North Sikkim

North Sikkim is a major district in the state of Sikkim.  Area wise North Sikkim is the largest district in the state. It is also the least populated district. Mangan is the district headquarters. North Sikkim is a paradise for nature lovers. The undisturbed and unspoiled beauty of North Sikkim quenches the thirst of the traveller. The snow-capped mountains, The breathtaking Valleys, The lush green dense forests, the beautiful water cascade, the Mists and fog, The enchanting beauty of the landscape, and the diverse flora and fauna make this part of the world one of the most desirable destinations to visit.


For most tourists, North Sikkim tours cover one or both of its major destinations, Lachen and Lachung. Lachen is the base for visits to Gurudongmar Lake and Chopta Valley and Lachung is the base for visits to Yumthang Valley, Katao and Yumesamdong. For tourists spending one or two nights in North Sikkim, Lachung and Yumthang valley is a natural choice. Those who stay here for 3 or 4 nights can cover both Lachen and Lachung. Chungthang is an important town and juncture where the road bifurcates. The road to the right reaches Lachung. The road at the left reaches to Lachen.

Main Destinations

Lachung –  The road which turns right from Chungthang takes tourists to the village of Lachung. Situated at a high altitude of nearly 8600 ft it is considered as the most picturesque village of Sikkim. Lachung is one of the most popular destinations in North Sikkim. The landscape is mesmerizing. This village with unmatched natural beauty is Situated on the banks of the Lachung River and is also the base for the tour to Yumthang Valley and further upwards. The village has an old monastery built in the year 1880 and lies in the midst of an apple orchard, A walk through the village path to this monastery is surely an experience to linger in the memory. The village has got some eye-catching fruit orchards. It is 120 km from Gangtok and is a six-hour drive from the capital. Winter here is very cold and the temperature often goes below freezing point.

Yumthang Valley – It is a valley 26 km from Lachung. A morning day tour is recommended. Situated at 11800 ft the valley offers breathtaking scenic beauty. The valley is also known as the Valley of Flowers. During spring flowers like Primula, Poppie and Rhododendron bloom in the valley and make it a piece of heaven for nature lovers. The Shingba Rhododendron sanctuary is part of this valley and one can see 24 different species of Rhododendron between April and May. There is a hot spring beside the Yumthang River which is said to be believed to have medicinal values. There is A Shiva temple a few km away further north. It is called the Tungabhadra Shiva temple. Yumesamdong and zero points both are further up to the north. Both places offer a stunning view of the Himalayas.

Lachen  – The road which turns left at Chungthang leads to the village of Lachen which is famous for its pristine beauty and is the gateway to the tour to the holy GuruDongmar lake. This is a small village with less than 250 houses. There is a beautiful monastery at Lachen which offers an unforgettable view of the mountain range. Lachen is situated at an altitude of 8500 ft. The most adventurous tours of north Sikkim start from Lachen. Apart from Gurudongmar Lake, Lachen is also the base for the trek to Green Lake which is located beside Zhemu Glacier.

Chopta Valley – It offers a barren yet beautiful landscape. The height of this valley is more than 13200 Ft. The valley remains frozen during winter. During spring the flowers bloom and give it a different look. Chopta Valley lies between the road of Lachen and Gurudongmar. For international travellers, tour to North Sikkim is limited to visiting Chopta Valley as they are not allowed to go to Gurugondmar Lake.

Thangu Village – Situated at an altitude of 13000 ft it is around 30-35 Km from Lachen. It is a village that symbolizes the serenity and tranquillity of nature. There are many small streams and rivulets dot Thangu village which increases its charm. People interested in treks to Gurudongmar Muguthang and Chopta Valley use this village as a base and are acclimatized to the weather conditions.

GuruDongmar Lake – Situated at a height of 17800 Ft and considered one of the most sacred lakes in the country Gurudongmar is one of the prime attractions of the North Sikkim tour. It is one of the highest lakes in the world. The view of this lake under a clear blue sky is divine.

Other Destinations

Singhik –  Mostly famous for a splendid view of Mount Kanchenjunga. Singhik is a picturesque, small place close to the headquarters of Mangan. Situated at a height of more than 5000 ft, it is surrounded by lush green forests, and mountains and below the lifeline of Sikkim, the Teesta river is flowing which adds a different flavour to the beauty of this place.

Mangan – It is the district headquarters and the most important town in North Sikkim. The distance is 65  km from Gangtok. Mangan is the capital of North Sikkim also. It is also a picturesque town. Mangan is also famous for a three-day long music festival which is held in the month of December every year.

Chungthang – Another important town in north Sikkim. 95km from Gangtok and situated at an altitude of nearly 6000 ft. Nestled at the confluence of two rivers Lachen Chu and Lachung Chu, the town of Chungthang is an important place in the circuit of north Sikkim tourism. The patron saint of Sikkim, Guru Padmasambhava blessed the valley of Chungthang, so it is a revered place for the Sikkimese people. Tourists can see a rock here which still carries the mark of the footprints of guru Padmasambhava. This is also the place where the northern Sikkim road has been divided into two parts one leads to lachung on the right-hand side and another one leads to lichen on the left-hand side.