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Kalimpong

Kalimpong is a tourist destination due to its pleasant weather and great mountain views. The Hill station is situated at an average elevation of 1250 meters i.e. 4100 feet. It is the headquarters of the recently formed Kalimpong district. It is popular among tourists owing to its temperate climate, magnificent Himalayan view and great history and culture of the local people.

Tour Operation in Kalimpong

In many ways operating a tour in Kalimpong is relatively easy. There are no restrictions on tourist or vehicle movement in the town, sightseeing points are easily accessible and there is a great choice of food and accommodation for your guests. As a travel agent, you can be least worried while sending your guests to Kalimpong due to its many advantages.

The location of Kalimpong town is also very suitable from a tour operator perspective. The place is just 51 km from Darjeeling, 75 km from Gangtok and 77 km from Bagdogra airport. This makes Kalimpong the most centrally located tourist destination, easily accessible from all the places around.  

Attractions

The town is well known for its educational institutions, established before independence and Graham's home is one such institute. Gompas or monasteries popular among tourist are Tharpa Choeling Gompa (1922), Tongsa Gompa (1692) and Zong Dog Palri Fo-Brang Gompa (Mid 1970). Kalimpong boosts of numerous nurseries that excel in the production of orchids, gladioli, Cactus, Flower bulbs, tubers, and rhizomes and contribute to the economy of Kalimpong. 

Nurseries are worth visiting. Other places to visit include Dr. Graham's Home, along with the adjoining chapel, Nature Interpretation Center, Deollo, Hanuman Mandir, Durpin Monastery, Mangal Dham, Golf Course, etc. Few places around Kalimpong worth visiting are Lava, Rishop, Lolaygaon, Samthar Valley, Charkhole, Reshi Khola, Iccheygaon, Silent valley in Sillery, Pedong, Relli Khola, Rikissum, Kagay and many more. It has a lot of Homestays in the outskirt and each of them has their own beauty and charm.

The area around Kalimpong is classified as an ecological hotspot. Neora Valley National Park has much wildlife including Tigers, Clouded leopard, Siberian weasel, Asiatic black bear, barking deer, Himalayan tahr, goral, gaur, pangolin and Red Panda. Acacia is the most commonly found species at lower altitudes, while cinnamon, ficus, bamboo and cardamom, pine trees, oak, birch, maple, alder and other evergreen alpine vegetation including species of rhododendrons.

Birding is one activity for which outskirt of Kalimpong is known for.   Among the spotted birds are pheasants, bulbuls, orioles, owls, partridges, sunbirds, woodpeckers, cuckoos, minivets, warblers, swallows, swifts, flycatchers and many more. Being a leading Travel operator and a destination management Company we organize corporate group activities, school excursion other than the normal FIT & MICE. Specialized tour like Birding and Tea Tourism are also looked after by us. Adventure activities like Trekking, Camping, etc are taken care of by our team.

History

Till the mid-19th century, the area around Dalingkot near Kalimpong was ruled in succession by the Sikkimese and Bhutanese kingdoms. King of Bhutan in 1706 won this territory from the Sikkimese and renamed it Kalimpong. The Treaty of Sinchula (1865) after the Anglo - Bhutan War in 1964 was signed, in which Bhutanese held territory east of the Teesta River was ceded to the British East India Company.

An influential Dorji family from Bhutan has donated a place to stay by the British and through them, trade and relations started with Tibet. Later on, it came to be known as the Bhutan House. Kalimpong's proximity to the Nathu La and Jelep La passes (La means ‘mountain pass’) became an important trading outpost for furs, wool and food grain between India and Tibet. Jelep La & Nathu La was the offshoots of the ancient Silk Road. Kalimpong developed fast and turned into a colorful city.

Geography

The town is located on a ridge overlooking the Teesta River with greenery all around. The town center is on a ridge connecting two hills, Deolo, and Durbin at an elevation of 1247 meters i.e. 4091 feet. Deolo is the highest point at an altitude of 1,704 meters and Durpin Hill is at an elevation of 1372 meters and both are must visit places. The River Teesta flows in the valley below and separates Kalimpong from the state of Sikkim and the district of Darjeeling. Mount Kanchenjunga at 8586 meters is the world's third tallest peak and part of the Himalaya range is visible clearly from Kalimpong.

Weather

Kalimpong has five distinct seasons such as spring, summer, autumn, winter and the monsoons. Average temperature ranges from a high of 29°C to a low of 9°C hence can be claimed moderate and mild. By June monsoon enters the region and lasts till the end of September and the area faces severe rainfall. Winter lasts from Mid November to Mid April, with the maximum temperature being around 15°C. Kalimpong is often enveloped by fog.

People and culture

Kalimpong is home to Nepalis, indigenous Lepchas, other ethnic groups including immigrants such as the Newars, Bhutia, Yolmos, Bhujels, Sunuwars, Sarkis, Damais, Magars, Chettris, Bahuns, Thakuris, Gurungs, Tamangs, Sherpas, Limbus, Rais and the Kamis. The town is a religious center of Buddhism and all its festivals are religiously observed with colorful processions and gatherings. The Tibetan Buddhist monastery Zang Dhok Palri Phodang holds a number of rare Tibetan Buddhist scriptures. Other festivals include Dashain, Tihar, the Tibetan festival of Losar. Languages spoken in Kalimpong include Nepali, Hindi, English, and Bengali. 
Football is the most popular sport here. Kalimpong has a golf course next to Kalimpong Circuit House. Morgan House is an old English architecture worth mentioning as some actor Utpal Dutt and other celebrities like Uttam Kumar, Supriya, Kishore Kumar, Amit Kumar, Leena Chandavarkar, Nargis, Sunil Dutt, Om Prakash have stayed here and their testimonials can be seen.

Local Food

The Momo a type of dumpling is best available in this region and worth a try. Steamed dumpling with an array of stuffing like pork, beef, and vegetables as per the order. Vegetable Momo and Chicken is worth trying. Chhang designates a local beer made from millet. Churpee (Dried cheese) and Chittora (Dried Pickles) are quite familiar along with the local Chocolate. Thukpa (Noodles) served in soup form represents other popular snacks in Kalimpong.

Communication

The nearest airport is Pakyong Airport (PYG) (60 Kilometers) & Bagdogra Airport (IXB) (90 Kilometers). The nearest major Railway Station is New Jalpaiguri Railway Station (NJP) and the nearest Bus Terminus is Tenzing Norgay Bus Terminus (Junction). Nearest Major City is Siliguri of Darjeeling district. It takes about 03 hours to reach Kalimpong from any of these locations by car. Private taxis, shared taxis and buses are the main public transport to reach Darjeeling from any of these locations. Alternatively, you can take the fascinating toy train ride from New Jalpaiguri Railway Station (NJP) or Siliguri Junction Station all the way up to Darjeeling soaking in the beauty of Himalayas.

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The journey started more than a decade ago when a financial consultant, a social activist and a biology researcher came together to start a business in tourism that none of them knew about. But travel is something they loved and enjoyed, and so they decided to change the paradigms in their own way. And they remarked “travel is more than a profession, it’s a passion”. Read More [+]

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