Darjeeling AND Gangtok -- RINCHENPONG

A beautiful village, Rinchenpong is situated at a height of 5,500 feet in west Sikkim. Here one can enjoy the magnificent beauty of the Himalayan mountain range amidst its quiet stillness and spectacular floral environs. On a clear day, the snow clad peaks of Kanchenjunga, Kabru, Rathong, Kumbakarna, Koktang, etc. dazzle the sky. Important places to visit here are Heritage House, Rinchenpong Monastery, Rabindra Memorial Garden, Risham Monastery, etc.

Rinchenpong is about 122 km from Siliguri. It takes about four hours to get there from Jorethang. There is a regular jeep service. The road has been extended 3 km to Kaluk, a small town that can also be reached through a memorable jungle trail. The vast openness of Kaluk and the panoramic view of the Himalayas can be a special treat.

Thursday is the local market day. People from neighbouring areas gather to buy and sell everything from bangles to baskets, turning the occasion to a festival. During the day, hundreds of Sikkimese crowd the shanty eateries and partake of hot momos and chhang, the local drink.

Both Rinchenpong and Kaluk has a number of luxury resorts as well as budget hotels.

New Jalpaiguri is the nearest railhead. Buses and jeeps are available from Siliguri to Jorethang. Rinchenpong is a two-hour journey from there. Walking is the only way of travelling within the town.

There are several budget as well as luxury hotels in Rinchenpong and Kaluk. Most of the hotels have restaurants. Momo and thukpa are available in the local eateries.