Places to Visit in Darjeeling
Darjeeling is one of the most popular hill stations of India and a preferred option for holiday by many people. Following are the famous tourist places in Darjeeling:
Tiger Hill: Tiger Hill is well known for stunning sunrise view of the Kanchenjunga and snow coated peaks of the entire eastern Himalayan range. It is situated at the peak point of Darjeeling.
Batasia Loop: Batasia Loop is a loop or a spiral of a narrow gauge railway trail where the Toy Train negotiates a sharp dive from Ghoom, Darjeeling. It’s a well-liked viewing place with gardens, streams and falls.
Darjeeling Ropeway: It is also known as the Rangeet Valley Passenger Cable Car. Here people can enjoy the sight of the valley like the spreading of lush tea gardens, dark forests, mountain streams, waterfalls and the splendid snow peaks at the background.
Rock Garden and Ganga Maya Park: Rock Garden includes terraced gardens at different levels that have been cut from side to side rocks with a waterfall with pleasant seating arrangements. Ganga Maya Park is spread out and has a beautiful stream flowing through it on a valley which has flower gardens, and fountains.
Japanese Temple and Peace Pagoda: Japanese Temple is located at Jalapahar hill of Darjeeling. It was built in a traditional Japanese way. Visitors can join the prayers and experience the spiritual peace in the middle of humming and hymns. Peace Pagoda is the place where there are four great avatars of Lord Buddha can be found. Visitors can see the snow peak range from here including the Kanchenjunga.
Mahakal Temple: The Mahakal Temple is a temple of Darjeeling of all faiths. It is located on top of the hill where the original Darjeeling Buddhist Monastery once stood.
Himalayan Mountaineering Institute: The Himalayan Mountaineering Institute is a must visit place in Darjeeling particularly for the mountain lovers. It was built in the remembrance of Tenzing Norgay who climbed the Everest in 1953.
Darjeeling Zoo: It spreads over the region of 68 acres and houses many rare species of animals like the snow leopard, red panda, goral (mountain goat), Siberian tiger, Tibetan Wolf and a variety of birds.
Darjeeling Mall and Chowrasta: This place is famous for hosting a number of boutique shops, restaurants and eateries. The Hawa Ghar and the giant golden colour statue of the Nepali poet Bhanubhakta Acharya are the two major attractions of Chowrasta.
Bengal Natural History Museum: One section of the Museum exhibits specimens like Himalayan Brown Wood Owls, Northern spotted owlet, Northern Brown Fish Owl, pheasants, fly catchers, woodpeckers and 800 more bird species. The other section is stocked with animal species like Tibetan fox, Tibetan Lynx, elephant, Toddy cat, panthers, leopards and many more.
Bhutia Busty Monastery: The Bhutia Busty Monastery is also known as Karmaa Dorjee Chyoling monastery. It is a branch of Phodang Monastery in Sikkim. Bhutia Busty Monastery is around 2 kilometres down from the Darjeeling Mall and houses a vast anthology of Old Buddhist scripts, including the “Book of Dead”.
Ghoom Monastery: It is the largest monastery in Ghoom, Darjeeling. Ghoom Monastery is one of the major Buddhist pilgrimage places in Darjeeling district. The monastery houses a 15 feet elevated statue of “Maitreya Buddha”, images of Buddha’s followers, and lots of Buddhist texts.
Dhirdham Temple: It is a replica of the Pashupatinath temple in architecture form. Dhirdham Temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva and is a famous Hindu pilgrimage site in Darjeeling. The main attraction of Dhirdham Temple is the white coloured statue of Lord Shiva that symbolizes the five different expressions of Shiva with his complete third eye.
Shrubbery Nightingale Park: Shrubbery Nightingale Park is a must visit place in Darjeeling. The park is interlaced by numerous pebbled walkways and also preserves an idol of Lord Shiva. The musical fountain is also a main attraction in the park.
Darjeeling Old Cemetery: It is declared as a site of ‘National Importance’. Darjeeling Old Cemetery houses two historical graves and some other graves belonging to people from the colonial era. The grave of Lt. General George W. Aylmer Lloyd and the great Hungarian linguist Alexander Csoma de Koros are the chief attractions in the area.
Sandakphu: Sandakphu is a picturesque snow-capped land. Sandakphu is the highest peak of West Bengal. The view of Kanchenjunga is remarkable from Sandakphu.
Darjeeling Himalayan Railway: This is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and one of the few hill railways which are still functioning in the country. Diesel trains run from New Jalpaiguri and steam engines run from Kurseong.
Other major tourist attractions of Darjeeling are Observatory Hill, Darjeeling Tea Estates, Mirik Hill Station, Coronation Bridge, Tibetan Buddhist Temple, Everest Museum, Singalila National Park, Neora Valley National Park, Senchal Wildlife Sanctuary, St. Andrew’s Church, Aloobari Monastery etc.