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Darjeeling has already been immortalized in Indian movies and ones from Hollywood with the world-famous Darjeeling Himalayan Railway, a mini-railway service that takes passengers around hills and ranges with natural beauty at its best. Darjeeling is a hill station in the northern area of the state of West Bengal in India and boasts of snow-capped peaks, a true paradise in the Lesser Himalayas or the Mahabharata Ranges. Darjeeling is a township that has been nurtured as a tourist destination since the time of the British Empire and is known across the globe for its vast tea plantations and exquisite quality of tea. It’s no surprise, that one of Darjeeling’s key exports is various varieties and qualities of tea.
Some of the destinations of this place are:
Darjeeling Toy Train
The Darjeeling toy train, officially known as the Darjeeling Himalayan Railway, transports passengers through the lower reaches of the Eastern Himalayas to the undulating hills and lush green tea plantations of Darjeeling. Like most other hill settlements in India, Darjeeling was once a summer retreat of the British. The railway was completed in 1881 and listed as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in 1999. Today, some of the few remaining heritage steam locomotives in India run along with it. A ride on the toy train is one of the popular things to do when visiting Darjeeling.
This is a sleepy town located on the slope of lush green Himalayan Mountains at an altitude of 1200 meters above sea level. The quiet atmosphere, peaceful ambiance, and natural vistas are the striking features of this place. The Durpin Dara Observatory situated at an altitude of 1402 meters above sea level is the foremost attractions of this place. This observatory provides breathtaking views of the snowcapped Himalayan Ranges and awe-inspiring view of sunrise over the Mt. Kanchenjungha. The well-known tourist attractions of this place also include Orchid flower nurseries, Mangal Dam, Pedong Monastery and many more. It is also a major center for traditional handicrafts, known for its wood carving, Thangka paintings, metal crafts, Tibetan and Leptcha jewellery.
Happy Valley Tea Gardens
The green verdant tea plantation is the most popular attraction of this region which was established in 1854 by David Wilson. Darjeeling Tea Tourism takes one through the bushes of this tea garden are old, some say the minimum age of tea bushes present here is 80 years and some are even 150 years old. During the visit to this place, tourists can pluck tea leaves from the garden and can also see tea processing inside the factory. Miles stretched tea gardens and aromatic ambiance make this place a soul stimulating tourist destination of Darjeeling.
The Lloyd’s Botanical Gardens
This beautiful botanical garden spreads over an area of 40 acres which was established in 1878 by Mr. W. Lloyd with a motive to preserve the native floral species. In this garden, one can see 150 species of cacti and succulent which is the main attraction of this place. During the flowering season, it is the most visited place because of a wide variety of Orchid collection.
It is the famous picnic spot of this place which is known for its breathtaking beauty of gushing waterfalls that rush down to the valley through deep ravines from 100 ft. There is a ferroconcrete Bridge over the stream which gives soul stimulating view of this place.
One of the most sought-after attractions of Darjeeling. The passenger ropeway starts at North Point, about 3 km from the town. This ropeway is 5 kilometers long and connects Darjeeling with Singla Bazaar. This ropeway passes over the Ranjit River at the bottom of the valley.
Some other known attractions of this Darjeeling are Kanchenjunga, Sandakphu, Everest Museum, Bengal Natural History Museum, Aloobari Gompa, Ghoom Monastery, and many more.
Shopping in Darjeeling delights tourists because here they will find a vast array of handicrafts that are ideal for gifts or as souvenirs of this place. Here tourists can buy beautiful Himalayan artifacts like town-brass statues, religious objects, jewelry, wooden carvings, woven fabrics, and carpets.
Best Time to Visit
The best season to visit Darjeeling is from September to June, take woolen clothes in winters and may avoid chilly days in January. September to November is ideal for sightseeing and outings. December to January is perfect for those who like the chilly climate and is the best period for honeymooners. February to June is ideal for all tourist activities in Darjeeling.
Where to Stay
Hotels abound in Darjeeling which ensures the best stay opportunities for travelers. With the five-star hotels of various groups, there are many luxury hotels in Darjeeling which provide outstanding services and give grand hospitality to their guests. All hotels in Darjeeling ensure easy access to view the various fascinating diversities of the city.