Darjeeling Experience: every bengali visits darjeeling atleast thrice in life1)in school days along with parents during summer vacation2)with wife for honeymoon3)along with wife & children.last november when i reached darjeeling ,this was actually my 5th visit this time,with my wife & child& in a time when bengalis have found new love in gangtok rejecting old darling darjeeling for fear of disturbance .after staying 4 nights in darjeeling,i felt,the hill queen is also feeling lonely,weeping silently for lack of tourists but the spirit of darjeeling is grossly intact.
Food, sight-seeing and shopping: i took joy ride in toy train from darjeeling to ghum.it looked like mini world.tourists from london,paris,japan,mumbai,gujrat.....all were waiting to have a memorable journey in heritage train.when we reached BATASIA LOOP ,the train against the background of snow white kanchanjunga looked like a true himalayan queen.
THE MALL is as beautiful as ever....i was overjoyed to have a cup of nice tea with typical darjeeling flavor at only rs 5.The back side of mall where the old lady sang rabindrasangeet in satyajit rays movie KANCHANJANGHA is now lovers paradise.i also felt nostalgic & my 2 yr old son was silently watching hills to give us some space.
Next morning when i reached TIGER HILL at 5 o clock morning i remembered poor RABINDRANATH TAGORE who failed to see sunrise at tiger hill in his all 7 visits due to cloud but i was lucky again to enjoy a breath taking sun rise.the foreign tourists were awe struck.i found one gujrati couple to utter MANTRA while observing the color changes on kanchanjunga.darjeeling is place for RED PANDA ....my son was excited to see the activities of red panda in zoo...adjacent to mountaineering institute.
Activities & things to do: dont miss evening snacks in glenery or keventers restaurant.you may visit mirik lake & can shop in pashupoti market ,nepal on midway.shopping in mall area is a lovely experience.you can trek to sandakfu.or can take mountaineering training in institute
Travel tips, How to reach, travel warnings etc: if you have motion sickness go darjeeling from njp through main road.otherwise go through pankhabari....it is shorter & view is better.chose a hotel in mall ....try heritage hotels .....kanchanjunga is best visible in october .....fix a date in october end after durgapuja festival is over.always book toy train in advance like normal train booking.darjeeling mail uttarbanga express kanchankonya express are good option from kolkata (sealdah)but flight to bagdogra is better option.from njp to darjeeling ,its 3 hr journey by car & 7 hrs by toy train.
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