Best Tourist Attractions in Darjeeling
Darjeeling is truly a magnificent jewel in the crown of West Bengal and India. Since colonial times, Darjeeling has always had an air of leisure and relaxation. It boasts scores of quaint colonial buildings, cobbled streets and is delightfully nippy in summers. It has winding roads, greenery, beautiful sunsets and is by far the dream holiday destination of almost every Bengali in the world.
A Bengali might go visit the Alps or go visit the sandy beaches of the Bahamas, but he will always keep coming back for more to Darjeeling. Someone has said that once the scent of the Himalayas seeps its way into the skin of a man, he will return to the hills to die. It is the same with Darjeeling.
It is a place so magical and so full of love, that once you are here, you will always keep coming back for more. Here are 25 places in Darjeeling that you simply must pay a visit to on your trip there.
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Tourist Attractions in Darjeeling
Amidst Nature at Himalayan Mountaineering Institute and Darjeeling Zoo
The Himalayan Mountaineering Institute is the premier institution for individuals who want to train themselves in the art of mountain climbing. It is a beautiful institute built in the memory of Tenzing Norgay, one of the first men in the world to conquer Mount Everest. Apart from the institute where the students study and live, the place boasts of a restaurant, a museum, and a souvenir shop.
There is also a memorial dedicated to the life and work of Tenzing Norgay. In the premises of the HMI alone, there is Padmaja Naidu Himalayan Zoological Park which is locally known as Darjeeling Zoo. Try to spot the red panda and snow leopard at the zoo. These two places are located on Birch Hill.
Tiger Hill is the most famed attraction in Darjeeling. People might moan and whine about waking up early while they’re home in the city, but no one has a problem waking up in the wee hours of the morning to catch the sunrise from the viewpoint on top of Tiger Hill. From the top of Tiger Hill, you can catch the magnificent panorama that is on offer, including the Mount Kanchenjunga and Mount Everest.
Batasia Loop is a beautiful place that is literally heaven for trekkers and nature lovers. It is a complete circular spiral that the narrow gauge train (toy train) makes. The entire place is decorated by an elaborate garden which is full of beautiful varieties of flowering plants. The entire location boasts of many nice restaurants and also an eco-garden.
Darjeeling Mall, Observatory Hill, and Chowrasta
Darjeeling Mall is the heart of all activity in Darjeeling. You cannot visit Darjeeling and not go to the Mall. The Mall is where all the locals go to meet their friends and chat after work every day. It has numerous coffee shops and eateries and also boasts some cosy boutiques. The Mall is a perfect example of civilisation and nature coexisting peacefully.
One flank of the Mall is covered by pine forests and the other is covered by shops selling handloom, souvenirs, jewellery, carpets and loads of other beautiful items. You can also go explore Observatory Hill from where you can capture beautiful views of the Himalayan panorama.
Explore Rock Garden, Natural History Museum, and Ganga Maya Park
The Rock Garden is 10 km from Darjeeling town and is one of the most beautiful places to visit in the vicinity. It is set with beautifully maintained and arranged rock terraces which are dotted with innumerable species of flowering plants.
It is truly a heaven on earth for botanists and other nature lovers. 3 km ahead is the Ganga Maya Park, a beautiful nature park that has a stream rushing through its midst. Tourists can also enjoy the Chunnu Waterfall. You can also get a tour of Darjeeling’s natural beauty in a scientific way at the Bengal Natural History Museum.
Spiritual Side Of Darjeeling
You can also discover the spiritual side of Darjeeling by exploring a large number of Buddhist Monasteries in the vicinity. Ones you should absolutely pay a visit to are Japanese Temple, Peace Pagoda, Makhal Temple, Bhutia Busty Monastery, Ghoom Monastery, Dali Monastery, Samten Choling Monastery, Yiga Choeling Monastery, Aloobari Monastery and Dhirdham Temple.
These are serene places of prayer located in the lap of the hills. You can also visit St. Andrews’ Church to admire the magnificent Gothic architecture.
One of the most sought-after tourist activities in Darjeeling is the ropeway. From the ropeway, you can enjoy a beautiful view of the valley below and witness the Himalayas in all its glory. You can enjoy the lush green carpet of the tea gardens, the gleaming streams and waterfalls and the winding roads that are cut deep into the body of the hills.
Other places you can pay a visit to include the Tibetan Refugee Self Help Centre, where Tibetan refugee families earn money by making and selling beautiful handicrafts. You can also frequent the Shrubbery Nightingale Park and the Senchal Lake and Wildlife Sanctuary.
You cannot visit Darjeeling without visiting a tea estate. This is why you should absolutely visit the Happy Valley Tea Estate, which is Darjeeling’s oldest tea estate. You can also visit Love Road, Darjeeling Cemetery, DHR Ghoom Museum, Tenzing and Gombu Rock and DHR Sukna Museum.
Make your trip to Darjeeling an unforgettable one by visiting these places. Also, take innumerable photographs so you can cherish these memories always.