Loleygaon (also spelt Lolaegaon or Lolegaon) is a beautiful Lepcha hamlet located at an elevation of 1,675 meters with a population of 5000 residents. Kaffer is the Lepcha name for Lolaygaon. This small but picturesque hamlet is 24 kilometers from Lava and 55 kilometers from Kalimpong town. Located at the extreme end of the Himalayan ridge, Loleygaon is known for forests, scenic beauty, sunrises and sunsets. Loleygaon along with Lava is one of the most popular tourist destinations and hill station for the tourists from all over the world. The sunrise and sunset over the mighty Kanchenjunga viewed from Jhandi Dara will mesmerize you and as if it is not enough, you can also enjoy the spectacular view of the Kanchenjunga from Charkole nearby.

Mobile phone network is available in most parts.

How to reach Loleygaon

Chunabati road on the way from Lava to Loleyaon

Chunabati road on the way from Lava to Loleyaon

Loleygaon in English means a village of happiness and pleasure and the easiest way to reach Loleygaon is by road from Kalimpong. You can either avail the bus service, jeep or Maruti van service from Kalimpong. The fare for the later is around 850 INR. It is only 1.5 hours journey from Lava with a Land-Rover and cab.  You can also trek to Loleygaon on Railey’s Hanging Bridge through Kalimpong-Relikhola-Sohilung Bazaar route. The Bagdogra airport is the closest airport and New Jalpaiguri station is the nearest station.

Attractions  at Loleygaon

Apart from the spectacular view of the sunrise and sunset visible from Loleygaon, the most notable tourist attraction is the 180 meters Canopy Walk on the hanging bridge from Heritage Forest is only 10 minutes walking distance. This forest is a century old one and is famed for its Cypress and Oak vegetation. Taking a stroll on the bridge with the towering pine, oaks and cypress creating a mystical atmosphere is an ethereal experience. You will feel a sense of freedom and also feel like you are getting close to achieving salvation on this journey through the bridge. By the end of this journey you will arrive at the Kaffer village from where you can see the snow capped Kanchenjunga like never seen before and also the peaks of Pandim, Kabru, Talung, Narsingh and Shimbho.

There is a Buddhist Temple nearby and Charkhol is only 15 kilometers from Kaffer. Only 10 kilometers from Loleygaon is Gumdara village which is considered as a land of virgin forest. Lovely blue and green valleys and enchanting forest is the specialty of this quaint village. All the lovely hamlets at the foothills of the Shivalik Himalayan range are known as “Natural Tranquilizers” in a consolidated form. Other tourist attractions include Ramitey Dara– the popular sunset point and the Loleygaon monastery which is the oldest in the region.

Accommodation in Loleygaon

Loleygaon has plenty of accommodation units.

Loleygaon Nature Resort (WBFDC Loleygaon is CLOSED for maintenance work)

Resort Tree-fern
Tariff: Rs. 1500.00 + 10% service charge

Hotel Laliguras
Tariff: Rs. 900 + 10% service charge

Kaafal Guest House
Tariff: Rs. 1200 / 1500 + 10% service charge

Lovely Resort
Tariff: Rs. 950 – 1,050

Sunakhari Resort
Tariff: Rs. 500 – 900

Hotel Pride
Tariff: Rs. 2,500 – 4,000

Glen Vista Retreat, Charkhol
Tariff: Rs. 850 – 1,500

Hotel Sunrise
Tariff: Rs. 1,100 – 1,500

Sonargaon Resort
Tariff: Upto Rs. 650

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Established in 1986 Neora Valley National Park is located near Lava in Kalimpong subdivision of Darjeeling District. Covering an area of 89 square kilometers this park is of the richest biosphere reserve in India. Open from 8 am to 12 noon, 1pm – 4pm. It is closed on Thursdays. It is one of the most popular tourist destinations and is growing rapidly in importance due to the number of tourists and also due to the diverse flora and fauna of North Eastern Himalayas. Located at a distance of 32 kilometers from both Lava and Samsing which is the border area, Neora Valley National Park has been declared by UNESCO as a World Heritage Site. Entry fee to this awesome reserve is INR 20.

Covering an area of 89 square kilometers this park is of the richest biosphere reserve in India. Often referred to as the land of the endangered Red Panda, it offers a staggering variety of vegetation and also birds. The nature lovers will be overwhelmed by the abundance of rhododendrons, bamboo groves and mountain streams. The highest point of Neora Valley National park is 10,500 feet which is the Rachela Pass.

How to reach Neora Valley National Park

Both buses and cars can take you to North East India’s biggest biodiversity zone, Neora Valley National Park. Buses plying from Siliguri will take you to Kalimpong from where Lava is 32 kilometers. The entry point of Neora Valley National Park is through Lava. There is an alternative route through Samsing for which you have to reach Chalsa from Siliguri which is 65 kilometers. From Chalsa Samsing is about 18 kilometers from where you can enter the biological zone. Accommodation is obviously in Lava or Samsing depending on whichever route you are taking.

Attaractions in Neora Valley National Park

The geography of the Neora Valley National Park is unique. The heavy growth in the forest sometimes even restricts the sunlight from entering the forest. It is also known as the Virgin Forest and quite true to its name much of the forest land is yet to be discovered pushing the adventure lovers to explore those inaccessible parts. The Neora River is the primary water resource of Kalimpong.

The flora of the region is diverse and the virgin wilderness supports tropical, sub-tropical, temperate and sub-temperate vegetation inside it. Mixed species of bamboo, sal, oak, ferns, rhododendrons and various types of orchids can be found in the park. The fauna supported by the forest environment is even more diverse. Red panda, sloth bear, Himalayan Flying Squirrel, wild boar, leopard cat, goral, serow, civet are some of the mammal species living in the forest. Others include lizards, king cobra, green pit viper, moths, bugs, wasps, cicadas.

Neora Valley National Park is also known as the bird watchers’ paradise. Some of the most sought after birds can be spotted here within areas of 1600m-2700 meters. Birds like Jerdon’s Baza, Darjeeling Woodpecker, Crimson-breasted Woodpecker, Tragopan, Golden-throated Barbet, White-browed Bush Robin, White-tailed Robin can be seen.

Trek to Neora Valley National Park

This is also a trekkers’ paradise because he/she can explore the diversity while climbing up to the highest point of the park which is the Rachela Pass. Jaributi is a particular point inside the park which is full of medicinal plants. Other interesting points include the Tiffin Dara and the Red Panda Camp.

You must obtain the permit to enter the park from forest range offices in Lava and Samsing and nobody is allowed in the park after sunset.

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