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Situated at an height of 2134 meters above sea level, Darjeeling is one of the most visited hill station of eastern India. A picturesque backdrop of the mighty Himalayan range with a pleasant climate make it a popular hill resorts of India. Darjeeling is a favorite rest and recreation spot for British, who came here to escape from the hot of the plain areas. It was during the British rule that it developed as a pleasant hill resort. It also offers several adventurous trekking routes with attractive surroundings. The hill station is also known for its fragrant teas and its tea plantations are worth visiting. There are also some finest Buddhist monasteries attracting tourists from all parts of India.
Darjeeling is also known for its famous steam run Toy Train that connects it with Siliguri. A Journey on the Toy Train will offers some of the spectacular views of the snowcapped mountain peaks of Himalayan range.
Climate of Darjeeling :
Darjeeling experiences a pleasant weather throughout the year but the ideal time to visit the hill station is from February to May and September to November. Its average temperature during winters varies between 2 to 10 degrees C and the maximum summer temperature can only go up to 15 degrees C. But the region receives heavy rainfall throughout the year.
Tourist Attractions of Darjeeling :
Tiger Hill - It is the highest point in Darjeeling and offers panoramic views of the might Kanchenjunga range and the peaks of Everest. The hill is also a sacred place for Hindus as there is a Kali Temple nearby.
Bhutia Busty Gompa - Located on the backdrop of the Kanchenjunga range, this is one of the most popular monasteries in Darjeeling. It also has a library inside, which has a collection of religious texts including a copy of the Tibetan Book of the
Ghoom Monastery - Also known as Yogachoeling Gompa, it is located at a distance of 8km from the town. It also has an image of Maitreya Buddha. Photography is allowed inside the monastery.
Botanical Garden - The garden has a wide collection of Himalayan plants, flowers and orchids. The Green Houses are also worth visiting.
Zoological Park - More correctly known as Padmaja Naidu Himalayan Zoological Park, it was established in the year 1958. It
was established with an aim to conserve and preserve the varied Himalayan fauna. The zoo houses some rare species including the Siberian tigers, red panda and Tibetan wolf, Himalayan black bears and yaks.
Tibetan Refuge Centre - It is the place where a large number of Tibetan migrated here in the year 1959 due to the annexation of Tibet by China. Its craft workshops produce pure Ladakhi wool items, carpets and interesting woodcarving products.
Gymkhana Club - This ball house offers various game facilities such as tennis, table tennis, billiards, squash and badminton.
Accommodation in Darjeeling :
There are a dearth of hotels and inns of all categories are available throughout the hill station. These offer excellent accommodation options with friendly services. Some of the popular resorts are : the Mayfair Hill Resort, Hotel New Eligin, Hotel Sinclairs, Hotel Cedar Inn and many other. These hotels offers spellbinding mountain vistas.
Getting to Darjeeling :
By Air - The nearest airport is at Bagodra(90km) and is connected to Delhi, Calcutta and Guwahati by flights of Indian Airlines or some other private airlines.
By Rail - New Jalpaiguri is the most convenient rail head and is connected Delhi, Patna, Kolkata(Calcutta) by various express trains. From Jalpaiguri one can take the mini Toy Train to reach Darjeeling and this offers an enthralling experience.
By Road - It can also be easily accessible by road and is connected to Siliguri, Calcutta, Patna, Phuntshoelling by regular bus service.
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