Darjeeling is the legendary British hill station perched in the foothills of the Himalayas. Located in the northern extreme of the Indian state of West Bengal, Darjeeling is just east of Nepal, just south of Sikkim, and a bit west and south of Bhutan. It is most famous for its once magnificent tea estates. Despite a steady and inexorable decline since independence, roughly a half century ago, these estates still produce a substantial portion of the world's tea. Darjeeling is a fascinating place, where the tourist can see Buddhist monasteries, visit a tea plantation, see how the tea is processed, go for a ride on the chairlift, go shopping in the colourful markets or go trekking to high altitude spots, near the border with Sikkim. Darjeeling has the unique feature of a toy train, which takes you from Jalpaiguri to Darjeeling through the steep mountainsides.
GETTING THERE TOP
The nearest airport to Darjeeling is the Bagdogra airport. Bagdogra is 10 kms from Darjeeling and is an important military installation. From Bagdogra one can take a bus or taxi to Darjeeling. Darjeeling has a railway station but only the toy train from Jalpaiguri and New Jalpaiguri comes here. The major trains connecting the place with all the major places in India come to Jalpaiguri or New Jalpaiguri. From here again you have to take the toy train or a bus or taxi to Darjeeling. The place is well connected by roads. The state transports run buses from Calcutta and other nearby places. The private operators also have their buses and the fair does not vary much in the state or in the private buses.
TIGER HILL TOP
Situated at an altitude of 2590 metres (8482 ft.) and 13 kms from the town, this spot has earned international fame for the magnificent view of the sunrise over "Kanchenjunga" and the great Eastern Himalayan Mountains. Even Mount Everest, the world's highest peak, is visible from here.
BATASIA LOOP TOP
About 5 kms from Darjeeling, this Railway Loop is a marvellous feat of engineering. It is fascinating to watch the toy train wind its way round the loop. The War Memorial constructed in the memory of brave sons of Darjeeling who died in different action since 1947, is worth a visit. A glorious view of snowy peak and town can be seen from this place. Entrance fee: Rs. 2/- Timings: sunrise till two hours after sunset.
Kanchenjunga View from Darjeeling one can have the best, uninterrupted view of the worlds third highest peak. Bhan Bhakta Sarani provides one of the enthralling views of these snow capped peaks. The Chowrasta also gives you a good sight to the Kanchenjunga peak.
SENCHAL LAKE TOP
Senchal Lake a scenic place near the tiger hills. This place has popularly come up as a picnic spot among the tourists. The lake supplies drinking water to the town of Darjeeling.
NATURAL HISTORY MUSEUM TOP
Natural History Museum has a collection of over 4300 specimen . Established in 1903, this natural history museum packs in its folds a rich collection of fauna found in the Himalayas and in Bengal. Among the attractions are included the estuarine crocodiles. This unique museum also has a good collection of butterflies. The mineral forms of various stones are displayed in a very attractive manner in the museum.
DARJEELING HIMALAYAN TRAIN TOP
The Darjeeling Himalayan Railway (DHR) is one of the most well known mountain railways in the world. It was built in 1881 and is over a hundred years old today. It connects the plains of West Bengal at New Jalpaiguri with the popular hill station of Darjeeling (6812 ft), a distance of 88km.