Darjeeling's Seasons - By Rhoderick Chalmers
There are only two seasons in Darjeeling - high and low, or more often
just ‘season’ and ‘off-season’. Despite the
disruption caused by political instability in the 1980s, Darjeeling
remains economically dependent on the crowds of tourists who flock here
in spring and autumn.
Mustang - By Mark Turin
Take a map of Nepal. Find the town of Pokhara and run your finger up
the river to the north-west. This is the mighty Kali Gandaki, The Black
One, and its source lies in Mustang, the most awe-inspiring of Nepal’s
Worshipping Kanchenjunga - By Aswini Tamang
I was in Rabongla in mid-September at the time when the Pang Lhabsol celebration were being held at the monastery grounds. Also known as ‘the worship of the snowy ranges’ in earlier days, this chaam is performed as an act of veneration to Sikkim’s protecting deity, Mount Khangchendzonga.
Darjeeling Himalayan Railway - Aswini Tamang
Being accorded a World Heritage status by UNESCO in 1999 was truly a significant moment in the life to this old afflicted Himalayan railway system. It held promises for its revival. The plaque reads, ‘The DHR is the first and still the most outstanding example of a hill passenger railway.
Tashiding Monastery & Bumchu Festival
This sacred water festival is the monastery’s main event. Held on the 14th and 15th day of the first month of the Tibetan lunar year (which falls sometime between February and March), this ancient ritual is one of the holiest Buddhist festivals in Sikkim. Thousands of devotees visit the sacred celebration and an endless train of people can be seen from midnight until the next day waiting for their turn to receive the holy water.
From Caravan Trails to a Highway
It seems a challenge to have a highway in this area. The road passage to Lachung in the heart of North Sikkim is a 118 km long roller-coaster adventure. From unpredictable boulder-crashing zones to treacherous remains of roads still suspended between landslides, slushy patches flooded by torrential streams to sections that one must negotiate under bonnet deep water