ArtsAutosBooksBusinessEducationEntertainmentFamilyFashionFoodGamesGenderHealthHolidaysHomeHubPagesPersonal FinancePetsPoliticsReligionSportsTechnologyTravel

3 Offbeat Destinations in Sikkim—Ravangla, Zuluk, and Gnathang

Updated on June 7, 2020
Prantika Samanta profile image

Educated as a microbiologist, trained as an editor, a quintessential nomad soul grounded to the earth. Loves anything that touches her soul

Vacationing in the Lap of Nature

If the lesser known roads beckon you or the thrill of unknowns fascinate you, head out to Sikkim that has many offbeat vacation destinations.

These locations are ideal for spending a few days amidst lakes and mountains far away from the fast-paced city life and reviving the soul.

Sikkim is a northeastern state in India blessed with abundance of nature. Bordering with Tibet in the north and northeast, Bhutan in the east, Nepal in the west, and the state of West Bengal in the south, it is also close to India's Siliguri Corridor near Bangladesh.

The thrill of getting a glimpse of Mount Kangchenjunga, the third highest peak on Earth, and the highest peak in India, is indescribable.

Offbeat Destinations in Sikkim

Whether you would intend to meditate, indulge in spirituality, or explore the land, these destinations in Sikkim would not disappoint you.

These three offbeat destinations boast breathtaking views and are dominated by serenity and tranquility:

1. Ravangla

2. Zuluk

3. Gnathang Valley

1. Ravangla

If you prefer to escape to mountains, listen to the whispers of the lush greenery, soak in the nature, and rekindle your spirit, Namchi and Ravangla in South Sikkim must be in your wish list.

These places are away from the hustle and bustle of the city and the perfect choice for unwinding. If you are yearning to spend some quiet moments with nature, these places help you fulfill your wishes.

My wish is to stay always like this, living quietly in a corner of nature.

— Claude Monet
Buddha Park, Ravangla, South Sikkim
Buddha Park, Ravangla, South Sikkim

Places to Visit in Ravangla

1. Buddha Park

The park is also known as Tathagata Tsal and leaves a long lasting impression because of its location amidst the mountains and greenery and the serenity.

The park has a 130 feet high statue of Buddha in the sitting position, seven bowls of water, a conclave, and a museum meditation center with a meditation hall.

The museum has a spiral gallery that depicts the life of Lord Gautama Buddha.

The carvings on the platform on which Lord Buddha's statue is placed is an artistic marvel.

The statue of Gautam Buddha and the beautiful design
The statue of Gautam Buddha and the beautiful design
The enchanting view of Buddha Park with snow-clad mountains in the backdrop
The enchanting view of Buddha Park with snow-clad mountains in the backdrop

Ravangla or Rabong is a small township in South Sikkim located at an altitude of around 7,000 feet above the sea level.

More About Buddha Park

While strolling in the park, enjoy the mesmerizing view of the idyllic surrounding and the calm ambience that add to the beauty of the place. The lush green park is quite spacious and has designated walkways. The snow-peaked mountains can be viewed from the park on a clear day.

Travelers can opt for the EV (electric vehicle) service to enter the park from the ticket counter. An additional payment is charged for opting this service. It is a one-time payment for both ways (to and fro).

The lush greenery of the park helps rejuvenate
The lush greenery of the park helps rejuvenate
Taking a stroll inside the park amidst the greenery is a blissful experience
Taking a stroll inside the park amidst the greenery is a blissful experience

2. Ralang Monastery

New Ralang Monastery or Ralong Palchen Choling is a must visit point. Near to this monastery is the old Ralong “Karma Rabtenling” Monastery (a monastery of Kagyupa lineage) built by the fourth ruler Chogyal (King) Gyurmed Namgyal in 1730 AD. It is considered to be one of the important and sacred monasteries of the state.

During 1975 and 1981, the old monastery was reconstructed. The new monastery was built by the 12th Gyatsalb Rimpoche and has precious paintings and thangkas.

