TSO LHAMO LAKE GUIDE
Why Should I Go
4 km from the international border with China, Tso Lhamo Lake is nature’s frontier. Since this waterbody is off the beaten path, most tourists skip it for other attractions. However, if you want to stroll around a lake that feeds the mighty Teesta, Tso Lhamo should be on your list.
Situated at an altitude of nearly 17,500ft, Tso Lhamo is the highest lake in India. The surroundings are stunning to say the least. If you want to witness nature at its best and untouched by modernity, there is no better destination than Tso Lhamo. The snow-capped mountains dotted with lichen surround this crystal-blue waterbody in north Sikkim. On a clear day, the reflection of the sky in the water will keep you spellbound for hours.
How Do I Get There
The northern town of Lachen is a 6-hour car ride from Gangtok. If you’re travelling alone, your best option is to board a shared jeep. From there, Tso Lhamo Lake is 75km away. For a rookie trekker, this is the perfect spot to gain experience in the rugged terrain of Sikkim. If trekking ain’t your thing, there are tour companies that organize trips to and from Tso Lhamo, via the Gangtok-Chungthang Road.
The lake’s proximity to the Chinese border implies that you need to get an Army permit to land up here. Make sure you have all the required permissions if you don’t want to be turned back at a check-post.
When Should I Land Up
October and November are said to be the best two months when you can get clear views of the surrounding mountain-scape. The clouds part and the heavenly sky makes the rugged trip there completely worth the effort.
If you can brave the winters, Tso Lhamo Lake is completely frozen over and the area looks like a snow chamber. The summer months make for the easiest treks. May, June and October are the perfect months to visit this magical lake.
The Finer Details
Photographs of Tso Lhamo, though beautiful, do not capture the essence of this waterbody. Since this area is slightly harder to get to, pushing yourself to complete the trek will bring you great rewards in the form of spellbinding scenery.
Do not get confused if the local guides use different names for this lake. Cholamoo, Cholamu are other names for this fascinating location.
Sikkim has a number of freshwater lakes you can visit, but you will surely have something to brag about if you make it to Tso Lhamo, the highest one.