Yes , Sikkim Travel Guide ! ! “Better to plan and well informed” Going out for vacation is the favour it thing to do, but it should be well planned and well informed too.
When you travel for unknown destination need to be aware of all the stuff out there so to help you to minimize your burden welcome here with the complete guide of Sikkim.
The exceptional tour is state also is known as “meeting place of three lamas”. Sikkim, India’s 22nd state bordered with Nepal.
Tibet , Bhutan and West Bengal. Least populated and 2nd smallest state in India , famous for its natural land scapes, snowy scenic beauty and biodiversity.
Best place to refresh yourself and rejuvenate your mind.
Here is an essential travel guide that makes you aware of Sikkim’s main tourist attractions, adventures, food, and festivals and shopping.”
- How to Reach
- Sikkim Entry Permit
- How to get a permit
- RESTRICTED AREA PERMITS -(RAP) FOR VARIOUS DISTRICTS IN SIKKIM
- HOW TO GET RAP?
- PROTECTED AREA PERMITS FOR- SENIOR CITIZENS AND CHILDREN
- Frequently asked question
If you are planning a trip to Sikkim or Gangtok, you must have known to the mode of transportation available here. The detailed guide which makes your journey comfortable and hassle-free.
You have all the three-way to reach Sikkim by air, train and road. Here are the ways you can avail the best out of three as per your budget prevail.
How to reach
Most accessible airport is Bagdogra in West Bengal, which is approximately at 124 km from Gangtok. The capital of Sikkim takes 5 hours from the airport.
You have to book buses or cabs, or if you wish to go luxurious, then you can avail helicopter services which provided by the tourism department of Sikkim.
Multi seater helicopter hardly takes 20 minutes to reach from Bagdogra airport terminal to Gangtok city. Passengers on this awarded a certification of participation by the Sikkim Tourism Development Corporation.
Sikkim has its Airport called Pakyong Airport in 2018 under UDAAN scheme, which is a Greenfield RCS airport at Pakyong town in Gangtok. The airport has 3,000 sq.metre terminals and can handle 50 inbound and as many outbound passengers.
The scenic airport located at 4,646 feet above sea level , the airport has the honor of in the list of highest airports of the country constructed at the cost of 605cr over an area of 990 acres of land.
Spice-jet started his flight services but closed after some time due to lack of infrastructure facilities which creating hindrances in the landing of flight in low visibility at the runaway.
The necessary infrastructure is still lacking in making flight operations at the airport to being functional . So currently nearby opt ion is Bagdogra airport to reach Sikkim.
Train journeys always been a very joyful ride. If you are an adventurer and enjoy train travelling and love to experience ride adventure, then the train will be best to opt for to reach destination.
Sikkim doesn’t have a traditional train channel. To reach Sikkim, you have to contact nearby New Jalpaiguri (NJP) Railway Station and Siliguri railway station located in West Bengal.
Then you can easily take a cab or buses from the station to the city. Ticket reservation facilities are available from Sikkim Nationalized Transport office in all working days.
The lifeline of Sikkim Is National highway connects Gangtok with Siliguri and this picturesque highway runs through the green valley along river Teesta.
On one side and sky-touching hilly region of Eastern Himalaya on another side. Lots of options for buses available at reasonable prices.
One could choose between Volvo a/c semi sleeper or multi ex semi-sleeper, or there is also government roadways buses are also available. The nearest bus depots are in Siliguri and Darjeeling, and it would not take more than a few hours.
Sikkim Entry Permit
The best to travel out Sikkim you can book tour agents they can take care of every documentation and permits if required, whenever.
Required to have Valid Protected Area Permit(PAP) or Restricted Area Permit(RAP) to enter Sikkim single tourists are only allowed to visit Gangtok, Rumtek Monastery, Phodong, Pemaytangtse Monastery, Kechoperi, Tashiding, Yuksum, Mangan, Singhik.
Also, four district headquarters and all subdivisions which include Rangpo, Roarathang, Rhenaka, Aritar, Rongli, Soreng, Namchi, Pakyong, Barapthing except Chung Thang.
Foreign Tourist is allowed to travel in groups with a travel agency. Permits issued for a 15 days duration and extended to a maximum of 30 days in two splits of 15 days each.
Tourist is required to get a permit issued to travel North Sikkim and the portion of east Sikkim. No permits are needed for to visit places Namchi, Pelling, Yuksom, Ravangla, etc.
How to get a Permit
Restricted Area Permit Sikkim
Sikkim being close to the international boundary, the state has specific restricted areas that need grants to access.
