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Darjeeling, Ganktok, Pelling in Februrary?

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Vadodara, Gujarat...
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Darjeeling, Ganktok, Pelling in Februrary?

Dear Sir,

Hello, this is Kaitav here from Vadodara, Gujarat. I am planning for my honeymoon trip in February, 2014 (between 8th and 20th, exact dates to be finalized shortly). I am thinking of around 7 to 8 days, excluding traveling/transportation time.

I have a few questions regarding it:

1) I browsed the forums and saw that it is safe to travel to Darjeeling now, but could anyone please reconfirm it?

2) Is February a good month to visit Darjeeling/Gangtok? I would like to witness snow/snowfall while also enjoy some sightseeing during the trip.

3) Is it enjoyable to visit Changu Lake (and other lakes) in Feb? I mean does it have tourists during Feb?

4) Any recommendations for best hotels in these places? My requirements are: Excellent rooms (with nice beds), good hygiene and staff, decent food, and located at a place from which we can walk to some nearby places.

5) Is it possible to get such a hotel in 3000 to 5000 Rs./ night?

6) One of the main reasons for selecting Darjeeling is the Toy train ride. Could you please the best option for it and also whether the toy trains would be functional in February?

I came to know that the NJP to Darjeeling route is unfortunately disrupted and the train now runs at a shorter route from Kurseong. Is it still enjoyable or is there any other toy train option?

7) Probably not the right forum to ask, but do you have any other (better) suggestions for honeymoon in February? I am also thinking of:

- Shimla, Manali, Dalhousie

- Srinagar, Kashmir

- Nainital, Mussoorie, Corbett

However, I am little afraid being unsure of the climatic conditions. As per my research on internet, these places will be extremely cold in Feb. Will sightseeing and stay be enjoyable in these places?

Seems like I have asked too many questions, but I would really appreciate your comments and suggestions on any of the questions, if not all.

Thank you in advance.

Regards,

Kaitav

Edited: 8:31 am, November 24, 2013
mumbai
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11. Re: Darjeeling, Ganktok, Pelling in Februrary?

Hello All,

We are planning to visit Darjeeling-Gangtok-Kalimpong in February.. For 5 nights/6days

Our Itinerary is like this

Day 1 - travel from Bagdogra to Darjeeling

Day 2 - Sightseeing in Darjeeling .. TIger Hill, Zoo, Himalayam Mountaineering institute, Tibet Refugee Center , Happy Valley Tea Estate

Day 3 - Drive from Darjeeling to Gangtok

Teesta Village, Rumtek Monastery, Dodrupchen Monastery

Day 4 - Sighsteeing in Gangtok - Changu Lake,

Day 5 - Drive from Gangtok to Kalimpong - VIsit Monasteries

1) Do you suggest to go through package tours or book on our own..

2) Is Kalimpong better or Pelling better.

3) Appreciate if you could suggest any place that we missed out or is worth considering to see.. As we are going from Mumbai, would like to visit all the famous places.

4) Can we also go for the toy train ride, how much time will it take. Can we accommodate in our itinerary

Thanks,

Lekhya

Vadodara, Gujarat...
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12. Re: Darjeeling, Ganktok, Pelling in Februrary?

Hi Lekhya,

Your plan looks good to me. I have not been to Kalimpong or Pelling, but I got some suggestions to visit Pelling. Also since you have limited time, it would be better to skip Kalimpong. I think the best thing would be to do some google search for these places, which you might have already done, and check the weather as well as distance between all these places. I always use google maps for estimate the distance between the places I am visiting, so as to have a better idea of selecting or dropping a particular place.

I have been to Darjeeling a few years ago in November, and it was an amazing experience. Changu Lake is beautiful. However, it might be closed in February due to snowfall, as experts say. One of the reasons for opting out of going there.

I just saw this post after replying to your message and I think a tour package would be good for this since your plan seems to be more or less fixed. There is one good package from makemytrip for that. That said, you can plan everything by self if you want more freedom. Maybe an expert will help you with some contacts in Darjeeling for stay/hotels and sightseeings or you can go through previous posts in this topic. Consider and evaluate the budget when opting between tour package and self-planned trip.

I hope you have seen this website: http://www.darjeeling-tourism.com/

It is excellent.

P.S. I have cancelled my trip to Darjeeling (with heavy heart, because I was so desperate to go there again and explore it even more), and will be going to Nainital now, in Feb 2014.

Big thanks to tripadvisor, especially AshisRoy, in guiding me in planning the trip as per my suitability.

Thanks,

KS

India
Destination Expert
for Shimla, Manali, Kashmir, Shillong, Sikkim, Uttarakhand, Puri, Darjeeling, Kolkata (Calcutta), Himachal Pradesh, Srinagar, Dalhousie, India, Ladakh, Leh
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13. Re: Darjeeling, Ganktok, Pelling in Februrary?

Lekhya,

The itinerary is okay. May add toy train ride (Joy ride) 1040hrs Train 52548 (14D) on day3, proceed to Gangtok after doing the ride. local s/s of Gangtok can be done on day4, after coming back from Tsomgo Lake. Pelling has more tourist spots around than Kalimpong.

The trip can be organised on your own. Feb is lean season, hotels can be chosen on spot, local vehicles readily available for s/s and transfer.

Edited: 2:01 am, December 28, 2013
mumbai
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14. Re: Darjeeling, Ganktok, Pelling in Februrary?

Thank you KS and AshishRoy ..

We will consider you valuable suggestions..

Planning trip on our own is definitely better. But the problem here is, we do not have any contacts.

Also, I have seen that the hotels in any online site, put up awesome pics, but on the ground reality they do not match upto standards..

I had a experience in Nasik, locals do cheat on you.. esp the auto wallas..

here, we are not sure of the price for each sight seeing / transfer..

Appreciate on any trustworthy contacts and hotels of range 5-6k per night..

Muzaffarpur, India
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15. Re: Darjeeling, Ganktok, Pelling in Februrary?

Hi

In feb,its better to visit the hotel and then decide,and you can bargain too.The range you are searching you will get good hotels.Similarly you dont need to book transport in advance.Taxis will be readily avaiable and you can bargain too.Just make a plan and go.

mumbai
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16. Re: Darjeeling, Ganktok, Pelling in Februrary?

Hi Rapat2604,

Thanks for replying..

I'm not good at bargaining , and you always have that thing in mind, 'Did I pay more' ..

I checked few sites, they are quoting 22000 per head, without air fares .

Here, we definitely do not have the option of choosing the hotel, they would provide some hotel.

Muzaffarpur, India
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17. Re: Darjeeling, Ganktok, Pelling in Februrary?

It depends on you.But believe me,in last 3 years i travelled sikkim 3 times and every time i travelled without booking anything.But i enjoyed a lot,and you can too.If you chose package you have to go according to plan,difficult to change anything in last moment.You wont have much option in hotel.If you go by your own you can enjoy whatever you want anytime.For hotels you can see reviews in tripadvisor and then can directly to hotel and check.In sikkim probablity of getting cheated is less than other tourist spot.Just do 1 thing that before finalising any cab ,ask from 2-3 source about rate.In sikkim you wont find agent and touts running after you.

18. Re: Darjeeling, Ganktok, Pelling in Februrary?

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