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Kolkatta to Darjeeling, Sikkim and Puri

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London
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Kolkatta to Darjeeling, Sikkim and Puri

Hello, I would really appreciate any tips/pointers on our plans as this is our fiirst time to India. Unfortunately we only have 14 days:-

Fly into Delhi, Fly out to Kolkatta (2 nights) then rail? bus? to Darjeeling (2 nights) and then up into the Himalayas (4nights) Sikkim (perhaps via Siliguri (although not sure what transport to use)? We would also like to go to Puri beach (2 nights) and then up to Agar and then back to Delhi for (2) nights. Many thanks, appreciate your time in responding.

We are unsure on the best mode of transport from Kolkata onwards and also whether we are leaving enough time. Best wishes

Hyderabad, India
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1. Re: Kolkatta to Darjeeling, Sikkim and Puri

Please find the partial information below which iam aware off.

You can travel by Flight from Kolkata to Bhubneswar to visit PURI

and back to Kolkata again.

For Darjeeling you can take Train or Flight, there are overnight Trains from Kolkata to Jalpaiguri, from Jalpaiguri you need take the Toy Train or Taxi to reach Darjeeling on the hilltop. For Flight its called Baghdogra somehwhere near Jalpaiguri.

You mentioned Agar did you mean Agartala ? if its Agartala you can take a flight and AirDeccan operates from Kolkata to Agartala.

London
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2. Re: Kolkatta to Darjeeling, Sikkim and Puri

Thank you for the extra info, it's very nice of you to respond. Please does anyone else have any experiences they can share?best wishes

Calcutta
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3. Re: Kolkatta to Darjeeling, Sikkim and Puri

Dear Zinchow -

In Kolkata : Once you land in Kolkata you have two options - ask for a hotel car ( if it is not too expensive this is more convenient) or go to the "Pre Paid" Taxi counter in the arrival lounge and buy a taxi ride to your hotel.

Now this is important - all Taxis from Kolkata airport can be hired only from the Pre Paid counter - so do not leave the terminal building without buying the prepaid taxi. If you have a hotel car then it is ok - the driver will be standing either inside the arrival hall or outside the building with a placard bearing your name.

Travelling in Kolkata is simple - Yellow Taxis can be flagged down from the road. Minimum Fare is Rs 20. If the Taxi has a digital meter - then you pay a little less than 2times the meter - if the taxi has a mechanical meter - you pay 4 times the meter. Kolkata has an underground metro - that is efficient. Do take the tram ride in Kolkata - I would suggest the Dalhousie Square - Shyambazar Route.

Travelling Out of Kolkata:

You can reach Darjeeling in 3 ways -

a) Flight from Kolkata to Bagdogra - then take a prepaid taxi from Bagdogra to Darjeeling or take a taxi to the Tenjing Norgay Bustand and then take a Bus. The other option is to take the Toy Train from New Jalpaiguri to Darjeeling.

b) Train from Kolkata to New Jalpaiguri - then take either the toy train or a taxi or a bus from Tenjing Norgay Bus Stand

c) Bus from Kolkata to Siliguri - there are several AC buses that travel - one operator even has a website where you can book - checkout www.royalcruiser.com

When in Darjeeling try to stay at a tea estate - I would recommend Glenburns. A trip to Sikkim is a must - and you should visit Gangtok, Changu Lake, Nathu La ( that is if you get the permission - non Indians may not be allowed in this border post with Tibet) and Pelling ( West Sikkim). That means more than 4 days in Sikkim.

From Darjeeling you can hire a car to reach Pelling/Gangtok.

To go to Puri :

From Darjeeling you have to come back to Kolkata and then either take a flight or train. There is also a nice AC coach service from Kolkata to Puri.

BTW: What is Agar?

Hope this helps.

