Gangtok is the capital city Sikkim, the second smallest state of India. Famous for its many important monasteries, and for the picturesque views of the Himalayas, Gangtok is one of the important hill-station of the country. In Gangtok you can see a smooth blend of both tradition and modernity. Located at an altitude of 1547 m above sea level, Gangtok houses some of the important Buddhist religious sites too. The existence of the peaceful Chortens or Stupas, old monasteries and the un-spoilt natural beauty of Gangtok offers you a truly unique traveling experience
PLACES TO VISIT IN GANGTOK:
Enchey monastery is another place you must visit in Gangtok. The Enchey monastery literally means the solitary temple. At the time it was constructed, it was the only building in the entire area. This place especially attracts attention during the religious dances or 'Chaam' performed in January. Located above Siniolchu Lodge, about 3 km away from the town centre, the relatively small monastery was built 200 years ago and the present building was constructed in the year 1909. The site where the monastery is built is supposed to be blessed by Lama Druptob Karpo, a tantric master known for his flying powers. You can also get wonderful view of Kanchenjunga from here.
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 lies 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 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.
FAIR AND FESTIVALS
Fairs and festivals celebrated in Gangtok add to the charm of the hill resort. The Tashiding Gompa hosts the annual Buddhist festival of Bumchu in January. During January-February the dancing festival of Chaam is held in Enchey Gompa. The monthly mask dance of Kagyat is another attraction in the hill resort. Saga Dawa is held in Gangtok during May, and Drukpa Teshi is celebrated throughout Sikkim during July mark Buddha's first teaching.
DO DRUL CHARTEN
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.