Imagine a glorious view of some of the highest peaks in the world - the crystal white shimmer of Everest on one side, and the majestic Kanchenjunga range on the other. A trek to Sandakphu and Phalut spells beauty, might, and grandeur all clubbed into one. This eight-day Sandakphu Phalut Trek gives you a chance to wake up each morning in the lap of nature, surrounded by dense forests and lush green valleys, amidst rhododendron meadows and white mountains – each of which will take your breath away.
Commence this magnificent journey from Chitrey – a tiny hamlet perched atop a hill and admire some of the most spectacular views of Darjeeling town. Hike on paths that soar upwards until you reach Tumling which brings you face-to-face with the snowy peaks of Kanchenjunga. Cross the border and enter Nepal only to find yourself mesmerized with the winding mountain paths and blooming valleys.
Head skyward and cross the ‘Valley of the Poisonous Plants’ to reach Sandakphu. On reaching the top, you will require a moment or two to gather yourself before the beauty of the place sinks in. Here, greet the sun as it rises from behind the towering snow mountains and covers everything in a shimmer of golden hue – a moment that will be etched in your memory forever.
Pass by dense bamboo forests and soothing paths, be welcomed by pine and oak trees, be amazed by a lake that never freezes, explore small hamlets atop hills and sip piping hot tea from tiny village tea stalls - there is never a dull moment here. On this journey, take the roads less travelled, and by the end of it you will know it was worth every bit of it.
Day 1: Siliguri to Chitrey (80 Km | 3-4 hrs. | 2542 m)
On your arrival in Siliguri, you will meet a tour representative and drive towards Chitrey. The drive on the mountain roads meandering through tea estates and perfect pine forests, will take you to a viewpoint at a decent height. After arriving here, transfer to your trekker’s private hut and rest. In the evening, meet the trek team who will be with you during the Sandakphu trek, and during dinner, get briefed about the journey by your guide. Also please make sure you reach Siliguri early morning, as Chitrey is situated in the periphery of Sangla National Park and the park closes the entries post 2 pm.
Day 2: Chitrey to Tumling (9 Km | 5 hrs | 3048 m)
Begin Sandakphu trekking early in the morning after a nourishing breakfast. You will first climb through forests, and after a while, you will reach a viewpoint, from where you will be able to see the beautiful gorge below. All along the hike, you come across various terrains, few rocky paths (gravel roads) with muddy sections and a few walks through meadows as well. At the end of this walk, you will reach a beautiful mountainous meadow, from where the Tonglu peak of the Singalila Range can be seen.
On the way, you will cross various Tibetan villages, tea shops, Buddhist monasteries and lovely forests. And if you get lucky, you might even spot a Red Panda. This little settlement lies on the India-Nepal border, and after you arrive here, you will be able to see the sweeping views of Sleeping Buddha. Retire for the night at your hut and at night you will be served with delicious dinner. On the trek, you will have lunch in one of the hamlets that will come across hiking.
Day 3: Tumling to Kalapokhri (13 Km | 7 hrs |3169 m)
Wake up at dawn to watch the mesmerising sunrise over Mount Kanchenjunga.
Post a delicious breakfast, begin the next phase of your journey. This day, your Sandakphu trekking package will bring you to Nepal.
Today you will trek for 13 km from Tumling campsite to Kalpokhri. If the weather is clear, you may get a glimpse of Mount Everest before you recommence your hike from Tumling campsite. You first experience a good ascent for roughly an hour, and then encounter descend. Post lunch, continue the expedition for approximately 2.5 hours along a trail with moderate elevation gain, and reach the village of Kalapokhari. There is a small lake in the area, from where the village gets its name. The waters of the pond appear black, and it is said that even in the severest of winters, it does not freeze. This belief has given the lake a mysterious aura and it is revered by locals. On arriving here, head to your hut and stay overnight.
Day 4: Kalapokhri to Sandakphu (7 Km | 4 hrs | 3635 m)
Wake up early in the morning and travel towards the lake to witness a pretty sunrise. After watching the phenomenon, return to your hut for breakfast. Post enjoying your meal, start your ascent to Sandakphu, which is at a distance of about 6 KM from here. Today you start at about 9875 feet and walk to a height of roughly 11929 feet above sea level. You will walk pretty slowly as the elevation keeps on increasing till you reach the top. The path is little tiring, but once you reach here, you will get a wonderful feeling and all the tiredness of the tough trek will slowly fade away. Look at the views from up here and do not forget to take photos of them. After a while, transfer to your lodging for rest. In the evening, mark the success of your arrival at the highest point in the state of West Bengal with a small celebration, and then stay overnight at this place.
Day 5: Sandakphu – Phalut (21 Km | 9 hrs | 3599 m)
Today morning, post breakfast, you will trek to Phalut meandering through sprawling meadows and dense jungle that also holds magnetizing views of the mountains. Also todays trek is lengthy, you will be cover a distance of 21 km in 9 hours. The trek route is not steep, it is a continuous meadow walk. The grueling yet beautiful trek is laden with myriad species of flora and fauna, and boasts of incredible landscape, perfect for your Instagram feed when you will be here. On reaching Phalut, you will stay overnight in government trekker’s hut where you will be served with tasty dinner meal.
Day 6: Phalut to Gorkhey (15 km | 7 hrs | 2133 m)
In the morning, post meal, you will begin today’s hike. You will go downhill hike through forested area of rhododendron shrubs and bamboos. The vivacity in the route will keep you hooked. You will walk for around 7 hours to reach Gorkhey which is a gorgeous Himalayan village located in midst of tall pine trees. You will have an overnight stay in private trekker’s hut, where you will also be served with dinner
Day 7: Gorkhey to Srikhola (16 km | 8 hrs | 1981 m)
Wake uo to beautiful sunrise and get ready to continue the further trek. Post breakfast, embark the trek to Srikhola. You will pass through numerous hamlets and sub-tropical forested areas. The greenery will keep you hooked and also give you good pictures. The trek duration is little long, but it is equally beautiful to keep you on the track. On reaching Srikhola, you can rest in your trekker’s hut. In the evening head-out for some bonfire and gossips to remember the adventure in the Himalayas!
Day 8: Drive to Siliguri (4 – 5 hrs drive)
Today is the last day of the trek, post breakfast, you will gather your belongings and drive back to Siliguri. On reaching, you can spend the rest of the time at your own leisure.
Minimum 4 persons required to operate this departure. If case the minimum no of group strength is not met , we reserve the right to cancel the departure and offder alternate date and trek option or else full refund is processed.
Maximum Altitude: 11,930 ft
Best time to go: March to May and October to December
Note: You can avail transportation by paying Rs.6000/- for NJP to NJP only . The cost does not involve any detour or reroute .