Gangtok Tourism
Hill

Gangtok Tourism

Gangtok Info

  • State: Sikkim
  • Famous for/as: Hill
  • Altitude: 1437 m
  • Pincode: 737101
  • District: East Sikkim
  • Language: Hindi,Nepali
  • STD code: 03592
  • Weather: Summer 10 to 28°C, Winter -5 to 16°C
Gangtok, the land of monasteries, is also the largest town of Sikkim. Situated in the Shivalik Hills and lying at an altitude of 1437 m, it’s an important Buddhist Pilgrimage Centre. Gangtok gained religious significance among the Buddhists after the construction of the Enchey Monastery in the latter part of the 19th century.

History of Gangtok

It was an important trade centre between the British and Tibet during the 19th century. Gangtok was made the capital of Sikkim in 1894 by Thutob Namgyal, who was a monarch under the British Rule. When India gained independence in 1947, Sikkim chose to be an independent monarchy and Gangtok continued to be its capital.

However, in 1975, after a period of strife and struggle, Sikkim was finally made an Indian state and Gangtok was made its official capital. The city suffered a major setback in its trade relations with Tibet after the Nathu La Pass was closed following the Sino-Indian war of 1962. However, the Pass has been opened in 2006, and Gangtok has again started functioning as a major trade point between India and Tibet.

People & Culture of Gangtok

The town has people from different ethnicities. The presence of Buddhists, Chinese, Tibetans as well as Hindus gives Gangtok a colourful ambience and every festival is celebrated here with the same fervour. Some of the popularly celebrated festivals are Losum and Losar, among others.

Most of the economy of Gangtok depends on tourism. A large part of the population of the town is employed in the tourism sector. Of late, eco-tourism has picked up in the region with tourists being offered the opportunity of trekking, rafting as well as mountaineering. Apart from the tourism industry, cottage industries form the other major portion of Gangtok’s economy which deals in watch making, handicrafts and local alcohol processing.

Things to do in Gangtok

Gangtok is full of gompas, stupas, parks and gardens. Some of the major attractions in and around Gangtok are the Rumtek Monastery, Pemayangtse Monastery, Tashiding Monastery, Tsomgo Lake, Nathu La Pass, Hanuman Tok etc. Visitors who want to explore Gangtok and its surroundings but do not want to do the planning themselves can opt for the several Gangtok holiday packages available.

Food & Shopping in Gangtok

Sikkimese food is a mix of Nepalese, Tibetan and Indian cuisine with rice being the staple. Some of the local delicacies of Gangtok are ningro (fern rings), shisnu (nettle soup), phing (glass noodles) and churpi (yak cheese) cooked with a lot of chillies. Apart from these, momos are available round the corner. There are a lot of restaurants, eateries and fast-food joints in Gangtok.

Gangtok is full of souvenir and curio shops. One of the best areas for shopping is the road near Lal Bazar which not only has many shops but prices are also cheaper by 30-40% than the shops on M.G. Road. The Sikkim Handloom and Handicraft Emporium sells masks, wall hangings, carpets, leather goods and Tibetan, Bhutia and Lepcha dresses. Other items that are popularly bought include thankas, silk paintings, prayer wheels, Tibetan jewellery etc. 

Travelling to Gangtok

Gangtok is connected to other parts of the country via an all-weather highway. The easiest way to reach Gangtok is by shared jeep from Siliguri, in West Bengal, which takes around 4˝ - 5 hours. Shared jeeps, the best way to move around in Gangtok, can also be availed from New Jalpaiguri, Darjeeling and Kalimpong.

Buses run by the state carrier, Sikkim Nationalised Transport, terminate at the SNT Bus Stand on Paljor Stadium Road. Non-SNT buses stop at the Private Bus Stand, off NH-31A, below Deorali.

The nearest airport to the place is the Bagdogra Airport (124 km away) in the town of Siliguri, West Bengal. Bagdogra Airport is connected to Guwahati, Kolkata and Delhi with Kolkata and Delhi airports having international connections as well. Taxis are available from the airport to reach Gangtok. These cost around INR2000.

There is a helicopter service also which is run by the Sikkim Tourism Development Corporation from Bagdogra to Gangtok, once a day. The cost for this is approximately INR2200 but baggage allowance is limited to 10 kg.

Gangtok does not have a railway station, the closest one being at New Jalpaiguri in West Bengal, nearly 150 km away. The station has train services from all parts of the country with some of the prominent ones being Bangalore, Guwahati, Kolkata, Hyderabad, New Delhi etc.

Travelling within Gangtok

SNT buses and private buses are available for travelling within Gangtok. SNT buses can be boarded from the SNT bus stand located on Paljor Stadium Road. For places such as Pelling, Yuksom and Tashiding, buses depart at 7 am and 12:30 pm from the SNT bus stop. An hourly service is also available for places like Ravangla, Namchi, Jorethang and Geyzing.

