Lying amidst the slopes of the Lesser Himalayas and blanketed by emerald green plantations of tea.
Spread over a steep mountain ridge, nestled amidst acres of lush green tea plantations, Darjeeling stands at the height of 2,050 meters above sea level, thus boasting of cool climes all year round. This scenic hill station is the perfect getaway for a romantic honeymoon and is just around 700 kilometres away from Kolkata.
History and Culture
The name ‘Darjeeling’ is derived from a monastery called ‘Dorje Ling’, built by Denzongpa tribals in 1765. It was a part of the kingdom of Sikkim and a native tribe named ‘Lepcha’ were the original inhabitants of the place, before being invaded by the Gorkhas of Nepal in the 1790s. Under the Sugauli Treaty of 1815, Nepal yielded one-third of their lands to the British, who established Darjeeling as a sanatorium. Dr. Arthur Campbell of the Indian Medical Service, started tea plantation in the town, in 1841. This gave rise to several tea estates being started in the area.
Darjeeling district harbors a variety of people like Gorkhas, Sherpas,Nepalis and many more who have their own distinctive languages, cultures, origins and ways of life, they are all nevertheless very hospitable and extend a lot of warmth.
Interesting facts about Darjeeling
Darjeeling originates from two Tibetan words: “Dorje” and “ling”. Dorje signifies thunderbolt which according to Hindu mythology is the staff of God Indra. The word “ling” means an area or spot. So, the name Darjeeling signifies the ‘place where there is a thunderbolt’.
When the Dalai Lama took off from Tibet in 1959, he triggered an outpour of thousands of his fellow countrymen who followed him. Since then, Darjeeling is the home to Tibetan Self Help Refugee Centre and has evolved into an important terrain of the Tibetan Diaspora.
The Darjeeling – Rangit Valley Rope-way is the largest rope-way in Asia. A ride on this rope-way will take you to cloud nine literally as while riding on this rope-way you actually pass through clouds. This rope-way ride is also a treat for the eyes as you can get a view of the wide, lush green tea gardens below.
The pleasant and soothing weather adds to the beauty of the place and makes it more alluring. Darjeeling can be visited throughout the year as the weather remains cool which is ideal for sightseeing at its various attractions. However, it is best to avoid the monsoon season as landslides are common during this period.
- January - December