Wednesday, 24 July 2013

Picture Card Perfect- Pelling, Sikkim

This post has been selected as Spicy Saturday Pick by Blogadda. A huge Thank You, Blogadda!

Pelling- The place is distinct, quaint and ruggedly loveable. By the time we reached the hotel we had booked online, in a cool April day, the town was in its afternoon slumber. The 'town' is barely a few streets, dotted with plenty of hotels, tiny eateries serving steaming momos and spicy chaai, souvenir shops selling chinaware and bric-a-brac. After a late lunch and a nap, we left the hotel for a walk, a walk to remember it was...Holding hands with your loved one, walking along the peaceful walkways, counting the stars and being kissed by the pristine weather...Pelling always remains etched in my memory as something sweet and romantic.

The aroma of pink lilies bursting into bloom woke me in the early morning and I was so eager to have a glimpse of the mighty Kanchendzonga that I rushed to the balcony, tugging my woollens. Mesmerised is all I can say. Pulling the chair and glued to the balcony I geared myself for one of the spectacular sunrises of my life. The light came in slowly, showering the icy top of the ranges a crimson orange that transformed to a lovely mauve, pink and finally settled down for a peachy white. The chirping birds around, sounds of  a small town waking up and the bountiful nature around you is almost dreamy and magical.
Sunrays kissing the icy Kanchendzonga

A simple beautiful cottage, Pelling
We had a full day to roam around the place and i was very particular in making the most of the day. After a breakfast of chow-mein, we set off with our favourite driver cum guide, Nima. The travel to Kanchendzonga falls is by itself Heaven, with winding roads that criss cross valleys and mountains. Little villages perched atop the hills, beautiful women going about their routine chores...I jumped at the chance of meeting two Lepcha women who posed cute for pictures with me and i had a hard time understanding their language and adoring their jewellery. The Kanchendzonga waterfall is about 30 kms from Pelling and the drive to Kecheopalri lake is through this awesome water marvel.
Local Lepcha Tribe woman- loved her jewellery!

Majestic Kanchendzonga Falls

The Acrobats near the falls- found it hard to control them!
 
The steps leading to the falls is a bit tricky, but once you cross the canopy, you are rewarded with a graceful shower of waterspray. I loved crossing over the stream and walking amidst the rolling stones. The path to the falls is dotted with shops selling channa, chaai and noodles.

Our next stop is equally breath taking- the Kecheopalri lake called lovingly the wishing lake. The path leading to the lake is mystical, aged trees dotting the path that begins from a temple with a huge bell. The ramp way to the lake lined by wishing bells. Bells, bells and more bells. The sight is simply astounding. And any mention of Kechoepalri without mentioning the fishes of the lake is incomplete. The huge shoals of  fish come to see you on the shores, they just circle calmly seeing you, feeling you. A truly rewarding spiritual experience is the gift  that Kecheopalri lake offers you. A very sacred lake of both Hindu and Buddhist faiths, devotees throng the place.
The Wishing lake, shaped like the footstep of Goddess Tara

The fishes in the lake

Singshore suspension bridge was next in the itinerary. Mighty high at 198m, this bridge connects two hills. Touted as Sikkim's highest bridge and Asia's second highest gorge suspension bridge, a bird's eye view from the bridge can just send your adrenaline pumping. I wish they could start bungee jumping from this vantage bridge, would definitely love to plunge down from it one day! Pulling the kids, we walked the stretch of the bridge across and was rewarded with the sight of lovely 'sunakhari' orchids blooming on a rock! And red roses along the road. Built for about 16 years by Sikkim PWD, this bridge is definitely worth a visit.
The Singshore Bridge- second highest gorge suspension bridge of Asia!
 
Sunakhari in full bloom!
Our last visit for the day is the Pemayangtse Monastery. Situated at the entry point of Pelling, the monastery dates back to 17th Century. The main statue of Padmasambhava with his consorts and the paintings around the temple are unique. The first floor houses several ancient Buddhist dolls, idols and paintings. The second floor is magical- the seven-tiered wooden structure, a model of the Heavenly Palace.
Pemayangtse Monastery
 

Intricate Lord Ganesha painting- Pemayangtse Monastery
 

Heavenly Palace- Monastery
The little monks around the place, the fluttering flags, the icy peaks jotting the landscape and cool breeze- the picture unfolds in my eyes as i write this. A visit to Pelling can rejuvenate and re-ignite the passion to live, as I discovered...

p.s.: God...I am dying for a trip again. Dear God, let my darling husband read this post and sponsor my next trip ;)
p.p.s.: Hearty welcome to the Royal Son. When are we going to see our own India's Royal Son? Speed up, Ra(h)ul!
p.p.p.s.: How are fried ice-creams sinfully tasty? :P

14 comments:

  1. Hey Nivedita , Nice to read ur travel experience to Sikkim. I like it. Appreciate ur writing skills tooo...keep writing.
    Bhavani

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    1. Surprize!!! Thank you so much Bhavani Akka. Didn't know you read my blog :)

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  2. Sikkim will certainly be our next travel destination! BTW you should try Ladakh - equally beautiful but more Buddhist!

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    1. Ahhh...great Meera! Just let me know in case you need any fine planning;) Ladakh is sure in my list...hope to make it soon:)

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  3. Amazing!! what a place..Sikkim is superb! I loved every click, the water is so clean that fishes are visible! something unimaginable anywhere else :P

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    1. Thanks a ton for the comment, AS :)

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  4. Hi,
    So you were off on a holiday. I am sure anybody visiting Sikkim would want to visit it again. We visited Sikkim for our 25th wedding anniversary, which was years ago, we had a great time visiting many places in Sikkim. We also stayed in Pelling in that Hotel that belongs to Danny Denzogappa and his brother. It was very beautiful with views of the snow clad mountains right in front of our windows, as if we could almost touch it. We went in November and it was really fantastic. We went up to the Indo-China border and walked on the snow.
    The lake is supposed to be very holy and will always remain still with no ripples on it, and by chance if ever a leaf were to fall on it, it would be scooped by the bird, so that no ripples happen even accidentally.
    Even next on my list is Ladahk.
    You look great, enjoying the coolness of Sikkim.

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    1. Rama...thank you for the detailed comment. Yes, I heard the story from our guide. Was really impressed. Ladakh! Yes, to Ladakh next :)

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  5. what a beautiful travelogue :)awesome photos

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    1. Thank you so much for the comment and visit, Rajlakshmi!

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  6. I read your blog. Such a great information. If anyone wants to enjoy in Sikkim then come with us and get Tour package to Sikkim in unique and lowest price.

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  7. I read your awesome information.If anyone wants to Adventure honeymoon package to Sikkim and honeymoon package to Sikkim in very affordable price.

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  8. Hey,
    just wanted to know where did you stayed

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    1. Thanks Anwesha. We stayed at Hotel Rabdentse. Check it in trip advisor.

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