For almost all permits you need a copy of your passport, visa and the ILP – Inner Line Permit. Also, a passport-sized photo of yourself is required.
SPECIAL PERMIT AREAS IN SIKKIM
High-Altitude Trekking Routes
The agent manages permits. The other licenses are issues in Gangtok, through agents in Yuksom.
Far North Sikkim
To travel after Singhik up the Lachung and Lachen valleys in North Sikkim, foreigners required Restricted-Area Permits (RAP).
These permits allow them to move up to the Tsopta and Yumthang valleys. However, Indian citizens also need a license, but it is a straightforward police permit. It is required to travel north of Singhik.
Still, it can even venture further up the Thangu Valley, Gurudongmar Lake or to Zero Point past Yumthang. The permits procured in Gangtok but only delivered on the morning of departure. Also, the need for a guide enforced.
For this place, a special permit required. It usually organised through your pre-booked home stay. The grant, however, is free for home-stay owners charge notable amounts for copying documents and travel charges to Mangan to make arrangements on your behalf.
You can also alternatively arrange your permit in Mangan. Still, it is best to leave it to your tour agent/manager or home-stay holders.
The lake also requires a permit that also arranged by your tour manager.
RESTRICTED AREA PERMITS ARE ISSUED BY
Ministry of Home Affairs (Delhi)
Foreigners Registrations office
All Indian Mission Abroad
Immigration Offices at Airports
Siliguri Tourism Department
And Many More.
Permits to the citizenship of Pakistan, Bangladesh, China, Myanmar and Nigeria are not issued. Grants or Permit without the prior approval of the Ministry of Home Affairs in New Delhi can’t be released.
RESTRICTED AREA PERMITS -(RAP) FOR VARIOUS DISTRICTS IN SIKKIM
Tsomgo and Baba Mandir permit issued by Police Check Post for Domestic Tourist.
Foreign tourists or visitors are allowed till Tsomgo Lake, and the permit /grant is issued by Tourism and Civil Aviation at the department & Police check post.
Permits/Grants issued by Tourism Department and Police Check Post to domestic visitors for Nathula Pass.
Dzongri Trek and Singalila Trek permits issued by Adventure Cell of Tourism and Civil Aviation Department of Sikkim.
Yumthang Valley, Thangu, Yumesamdong, and Chopta Valley and Gurudongmar Lake permit/grant issued by Police check post for domestic tourists. And foreigners permit issued by the Tourism Department and Police check post. Foreigners should apply through their travel agents.
Green Lake Trekking Permit issued by the Tourism Department, but only after getting a valid permit/Grant from Ministry of Home Department in New Delhi.
The RAP is a valid permit/Grant for trekking anywhere in the South District for any Foreign Tourist.
HOW TO GET RAP?
The quickest and most efficient way to obtain Restricted Area Permits for regular tourists is to go through your registered tour manager or travel agency. A simple form has to fill up to mediate the process of getting you the permit.
The permits are economical and do not mark a hole in your pockets. It is a one day process because the permits application submitted in the morning and the permits usually issued in the afternoon.
But this a day process can be avoided if you pre-send your documents to your travel agent and permit-ready before your arrival.
PROTECTED AREA PERMITS FOR- SENIOR CITIZENS AND CHILDREN
It is required to carry the child’s birth certificate if you are travelling with an infant. It is because the permit-issuing authorities usually check the document to determine the age.
Permits for children under the age of 5 years are not issues, and hence the age proof is essential. Because at the high altitude districts of Sikkim, oxygen levels are less and it is not adequate to travel for children and senior citizen.
Sikkim is the state of epic mountains, amazing trekking terrain, delicious cuisine and amiable local citizens. Sikkim is the best ethnic place to explore Northeast India’s diversified cultures.
The state has spiritual and religious vibes in every bit of it as Buddha has its soul that can be experienced at this point.
Frequently asked question
Sikkim has its airport but due to non availability of special technical infrastructure for high altitude airport is not established so its not functional.
You can take a flight to Bagdogra Airport nearest to siliguri and then book taxi, cab or any transport to travel to the city of Sikkim by road. Availability of rail and road transport is also functional to reach Sikkim.
Nepalese is the most common language in Sikkim. Other than that, English is spoken by people who live here.
Air medium is convenient to reach Sikkim but it’s totally a matter of your budget. For any transport medium, you have to first land to the nearest station of Sikkim and then by local transport you can reach Gangtok, the capital of state of Sikkim.