Kalimpong

The second leg of out journey after Gangtok,was a stop at the small picturesque town of Kalimpong( 4,100 ft).

While Kalimpong was not initially on our schedule we made it our pit stop due to road sickness issues. But I tell you we regretted it not one bit. There’s not much to see really..but it’s a beautiful little hill-town in the Eastern Himalayas and its gentle laid-back charm can soothe your soul.

Kalimpong once belonged to Sikkim but was then taken by the Bhutanese and then passed into the hands of the British. Under the British it was primarily a center of Scottish missionary activity.

Apparently shopping is the most exciting touristy thing to do. There are two crowded bazaars as well as weekly markets on Wednesdays and Saturdays where one can buy Chinese textiles and lots of handicrafts attractive to anyone with a taste for oriental designs at DIRT CHEAP rates. No, I didn’t buy much as we were proceeding to Bhutan and I didn’t want to add to the already bulging suitcases.

Now , Doesnt this beat any BB Court in the world!

What to do in Kalimpong? Well, we did do visit all the must-see places, but I must admit none were overly impressive.There’s not much to do. But then that’s not the point. it’s just a quiet, picturesque town with loads of old British houses with its chimneys and gables and lovely gardens, great views. Most of all it has some sort of a charm , a placid ambiance that lends it character; basically great for a wander,trekking, for a chill out or to just savour the local food.

Kalimpong has also been a fav getaway for some big names among them Rabindranath Tagore and Dr. J.A.Graham. Rabindranath Tagore’s poem Janmadin was broadcast in India’s first Live Radio Broadcast from Kalimpong. Dr Graham is considered the father of Kalimpong for his various contributions to this enchanting town. His orphanage and school which was founded in 1880, with its own church, dairy, poultry, vegetable garden & bakery still run today.


Apart from Dr.Graham’s school one can also visit the Durpin Dara monastery in the south as well as check out the excellent views of the surrounding mountainside and the mighty Kanchenjunga range from the top of Deolo Hill(5,590 ft) in the North.

Stiking a Pose at Deola Hills

There is also a Science Center that you can visit if you are traveling with kids. Kalimpong produces 80% of India’s gladiolas and has a great number of nurseries.
We visited the Pineview Nursery which has a mind-blowing variety of cacti from the world over.

To Get to Kalimpong

• Air : Nearest airport Bagdogra (80 kms from Kalimpong)
• Rail : Two nearest railway stations are New Jalpaiguri (NJP) and Shiliguri
• Road : Kalimpong is connected by road with Calcutta 651 kms, Guwahati 513 kms, Delhi 1312 kms and other major cities in India.

Eat Out

Options are limited and we generally had our meals at the Hotel itself. We did go to the recommended Fresh Bite at
Rishi Road to taste the local cuisine,

To Stay
Kalimpong has a surprisingly large number of hotel options(since it is not tourist-choked). We stayed one night at Komfort Inn, a small yet homely cute place , and also at the colonial Himalayan Hotel.

Both GREAT places.

After our stay in Kalimpong, we left for Bhutan, refreshed and ready to take on more mountainous roads!

Advertisements
Leave a comment

6 Comments

  1. Wow wow wow! Lovely place… I’m waiting to go north-east….

    Reply
  2. bergamot

     /  July 21, 2010

    Nice pics… the cactii look great.

    Reply
  3. not yet get a chance to visit this place.. really nice to know abt such places.. good post

    Reply
  4. It is such nice a pleasure to see the pictures.

    Reply
  5. It is nice to see such tourist attractions and to know more about them. I have never been to kalimpong and would like to visit there after reading this post.

    Let’s see.

    Reply
  6. HI Sheba, Haven’t been over for a little while. Whole new look! I like it 🙂 What beautiful scenery, sounds like a lovely holiday.

    Reply

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

  • July 2010
    M T W T F S S
    « Jun   Aug »
     1234
    567891011
    12131415161718
    19202122232425
    262728293031  
  • Enter your email address to subscribe to this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

    Join 60 other followers

%d bloggers like this: