Echhey Gaon is a picturesque village in the lap of Himalayas surrounded by dense forest of Juniper, pine and birch where you will feel detached from human civilization. With loads of greenery and peace and quiet, this old-world village has not been spoilt with materialistic pleasure of the city life. This is an ideal place for the nature lovers at an altitude of 5,800 feet none of the machines can disturb you from relishing the natural abundance of this village. Only 12 kilometers away from Kalimpong and cab fare is around 800 INR, this incredibly pristine hamlet is home to approximately 30 families living in peace and happiness. If you wish to share their happiness then definitely visit Echhey Gaon or the Wishing Village.

How to reach Echhey Gaon

On the way to echhey forest village

On the way to echhey forest village

Reaching the wishing village could not be easier than traveling in your car or a hired vehicle from Kalimpong. The route NH-31 through Pedong will take you to Echhey Gaon in no time. However, you have to first reach Siliguri to arrive at Kalimpong and from there travel only 12 kilometers to the beautiful and green Echhey Gaon. Since it is rapidly becoming a popular tourist destination, there is a steady influx of vehicles to take you to the hamlet from Kalimpong.

Time to go to Echhey Gaon

The months of October through April are ideal to visit Echhey Gaon to enjoy your trip the most. Avoid the rainy season at all costs because landslide is rampant. During the winter season carry heavy woolen clothes to check the cold and if you are traveling in April, then light woolen clothes will be perfect.

Attractions in Echhey Gaon

The major highlight of this village is the sensational view of the Kanchenjunga and the canopy of Rhododendron. Savor the sight of the sun rising over the great Kanchenjunga from Ramitey View Point. You will have to admire the golden hue of the peak of the might mountain and also the panoramic view of the forest from Ramitey point. The sweet chirping of the birds and the Teesta River are delightful from atop. If you really want some activity, then trek to the nearby Sillery Village at a short distance of 2.5 kilometers from Echhey Gaon.

Accommodation in Echhey Gaon

Home Stays are the best accommodation facility in Echhey Gaon with prices varying between 700 and 1000 INR per head. The prices include a square meal served by the home stay owners. Vegetarian and non-vegetarian dishes are served to the guests prepared with the vegetables organically grown by the farmers in the village. Along with Bengali and Chinese cuisine, Lepcha food can also be ordered.


Khawas Homestay

Panoramic view of icche gaon

Visitor in front of Pankarma Homestay

Pankarma Homestay, Echhey Forest Village, Burmaik
Mrs. Lalita Rai
Telephone: 9002790443, 8670915570

Khawas Home Stay, Echhey Forest Village, Burmaik
Mr. D.K. Khawas
Telephone: 8670242128, 8906926652, 8116760140, 8972287740

Marigold Homestay

Marigold Homestay

Mukhia Home Stay, Echhey Forest Village, Burmaik
Telephone: 8972470220

Marigold Homestay, Echhey Forest Village, Burmaik
Laxuman Bhujel
Telephone: +91 7602789667, 9679685022, 09800664087, 08158858078, 9614576818, 7602233369

Photo Courtesy: Shantanu DebSingha and others

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Latpanchar is a small and wonderful hamlet near Kalijhora which is also a part of Mahananda Wildlife Sanctuary. Only 13 kilometers from Kalijhora, you should not miss this beautiful and unspoiled forest village with an average elevation of 4,200 feet. The best part of Latpanchar visit is that you will be able to see many wild animals, birds and enjoy dense vegetation as it is a section of the Mahananda Wildlife Sanctuary. It is an ideal place for forest lovers. However, in spite of such natural splendor Latpanchar has yet to become a primary tourist destination in the Eastern Himalayas.

How to reach Latpanchar

Latpanchar can be easily reached from New Jalpaiguri Station within 1.5 hours by car/taxi. It is only 44 kilometers away from this railway station and taxi fare is around 1600 INR. The car will take Sevoke Road to reach Kalijhora and from there a narrow winding road uphill will take you to Latpanchar covering 13 kilometers in around 1 hr drive. The condition of the road is not good and hence you must keep some precautions like medicines for nausea. Jeeps are easily available on this route.

Accommodation in Latpanchar

The forest rest house known as the Latkuthi Bungalow is the best place to stay in Latpanchar. It has 2 lovely rooms with basic facilities. However, this place must be booked in advance from West Bengal Forest Development Corporation. Alternative option is the Cinchonest Home Stay offered by Padam Gurung. It has 3 rooms with attached bathroom and hot water. The rooms have balcony and the view of the Himalayan range is awesome. Delicious vegetarian and non-vegetarian food is served to the guests thrice and tea with snack is also provided. The rent is 925 INR. The best part of home stay is that you get to know the locals from close quarters.

Attractions in Latpanchar

Latpanchar is famous for its diverse flora and fauna and also the cinchona plantations covering 1400 acres of land. Walking through the forest and the plantation is a memorable experience especially if you are bored of the city life.  Just taking a stroll on the winding forest road is refreshing especially early in the morning. The Ahal Dara view point is close by from where the sunrise appears stunning. Look below to see the wide spread forest and Teesta River flowing in its own course. On clear days the view of the Silk Route, Kalimpong and Gangtok cities is striking. At a little distance is Namthing Pokhri, the lake which is flanked by cinchona plantation. Himalayan Salamander and different types of birds often visit this place.

Sarsari Dara is another view point which offers a breathtaking view of the scintillating Kanchenjunga during sunrise and sunset. Other peaks and the small hamlets at foothills look like a painting on a large canvas. This view point is about 1.5 kilometers from Latpanchar. The biodiversity of Latpanchar is staggering with over 240 species of birds and 36 kinds of animals. Elephants, Himalayan Black Bear, mountain goats and even leopards can be found here. Scaly Thrush, Yuhina, Minla, Drongo, Magpie, Spotted Eagles and many more birds flock here throughout the season. The best time to visit Latpanchar in its full glory is during October through April.

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Monsong is a lovely little quaint village located in the charming eastern Himalayan region. It is quite an offbeat destination and a perfect weekend getaway. The beautiful and cool weather, the formidable mountains, the lush green forests of fir, pine, birch shaal, cinchona and cypress, innumerable birds, some endangered animals and hospitable and warm people are some of the characteristics of this charming hamlet, Monsong. It is situated at a short distance of only 8 kilometers from Pedong and 32 kilometers from Kalimpong, the major town.  Sparsely populated and far from the din and bustle of city life, this is an ideal place for rejuvenating the senses; tired body, mind and soul.

How to reach Monsong

Reaching Monsong is easy. You can hire a jeep or take any of the buses plying from Pedong towards Kalimpong/Lava. The road gets bifurcated from Algara and taking one of those split routes towards Sikkim covering 27 kilometers or Rongpo covering 17 kilometers you will reach the misty and foggy land of Monsong. During the summer months the sky is clear and you can experience the best weather. The weather remains cool and with the clear skies you will be able to see the panoramic splendor of the region.

Accommodation in Monsong

You can stay the Jalsa Bungalow also known as Wiaba Village Resort. The resort set up in Monsong is for the discerning travelers who arrive here looking for peace. The resort offers modern amenities to make the guests comfortable. The railway station is 100 kilometers and airport is 105 kilometers from the resort. The rates at the resort changes with season and rooms are mostly available throughout the year. The multi cuisine restaurant serves various delectable dishes to the guests. Other facilities include medical services, airport transportation, parking and round the clock room service. Home stays are also available if you want to experience the local lifestyle.

Attractions in Monsong

If you are craving for some activity, then fishing, trekking, sightseeing, farm activities and adventure camping are some options for you. Now, while trekking to the nearby hill you will admire the Himalayan range fully visible from here in its full glory. The Teesta valley is also clearly visible from here with the mighty river sprawling through the region. This valley was famous for cinchona plantation in the early times.

All in all Monsong is a charming village near Pedong offering ample opportunity for rest as well as activities for the tourists.

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Rikisum is a beautiful and almost isolated village in the Kalimpong subdivision of Darjeeling District in West Bengal. 15 kilometers to the north of Kalimpong, this quaint hamlet is only an hour’s drive from the main town. The hilltop settlement welcomes you with open arms to savor the unspoiled beauty of the village in its full glory. Since it falls on the PedongLava Road the village enjoys an elevation from which the mighty Kanchenjunga and other peaks are clearly visible. The towns of Gangtok and Pedong also present a panoramic from this village.

How to reach Rikisum

Reaching Rikisum is not difficult at all. You can either visit Rikisum on a trip from Kalimpong or arrive at the place directly by hiring a jeep from New Jalpaiguri Station. It is only 1 hour drive from Kalimpong town.

Accommodation in Rikisum

The only accommodation facility in Rikisum is the Swarnasikhar Lodge which is a cozy place with cottage like accommodation units. There are 2 cottages with 3 rooms of double beds and attached bathrooms. Basic amenities are provided in this lodge along with breakfast, lunch and dinner. Guided tours and treks will be arranged by the lodge if you ask for it. The price for lodging is 1534 INR + 3.09% service tax per person. An alternative to this lodge is the home stay available in Rikisum.

Attractions in Rikisum

Rikisum offers a soothing environment and a fantastic weather. While on a journey to reach Rikisum you will be welcomed by meandering Teesta and in the evening you will be lulled by the hypnotic starry sky. There is a point 2 kilometers from Rikisum village offering the best view of the majestic Kanchenjunga. Also the Damsang Fort can be reached within 15 minutes from the lodge. You can either trek to the fort or hire a taxi. Pedong is also nearby and you can trek to the place and explore its beauty.

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Chibo is a busty found in the Kalimpong subdivision of Darjeeling district in West Bengal which is famous for its flower nursery. Busty meaning residential area; Chibo Busty is quite a famous community in Kalimpong. Located on 7th Mile Kalimpong Chibo Busty attracts a large number of tourists for the Standard Nursery of flowers. Standard Nursery is popular for growing magnificent and colorful Dahlias, Gerbera and different types of roses.

How to reach Chibo nursery

Reaching the nursery is easy. Once you reach Kalimpong from Darjeeling, you can walk or hire a local vehicle to take you to the Standard Nursery.

Attractions in Chibo nursery

It is an amazing place for horticulturists because he/she can learn a lot about the process. For general public it is a beautiful place to see a wide variety of roses including the rare ones, Dahlias and Gerbera.

Standard Nursery like all the other nurseries in Kalimpong facilitates export of plants and flowers to other parts of the world. The nursery has a seating arrangement inside and remains open throughout the week expect Sundays from 9 in the morning to 6 in the evening. The weather of Kalimpong supports horticulture in the area. Therefore, beautiful plants are cultivated in various localities of Kalimpong for commercial purposes.

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Rishikhola is a unique gift of nature to Kalimpong. It is rapidly becoming a popular tourist destination due to its scenic landscape and peaceful environment. Located at the border of West Bengal and Sikkim, it gets tourists from both the parts. Khola in the local language means stream and Rishikhola the place derives its name from the stream itself. Only 13 kilometers from Pedong sitting at an elevation of 1700 feet, Rishikhola offers a blend of fishing and trekking activities for the adventure lovers and lot of opportunity to sit and back, relax and relish the beautiful, tranquil environ with occasional chirp of birds and only constant noise of the stream flowing.

How to reach Rishikhola

Rishikhola is easily accessible to tourists through Pedong or Rongpo in Sikkim. It is a part of the famous Silk Route reaching Gangtok. Board the Kanchakanya Express and arrive at New Mal Junction. Hire a cab or jeep from here which will take you through garubathan, Damdim, Lava, Pedong to reach Rishikhola. If you are travelling from Gangtok, that is Sikkim, then take the route via Tshango Lake, baba Mandir, Kupup Valley, Zuluk, Rangli and reach Rishikhola.

Accomodation in Rishikhola

There are beautiful resorts, farm houses and hotels to stay in Rishikhola. The Prakriti River Retreat is one of the best accommodation facilities here near the Reshi/Rishi stream. The rooms are spacious with modern amenities and the fare is 800 INR including breakfast, lunch, brunch and dinner. The other option is Rishi River Retreat situated on the right side of the stream. The 2 storied hotel offers breakfast, lunch, snacks and dinner along with basic amenities for the tourists at a price of 800 INR. The Rishi Retreat Farmhouse to the left side of the stream is another lovely accommodation unit. Here also the price of the rooms including a square meal is 800 INR. Last is the Rishi Nature Camp wherein you can camp on the camping grounds and rest in the lap of nature.

Attractions in Rishikhola

The major attraction of Rishikhola is bird watching. Numerous species of birds both common and endangered species can be found in the hills and the forests carpeting them. Known as a paradise to bird lovers, Rishikhola is home to migratory and resident Himalayan birds. During the months of April and May you will be able to watch beautiful and colorful birds in various shapes and sizes which include Red tailed Minla, Green Magpie, Fire Tailed Sunbird, Himalayan Bulbul, Verditer Flycatcher, Crimson Sunbird, Scarlet Minivet, beautiful Racket tailed Drongo, the magnificent Red Billed Leothrix, the mighty Crested Serpent Eagle, the Blue throated Barbet, the Great Barbet, the Oriental White Eye.

