Day 01: Gangtok to Lachen
Day 02:Lachen to Thangu & Chopta Valley Exursion. Weather permitting, visit Gurudongmar Lake. Transfer to Lachung
Day 03:Lachung Yumthang Valley Excursion and transfer to Gangtok .
Day 01: Gangtok to Lachen Pick-up from the Bajra Taxi Stand at Gangtok at about 10 a.m. and start for Lachen. On the way stop for sightseeing spots like Tashi View Point, Kabi Lungtsok, Naga Waterfall, the Confluence of Lachen Chu & Lachung Chu at Chungthang.Lunch will be served at Namok.
The whole journey is about 6-7 hours’ drive. By evening reach Lachen and your trip for the first day ends. Lachen is a remote village in North Sikkim and the winter home for Tibetan nomadic tribes against the backdrop of towering snow peaks, alpine flower valleys, and vast plateau.
This is the base for exploring the high altitude Gurudongmar Lake and trekking to Green Lake (Depending upon prior permission).Check in at a hotel/Lodge. Overnight stay will be at Lachen.
Meal Plan: Breakfast (No) Lunch (Yes at Wayside Eatery) Dinner (Yes)
Have early breakfast (At times Packed breakfast) and leave for Thangu Village (4100m / 13450ft), a remote high altitude village of Tibetan Nomads & Chopta Valley on your way to the Gurudongmar Lake. Thangu valley occupies a very broad valley at the junction of Thangu Chu, Chopta Chu, & Lassur Chu. It is situated at an altitude of 14000ft. Chopta Valley is situated at a height of 14,500 ft.
This Valley is also known for its flowers. This is the second valley of flowers in North Sikkim after the more famous one at Yumthang.Both the valleys erupt in a riot of colours in the month of May, June & July. Also in the month of Dec & Jan you can play in the snow or even walk across the meandering frozen Chopta River.
From Chopta Valley drive for another 30kms in 1.5hr to Gurudongmar Lake (5225m / 17143ft) close to Tibet Border. This lake is the Second highest lake in India after the Tso Lhamu Lake. If weather permits and permission is availed, proceed for Gurudongmar Lake (17,800 ft). Gurudongmar Lake is considered as one of the sacred lakes of Sikkim both by the Buddhist and the Hindus.
The lake is named after Guru Padmasambhava, the Indian tantric Buddhist who conducted rituals there. The lake remains milky in colour throughout the year and it is believed that Guru Padmasambhava had touched the lake whilst he visited Tibet from this area. Hence, a portion of the lake never freezes.After spending half an hour to one hour there, drive back to Lachen. After lunch, visit the Lachen Monastery and start your journey to Lachung via Chungthang. Visit the Bhim Nala Waterfalls and reach Lachung by late afternoon. Lachung is yet another remote high altitude village of Tibetan and Bhutia people in North Sikkim with towering rocky snow peaks, vibrant rhododendron valley, lush green yak pastures, perennial waterfalls and hot springs. This place is the base for exploring alpine valley of Yumthang and Yumesamdong close to the Tibetan plateau. Evening is free at leisure and overnight stay would be at Lachung.
Meal Plan: Breakfast (Yes) Lunch (Yes) Dinner (Yes)
After breakfast leave for Yumthang (11,800 ft.) or the “Valley of flowers”. Yumthang is a lush green valley surrounded by snow peaks on all sides where the tree line ends. While on your way, you would be driving across the Shingba Rhododendron Sanctuary which has more than 120 species of Rhododendron trees and is also the home to the endemic Rhododendron Niveum, the State Tree of Sikkim. In April / May / June the valley erupts in a riot of colours as Rhododendrons, Primulae and many other Alpine Flowers bloom in abundance. In the winter, Yumthang is sombre with snow all around, and the snow clad mountains add to the ethereal beauty of this place.
Note: Visitors may also want to visit Yumesamdong or Zero Point. Zero point is close to Yumesamdong, although contrary to popular belief they are not the same places. After reaching Yumesamdong, one needs to walk a little to reach Zero point. Officially one is not allowed to visit Yumesamdong/Zero Point. On the way back, you may visit the hot spring across the Lachung River, although it is mainly used for bathing purposes by the army personnel. Return to Lachung for lunch.
After lunch at Lachung, leave for Gangtok. On the way, stop at Singhik for tea or light refreshments. From Mangan, if the weather is clear, you may get to see the Khangchendzonga Range. This location offers a majestic view of Mt. Pandim, Mt. Kabru, Mt. Simvo, Mt. Jopuno, Mt. Khangchendzonga and Mt. Siniolchu. Return to Gangtok by evening. Your tour ends with sweet memories upon return to Gangtok.
Meal Plan: Breakfast (Yes) Lunch (No) Dinner (No)