West Sikkim- Pelling to Yuksom
The Pelling to Yuksom route in West Sikkim showed me many mesmerizing places such as Rimbi Orange garden, Khecheopalri lake. As I commenced on my Pelling to Yuksom journey, towards Rimbi I came across an ancient tribal village called Darap. It has now grown into a famous destination to explore the Himalayas.
There are many homestays that have come up in this village providing an ideal peaceful retreat. Therefore tourists coming here to see the snow-capped peaks of the northeast Himalayas.
1. Rimbi Waterfall- Waterfall on the Highway
The intense greenery of the Himalayas and the pollution-free environment lead us to the next village called Rimbi in west Sikkim.
However, Rimbi is famous for its orange garden and the Rimbi river. It provides a charismatic landscape for the tourists to enjoy the beautiful scenery of the Eastern Himalayas.
Just before the Rimbi orange garden, I came across the Rimbi waterfall on the highway.
The waterfall is not so huge. But due to the surrounding scenery and the unique alluring nature this spot can be easily considered as an enchanting retreat for all the tourists. In other words, Pelling to Yuksom highway in west Sikkim is a treat to the eyes.
2. Rimbi Orange Garden- Place of tranquility in Pelling to Yuksom route
Just after a 5 min drive from here, we reached the Rimbi orange garden. Small shops near the highway welcomed us through a small entrance with an entry fee of RS 10.
The area is congested but has been suitably utilized for cultivating organic fruits and crops. The area is mainly marked with orange trees and cardamom plantations besides some few houses of the villagers residing here.
The numerous orange trees start to bloom with oranges from the month of November to February.
However, organic farming surrounded by the Himalayas was mesmerizing on the banks of the Rimbi river.
The pathway leading down to the river banks is covered with numerous flower plants with rose being the primary flower tree. There are cozy seating places a, with small shops selling organic Himalayan tea and water bottles for the tourists.
I reached the banks of Rimbi river and the sound of the rapids formed by the flowing of the river through the mountain rocks allured us. We recorded the surrounding in our go pro camera to take back the memories of the natural ambience.
In other places, such banks of the rivers have been transformed into picnic spots. But the Sikkimese people have done effective ethical work in maintaining the cleanliness of the place.
In fact, the state of Sikkim is the first state in India to have transformed into completely organic. It may be considered as one of the cleanest states in India.
The Rimbi orange garden provides a tranquil place amidst organic farming. It also helps us with some effective time with nature on the banks of the free-flowing Rimbi river.
3. Khecheopalri Lake- sacred lake in Pelling to Yuksom Highway
After that, we proceeded more towards West Sikkim to one of the most famous destinations in West Sikkim known as Khecheopalri lake.
Khecheopalri lake is situated in the village with the same name at an altitude of 1700 meters above sea level. It is a sacred lake for the Sikkimese people.
The Khecheopalri lake forms the pilgrimage site of the most important pilgrimage tour for the Sikkimese people. It consists of Yuksom, Dubdi Monastery, Pemayangtse monastery, Rabdentse ruins, the Sanga Choeling Monastery and Tashiding.
The local name of the Khecheopalri lake refers to “Oh lady sit here”. It refers to the footprints of Goddess Tara blessed by Guru Padmasambhava. Hence due to the sacred history of the Khecheopalri lake, it is also known as a wish-fulfilling lake.
There is a white stupa on the walking trail to the Khecheopalri lake and a grey stupa just in front of the Khecheopalri lake.
There are symbols and prayers marked on the walls on the way to the Khecheopalri lake. It symbolizes the religious sacredness of the place for both the Buddhist and the Hindus.
The vicinity of the Khecheopalri lake is marked with numerous prayer flags of various colors that adorn the beautiful natural scenery in a splendid way. Khecheopalri lake forms a major part of west Sikkim travel blog, en route Pelling to Yuksom. A hike at the top of a mountain will take us to a viewpoint. From there we get to see the entire periphery of the Khecheopalri lake. It looks like the footprint of the local God Tara. Hindus also believe it to be the footprint of Lord Shiva who meditated in one of the caves of the nearby sacred hill.
Now a jetty has been built marked by prayer wheels. It leads us to the front of the Khecheopalri lake where tourists may offer incense sticks and worship the sacred goddess of the lake. The Khecheopalri lake in West Sikkim on Pelling to Yuksom highway is believed to be free from any leaves of trees. It is believed that the birds in the vicinity pick up the leaves which fall into the Khecheopalri lake.
The Khecheopalri lake contains numerous fishes that thrive which can be easily seen from the jetty. The road to the Khecheopalri lake is through dense Himalayan forests. One has to take a 10 min walk through the dense forests from the monastery at the starting of the village.
4. Kanchendzonga Waterfall
Our next destination was Kanchendzonga waterfall which is situated at an hour drive before Yuksom just beside the Pelling to Yuksom highway. The first stream of the waterfall is a narrow one from where the local people have set up zip line adventure sports.
As we walk further inside through the rocks we come across the main waterfall which is of much greater volume. But lesser in height than other waterfalls in the rest of West Sikkim. But the huge volume of water gushing down to the gorge below the highway is a magnificent attraction which allures every tourist visiting Pelling in West Sikkim.
As we proceeded towards Yuksom, we crossed numerous iron bridges which are frequent here in the highways across the northeast of India. People of Sikkim adorn them with prayer flags. However, It makes them look more beautiful with the background of the Himalayan mountains. We crossed the fast-flowing Rathmong Chu river that later meets the Teesta river in the south of Sikkim and entered the quaint village of Yuksom through the meandering roads.
The road quality is pretty good except for some rough patches which are common due to the landslide zone of the Himalayas.
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