Also known as Changu Lake, the Tsongmo Lake is most definitely a must visit summer as well as winter site near Gangtok. About 2 hours from the city this serene glacial lake is a lovely retreat for the Sikkim tourist.
The lake has been extremely well-preserved by the authorities and is something of a matter of pride ofr the state. It is also a great Stop over while heading to Nathu la. It looks exceptionally stunning in winter but the roads do tend to be closed then so if you are going in the beginning of winter, it will be the best time to visit it.
Ganesh Tok is a much loved tourist spot in Gangtok. Some say it is the best viewing sport for spectacular vistas of the city. Whether this is true or not, it is certainly a great place to visit while in Gangtok.
There is a small temple dedicated to the Hindu god Ganesh and the area atop a hill is also one of the most popular tourist attractions due to the amazing vistas it provides. You will also found a few small souvenir shops, kiosks and other tiny places along the way and at the top of the hill as well. The Kanchenjunga hill in all its glory can be seen from here and is not to be missed. The best time to witness it is in the morning.
The Tashi viewpoint is an interesting way to avail panoramic views of the city of Gangtok right up to the Nathula. Seeing the Kanchenjunga from here is sure to be a lovely experience.
If you go early in the morning, the sunrise is surely quite spectacular. This viewpoint is perhaps the lowest in the city which makes it slightly unfavorable in times of fog when you may not be able to see anything. But on clearer days the place offers lovely views of the city
Major Harbhajan Singh served in the Indian Army and lost his life while escorting a mule caravan from his battalion headquarters in Tekula to Dengchukla in 1968. Harbhajan Singhs body was found when a soldier dreamt of him telling him exactly where to find the body.
Soon, the body was found and the shrine was made in the honor of the brave soldier. Today, it is said that Harbhajan Singh warns Indian soldiers of the upcoming attacks at the Indo-Chinese borders and even Chinese army men believe to have seen a human figure patrolling the border at night.
Baba Harbhajan Singh Memorial Temple
The Himalayan Zoological Park or the Gangtok Zoo is sure to be one of the most unique zoo experiences. All of natures bounty that the Himalayas have been blessed with has been preserved here in a rare collection. Even if you are planning a short trip dont forget to put this one on your list.
The Red Panda, the Snow Leopard and many other lovely and unique Himalayan creatures can be seen here, in a largely preserved habitat. The species you will see are simply astonishing. The clouded leopard, leopard cat etc. are some other animals that shouldnt be missed
Himalayan Zoological Park
Monastery , Nature
The Ranka Monastery, also known as Lingdum Monastery is located around 20 kilometres away from Gangtok and follows the Zurmang Kagyud lineage of Buddhism.
During your visit, you can enter the Prayer room that contains a beautiful golden Buddha statue. The courtyard is where young lamas are trained and you can truly see the beautiful architecture of the monastery from here.
Temple, View Point
Hanuman Tok, which is similar to the Ganesh Tok is another very interesting Hindu religious site in Gangtok. There is a Hanuman Temple in the region which is considered to be sacred. Hindus from all over the country visit this place precisely for its religious significance. The typical Hindu architecture and the carving of the idols and the walls are worth noting
Religious Site, Monastery
Enchey Monastery is a tiny and yet well-known place in Gangtok. If you dont have a lot of time to spend in the city but do not want to miss out one its beautiful monasteries, the Enchey Monastery, being quite easy to access is your best option.
Even though it is one of the smaller monasteries, it is absolutely beautiful. The intricately painted window panes are worth noting. The images and carvings of gods and goddesses are quite fascinating to see as well. During January or February (depending on the Tibetan Calendar) they are also host to the Cham dance festival which is visually quite spectacula
Food And Drinks, Streets
MG Marg (Mahatma Gandhi marg) is a pedestrian street in Gangtok and is home to some of the best hang-out spots, shops and eateries in the city. The street springs to life at night and has enough places to have a seat and simply watch people go by. The colourful shops that line the street are perfect to shop for gifts while grabbing a bite at the local eateries, completes the experience. The view of the surrounding mountains from the street adds to its beauty
Mahatma Gandhi Marg
Religious Site, Monastery
It is a place worth visiting while in Gangtok. The building has withstood years and years of changing weather and although it has been occasionally refurbished, itsnatural strength is what makes it stand worth and tall.It also happens to be the most important and prestigious monastery in the region. Even the monks who are allowed entry into the place have to undergo a very strict screening process. This gives the place tremendous religious and cultural significance
Nathu La is a definite must visit from the city of Gangtok. This Pass in the Himalayas is on the border between India and China and one of the most interesting sites to see in Sikkim. You will need a permit to visit Nathu La and you can only access it through the Indian border but the place is worth the effort.
Religious Site, Monastery
Sikkim is known for its incredibly serene calm and the lovely monasteries engulfed in it. Rumtek Monastery in many ways epitomizes this calm and peace. The Monastery, also known as the Dharmachakra center, is a stunning place to see in Gangtok.
The Rumtek Monastery Buddha figurine, is certainly worth seeing. Set in a lovely golden hue he is a symbol of peace. The lovely colors in which the walls, the pillars and the exterior of the building have been decorated are very pretty. As you walk up to the monastery, the subtle grind of the prayer wheels sets the atmosphere.
Library, History Museum
The Namgyal Institute of Tibetology is the best place to learn about Tibet and the Himalayas and has a Museum and a Library that offers you everything you would want to know about Tibet and even Buddhism. The campus of the Institute itself is loved for its Tibetan Buddhist architecture.
The museum showcases a rare collection of statues, ritual objects, traditional art objects, thangkas (painted, woven and embroidered scrolls) and ancient manuscripts in Sanskrit, Tibetan, Chinese and Lepcha. A casket containing the relics of the two great Asokan missionaries- Madhyama and Kasyapagotra is the highlight of the museum