LACHUNG TRAVEL GUIDE
Lachung is a small hill town tucked in the Himalayas of North Sikkim, at an altitude of 3000 ft above MSL. The drive to Lachung is as scenic as the town itself. Accessible by road from Gangtok, which is located at a distance of 120km, Lachung is a town out of some old classic book. Most of the houses are made of wood, surrounded by small kitchen gardens around winding roads, small stepped grassy fields, wandering cows, interrupted every now and then by a small shop. Here, you would feel like you have been transported to a different time, except that you still get to use your smartphone when you get the network.
Climate And Best Time To Visit
Lachung offers great views of snow capped mountain peaks around the year. It is surrounded by waterfalls on the mountain routes. In the winter season, the region receives snow. The best time to visit is during the summer or autumn, avoiding the monsoon which brings landslides, and winter, during which many routes are closed due to snowfall.
Getting There & Getting Around Lachung
Due to its close proximity to the China border, any visitor to Lachung is required to have a special permit, for which you need to apply one day before from Gangtok via a travel agent. It is important to carry all the relevant documents and passport size photographs with you during your travel, else you cannot obtain the permit. Lachung is not easily accessible by any public transport, and the best way to get here is to book your journey with a good travel agent. The mountain roads are excellent in patches, and bumpy in other places, so it is important to ensure you book a good SUV for your commute.
The entire route to Lachung is spanned by military bases, where photography is strictly prohibited, and you are not allowed to halt for too long without any reason. Several checks for the travel permit are required along the route before you can enter Lachung.
The best way to explore Lachung is by foot. A walk around the town will leave you refreshed, with the unpolluted mountain air in your lungs, and the delights of a small town to give you a mental break from the routine life. You can stop at small eating places in huts to indulge in some home cooked Sikkimese food to complete the experience.
Sightseeing & Activities
Close to Lachung is the Lachung Gompa, on top of a hillock. It is a short drive from the town and is a Buddhist place of worship. Located at a picturesque spot, it is worth a visit. You can also walk up to the Gompa if you want a more immersive experience of the hills.
At a distance of 30km from Lachung is the Mount Katao, a scenic Himalayan mountain. It gives breath-taking views of surrounding valleys and mountain ranges.
The most delightful visual treat though is the Yumthang Valley of Flowers, located at a distance of 25km from Lachung. The valley is a riot of colors during the flowering season, home to a large variety of flowers. Ahead of the valley lies the Zero Point or Yumesadong, which is 25km further from Yumthang. The route to Zero Point is home to Azellia, the hallmark fragrance outside every household in Sikkim. It sees snowfall almost round the year. At the Zero Point, you can enjoy the change of scenery from rainbow colors of the flower valley to the white layers of snow.