Taxis and shared jeeps are also available, usually at MG Marg and Lal Market. Taxis are not metered so it is best to negotiate the fare before boarding.

Accommodation options in Gangtok

Accommodation options in Gangtok range from budget hotels and mid-range hotels to deluxe hotels and luxury hotels. Tourists looking for budget accommodation can head towards Mall Road, Namnang Road and MG Marg. Paljor Stadium Road is where most of the heritage hotels are located.

Those looking for Gangtok luxury hotels can head towards places like MG Road, Paljor Stadium Road, P.S. Road, MG Marg and NH-31 A. Mid-range accommodation options are available on Church Road, MG Marg and Tibet Road.

The region enjoys mild temperature conditions with the maximum temperature not going beyond 22-25° Celsius throughout the year. This is characterised by the presence of temperate as well as deciduous forests of birch and oak in the region.
More »

Most preferred by...

Travellers from Kolkata, Delhi
Couple
Family

Best time to visit Gangtok in the next six months

  • May
  • June
  • July
  • August
  • September
  • October

Gangtok Traveller Reviews

WRITE A REVIEW
Read 546 destination reviews
with average rating of 5.9/7, 1
out of 9796 Gangtok reviews 546
Sort by:
Tarun shaha

  • Scout
  • Tarun shaha
  • 3 Reviews
  •  161 readers

"The place is less expensive to travel" new review

  • 5.5/7
  • Posted 2 days ago
The place is less expensive to travel. This is also honeymoon place. New couple can go there and enjoy the place very much. The north sikkim is full of ice to see. Traveler can take sunglass, cap, warm cloth for safe journey. Traveller can visit nearby Darjeeling the natural place and come back by toy train from Darjeeling.
More »
  • Was this review useful?
  • YES
  • Be the first to vote.

Ujval Sanghavi

  • Scout
  • Ujval Sanghavi
  • Lives in Pune
  • 3 Reviews
  •  229 readers

"A relaxing trip" new review

  • 6/7
  • Posted 3 days ago
The sunrise was so good. The temple was so clean and wonderful. After I left Gangtok, I miss the sunrise that I viewed. I also miss the parathas and veg thali. I wish I will go back again and enjoy. I also miss travelling by indigo airways. The airport services was so excellent.
More »
  • Was this review useful?
  • YES
  • Be the first to vote.

Anup sharma

  • Explorer
  • Anup sharma
  • Lives in Kolhapur
  • 6 Reviews
  •  480 readers

"A clean holy place" new review

  • 6.5/7
  • Posted 4 days ago
Gangtok is a well-managed place. The roads are clean everywhere there are trees and plants planted, so the area is fresh and clean. The main shopping area is M G Marg which was beautifully situated but the purchasing is bit costly over there. The hotels are also costly. Even the food too. You will rarely found a good indian cuisine restaurant there. The chinese cuisines are easily available every where but they are also a bit expensive.
More »
  • Was this review useful?
  • YES
  • Be the first to vote.

Rahul Sidharthan

  • Connoisseur
  • Rahul Sidharthan
  • Highlander
  • 11 Reviews
  •  2 helpful votes
  •  10763 readers

"Perfect Holiday Destination" new review

  • 6.5/7
  • Posted 4 days ago
Gangtok was something that had been on our radar for quite some time and finally we decided to take the plunge when kids had vacations for 10 days in March and we were not really keen on spending those days at home. Instantly decided on Gangtok and then clubbed it with Pelling and Darjeeling. We still reliving those fond memories of one week of heaven.

How to reach: Gangtok is not directly connected by rail or air with nearest airport at Bagdogra and nearest railhead at New Jalpaiguri (both in West Bengal). A gruelling four hour drive is involved in reaching Gangtok from either location. However, prepaid taxis are easily available at both the airport and railway station.

Ideal time to visit Gangtok would be Apr-Jun and then again from Sep-Nov. After that it gets really cold. Our trip was in the last week of March and was relatively comfortable. The cold was not too biting except when we visited Nathula Pass.

Gangtok offers a multitude of attractions with the obvious view points as well as numerous monasteries. Hire a local taxi operator who would be able to guide you around. They are quite reasonable and do not actually fleece (unless you end up with the bad sheep of course). People are extremely friendly and warm hearted. Another prominent speciality of entire Sikkim was that all places were spanking clean at all times. People took pride in keeping it clean, a welcome change from many other locations across India.

Food available at most places was Momos, Maggi and Wai Wai (another variety of instant noodles). In the cold weather, hot momos or Maggi did seem god send at more occasions than one. Ensure you carry at least a warm jacket or sweater at all times. It did rain once during our stay and we were forced to buy an umbrella but I think it was a freak incident as confirmed from our driver cum guide too.