Enjoy India

London
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4. Re: Kolkatta to Darjeeling, Sikkim and Puri

Thank you Snandi, that's really helpful. We fly into Delhi from the Uk so we have decided to do 3 days Golden Triangle. As we will have less time we are going to fly to Kolkata and fly to Bagdogra, and get a taxi to Dajeeling. It all looks so nice around there that we are going to leave out Puri due to time pressure. Do you think that we should see Kalimpong? Do you know whether we could arrange to do a lot of the activities you suggest quite easily through a local tour agency? In this case, are we better just booking a couple of nights at the tea plantation and leaving the rest open? Many thanks for your expertise. Can't wait to see all these wonderful places!

Calcutta
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5. Re: Kolkatta to Darjeeling, Sikkim and Puri

Zinchow

To cut on time - you can leave out Calcutta as well. There is a direct flight from New Delhi to Bagdogra. Make sure you take a window seat on the left - because 30min after take off you get to see the Himalayan ranges in the distance.

In terms of stay at Darjeeling - you can check out Glenburn's - its by far the best Tea Resort. There is another one near Kurseong ( on the way to Darjeeling - but not so nice).

Yes - you can make the trip to Kalimpong - but I would definitely recommend Pelling over Kalimpong. The other option is to stay in Lava - the West Bengal Forest Department runs log huts inside thick Pine woods - and its nice and calm. So , depending on whether you want to go to Kalimpong or Pelling your travel options are

Bagdogra - Darjeeling - Glenburn ( its away from Darjeeling) - Pelling - Bagdogra

Or

Bagdogra - Darjeeling - Kalimpong - Lava - Kalimpong - Bagdogra.

If you are staying at Glenburn - you can ask for a pickup from Bagdogra - makes life simple.

In Kalimpong I stayed at Silver Oaks - its great - you can also check out the Delo hotel - its not as nice as Silver Oaks - but the locale is stunning - inside a large garden - with a green lawn in front that overlooks a deep valley and the White Himalayan peaks.

Activities: Trekking - Darjeeling - Sandakphu - Back - but this takes long

River Rafting - I do not know the names of the agencies - but there are people who can help you get this organised.

Did I confuse you !!??!!

Cannock, United...
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6. Re: Kolkatta to Darjeeling, Sikkim and Puri

Zinchow,

Just a word of warning about the train journey to Darjeeling..........it takes forever!! We went on it last December as far as Kurseong - it took about 5 hours!! From Kurseong you can get a bus or taxi to Darjeeling. Altough it takes a long time by train the scenery is pretty spectacular so keep your camera handy at all times!

Darjeeling has changed a hell of a lot since I was a boy, more crowded and more polluted, but the views from the Mall across to Kanchenjunga make the whole journey worthwhile. Apart from the things snandi has mentioned, try to get to the Himalayan Mountaineering Institute, full of history about the various ascents on Everest, particularly the ascent by Tenzing Norgay (who I was privileged to meet when I was a boy) and Edmund Hilary

Have a fantastic time! The people of India are some of the most hospitable you could ever wish to meet. I felt safer on the streets of Kolkata at night than I do in some areas here in the UK!!

Tony

Cannock, United...
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7. Re: Kolkatta to Darjeeling, Sikkim and Puri

Just a little extra!

If you're pining for a decent cup of coffee in Kolkata, try Baristas in Park Street. Proper Italian style coffee and they do a good range in toasted snacks! Another good coffee place is inside the Oxford Book Store, also on Park Street.

Indian in Paradise
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8. Re: Kolkatta to Darjeeling, Sikkim and Puri

Hello, To zinchow if you have not been to India before? Please take extra care of where you eat and what you eat and take all your necessary shots before departure and I'm sure as mentioned by Tony and snandi you will have a most unforgetful and memorable holiday.Enjoy.

Downingtown, PA
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9. Re: Kolkatta to Darjeeling, Sikkim and Puri

We are currently planning an almost identical trip. Did you go? Any tips you can provide?

Cannock, United...
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10. Re: Kolkatta to Darjeeling, Sikkim and Puri

tulip

In case zinchow doesn't return to this board, but is still active elsewhere on the forum, you can leave him a message via his tripadvisor mail box by just clicking on his name which will take you to a different section where you can post him a message. If you still have no luck but would like more info just return to this section and we'll try to help as best we can!

Tony