen(8,800ft) is a little mountain town that is ideal for nature enthusiasts. The temperature here ranges from 14 to 20 degrees Celsius, making it ideal for a rainy vacation.
Because of the excessive rain, a trip to the magnificent Gurudongmar Lake may not be possible. The early morning journey from Lachen, at 17,000 feet, will take you via some of Sikkim’s most beautiful scenery. It all depends on the weather gods’ temper.
Lachung (9,000 feet) is a picturesque northern town with temperatures ranging from 13 to 23 degrees Celsius. On a wet day, this tiny village provides spectacular mountain vistas. Another must-see temple amid an apple orchard is Lachung Monastery. Yumthang Valley, Sikkim’s Garden of Eden, is one and a half hours from Lachung (11,800ft). Nature is at its most beautiful here, and Yumthang provides breathtaking vistas of the state’s vegetation.
If the weather permits, one can drive up to Zero Point (15,000ft). This spot, 23 kilometres from Yumthang, is where three rivers meet, and if you go in September, you may brag about seeing the northern highlands in all their monsoon grandeur.
Soaking in the Historical Delights of West Sikkim
The western hill town of Pelling (7,200ft) is the finest option for anyone looking to discover Sikkim in September. The temperature ranges from 13 to 23 degrees Celsius, and seeing the town after a rainstorm is a terrific opportunity to gain a fresh perspective of Sikkim. The Pemayangtse Monastery is located 9 kilometres from Pelling. From this gompa, one may see the Himalayan range at practically touching distance if the clouds aren’t too thick. This monastery’s Buddhist art serves as a reminder of Sikkim’s long-standing religious tradition. The Rabdentse Ruins are all that is left of Sikkim’s former capital. 32 kilometres from Pelling, history and environment collide to give visitors a picture of the mountain kingdom’s past.
September hikers will begin their journey in Yuksom (6,000 feet) in the west. Pelling is 40 kilometres from the ‘entrance to the Kanchenjunga.’ A hike from here may take you through the ominous but magnificent Khecheopalri Lake before providing unrivalled views of Dzongri, Pandim, Ratong, and the colossal Kanchenjunga, among other peaks.
The September Birdsong of South Sikkim
In September, Namchi, 80 kilometres south of Gangtok, is a traveler’s delight. The temperature ranges from 16 to 23 degrees Celsius, which is ideal for a trip over Samdruptse Hill (7,000ft). From this park, a 138-foot Padmasambhava monument stares out over this southern town. For those interested in seeing Sikkim’s gompas, the Ngadak and Sherdup Choeling monasteries are close by.
Ravangla, 70 kilometres south of Gangtok, is located next to the Himalayan range. Take a hike up Maenam Hill for spectacular views of the Alps while you’re here. The adjacent Ralang Monastery is close by, as is the wandering Maenam Wildlife Sanctuary, which is 26 kilometres from town. This refuge comes alive with birdsong for nature enthusiasts prepared to withstand Sikkim’s September weather.
Many individuals believe that going to Sikkim in September is inconvenient. September is the best month to visit Sikkim if you’re ready to brave the rains, don’t mind bypassing some high-altitude sights, and want to see the state before the autumn tourist season begins.
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