About Kalimpong

Country: India | State: West Bengal

Ideal Trip Duration: 1-2 Days

Nearest City to Kalimpong: Guwahati (490 Kms), Kolkata (620 Kms)

Best Time to Visit Kalimpong: March to May & September to December

Peak Season: March to May

At a distance of 51 km from Darjeeling, 58 km from Namchi, 66 km from Siliguri, 72 km from New Jalpaiguri, 74 km from Gangtok, 89 km from Pelling, 358 km from Darbhanga, 445 km from Muzzafarpur, 490 km from Guwahati and 620 km from Kolkata, Kalimpong is a charming hill station in the Indian state of West Bengal. Placed at the foothills of Shivalik ranges, Kalimpong is the headquarters of Kalimpong district and among the most popular tourist destinations in West Bengal.

Perched at an altitude of 1250 m, Kalimpong is located in the northern part of the state of West Bengal close to the Bhutan - Tibet - Sikkim border. Kalimpong was an important trading center in earlier days, when the trade routes between Tibet, Bhutan and Sikkim were very much active. It was known as the silk route connecting Lhasa in Tibet with the rest of the subcontinent.

According to history, the area around Kalimpong was ruled by the Sikkimese Kings and was known as Dalingkot. In 1706, the Bhutan Empire took over the town and renamed it as Kalimpong. After the Anglo-Bhutan War in 1864, the Treaty of Sinchula was signed in which Bhutanese held territory east of the Teesta River was ceded to the British East India Company and merged into the present Indian state of West Bengal. After India's independence, Kalimpong became a subdivision of Darjeeling district and formed as a separate district in 2017.

Sits on a ridge overlooking the Teesta River, the town gets its name from two Tibetan words - Kalon means King's Minister and Pong means Stronghold. So the name Kalimpong actually means Stronghold of King's Minister. In Lepcha language the name Kalimpong means 'ridge where we play', as it was known to be the place for traditional tribal gatherings for summer sporting events.

Kalimpong is known for its temperate climate, panoramic valley views, ancient Buddhists monasteries, churches and Tibetan handicrafts. Deolo Hill, Zong Dhog Palri FO Brang Monastery or Durpin Monastery, Mangal Dham, Kalimpong Science Center, Tongsa Gumpha, Tharpa Choling Monastery, and Dr. Graham's Home are the top places to visit in Kalimpong. Kalimpong is also notable for its wide array of orchids and nurseries, which export Himalayan grown flower bulbs, tubers and rhizomes.

Bagdogra International Airport is the nearest airport, which is about 78 km from Kalimpong. It has well connected flights from Kolkata, Guwahati and New Delhi. About 72 km from Kalimpong, New Jalpaiguri is the nearest rail head and is well connected by trains with Patna, New Delhi, Mumbai, Guwahati, Howrah, Bangalore, Dibrugarh, Puri, Gaya, Indore, Jaipur, Kolkata, Amritsar, Chennai, Chandigarh, Ranchi, Bhubaneswar, Cochin and Agartala. Pre-paid taxis are available outside the station to reach Kalimpong from Bagdogra and New Jalpaiguri. Kalimpong is well connected by road with Siliguri, Gangtok, Kolkata and Darjeeling.

Losar is the major festival celebrated in Kalimpong with great enthusiasm which attracts huge number of tourists from all over the country. Dashain, Maghe Sankranti, Holi and Diwali are the other festivals celebrated in Kalimpong.

Kalimpong has pleasant climate throughout the year. However, the best time to visit this hill town is from March to May and September to December.

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Other Info
Internet Availability: Poor
STD Code: 03552
Languages Spoken: Bengali, Nepali, Lepcha, Hindi & English
Major Festivals: Losar, Dashain & Maghe Sankranti

How to Reach Kalimpong

By Air

Nearest Airport: Siliguri - Bagdogra Airport (78 Kms)

By Train

Nearest Train Station: New Jalpaiguri Junction, Siliguri (72 Kms)

By Bus

Nearest Bus Station: Kalimpong Bus Station (0 Kms)

Top 11 Places to Visit in Kalimpong

#5 of 19 Places to Visit in Kalimpong

At a distance of 10 km from Kalimpong Bus Station, Deolo Hill is a hilltop located to the north-east of Kalimpong in West Bengal. Situated at an altitude of around 2000 m, Deolo Hill is the highest point in the town and among the famous Kalimpong Tourist Places.

Deolo Hill is one of the two hills in between the town of Kalimpong stands, the other one is Durpin Hill. Out of the three water reservoirs in Kalimpong, two of which are primary source of drinking water, are located atop this hill. From the top of this hill, tourists can enjoy beautiful views of the surrounding villages of Relli valley and Teesta River along with the town of Kalimpong. On a clear day, the snow-clad mountains of West Sikkim are also visible from this hill.

