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<< Indian Himalayas << Pilgrimage Travel Destinations >> << Pilgrimage Travel Sikkim (Gangtok)>>

Pilgrimage Travel Gangtok (Sikkim)

East District, Sikkim
1,870m
Capital Of Sikkim.
Mid- February To May End & Mid - September To December

Gangtok is endless. The small town itself is a beautiful place to move around. It houses sites like the most important 'stupa' of Sikkim, the Do Drul Chorten, the solitary temple or the Enchey Monastery, the marvellous collection of orchids in the Orchid Sanctuary and the picturesque Tashi Ling that provides an astounding view of the Kanchenjunga range. The Namgyal Institute of Research and the Tsuk la Khang, a depository of a large collection of scriptures and the principal place of worship for the local Buddhists.

Do Drul Chorten - Do Drul Chorten is one of the many important attractions of Gangtok. It is regarded as the most important 'stupa' of Sikkim. Built in 1945 by Trulshi Rimpoche, head of the Nyingma order of Tibetan Buddhism, this stupa also has sacred gold-topped shikhara with 108 prayer wheels. This highly revered Chorten is also characterised by complete mandala sets of Dorjee Phurba (Bajra Kilaya), a set of Kan-gyur relics ( Holy Books), complete 'Zung'( mantras) and other religious objects. The Chorten also has two huge statues of Guru Rimpoche (Guru Padmasambhava) around it.

Institute of Tibetology: About 1.5 km (nearly a mile) from downtown Gangtok is the Institute of Tibetology, an organisation dedicated to furthering Tibetan studies, Buddhist philosophy and region. It attracts scholars from all over the world. It houses a rare collection of 30,000 books, Tantric documents, rare manuscripts written in gold on the bark of a poisonous tree, antique thanks and 200 icons, all prized objects of art for the Buddhist world. The Institute has won both national and international acclaim.

Tsuk la Khang - Another place that must be included in your sightseeing is the Tsuk la Khang. A depository of a large collection of scriptures, this is the principal place of worship and assembly for the local Buddhists. The Tsuk la Khang is also characterised by the beautiful and impressive building with mural covered interior, lavishly decorated altars or images of Buddha, bodhisattvas and Tantric deities and the many fine works of woodcarving.

Namgyal Institute - A must visit in Gangtok, the Namgyal Institute was built in the year 1958 to promote research in Mahayan Buddhism and Tibetan language and traditions. Built in a traditional style, this institute has world's largest collections of books and rare manuscripts on Mahayan Buddhism, in addition to the works of art and silk embroidered Tankhas. Moreover, it also houses relics of monks, samples of Lepcha scripts, masks and sacred objects like Kapali, a bowl made from a human skull, and the carku, a flute made from a thigh bone.

La Bazzar or Market - On Sunday, Gangtok' s Lal Bazaar is a melody of colour. Various ethnic groups from different villages gather to haggle, bargain, gossip or just sell their wares. The marketplace rings to a cacophony of sound-the babble of ethnic tongues, the chiming bells of the Indian sweet shops the whining of a beggar, the chanting of prayers, the advertising of the Sikkim lottery and the blaring Hindi love songs from the Denzong cinema.

Tashi Ling - Tashi Ling is located at a distance of just 6 kilometres from the main town. The Tashi Ling is another important site to visit in Gangtok for it provides astounding view of the Kanchenjunga range. Here lays the Tashi Ling monastery mostly known for its 'Bumchu' (Sacred Pot). This pot contains holy water, which has never run dry for last 300 years. The place also provides view of the Phodong and the Labrang monasteries located on the opposite hill. Just a day's walk from Pemayangtse, this is also a wonderful picnic spot.

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