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TInchuley is a lovely mountain village located at a distance of 30 kilometers from Darjeeling, 25 kilometers from Kalimpong blessed with a lovely weather. Reckoned as an offbeat tourist destination, Tinchuley is a relatively new discovery in the eastern Himalayas.  Located at an elevation of 5,500 feet, the weather in Tinchuley is pleasant most of the year. However, the best time to Tinchuley is during the summers when the temperature remains between 18 and 22 degree Celsius. Tinchuley is promoted as part of the Home Stay Project in eco-tourism initiative. Lot of organic farming is also done in the area.

How to reach TInchuley

Tinchuley can be reached via different routes. If you are coming from Darjeeling, you have to take the Jorbungalow-6th mile bazaar-Takdah route to Tinchuley. If you are looking for adventure, then take the other route through Teesta Bazaar-Chegra basti-Takling village and Kolbang to reach Tinchuley. This route is known one but difficult to drive. There is another route to reach Tinchuley through the Bengal-Sikkim Highway via 27th mile. The journey through this route is beautiful with Teesta Velly-tea estates and Low Dam Project.

Accomodation in TInchuley

Accommodation in Tinchuley is not a problem. Though the best is the Gurung Cottage, there are other home stays available in the village. Gurung Cottage is the first home stay facility in Tinchuley and hence is the most experienced one in terms of hospitality. They provide basic amenities and delicious food.

Attractions in TInchuley

The natural beauty and bounty of Tinchuley is its major attraction. It is a nature lover’s paradise. A stroll through the pine and oak forests, orange orchards, marigolds, colorful Buddhist flags and small cottages will make you feel like you have landed in a dreamland. Tinchuley’s beauty appears to be straight out a fairytale book which will enthrall you and the memory will last for the lifetime.

Of course the sunrise and sunset with the color play at the mountain top is one of the major attractions of Tinchuley. The Gumbadara view point offers a breathtaking panoramic view of the mighty Teesta and the entire Eastern Himalayan range with all its beauty. The Takdah and the Rangli-Rangliot Tea gardens are close by. Darjeeling tea is an extremely famous and loved variety of high quality tea with strong taste and flavor. You will find a number of tea gardens in the region like Teesta Valley Tea Garden, Gayle Bhanjan Tea Garden and Namring Tea Garden.

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13 kilometers from Mongpu and 28 kilometers from Siliguri tucked away in the Himalayas is the small and relatively less crowded hamlet of Kalijhora. The village is totally covered by the forests of shaal, arjun, segun, eucalyptus and derives its name from the water fall Kalijhora cascading down from a height of 550 meters. Kalijhora literally means black water and the color is definitely more blackish than the mighty Teesta flowing downstream. Mouni Pahar/hill surrounds this quaint little hamlet and Swetkhola and Kalikhola Rivers act as borders of this Kalijhora while the village itself is the border between Bengal and Sikkim.

How to reach Kalijhora falls

Reaching Kalijhora is quite easy because it is located on the National Highway 31A connecting Bengal with Sikkim. You can take any vehicle that is plying towards Sikkim from Siliguri and reach Kalijhora since its enroute to Sikkim via the same route. For accommodation, the forest rest house and PWD inspection bungalow are available. However, both of these require advance reservation.

Attractions in Kalijhora falls

The scenic beauty of Kalijhora is incomparable to any other village and the presence of the waterfall makes it even more attractive. Initially famous as picnic spot because of its proximity to River Teesta, it was only loved by the locals. However, over the last few years there has been a steady influx of tourists at this region. The landscape has altered considerably after the construction of the dam in 2000. This is the perfect spot for lazing around and enjoying natural abundance. The unspoiled greenery along with the consistent orchestration of crickets will enchant you throughout.

The well known Sevoke Bridge commonly called Bagpool is only 7 kilometers from Kalijhora. Latpanchar another tourist spot which is potentially developing into a popular one is located nearby at the end of the forest. Trekkers can trek to reach Latpanchar through the forest trail. You can continue on the same route to Shittong, Pokhritar, Bagora finally leading you to Kurseong-Darjeeling Highway. There is even more adventure waiting for you at Kalijjhora. You can trek within Mahananda Wildlife Sanctuary which is only a couple of hours from Kalijhora. Tourists often trek to Kamala Falls within the premises of the sanctuary. However, special permission from the forest department is mandatory.

Discover the Rambijhora Falls at a short distance and also take part in white water rafting during the day. Peshok is a close by spot which is marked with the confluence of Teesta and Rangeet offering an amazing sight. Only 20 kilometers from Kalijhora is Mongpu, famous for Cinchona plantation and Rabindranath Tagore’s summer residence.

