Sikkim Information and Tourist Places
Sikkim is a landlocked Indian state nestled in the Himalayas. Sikkim is the second smallest state of India. It is the second-smallest in area after Goa. Gangtok is the capital and largest town. Sikkim is home to the Mahayana form of Buddhism and its colourful Gompas are a major attraction. The predominant religions are Hinduism and Vajrayana Buddhism.
The official language of the state is English, but there is a sizable population that converses in Nepali, Lepcha, Bhatia, and Limbu. Sikkim has borders with Nepal, Tibet, Bhutan and the Indian state of West Bengal.
There are a wide variety of hotels in Sikkim. Hotels in Sikkim range from high-end luxury ones to budget friendly economy class hotels. The hotels in Sikkim showcase elaborate arrangements for comfort and leisure. Because of the Himalayans geography, swimming pools and elevators are also not common in the hotels in Sikkim. There are also some heritage hotels in Sikkim, which were actually palaces of the Royal family of the region and now are converted to hotels. Sikkim Hotels are comparatively cheaper than the hotels in other parts of India.
There is the main tourist attractions are Rumtek Monastery, Yumthang Valley, and Changu Lake and so many attractions located in Sikkim.
The largest monastery in Sikkim sprawling over a huge area. It was originally built in 1730 by the ninth Karmapa but was destroyed by fire and was reconstructed to the present state by the late 16th Gyalwa Karmapa in 1960. It includes a school built on modern lines to impart teachings in Tibetan and various aspects of Buddhism.
Yumthang is a valley in the high reaches of Himalayas also known as the valley of flowers. The Yumthang valley is situated at an altitude of Tibet. Yumthang is a beautiful destination, covered with Rhododendron and Primula flowers. A number of hot springs are scattered in the valley providing an unexpected opportunity to feel the warmth of the water even in freezing temperature.
Changu Lake is literally known as the ‘ source of the lake’ in Bhutia language. Situated around 35 kms away from Gangtok, the capital of Sikkim, this calm lake is located at an altitude of 12,310 ft on the Gangtok Nathu La highway. It’s cool, placid water smoothly merges with the scenic beauty around.
The traditional food of Sikkim, is gaining popularity among the masses. In the present day, Sikkimese cuisine has entered the kitchens of the world. Rice is the chief food of the Sikkimese. Depending on availability, meat and dairy products are consumed as well. The pattern of food production also reveals the gastronomy of Sikkim. With high altitudinal variation, crops like finger millet, wheat, buckwheat, barley, vegetable, potato, soybeans etc. are grown.
Momo is very popular Tibetan delicacy in Sikkim. It is prepared by stuffing minced meat, vegetables or cheese in flour dough and then moulding them in the form of dumplings. Gya Thuk or Thukpa is a noodle based soup with vegetables or meat. Sael Roti is Nepali cuisine is prepared by grinding a mixture of rice and water into a thick paste. Milk and sugar is added to the paste which is deep fried. It is normally eaten with potato curry or non-vegetarian dish.
Sikkim is renowned for its elegantly woven materials that incorporate dresses, shawls, blankets and knitted garments. Gangtok is the capital of Sikkim and a major reservoir of shopping places too. The main markets for shopping are Old market, New Market and Lal market. Here one finds shops of all kind which offer good range of items to be purchased. For a tourist there are many attractive items to be bought as carved furniture, the dresses, Lepcha weave bags, Carpets & Durries with intricate designs and colourful decorations. One can also buy wooden and bamboo artifacts. The real charm of shopping places in Sikkim comes from the fact that the markets of Sikkim are not as elaborate as one can easily trace in metropolitan cities.