At the summit of the hill, there is a park built for recreation purposes which feature exotic flowers. The park is a popular picnic spot for tourists as well as locals. There are also some viewpoints for the mesmerizing view of the sunset and sunrise. .....

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#6 of 19 Places to Visit in Kalimpong

At a distance of 1 km from Deolo Hill and 9 km from Kalimpong Bus Station, Kalimpong Science City or Science Centre is a science and technology center located in Kalimpong town of West Bengal. Situated near Deolo Hill, it is one of the great places to visit in Kalimpong.

The Science Centre has been established in Kalimpong in the year 2008, conceived, designed and developed by National Council of Science Museums (Ministry of Culture, Government of India). Covering an area of 7 acres, it is a knowledge-based organization of high quality and dedication. The main objective of the center is to develop a scientific temper in the society and promoting of the knowledge and ideas of science among the general masses particularly, in students.

Kalimpong Science Centre houses a science observatory, a 3D movie theater and several scientific objects for display. Various examples of science and science live working models are presented here. Children get ample information on the various .....

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#7 of 19 Places to Visit in Kalimpong

At a distance of 5 km from Kalimpong Bus Station, Dr. Graham's Homes is an old educational institute situated in the town of Kalimpong. This is one of the unique educational institutions in the world and among the popular historical places to visit in Kalimpong.

Dr. Graham's Homes is situated on the lower steep of Deolo Hill and is a major center of education in Kalimpong. Formerly called St. Andrew's Colonial Homes, Dr. Graham's Homes was founded in 1900 by Reverend Dr. John Anderson Graham, a missionary of the Church of Scotland, who settled in Kalimpong and worked with the local community for several years during the turn of the 20th century. Whilst working in Edinburgh as a clerk in the Civil Service, Graham was influenced and encouraged by the Minister of his Church, the Reverend John McMurtrie, to be ordained in the Ministry of God.

Sprawling in 500 acres, Dr. Graham's Homes is a co-educational boarding and day school affiliated to the Council for the Indian School Certificate .....

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#8 of 19 Places to Visit in Kalimpong

At a distance of 8 km from Kalimpong Bus Station, Hanuman Temple is a Hindu temple located in Kalimpong of West Bengal. Situated near Deolo Hill, it is one of the beautiful places of pilgrimage in Kalimpong and among the best places to visit in Kalimpong.

Dedicated to Lord Hanuman, the Hanuman Temple was inaugurated in 2004 by Karma Wangchuk. The temple has a gigantic statue of Lord Hanuman with a height of approximately 30 feet. A small Durga temple is also there near the entrance gate. This place is located at an elevation and overlooks the Teesta River on one side and the hills on the other side.

One need to climb a flight of stairs to reach the temple and the place offers a mesmerizing view of Mount Kanchenjunga. On a bright sunny day, neighboring state of Sikkim, the surrounding landscapes of Lava and Kaffer hills are also clearly visible from here. Another impressive place of worship nearby is the statue of Lord Buddha sitting in the lotus position. One can visit this .....

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#9 of 19 Places to Visit in Kalimpong

At a distance of 1 km from Kalimpong Bus Station, Mangal Dham is a Hindu temple located in Kalimpong of West Bengal. Situated close to Thongsa Gompa, it is one of the most significant religious centers in West Bengal and among the must visit places in Kalimpong.

Mangal Dham was built in 1993 by Shri Krishna Pranami in the divine memory of late guru Shri Mangaldasji. In 1940, Guruji Shri Mangal Dasji Maharaj visited Kalimpong. The visit had a profound impact on him. He decided to realize his divine dreams of serving the poor and needy in Kalimpong. He built many orphanages, schools and temples.

Sprawling over an area of 2 acres, the temple is dedicated to Lord Krishna. The whole theme of the dham is Knowledge, Devotion and Service. The Samadhi of Guruji lies in the ground floor while the prayer hall is in on the top floor where one can see the idol of Raj Shyamaji flanked on both sides by the Revered Prannathji and Shri Guru Mangaldasji. There are many paintings and diorama .....

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#10 of 19 Places to Visit in Kalimpong

At a distance of 1.5 km from Kalimpong Bus Station, Thongsa Gumpha is a Buddhist monastery situated in the hill town of Kalimpong. Located close to Mangal Dham, Thongsa Gumpha is the oldest monastery in the entire Kalimpong region and among the best places to visit in Kalimpong.

Built in 1692 CE, Thongsa or Tongsa Gompa is also known as the Bhutanese Monastery. The original Gompa was built under the direct guidance of Bhutan King. It was reconstructed in the 19th century after the demolition of the original Gompa by the ravage of Gurkhas in Sikkim. The monastery belongs to Nyingmapa School of Buddhism.