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Charcoal located at an elevation of 5000 feet sits pretty at the top of the eastern Himalayan range rewarding the tourists with natural abundance. Only 16 kilometers from Lolegaon and 22 kilometers from Kalimpong, Charcoal or Charkhol is a small Lepcha village tucked away in the lap of the Himalayas. Charcoal offers the most pristine forests in the eastern Himalayas and a breathtaking view of the Kanchenjunga which you will never forget in your life. Easy, simple, peaceful, Charcoal is arguably one of the best places for mind and body rejuvenation. With so much of greenery all around you, you will completely forget about the concrete jungle you have come from.

How to reach Charcoal 

Reaching Charcoal is easy once you have arrived at Lolegaon. You can trek, walk or even hire a vehicle to reach Charcoal.

Accommodation in Charcoal

The best part about Charcoal in terms of easy access to the tourists is its accommodation facilities. There are cottages in Charcoal which welcome you with open arms to enjoy your sojourn at this small village. The well developed accommodation units have contributed to the popularity of the destination among discerning travelers. You can put up at Dhanbagey Home, Heritage Farm, Waiba Home stay, Niyma Hoitsher Home Stay, Nijano Homestay, Cocomando Homestay, Anudith Lodge Rangaroon T.E., Peace Palace Homestay, Yonzon’s EC0-Tourism Homestay. Obviously as a part of the eco-tourism project these home stays have come up with excellent facilities for the tourists. Besides, there are some resorts as well like K Kunj Village Resort, Orange Villa, Mhendhola Dhim Resort, Golden Valley, Garden of Heaven, AUKS Homestay Soreong, Green Valley, Blue Pine Retreat and Trident Hill Resort where you can stay during your trip. The prices which include food and lodging range from 700-1700 INR. All the units are provided with modern amenities for the guests.

Attractions in Charcoal

The biggest highlight of Charcoal is the hypnotizing view and the color play at the snow capped peak of Kanchenjunga throughout the day. You can actually spend the entire witnessing nature’s love affair or take a stroll through the pine, cypress, oak and rhododendron forest. During the course you will notice various species of beautiful birds, butterflies, orchids and fragrant flowers. The ambience of Charcoal will have an everlasting effect on you and the view of Mt. Everest on clear days from Jhandi Dara is a visual treat. If you are missing some adventure, then trek to nearby Kafer only 15 kilometers from here.

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When you come to think of it Gumabadara Village, nestled in Kalimpong, is not exactly one of the leading tourist destinations in this part of the hilly terrain of Bengal. But boy, you would make a great mistake if you never visited this place at least once in your life when you had the chance to do so. In case you have been to Kalimpong before you would be well conversant with the destination known as Lolegaon.

How to reach Gumbadara Village

Before you make the trip to Gumabara you need to be aware of the fact that the accommodation that you shall get here is mostly village style facilities. It is 12 km from Lava and 10 km from Lolegaon. It is situated at a height of 6500 feet and is regarded as a virgin beauty of sorts. The hamlet is dotted with trees such as oak, pine and trees known in Bengali as jhau. It is a really wonderful site for the tired souls. It is like a riot of blue and green over here – the natural beauty will simply take your breath away.

 Attractions in Gumbadara Village

Chunabati road on the way from Lava to Loleyaon

Chunabati road on the way from Lava to Loleyaon

Nearby Gumbadara is located the Kafer Village (Also known as Loleygaon or Lolegaon). You know, what the best part of this journey is – the jungle that you need to pass through in order to get to Gumbadara from Lolegaon! For each day the cost for one person would be in the range of INR 1000. This includes both food and lodging. However, if you are not going alone then there is a good chance that the costs could come down. This place is known as the land of cloud fairies and not without reason. The greenery here is mind-blowing as well and you could jolly well spend at least a couple of days over here.

A monastery is building up in this village. A big Buddha statue and a lama school are here. In downhill there is a nice village is there. A newly set up high school and doctor’s dispensary are also there.

Accommodation in Gumbadara Village


Salakha Guest House, Gumabadara Village

Salakha Guest House is one of the various options that you would get here in case you are looking to spend a day here. You can also try out D600. Here you will get both food and lodging. Otherwise you can opt for home-stay facilities as well. The costs are not too much.

Salakha Guest House
Phone: 09933780018 / 09593652607
Tariff: Rs. 500.00 – Rs. 1600.00

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