As the Himalayas stretches eastwards, West Bengal and Sikkim adjoin to give fellow travellers a beautiful insight of the snowcapped mountains. Sandakphu is very popular among the local east Indian travellers but does not witness a generous influx from other parts of the country.
Beyond the touristy hill station of Darjeeling in West Bengal, the Himalayas takes the form of stunning Kanchenjunga Range here. Four of the five world’s highest peaks—Everest, Kanchenjunga, Lhotse and Makalu—can be seen from Sandakphu. In other words, Sandakphu is the summit of Singalila Ridge in Singalila National Park, which is along the border of India and Nepal.
The route until Sandakphu and beyond to Phalut is motor-able but further to Gorkhey is possible only on foot. There are many variations of the trekking routes within the Sandakphu circuit—hence is a favourite among many travellers and tourists. Through steep turns and incredible panorama of rustic hamlets, groves of rhododendrons and eventually the majestic Himalayas, it is easy to understand why Sandakphu becomes a memorable journey for all who witness it.
|General Season||Mar-May, Oct-Dec|
|Solo traveller||₹ 65,000|
|2 travellers||₹ 100,000|
|3 travellers||₹ 135,000|
|General Itinerary||Bagdogra-Tinchuley-Sandakphu-Phalut-Bagdogra (4D/5N)|
- Sleeping Buddha from Sandakphu
Your journey will begin in Bagdogra Airport from where you will drive through the dusty, commercial town of Siliguri to the therapeutic tea gardens of Kurseong. Kurseong is famous for being the quiet cousin of Darjeeling and is spoilt with heritage, colonial bungalows.
The trail takes a greener turn as we bypass Darjeeling for the forest-laden Tukdah. The Lepcha word, Tukdah, means ‘mist’ and the town is a true representation of its meaning. Like Kurseong, Tukdah is abundantly blessed with tea estates, Teesta Valley Estate is perhaps the most popular. The town has a thriving market place too.
From Tukdah, we begin our incline drive to Sandakphu. En route we will cross Manebhanjan (serves as base to trekkers hiking to Sandakphu), Tumling (which is officially in Nepal), Garibas and Jaubari (where entry tickets for Singalila National Park are purchased).
Sandakphu is one of the most difficult 4×4 trails in India and driving up to this summit should be a challenge worth conquering. Once at the summit, immerse yourself in the breathtaking views of the Kanchenjunga Range. Whether it is sunrise or sunset, the views from Sandakphu never disappoint.
Further on we will take the 4×4 terrain to Phalut, from where the majestic Himalayas appear to be a stone’s throw. Phalut is surrounded by extensive meadows. On a clear summer day, one can get uninterrupted views of crisp snow mountains from vibrant green meadows.
Some key experiences during your overlanding will be a complete homestay experience at an organic farm, where you will enjoy local cuisine.
- Expedition Leader
- Outdoor Specialist
- Support team ensuring complete convoy management
- Expedition ready 4×4 to self-drive (with fuel for the entire journey)
- Accommodation on twin sharing basis – mix of homestays, guesthouses and IB/PWD bungalows
- Meals – Breakfast & Dinner (choice of pure veg is available)
- Radio communication
- Local Culinary delight & Cultural immersion
- Village walks, Local sightseeing, and Exploration
- Local guidance and support from experts
- Necessary documentation and arrangement
- Amazing photo and video opportunities
- Sleeping Buddha from Sandakphu