If you like travelling slowly and leisurely on winding mountain roads, offering incredible sceneries, then you may go on such a journey through the state of Sikkim. The Sikkim cycling adventure starts with your arrival at the Bagdogra Airport from where you transfer to Gangtok. On reaching Gangtok, transfer to the hotel and acclimatise. After spending a night here, begin the road journey, and ride your way to Rumtek village. A trip to the famous Rumtek Monastery, locally called Rumtek gompa, is also offered on this expedition. See some centuries-old statues and paintings at the site before proceeding towards your next destination. In the next leg of this Sikkim cycling tour, head to Temi, the only tea garden of Sikkim.
Post an overnight stay in Temi, ride for almost 80 km to reach Yuksom. The journey may be exhausting as you will have to travel on some uphill sections. Yuksom is the starting point for many trekking expeditions to some bewitching destinations in the state. Stay here overnight and in the next part of this cycling in Sikkim experience, move to Pelling. Take a small break from the road trip to enjoy the awe-inspiring beauty of Khecheopalri Lake. Considered sacred by both Hindus and Buddhists, it is a serene and naturally beautiful site. Enjoy passing through some local villages and a beautiful forest of cardamom, pine, Himalayan alder, chestnuts, magnolia and cherry on the way to Pelling.
When the second half of this Sikkim cycling expedition begins, head to Rinchenpong. This phase of the trip comes to a halt at Pemayangtse Monastery. It has an enormous hall, which houses images of Guru Rinpoche and other deities, along with some beautiful murals and thangkas. After spending some time here, continue the ride to Rinchenpong. Spend the next two days of this venture in the marvellous hill station of Darjeeling. Riding along the boundary of Barney Rhododendron Sanctuary, you might get a glimpse of the Himalayan red panda. On reaching Singla, transfer to Darjeeling destination by an automobile. The time in Darjeeling can be utilised with visits to the museum of the Himalayan Mountaineering Institute, and Peace Pagoda. On the last day, move to the Bagdogra Airport and board the flight for your onward journey.
Day 01: Arrival in Bagdogra | Bagdogra to Gangtok
On arrival at the Bagdogra Airport, meet our representative and transfer to Gangtok, the capital city of Sikkim. After reaching Gangtok, travel to the hotel and stay overnight.
Day 02: Gangtok to Rumtek
The Sikkim cycling adventure officially starts now as you ride to Rumtek. Enjoy the pleasant regional weather while following a zigzag route to the destination. Rumtek is well known because of the Buddhist monastery located here. Make a small visit to this 16th-century gompa to see beautiful statues and paintings of deities like Virupaksha, Virudhaka, Vaishravana and Dhritarashtra. Post the visit, transfer to the lodging in Rumtek to rest.
Day 03: Rumtek to Temi
In the morning, enjoy leisurely bicycling on undulating terrain to reach Temi, the only tea estate in the state.
On reaching here, transfer to your lodging and enjoy a peaceful sleep.
Day 04: Temi to Yuksom
This is quite a challenging phase of the tour as during it you will keep on the road for over 75 km towards Yuksom. A small village, it is the point from where numerous trekking expeditions, taken in the area, begin.
On arriving in Yuksom, move to your lodging and stay overnight.
Day 05: Yuksom to Pelling
In the morning, travel to Pelling, a small and scenic hill station at an elevation of about 7000 feet above sea level. The place is a popular tourist attraction as it offers one of the closest views of the snow-capped Kanchenjunga Range.
Before reaching here, stop at the en route Khecheopalri Lake. This breathtaking waterbody is of great religious significance for Buddhists and Hindus. After spending some time here, continue the Sikkim cycling tour through some villages and forests of pine, Himalayan alder, chestnuts and magnolia. On reaching Pelling, transfer to your lodging and enjoy an overnight stay.
Day 06: Pelling to Rinchenpong
As you heading towards Rinchenpong, halt at Pemayangtse Monastery. Built in the year 1705, it is one of the oldest such establishments in the state. The huge prayer room of the gompa features statues of eight different manifestations of Guru Rinpoche. An approximately 30-km ride from the monastery leads to the village of Rinchenpong. About 100 km from Gangtok, the place offers scenic views of surrounding mountains. After reaching Rinchenpong, move to the lodging and rest.
Days 07 and 08: Rinchenpong to Darjeeling | Sightseeing in Darjeeling
Continue the cycling in Sikkim experience to enter the East Indian state of West Bengal. Staying close to the India-Nepal international border, travel towards Darjeeling. The road follows the boundary of the Barsey Rhododendron Sanctuary, and along the way you might get a glimpse of the famous Himalayan red panda.
Stop cycling when you reach Singla, located in the valley of the Rangeet River near the Sikkim-West Bengal state border. From here, transfer to Darjeeling via an automated vehicle. Often referred to as the queen of the hills, Darjeeling is famous for its scenic beauty and tea gardens. On reaching this famous hill station, transfer to the heritage hotel for a relaxing overnight stay.
Day 09: Darjeeling to Bagdogra | Departure from Bagdogra
On the ultimate stretch of the Sikkim cycling expedition, travel from Darjeeling to the Bagdogra Airport to board the flight for your onward journey.
Duration: 08 Nights/ 09 Days
Places Covered: Bagdogra, Gangtok, Rumtek, Temi, Yuksom, Pelling, Rinchenpong, Darjeeling
Average Cycling Time: 5-6 hours
Best Time to go: October to March
Bikes available - Giant Rincon and Merida Matts