Duration: 2 Nights & 3 Days
Difficulty Level: Beginner
Closest Rail Station: NJP/Siliguri Junction
Closest Airport: Bagdogra
Best Season: March-June for Rhododendron, October-January for clear view
Day 1: NJP/Bagdogra to Maneybhanjan and transfer to Tumling
Day 2: Tumling to Sandakphu
Day 3: Sandakphu to Maneybhanjan and transfer to NJP/Bagdogra
Day 1: Drive from NJP/Bagdogra to Dhotrey
Distance: 98 Km
Duration: 5 hours
Altitude: 10,100 ft
Time: 9 A.M
Your journey with us starts upon reaching the frontier town of Siliguri. Depending upon your mode of arrival, pick up will be arranged from Bagdogra, NJP or Siliguri Junction.
The road takes you through the bustling town of Siliguri initially, but soon you would be journeying through the tea gardens and lush forests. The ascent starts from after reaching the beautiful lake of Mirik. From there to Maneybhanjan, it’s a constant meandering journey through beautiful tea gardens and mountain forests. After crossing Sukhiapokhari, the last major settlement, a mere 7 km drive will take you to Maneybhanjan, a border town of India and Nepal. It’s a busy are of sorts, bustling with trekkers and travellers of Sandakphu. You will board a iconic land Rover there to drive to your destination, Tonglu. After completing the necessary formalities to enter the Singalila National Park, you will start your climb. From Maneybhanjan to Tonglu, it’s a climb of about 4000 ft and is quite steep.
Nowadays the road from Maneybhanjan to Tonglu has been paved with concrete and is a smooth ride. You wile ride through meadows and rhododendron forests as you gradually climb to your destintion. On the way the hamlets of Chitrey and Meghma will welcome you. You can have a small tea break at Chitrey, before you continue journey. From Meghma, its just 2 km to Tonglu and is the steepest part of the trail. Once reaching Tonglu, you will be mesmerized with the surreal view all around you. There is also the choice of proceeding to Tumling, just 1 Km farther, which houses somewhat better accommodation choices. After reaching your destination and settling down, you will be served with hot lunch. After that you can set out to explore the area. On a clear day, Tonglu boasts of a magnificent view of the Sleeping Buddha Range. There are small hillocks you can climb and take some envy enducing photos to show back home. As the day comes to close, the temperature drops considerably and you will have to move indoors. You can spend the evening, chatting away with the locals and enjoying the tasty local drink, Thumba. Soon, dinner will be ready for you and you can take to bed as you can’t miss the sunrise tomorrow.
Day 2: Tumling/Tonglu to Sandakphu
Distance: 20 Kms
Duration: 3 Hours
Altitude: 11,900 ft
Time: 9 A.M
Get up early in the morning to view the mighty Kanchenjungha in the morning light. After that you can freshen up and get ready to set out for the day’s journey. After breakfast you will set out for Sandakphu. The distance though only 20 kms, will take a while as the path is winding and quite steep. On the way, you will pass settlements of Jaubari, Gairibas, Kalipokhari and Bikeybhanjan.At Kalipokhari you can stop a while to gaze into the steller black waters of the high altitude lake. On reaching Sandakphu, settle in your rooms before lunch is served. After that, you can rest a while or choose to explore the surrounding and visit the Kanchenjungha viewing point nearby. In the evening, tea and snacks will be served. You can spend the evening in the hotel lobby, engaging with other guests or you can retire back to your room till dinner is served. Post dinner, settle in and set your alarm for the famous Sandakphu sunrise.
Day 3: Sandakphu to NJP
Distance: 108 Kms
Duration: 6 Hours.
Altitude: 400 ft
Time: 9 A.M
Get up early in the morning and don your winter wear as you set out to view, one of the nicest sunrises you have ever witnessed. The rising sun casts a truly spectacular color over the Kanchenjungha range and leaves the spectators almost in a trance as you will fail to look away. Sandakphu boasts as the vantage point which offers awesome views of four of the five highest peaks of the world, Mt Everest, Lhotse, Makalu and Kanchenjungha. After you had your fill, you can retire back to the room or choose to explore the area some more in the early morning light. We will set out back for Maneybhanjan after breakfast. We will descent back the familiar path, till we reach Maneybhanjan. From there you will board the cab waiting for you, to drive back to Siliguri. After Sukhiapokhri familiar tea garden vista will greet you. You will be able to attend a tea testing at the Gopal Dhara tea garden on the way. Where from you can source some authentic Darjeeling tea for yourself. Finally, your journey will come full circle at NJP, from where you can depart for your onward destination with fond memories from the trip.
Sandakphu is accessible to the roadhead through Dhotrey. Dhotrey is easily accessible via motorable road from the town of Siliguri. Siliguri is very well connected throughout the country via rail. The two major rail stations are NJP and Siliguri Junction. Siliguri also has an airport of its own. Bagdogra airport connects Siliguri with the rest of the country and is at a distance of 12 kms from the Town Centre.
Rs 6,000/- per head for a group of 6
Land Rover ride to Sandakphu.
Accommodation in Tumling and Sandakphu.
All meals from Lunch of day 1 to Breakfast of day 3.
All permits and driver allowances.
Cab fare from NJP to Maneybhanjan and back.
Any personal expenses.
Any extra snacks and beverages.
Any extra services availed at the hotels.
Anything not mentioned in the inclusions.
Note: Cost of cab fare from NJP to Maneybhanjan (Up & Down) is Rs 2,000/- per head for 6 heads