With plenty to see and lots of stuff to buy, it is indeed a holiday paradise and one that is worth experiencing. Do not miss out on visiting Nathula pass and seeing eye to eye with the Chinese soldier on guard at the border. However, a pass is needed and that can be obtained only one day in advance, so that is to be borne in mind while planning the trip. Also not to miss is the various Buddhist monasteries, each one more beautiful than the previous. Chinese dragon has a tremendous influence throughout and is omnipresent throughout Gangtok. Dont miss a stroll in the Mall Road (completely free of vehicles) and enjoy shopping for trinkets at a leisurely pace.

A few of the attractions in and around Gangtok are Nathula Pass, Tsomgo Lake, Baba Mandir, Cable car, Rumtek Monastery, Hanuman Tok, Ganesh Tok, Namgyal Institute of Tibetology and Tashi View Point.

Ideal period of stay would be between 3-4 days. Anything less would make you miss something, anything more would be just in case you are in mood to relax and enjoy the weather!
More »
  • Was this review useful?
  • YES
  • 1 vote

Prabir Headliner

  • Scout
  • Prabir Headliner
  • 3 Reviews
  •  2 helpful votes
  •  1094 readers

"A beautiful place to visit" new review

  • 7/7
  • Posted 2 weeks ago
It's very beautiful place. Good time to visit this place is April to May. In that time you can enjoy snow. In the month of March, you see too much snow on road on Lachung and Lachen. From this you also visit Gurudongmar lake. It's very beautiful lake to visit.
More »
  • Was this review useful?
  • YES
  • 2 votes

Wasim Bashar

  • Scout
  • Wasim Bashar
  • Lives in Kolkata
  • 3 Reviews
  •  2 helpful votes
  •  1718 readers

"Excellent place to visit with family" new review

  • 7/7
  • Posted 2 weeks ago
I never expected that I love this much more because I love my quality time with my family members. My family members also enjoyed because they never expected that the place was really awesome. 2 sister falls were a better place. I loved to eat momos, every one should try at least once.
More »
  • Was this review useful?
  • YES
  • 1 vote

Tiruvathuru Reddy

  • Explorer
  • Tiruvathuru Reddy
  • Lives in Bangalore
  • 6 Reviews
  •  1202 readers

"Needs to improve in some places" new review

  • 4.5/7
  • Posted 2 weeks ago
It's good. Good south Indian restaurants are required for food. Money demanded by local taxies is huge. Looks like full unity. Can avoid going to that taxi stand and making tourists stand for hours in that dirty stinky area. That stand is not at all maintained.
More »
  • Was this review useful?
  • YES
  • Be the first to vote.

Sanjay Chaudhary

  • Scout
  • Sanjay Chaudhary
  • Lives in Panipat
  • 4 Reviews
  •  3 helpful votes
  •  1880 readers

"A must see place" new review

  • 6/7
  • Posted 2 weeks ago
Overall experience was too good. Gangtok is a very beautiful and natural beauty of India. People should really visit this place. We can say this place is like heaven of our country.
More »
  • Was this review useful?
  • YES
  • 1 vote

Lakshman

  • Scout
  • Lakshman
  • Lives in Delhi
  • 1 Review
  •  2 helpful votes
  •  1158 readers

"Pefect for an Internet free holidays" new review

  • 7/7
  • Posted 2 weeks ago
It was excellent experience to travel to Gangtok. Every one should visit the place because it is a very nice place. The right time to visit Gantok is in these season from March onwards. The gardens, temple & local lake were awesome. The sight seeing places in the destination should not missed at all. The best way to visit the destination is to travel by roads.
More »
  • Was this review useful?
  • YES
  • 2 votes

Dulal

  • Scout
  • Dulal
  • 4 Reviews
  •  1 helpful vote
  •  1755 readers

"Nice experience with scenic beauty of Himallayan range" new review

  • 6.5/7
  • Posted 3 weeks ago
Most important thing is that the city is very clean. Well-maintained by the Govt. As a good tourist attraction site in India. Roads were cleaned. People were very gentle and co-operative with tourists. Main attraction is MG. Marg where we were staying. It was live even in night. Other places were also good.
More »
  • Was this review useful?
  • YES
  • 1 vote

Jain Jain Ajith Vilash kumar Jain, Jain, Ajith and 15599 other people have been to Gangtok.
View their ratings...

Gangtok Sightseeing

View all 52 Sightseeing options in Gangtok »

Best time to visit Gangtok with family

  • Jan
  • Feb
  • Mar
  • Apr
  • May
  • Jun
  • Jul
  • Aug
  • Sep
  • Oct
  • Nov
  • Dec

Gangtok Packages

Click to send the package enquiries

Hills
The Shangri-La Budget 6720 Per Person 3 days & 2 nights VIEW DETAILS
Hills
The Shangri-La Deluxe 8280 Per Person 3 days & 2 nights VIEW DETAILS
Hills
The Shangri-La-Luxury 11640 Per Person 3 days & 2 nights VIEW DETAILS
Hills
Standard Mythical Paradise 6000 Per Person 3 days & 2 nights VIEW DETAILS


Gangtok Information


- Posted by
1 of