The beautiful monastery
The beautiful monastery

Distance and Time to Reach Ravangla from Various Places by Road

Distance (approximately in kilometers)
Time (approximately in hours)
NJP Station
Bagdogra Airport

2. Dzuluk or Zuluk or Jhuluk or Jaluk

Zuluk is a picturesque destination in the lower Himalayas in East Sikkim and located at an elevation of 10,000 feet above the sea level. A high altitude, beautiful, small, quiet hamlet on Old Silk Route is ideal for unwinding and connecting with nature.

Along with beauty, the place is also important historically. Both India and Tibet traders in the past used this route (starting from Pedong in India to Lhasa in Tibet) for trading silks, wool, and other materials.

Even though the trade has stopped long ago, but Zuluk has remained popular among the tourists for the mesmerizing beauty it offers.

Abode of clouds
Abode of clouds

Road to Zuluk—32 Hairpin Bends

The road to Zuluk is an astounding spectacle and an absolute masterpiece of engineering. The road has 32 hairpin bends and the zigzag pattern can be clearly viewed from the vantage points.

Imagine how exciting it would be to have an ocean of clouds and Mount Kanchenjunga as constant companions all the way to Zuluk? The place remains covered by snow during the winter, but various rhododendrons adorn the place during the summer.

The road remains closed during the winter, so plan your tour accordingly. Trips during monsoon are not at all advisable.

32 hairpin bends enhance the beauty of the place
32 hairpin bends enhance the beauty of the place
Serenity dominates the place
Serenity dominates the place

Zuluk—Thambi View Point

Before entering the road to Zuluk, there is an army check post to check the permits and other papers.

Next stop was Thambi View Point (around 11,000 ft) from where Mount Kanchenjunga can be viewed better. There were eateries as well. The point is close to Zuluk and well known for sunrise views.

Thambi View Point to view Mount Kanchenjungha
Thambi View Point to view Mount Kanchenjungha

Zuluk—a Restricted Area

The area is restricted for its vicinity to the Chinese border. Domestic tourists approaching from Kalimpong can get the permit from Rongli through the registered tour operator.

Documentation for adults include Passport, Driving License, or Voter Card and for minors include the birth certificate, the photocopies of the concerned original document, and recent photographs of each member traveling.

However, the place is not opened for foreign nationals owing to security reasons.

3. Gnathang Valley

Ascending further is the beautiful Gnathang Valley situated at an altitude of about 13,000 feet that remains covered with snow in winter and with flowers in summer.

The road further goes up to Old Baba Mandir.

The view point from where you can see Gnathang Valley
The view point from where you can see Gnathang Valley
Gnathang Valley at a distance
Gnathang Valley at a distance

Gangtok to Zuluk via Tsomgo Lake

Travelers can choose the route from Gangtok to reach Zuluk via Tsomgo Lake, New Baba Mandir, and Gnathang Valley depending on the month of traveling. The road may be closed during winter and rainy season due to snowfall or landslides.

Kalimpong to Zuluk via Rongli Bazar

Travelers can also reach Zuluk via Kalimpong, Algarah, Pedong, Reshikhola, Aritar, and Rongli Bazaar.

Pro Tips

Travelers can stay overnight at Algarah and Aritar before heading to Zuluk for acclimatizing themselves to avoid altitude sickness owing to higher altitude and low oxygen levels.

Distance and Time to Reach Zuluk from Other Places

Distance (approximately in km)
Time (approximately in hours)
NJP Station/Bagdogra Airport

Pakyong Airport in Sikkim is the nearest airport and Zuluk is around 4-hour drive from the airport.

Mountains hidden in the ocean of clouds
Mountains hidden in the ocean of clouds


We wanted to make the most of our vacation and keep stress at bay. So, we did the following:

  1. Hired a dedicated private car from a registered tour operator to visit these idyllic destinations
  2. Consulted a tour expert who designed our tour plan and suggested us the following:
  • Ideal time to visit these destinations
  • Appropriate routes
  • Budget hotels with desired amenities
  • Trip duration
  • Best eateries

This content is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge and is not meant to substitute for formal and individualized advice from a qualified professional.

© 2019 Prantika Samanta


This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

Show Details
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)