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.
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Best time to visit Gangtok in the next six months

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Gangtok Traveller Reviews

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Read 527 destination reviews
with average rating of 5.9/7, 1
out of 9307 Gangtok reviews 527
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Raunak Kumar
  • Raunak Kumar
  • Lives in New Delhi
  • 5 Reviews

"Best during the Winter" new review

  • 6.5/7
  • Posted 2 days ago
This is one of the best place to visit in the month of December and April. There are so many places that it takes generally a weeks time to capture each and every place. It is very tourist friendly destination where there is no any kind of fear to be kept in mind.
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Kalyan Sarkar
  • Kalyan Sarkar
  • Lives in Howrah
  • 3 photos
  • 3 Reviews

"Did not get to roam much due to rains" new review

  • 6.5/7
  • Posted 1 week ago
This time I used Gangtok as transit place for our North Sikkim tour. Even though we spent some quality time in MG Marg on arrival evening. The day we returned from North Sikkim was rainy. So, we did not get any scope to roam. In early morning of last day I walked a few miles in development area and met some local people, nice street dogs, boys playing on ground.
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  • 2 votes

Saloni Kekatpure
  • Saloni Kekatpure
  • Lives in Mumbai
  • 3 Reviews

"Warm and friendly place" new review

  • 6/7
  • Posted 1 week ago
This city truly surprised me. Such warm and friendly people. Even though we don't understand their language they are so helpful and kind all from cab drivers to shopkeepers everyone. Very well cultured and polite people. During my entire stay I didn't hear even one person scream and shout or fight. Even in traffic everyone is calm and smiling. The traffic and people are very disciplined here. There is a separate path for pedestrians and in the main market vehicles are not allowed, making it pollution free and noise free. Would love to visit this place again.
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  • 3 votes

Akhil agarwal
  • Akhil agarwal
  • Lives in Delhi
  • 3 Reviews

"Explore and have fun" new review

  • 6/7
  • Posted 1 week ago
What should I tell about Gangtok. Its a paradise on the earth. Do not forget to visit Nathula Pass and Changu lake which is 13000+ above the sea level. It is one of the must visit places in India. Very Clean, awesome and fun place. One of the best place for honeymoon.
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  • 5 votes

Prathik
  • Prathik
  • 3 Reviews

"Enjoyed Nature" new review

  • 4/7
  • Posted 1 week ago
We enjoyed the nature, loved the adventurous journey. It's a peaceful place with good people and good culture. Though we could not reach the famous Changu lake due to some road works, but we enjoyed a lot while travelling seeing the nature's beauty.
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  • 5 votes

Manish kumar
  • Manish kumar
  • Lives in Ellenabad
  • 2 Reviews

"Explore and have fun" new review

  • 4.5/7
  • Posted 1 week ago
Visit to Gangtok was a nice experience. Stay was a good one. Market was of good standard infact simulating like foreign. Hotel was good, staff were well-behaved. Sightseeing was convincing and good but time factor is important in one, it is not possible to visit and see all the important sites and monuments. It requires two-three days to explore and have fun.
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  • 5 votes

Madan kumar
  • Madan kumar
  • Lives in Bhilwara
  • 3 Reviews

"Paradise on the Earth" new review

  • 7/7
  • Posted 1 week ago
What should I tell about Gangtok. Its a paradise on the earth. Do not forget to visit Nathula Pass and Changu lake which is 13000+ above the sea level, the journey to these points are breath taking with full of snow and mist. Snow fall, Ice, Yak ride in changu lake, frozen lake, its really an paradise on the earth.

Why should we travel to any other countries, when we have Gangtok.
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  • 5 votes

Sushil Kamal
  • Sushil Kamal
  • Lives in Aurangabad
  • 3 Reviews

"live & feel nature!" new review

  • 7/7
  • Posted 1 week ago
In your lifetime you must plan for a trip to Gangtok!! Either with your loved one or friends or be it family!! I was there for 3 days but I felt like it was only hours! What a scenic place, mountain covered with ice and snow fall in changu lake! Truly awesome!!! North-eastern people are also very helpful! You will not face a single problem by locals they are very friendly! Weather, momo, road trip, paragliding, ice skating everything is just awesome!!! And one thing worth to mention is Gangtok, Sikkim is one of the cleanest place in India!!
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  • 5 votes

Nav Agarwal
  • Nav Agarwal
  • Lives in Howrah
  • 7 Reviews

"Very beautiful place" new review

  • 6/7
  • Posted 2 weeks ago
I went there first time and you won't believe I was amazed by the beauty of the place. It's always being a nice pleasure to be there. It's also very mesmerizing and flaunt looking. But some times I need to say every one has go there and take some time to forget themselves in a place like heaven.
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  • 5 votes

Ravi kant Gupta
  • Ravi kant Gupta
  • Lives in Bahadurgarh
  • 1 Review

"Beautiful place to visit at an affordable price" new review

  • 6.5/7
  • Posted 2 weeks ago
Gangtok is a beautiful place to visit in all seasons (except rainy season) with family or friends. The best place around Gangtok to visit is Noth Sikkim. One can get packages from the agents at a very reasonable rates. The people are very friendly and do not intend to burn a hole into your pocket.
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  • 5 votes

Kunal Sameekshya Sinha roy Subratha Kunal, Sameekshya, Sinha roy and 14759 other people have been to Gangtok.
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Gangtok Sightseeing

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