Darjeeling known as the queen of hills has been a major tourist destination in West Bengal for the past two decades. From the town of Siliguri on the foot of the hills it takes 3 hours in a car to reach this amazing hill station. The journey from Siliguri to Darjeeling itself will amaze you to such an extent you will be restless to visit this small town high up on the mountains. The view along this journey is so enchanting you will find yourself staring at the beautiful mountains and the down below valleys along the way. At certain times of the year a dense fog engulfs the hills and gives you a misty feeling which does not make your day gloomy but makes the town all the more mysterious. The town has been a favourite with travellers in West Bengal and continues to be so with its enthralling roads and captivating sceneries. It is also a gateway to Sikkim another beautiful state and makes travelling a pleasure. The view of the Kanchenjunga from the town is so crystal clear that you feel you are sitting on the lap of the great Himalayas. There are several places to visit in this mesmerizing hill station and some of them are;
Ghoom is a town adjacent to Darjeeling. Ghoom is famous for having the highest railway station in the world. The famous toy train goes through Ghoom which is even higher than Darjeeling. Take a ride in the toy train while enjoying the beauty of the queen of the hills. It also has the Ghoom monastery which was built in 1875 and is a great place for spiritual revival.
The main attraction in Mirik is the Mirik Lake. It is the largest natural Lake in West Bengal. The Lake is surrounded by tall trees and a lush green park. It’s a great place for relaxation and a peaceful day or two. The lake also permits a few activities such as boating and fishing. The Mirik Lake is around 1 and a half hour journey from Darjeeling and brings a change from the high hills and cold weather.
This is a beautiful garden with colourful flowers and a lush green cover. This place houses a Gorkha War Memorial. The beauty and the excitement of this place are best experienced when you are on a toy train. The toy train spirals down in a loop and gives you a beautiful sight of the garden as well as the surrounding scenic beauty. It comes down around 1000 feet and allows you to savor the enthralling environment around you.
HIMALAYAN MOUNTAINEERING INSTITUTE AND ZOOLOGICAL PARK
This is one of the most exciting places in Darjeeling to visit. The Himalayan Mountaineering Institute is a reputed institute which trains its applicants in mountain climbing, trekking, and many such activities which might be needed when you are on a trip to the highest parts. They give you training on surviving during a trek and also on how to climb up and down steep cliffs. The zoological park is also a fascinating site as you will find many wild animals of different breeds and species.
ROCK GARDEN AND GANGAMAYA PARK
Another beautiful place which is a must visit is the rock garden and the gangamaya park. It is one of the most beautiful sights one can hope to see coming to Darjeeling. The journey to the garden is absolutely enchanting with huge slopes of green hills on either side encompassing the path. Beautiful hills and scenes can be seen in the distant. The park itself is a mesmerizing place to be. The garden is full of colourful flowers and beautiful plants. It overlooks a small river like canal whose water gushes down the slope. Sitting among the flowers and the greenery looking at the water go down its rightful path makes for quite a tranquil and peaceful and beautiful time.
Tiger hill is one of the famous destinations in Darjeeling. It can be reached by car or on foot. The journey to this peak begins from Ghoom and usually people prefer trekking to the peak. The trek is an exciting adventure and all visitors are recommended to try the trek. On reaching you can witness a scintillating sun rise from the tiger hill peak. It is one of the most enchanting sights you will ever see. The Kanchenjunga and the Mount Everest are also visible from the peak.
HAPPY VALLEY TEA ESTATE
This estate houses one of the highest tea factories in the world. It is situated amidst beautiful sceneries and enthralling surroundings. The journey through the tea estate will leave you spell bound at the beauty of the queen of hills. The estate is spread across a huge area and you can view its beauty while travelling.
Travelling on the ropeway and looking at the hills and valleys down below will leave you wanting for more. This journey on the ropeway is a fascinating one and the scenery you can witness is enthralling.
MALL AND CHOWRASTA
This is the centre of the town of Darjeeling. People come here to hang out and enjoy the cafes and the restaurants. There is also horse riding facility available here.
TENZING NORGAY ROCK
It’s a rock named after the great Tenzing Norgay. Here people practice rock climbing and they are trained for tougher expeditions.