Saturday, 17 January 2015

Trip to Yumthang Valley : The Valley of Flowers and Zero Point

After feasting on the magnificent and breathtaking landscape of Gurudongmar Lake for hours, we had returned to Lachen to collect our luggage from the hotel and the same day, we had started for Lachung for our next part of itinerary of North Sikkim covering Yumthang Valley and Katao. 

As i mentioned in the last post that while going to Lachung, it had started raining heavily, but this time, we were more than happy to welcome the rains, though it might have been difficult for our driver to drive on serpentine roads with numerous hairpin bends, that too in torrential rains. Perhaps, being able to behold the pristine lake and the landscape filled with snow-clad mountain peeks had it's intoxicating effect, that's why, while returning from the lake, when we started singing with gay abandon, we were not aware that the tourists coming from opposite side travelling to Lachen were throwing a curious glance on us and must have thought, what had happened to us. If only they could know, what was in store for them on next day!

The distance of around 120 km from Gurudongmar Lake to Lachung  via Chungthang was covered in around 5 hours. Obviously, we stopped occasionally in the way  to capture some natural view in our camera.

Amitabh Bachchan Waterfall (Naga fall)
On the way to Lachung from chungthang, we like many other travellers stopped to see this mighty waterfall fed by numerous streams. The fall is named after Mr. Amitabh Bachchan, the legendary actor owing to it's height. Given the remoteness of the place, Mr. Bachchan might not be aware that a waterfall on his name exists in this world. However, it gave us some laughter moments, as we proceeded. At some distance from this waterfall, we saw a small waterfall and immediately a new name was coined for it. No prize for guessing friends! The name given to the fall was Jaya Bhaduri fall :-). We had another such funny moment, when we saw one more waterfall, taller than the previous one and it was named on evergreen actress Rekha.

By 6:00 PM, we had reached Lachung, a small town situated at elevation of around 9600 ft and started looking for hotel for our night stay. As it was still raining heavily, we didn't spend much time on exploring our options. In stead, we settled in the first hotel, we entered. It was an average accomodation, good enough for one night halt, but i must loud the hospitability of young folks running the hotel. 

It was raining since noon and the electricity had given up, so we were literally heading towards a biting cold and dark night. Some of us were feeling the urge to have tea and there was a small hut-cum-tea stall near our hotel, we went there braving rains and darkness. The shop was manned by two girls and there were some locals as well as some tourists sitting inside. The tiny shop had really the wide range of drinks available, from tea and coffee to bear and whisky. I was not surprised, as i believe, in Sikkim, consumption of liquor is more than that of tea. We had discussions with the girls managing the shop, while having our tea and we came to know the level of hardships faced by them in their daily lives. Apart from the harsh climatic conditions, poor accessibility is a big problem faced by the villagers. One astonishing fact was that they had to travel to Mangan, the district headquarter of North Sikkim, 60 km away from Lachung for purchasing grocery items.

We had returned to our hotel rooms and were discussing our travel plan for tomorrow in a candle light. After having delicious dinner cooked by young and jovial fellows, we had gone to bed for the night. 

The incessant downpour had enhanced the coziness of the bed and suddenly a beautiful melody of Hemant Kumar came to my mind, "Ye Raat Ye Chandni Fir Kahan, Sun Ja Dil Ki Daastaan". Romanticism of the song had increased manifold in the tranquility of that memorable night. Crooning the song, I had gone to sleep, waiting a new dawn. The night spent at Lachung was really a special one for all of us.

Lachung Factfile

Lachung is a small village rather hamlet of North Sikkim, 125 km away from Gangtok. The village is situated at the confluence of two rivers Lachen chu and Lachung chu, both tributaries of River Teesta. Lachung is a Tibetan word, which means Small Pass. The Lepchas and Bhutias are the main inhabitants of this place. Lachung has been described by many as the most picturesque  village of Sikkim and rightly so. During the winter, the whole village gets covered in snow.

The best time to visit Lachung is from October to May.

In the next post, i will take you to the valley of flowers and then will have some fun in snow at zero point. Till then adios!

If you like to read my blog, you may leave your comments and suggestions on my blog page or facebook page of my blog Zindagi Ek Safar Hai Suhaana.


  1. It feels that Im travelling the site you mentioned while reading your post......good keep it up

  2. Dear,
    Wonderful write-up about your experiences and visit to North Sikkim.
    From: Surojit
    Apple Valley Inn Lachung