Savor the Himalayan Environ
THE ONLY BROTHER STATE IN NE
Among the north-eastern states, here are seven sisters and a brother. Sikkim is generally identified as the brother.
The capital of Sikkim is Gangtok.
A MIXED PACKAGE
Sikkim has a lot to offer to the discerning visitors. Besides the natural scenery, Sikkim is a melting pot of cultures, traditions and beliefs.
The exhilarating journey begins from Darjeeling in the West Bengal State of India.
There are swift and rippling rivers, snow-clad mountain peaks, lush valleys, snow clad mountain peaks and many avenues to share and even challenge nature.
Sikkim is a unique and exceptional experience.
SIKKIM: AN ADVENTURER’S PARADISE
Sikkim has lots to offer for the adventurer. Mention may be made of hang gliding, rock climbing, and trekking besides many other areas where you can literally feel the gushing wind, and the flowing clouds.
THE GUARDIAN OF SIKKIM
Kanchenjunga ((28,209 ft/8,598 m) – the third highest peak of the world – almost stands as the guardian of Sikkim.
SIKKIM: LOSE YOURSELF AMIDST NATURE’S BOUNTY
Sikkim is a treasure trove of natural resources.
While trekking on the mountainous trail you can savor the fantastic sights of the Himalayan ranges.
What’s more, you’ll simply be lost amidst the exquisite bounty of Mother Nature.
SIKKIM: BUDDHIST PILGRIMAGE SPOT
Above all, Sikkim is a pilgrimage spot for the Buddhists. Many ancient Buddhist monasteries are located in the state.
SIKKIM: NATURAL MUSEUM OF BUTTERFLIES
Almost a Shangri-La, Sikkim is also a wonder spot for butterflies. Varieties of butterflies are found amidst the colorful flowers of the State.
SIKKIM: A SHORT POLITICAL BACKUP
Sikkim was an independent Himalayan kingdom ruled by the king known as the Chogya deemed as the ‘God-king’. The Sikkimese ruling family followed hereditary monarchy. Palden Thondup Namgyal was the last Chogyal of Sikkim. He ascended the throne in 1963.
Sikkim became a protectorate of India and in return enjoyed full internal autonomy according to the terms of a treaty signed between the two countries in 1950.
The Chogyal had to seek the intervention of the Government of India to subdue political unrest against the royal family in April 1973. India rushed troops and also deputed a chief administrator as a permanent political agent.
The political unrest was brought under control following an agreement among the Government of India, the Chogyal, and his political rivals the very next month. The Chogyal granted additional democratic rights to the citizens besides guaranteeing protection to the minorities.
Nonetheless, the political upheaval continued. Finally a referendum was called for. As a consequence thereof, monarchy came to an end in 1975.
Sikkim became an Indian state immediately after.
THE SIKKIM POLITICAL STRUCTURE
The Sikkim legislature is made up of a single-chamber. There are 32 members of the state legislative assembly.
From Sikkim, two Members of Parliament one for the Lower house (Lok Sabha) and the other to the Upper House (Rajya Sabha) are elected every five years.
There are four districts of the Himalayan state.
SIKKIM AT A GLANCE
|SIKKIM||: One of the highest Indian regions of the world.|
|TYPICALITY||: This north-eastern state has many spurs. The Himalayan main range also crisscrosses the State.|
|TEMPERATURE||: Gangtok – highest hilltop tourist destination spot of Sikkim – experiences 39°F to 57°F (4°C to 14°C) on the average in January or the winter season. The average temperature of the remaining parts of the State ranges from 57° F to 72° F (14° to 22° C) in May or during the summer season.|
|ANNUAL RAINFALL||: Approximately one-third of the hill state is covered by forests. However, the average rainfall varies according to the region and altitude of the state.|
|CLIMATIC FACTORS||: Alpine to tropical.|
|CLIMATIC VARIETY||: Perennially snow-capped mountain peaks and ranges; temperate hills; besides the humid and hot climate that prevails generally over the lowlands.|
|FOCAL POINT||: The Ch’u-mu-pi Valley. It is the strategic mountain wall gap between NE India and Tibet.|
|HIGHEST ELEVATION||: Kanchenjunga. It is 28,209 ft or 8,598 m. This Himalayan mountainous peak is one of the highest in the world.|
|LOWEST ELEVATION||: 1000 ft or 305 m in southern Sikkim.|
|POPULATION||: According to the 1991 Census, the population of Sikkim is 406,457.|
|AVERAGE DENSITY||: 148 per sq mile (57 persons per sq km).|
|MAJORITY POPULATION||: Nepalese. They are Hindus.|
|LARGEST MINORITIES||: Lepchas and Bhutias. The Bhutias are of Tibetan stock.|
|TRADITIONAL CRAFTS||: Handicrafts.|
|ECONOMY BASE||: Agriculture.|
|EXPORT PRODUCE||: Apples, oranges, potatoes and cardamom.|
|OTHER PRODUCTS||: Rice, wheat, barley and corn (maize).|
|ECONOMIC ACTIVITIES||: Mining of minerals like lead, marble, copper, coal and iron ore. Moreover, many of the populace raise yak and sheep while trading in the products of these cattle.|
|MODERN-DAY FOCUS||: Tourism in all forms, viz., eco-tourism, adventure tourism and cultural tourism.|
|MAIN TRAVELLING MODE||: Road transport.|
|OFFICIAL LANGUAGE||: Hindi.|
|GOVERNMENT LANGUAGE||: English|
|OTHER LANGUAGES||: Limbu, Lepcha, Nepali, and Bhutia. The Bhutias are Buddhists while the Lepchas follow a combination of Buddhism combined with traditional animistic beliefs.|
|LITERACY RATE||: Approximately 60 per cent of the total population.|
Gangtok – the capital of Sikkim – is a quaint but delightful place. You’ll come across modern architecture rubbing shoulders with pagodas and markets in the monks robed in crimson.
There is no dearth of tourist destination spots in Sikkim. The typical aspect of Gangtok is that most of the buildings of this north-eastern have their roofs as pagodas.
The best part pf Sikkim is that lodging facilities are up to the international standards. They include lodging facilities and also hotels.
If you opt for the conducted tours, you’ll be taken to the northern border from where you can have a bird’s eye view of Nepal.
TOURIST DESTINATION SPOTS
The tourists are commonly taken to the following places: Ghoom Monastery, Tiger Hill, Batasia Loop, the Mirick Lake, the Tsangu lake, the Deer Park, the Enchey Monastery which is more than 200 years, Orchid Sanctuary, Rumtek Monastery, Parmesan Nadia Himalayan Zoological park, of Deolo Hill, Gangtok Directorate of Handicrafts and Handlooms, Thshangu Lake & Baba Mander, Gangtok Directorate of Handicrafts and Handlooms, Dr Graham Homes School, Thonga Goma Monastery, Mangaldham, Nurseries at Kalimpong, Himalayan Mountaineering Institute (Closed on Thursday), Ropeway, Peace Pagoda & Rock Garden, Tensing-Gumbo Rock, Tibetan Refugee Self Help Center, Lebong Race Course, Peace Pagoda, Rock Garden – Gangamaya Park, the Gangtok-based Research Institute of Tibetology, Thshangu Lake and the Baba Mandir. among others.