Darjeeling is a city in Indian state of West Bengal. It is situated around 700 kms. away from Kolkata. It is a popular hill station in East India. It is very famous for its tea industry. There are more than eighty- six estates which produces famous Darjeeling tea. Darjeeling tea is internationally recognized and is very famous among black teas in the world. It has various British style schools also which attracts students from all over India and also from neighbouring countries. It is the headquarters of Darjeeling district. The toy train is one of the UNESCO world heritage sites.The Kanchenjunga peak which is the highest in India and the third highest in the world can be clearly visible from here. It is a wonderful place to explore the tea estates, markets and villages. There are many tourist attractions here. Some of them are Darjeeling-Ranjeet valley passenger ropeway cable car, Zoo, Botanical gardens, etc.
Places to visit in Darjeeling
Some of the visiting places in Darjeeling are Tiger hill, Batasia loop, Darjeeling Himalayan railway, Darjeeling ropeway, Nightangle park, Himalayan mountanning institute, etc.
Tiger hill is the highest point in Darjeeling, situated at a distance of 11 km. away from the town of Darjeeling in West Bengal. It has a beautiful view of Mount Everest and Mount Kanchenjunga together. It is very famous for its beautiful sights of sunrise. There are some famous monasteries to visit in Darjeeling.
Batasia means airy space. The loop goes around a garden. Batasia loop is a beautiful train route in Darjeeling. It is a lush green toy train pathway for minimizing the elevation of Darjeeling Himalayan railways. It is situated in Ghoom, around 5 km. away from Darjeeling on hill cart road (NH-55).It has its unmatched natural beauty which is a wonderful sight to be seen. Batasia loop is one of the mesmerizing places to visit in Darjeeling. Its beautiful view can’t be missed.
Darjeeling- Himalayan railway
The Darjeeling- Himalayan railway is also known as DHR or the toy train. It is 2 feet gauge railway which runs between New Jalpaigudi and Darjeeling. It is around 88 km. long. It is inscribed as UNESCO’s World heritage site in 1999.The journey through toy train has amazing sights with pleasing mountain views and pass by local shops and villages on the way. The Darjeeling Himalayan railway runs various tourist train services. They are Safari trains, Toy train joy rides, Daily passenger services.
Steam and Diesel locomotive running from siligudi to rangtong having views of Mahananda wildlife sanctuary, railway museum at Sukna and Z reserves.
Toy train joy rides
It is 2 hour trip in first class carriages with diesel and steam locomotives from Darjeeling to ghoom return.
Daily passenger services
Diesel locomotives runs from New jalpaigudi to Darjeeling with first class air conditioned carriages.
It is India’s first cable car system established in 1968.It was started initially to cater to the tea gardens in the valley which did not have easy access. But now it is a tourist hotspot. With 16 cable cars, each car carries 6 passengers from north point in Singamari to the Singla bazaar situated on the banks of Ramman river, transpoting passengers at a height of 7000 feet. From this many tea estates of Darjeeling can be seen.
It is a public park area where tourists and local people visits frequently. It is a slight elevated terrain. There is a giant statue of Lord Shiva and a musical fountain is present there. It was used as a famous Bollywood movie shooting spot during 1950’s-60’s.
Himalayan mountaineering institute
It was established to encourage mountaineering as an sport in Darjeeling in India on 4th November 1954.Tenzing Norgay was the first director of field training of Himalayan mountaineering institute.
Best time to visit Darjeeling
Darjeeling is a famous hill station in East India. A large number of tourists visit here every year. During winter season from mid November to January the temperature ranges between 7 degree celcius to 5 degree celcius. April to June in Darjeeling is not very hot and it is pleasant. So April to June is considered as the best time to visit this place. July to August is the period of heavy rainfall so it is not good to visit. In September there is less rainfall and greenery prevails all around so it is also good time to visit.
How to reach Darjeeling
For Darjeeling the nearest airport is Bagdodara airport. There are direct flights from Kolkata, Delhi and Guwahati. From airport taxis takes around 3 hours to reach Darjeeling.
It can be also reached by trains. The nearest rail is New Jalpaigudi. Which is well connected to most of the major cities of India.
It can be also reached by bus. There is regular bus services available from Siligudi to Darjeeling which is around 70 km. away from it. The road network is quite good. One can also drive down to Darjeeling from nearby city like Siligudi.
Food available in Darjeeling
Darjeeling being a famous hill station of East India, a large number of options are available for food lovers in Darjeeling. It ranges from traditional, Sikkimese and Tibetan cuisines to Thai delicacies. Tea is a popular beverage here. Some of the popular items are Momos, Thukpa, Tongba, Aloo dum, Sael roti, Nepali thali and many more.