The capital of northeastern state of Sikkim, Gangtok is a paradise for nature lovers, adventurers, and yes peace seeking souls too. When it comes to things to do in Gangtok, there are experiences for every kind of traveler and such is the beauty of these experiences that they leave an impression on your heart. So, without further ado, if you’re planning a holiday to Gangtok with your family, friends, partner, or even solo, these are the top things you must try in Gangtok before coming back.
1. River rafting in Gangtok:
The Teesta river flows through Gangtok and is an excellent choice when it comes to enjoying the best river rafting experience in India. The river offers a rapid level ranging from 1 - 4 and depending on the kind of experience one has; adventure seekers can choose their level. A town called Makha that lies beside Gangtok is the beginning of the 11-km circuit which passes through Rangpo through Sirwani. The best part of river rafting apart from the fact that it is one of the most challenging and enjoyable circuits in India is that you also get to see mesmerizing mountain views as you challenge your way through the rapids.
2. Paragliding experience in Gangtok:
One of the most exciting and newest things to do in Gangtok is the paragliding experience. This activity happens at Luing Resithang which is close to the eastern part of the city of Gangtok. Although this is one of the newest attractions in Gangtok, opened in 2010, it is one of the best places to do paragliding in India. The mesmerizing panoramic views of the mountains while flying can only be felt and not described in the words.
3. Ropeway Cable Car Ride Gangtok:
The seven-minute ropeway cable car ride in Gangtok is one of the best things to do in the city. People from far and wide visit the city just to enjoy this ride. Originating from Deorali and ending at Tashling, this one-kilometer ride offers stunning views of the city and Khangchendzonga. Gangtok has long been famous for this cable car ride and the only way to find out why is by actually indulging in it on your trip to Gangtok.
4. Yak Safari in Gangtok:
Yak safari is one of the most fascinating things to do in Gangtok and is primarily enjoyed at the Tsomgo Lake. And yes, the lake is stunning but so is the yak safari experience there which slowly takes you to the Tsomgo lake from Gangtok and gently rides on the steel slopes. This is one of those moments where you feel the time slow down and are truly immersed in the ride and nothing else.
5. International Flower Festival in Gangtok:
Attending the International Flower Festival is one of the best things to do in Gangtok and it happens in the month of May. The whole city during this time is decorated with flowers and is drenched in colors of every pallette. From the local varieties to the exotic ones from around the world, the flowers become the heart and soul of the city during this time. So, if you want to visit Gangtok and experience its true charm and the bliss of the spring, May is the time to do so.
6. Shopping at MG Road:
The MG Road in Sikkim is the most famous road of the city and also the first one where spitting or littering can lead to a severe fine. This means it is a clean area to shop for souvenirs and pick up some handicrafts and local produce that you won’t find anywhere else. From the cafes to the street shopping to souvenirs and some authentic Sikkim handicrafts, buy it all from here. And yes, if you happen to visit the city during the month of December, you can also be part of the Gangtok Food and Culture Festival.
7. Visit the Namgyal Institute of Tibetology:
Visiting the Namgyal Institute of Tibetology in Gangtok is one experience that will stay with you forever. An institution that is away from all the social evils and systems of society, this place focuses on peace and living the good life via the teachings of the Buddha. The building houses paintings, relics, scriptures, and murals and also houses a Buddhist Centre of learning. This is a must visit place for those who are looking for inner peace.
8. Gangtok Sightseeing:
Gangtok has many wonderful places for its visitors to see. From the amazing MG Road to the Ganesh Tok or Tashi View Points, there are many wonderful places to see in this paradiscial city that offers the best of urban and nature.
9. Visit Nathula Pass:
Nathula Pass is one of the most famous places near Gangtok and is more or less always included in a Gangtok package. The Pass which is at a height of 14,140 feet is a must visit place for every traveler and on the way to this place, travelers can also see various lakes along with amazing flora and fauna.
10. Monastery visit:
Gangtok is home to some of the most famous monasteries in India and caters to thousands of devotees who come here in search of peace and indulge in some Buddhist teachings. The famous places of religion here include Rumtek Monastery, and Enchay, Do-drul Chorten.
Looking at these things to do in Gangtok, it is safe to say that this capital of Sikkim is one of the best places to visit in the Northeast India and given a chance, everyone should visit it at least once in their lifetime - because once you do, you will surely come back again!