Sunday, August 2, 2009

Day 3: Permits & Lingdong Monastery, Gangtok

Riding Route: Gangtok - Rumtek - Lyngdong - Ban Jhakri Falls (60 KM Approx)
Road Condition: Bad patches on the way but overall good.
Max. Altitude: 4715 ft(Gangtok)

Got up at 6:30 and it was all very bright outside. Today our main aim was to get permits for entering North Sikkim. We had an idea on how to get permits, but we were not very confident that we will get the special permits. If you ask at their Tourist office on MG Road, they would bluntly say 'No' to the idea of taking your vehicle into North Sikkim. I already had done a bit of googling on this and had an idea of ways of getting these permits. Entering North Sikkim is not very easy if you want to enter individually and with your own vehicle, as its a very restricted area due to its closeness to China, It has a very heavy Army presence. So Manas and me headed to The Secretariat Building in Gangtok, where the Home Dept. Office is located and they are the ones who deals with issuing these special permits. It was like any other Govt. Office. We reached the place at around 9 and were told that officers would only come at 11. So we again came back to hotel and visited the local Kanchendzonga market in central Gangtok. We had to wait for a long time before we could meet the Additional Secretary, Home Dept.
He told us to write an application and attach all the identification and vehicle documents with it. There were two pretty ladies working in that office who were very cooperative. The Secretary was on Tour thus we could not get the permits that day. The lady asked us to collect the permits the next day at 11. It would have been great if we would have got the permits on the same day but then we were happy on the prospect of entering North Sikkim on our motorcycles!! We were so happy..
We had time so decided to visit the Rumtek Monastery which is short excursion from Gangtok. We climbed down from Gangtok and then took a right turn towards Rumtek Monastery. It was a lovely road with breathtaking scenery. Somewhere on the way we missed the turn to Rumtek and accidently went to Lingdong Monastery which was more beautiful. We spent some time there.

Prayer Wheels, Lingdong Monastery

We also got chance to see the Monks chanting prayers inside the monastery. It was a very soothing experience. We got some good videos and snaps while they were chanting. They didn’t mind it at all. Imagine doing this in Temples back home!
Wish our temples were so welcoming too.

Little Monk at the Monastery

Parag got so influenced that he decided to stay back for some more time. Initially we thought Parag was going to end his journey there itself and become a monk for all his life. He kind of changed his mind later on and came back to the Hotel. On the way back from that monastery we visited the Ban Jhakri falls which was a nicely maintained place. But it was not so beautiful as I would have liked it, maybe due to lack of water/rain.

Ban Jhakri Falls, Gangtok

Later that night we visited another restaurant named Taste of Tibet. It was far better place and we tried the Dansberg beer. The brand is owned by our bollywood ka villan Danny Denzongkpa! It had a nice refreshing aroma which we enjoyed a lot.

Momo Country!

Tibetan Cuisine

Gangtok Night View

1 comment :

  1. Hrishikesh Burkule..... can u plz cntact me on facebook or phones.... plz send ur mobile number...7501669508 its my number... i m in culcutta....i need ur help for than same destnion of gurudongbar lake via bikes.... plz... 10 to 20)