Today is the day.. today we’ll find out whether we will go to Tsomgo Lake, Baba Mandir, Nathu La.
I wake up with great hopes – hoping we have got the permits, and also a major headache. The sinus that had started acting up last evening has now become a full blown attack.
Tsomgo Lake (also called Changu lake) is a glacial lake situated some 40km from Gangtok, and it is at an altitude of 12315 feet. Since this lake is located in a restricted area you need special permits to visit it.
We started immediately after breakfast – though Tsomgo Lake is just 40 km from Gangtok – the roads leading to it are too steep. Plus there are some restrictions at these places – one has to return by 2 pm.
I clicked this pic while we were waiting at the police checkpost getting our permits verified.
So finally at Tsomgo Lake — and it’s so cold. I’m wearing 3 layers, plus a jacket, gloves and a beanie and still I’m cold 😀
If you open your mouth to speak it looks like you’re smoking – it’s that cold.
I saw plenty of yaks at the lake .. You can go on a yak ride (costs around 300 Rs I think). I didn’t go on a yak ride – walked around clicking pictures of the lake, the clouds, yaks, the mountains .. I had to keep walking – it was freezing. 😀
The legend of Baba Harbhajan Singh is very well known. Baba Mandir is a very popular tourist destination – way too crowded here. There was a souvenir shop, but it was so crowded that I stepped out in just 5 minutes. Soldiers come here to pay their respects.
Since we did not have permits to go to Nathu La, we started our journey towards Gangtok. But there was a military museum/hall of fame on the way and we stopped there for some time.
On the way back we encountered a massive road block – don’t know the reason for that. Long line of vehicles – all patiently waiting for the road to clear. No honking, no abusing.
We reached Gangtok around 3 pm and since everyone was hungry we decided to have lunch at the market. Strolled around old market, and M.G Road looking for a place to eat.
We found this place called “Taste of Tibet” on M.G. Road and decided to eat there. It was around 3:30 and that place was crowded. Too crowded – we had to wait for a while to get a table. It seems that place is popular with the locals as well. It’s a good thing – crowds, and being popular among locals. The food was good too. If you’re too particular about hygiene, then I don’t think this place is for you. This place reminded me of Udipi joints in Mumbai – always busy, eat and move on, sit wherever you find place – if you’re eating alone, or there’s place at your table someone can/will come sit next to you. The food is good and cheap as well. So if you’re looking for a quick bite, this is a good option in Gangtok.
The sinus was still troubling me so I walked back to the home stay after lunch.. didn’t go shopping or anywhere. At the market stopped to buy a jacket for my nephew – that was it. Needed some sleep.
The rest of the gang visited a place called Live and Loud Cafe in the evening. The band there covered a lot of good songs – Missed a lovely evening 😦 Our last evening in Sikkim.