The monastery boasts of a serene and spiritual ambiance. Buddhists monks offer everyday prayer here and this place is a perfect place for mediation. The number 108 is known to be a holy number in Buddhism because it constitutes the product of all 9 planets and 12 months of the year. But this monastery has 219 prayers drums which is unusual and strange aspect. Many activities .....

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#11 of 19 Places to Visit in Kalimpong

At a distance of 5 km from Kalimpong Bus Station, Zang Dhok Palri Monastery is a Buddhist monastery located atop Durpin Dara Hill in the beautiful hill town of Kalimpong, West Bengal. Popularly called as Durpin Monastery, it is one of the largest monasteries in Kalimpong and among the well-known Buddhist monasteries in West Bengal.

The Zang Dhok Palri Monastery was established in 1970 by Dudjum Rinpoche and was consecrated by His Holiness Dalai Lama six years later. Today, Zong Dog Palri is regarded as a major religious center among the followers of Buddhism. Built in the typical Buddhist architectural style, this monastery has sculptured walls, pillars and ancient paintings. In addition, this gompa houses a main prayer hall with large paintings and has a three dimensional appearance inside.

Durpin Monastery holds an important religious significance owing to sacred Kangyur kept inside the monastery. Consisting of 108 volumes, all these were carried by Dalai Lama during his .....

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#12 of 19 Places to Visit in Kalimpong

At a distance of 2 km from Kalimpong Bus Station, Tharpa Choling Monastery is a beautiful Buddhist monastery situated off the KD Pradhan Road in Kalimpong town of West Bengal. Perched atop Tirpai hills, it is one of the three oldest monasteries in Kalimpong and among the must visit Kalimpong Tourist Places.

Tharpa Choling Monastery was founded by Domo Geshe Rinpoche Ngawang Kalsang in 1912 AD. According to history, Domo Geshe Rinpoche lived in Kalimpong in 1906 when he came to India for pilgrimage and to collect medicinal plants from India, Nepal and Bhutan. At the request of the Tibetan merchants and some Bhutanese leaders living in Kalimpong, Rinpoche established this monastery. For building the monastery, lots of acres of land with paddy fields and orange plantations were donated by the people of the region. Tharpa Choling monastery is a non-profitable development Association.

Tharpa Choling Gompa belongs to the Yellow Hat or Gelugpa sect of Tibetan Buddhism. The style .....

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#13 of 19 Places to Visit in Kalimpong

At a distance of 1 km from Kalimpong Bus Station, Nature Interpretation Centre is a museum located on Rinkin Pong Road in Kalimpong. It is one of the popular museums in West Bengal and among the most important places to visit in Kalimpong.

Also known as Forest Museum, Nature Interpretation Centre was established and maintained by forest department since 1900. This Centre works toward spreading awareness on various environmental issues caused by the human activities such as global warning and animal extinction. The museum is famous for its dioramas which is basically a 3d miniature of the different ecological life residing in the area of Kalimpong. The dioramas are simple amazing pieces of art and science merged together. The Centre also displays photographs and books on ecology and environment.

The Centre conducts regular activities for collecting information on the flora and fauna that are present in and around the region and carries researches based on that. They also work .....

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#14 of 19 Places to Visit in Kalimpong

At a distance of 2.5 km from Kalimpong Bus Station, Pine View Nursery is a cactus nursery situated on Atisha Road in Kalimpong of West Bengal. It is one of the popular nurseries in Kalimpong and one of the stoppage points in a standard Kalimpong local sightseeing tour.

Pine View Nursery is a private commercial nursery established in 1971 and is known for its exotic collection of cactus. Mr. Mohan S Pradhan, the individual behind this project and nursery, left his orchid business and followed his passion for cactus. He got an opportunity to collect various species of cactus during his business trips to different parts of the world. Soon he started to raise them in his greenhouse which he built at his home.

Spread over an area of 2 acres, it houses over 1500 species of cactus which was collected diligently from around the globe for four decades. Another notable aspect about this place is the fact it has the largest collection of cactus in entire Asia. The nursery has been awarded .....

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#15 of 19 Places to Visit in Kalimpong

At a distance of 18 km from Kalimpong Bus Station, Teesta River Rafting is the most popular adventure sport activity in Kalimpong, West Bengal. Teesta River has become one of the most popular hotspots for White Water Rafting in eastern India and among the must include things during Kalimpong Tour.

Teesta River with its green surroundings is the best choice for Rafting in Kalimpong. The Teesta river rafting has carved out deep ravines and gorges in Sikkim meandering through the hills with Kalimpong lying just off the river. This makes for quite an exciting and enthralling rafting experience.

Ideally rafting can be done enroute, between Gangtok to Darjeeling, Gangtok to Kalimpong or Gangtok to Siliguri. The routes for non-swimmers are gentle and easy without much rapids involved. However for the swimmers and experienced clients, the routes are more adventurous with high grade rapids providing quite a thrill. The rafting trips for non-swimmers in Teesta River start mostly at .....

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