Saturday, June 27, 2015

Eiffel Tower by the day and Night

Eiffel Tower at night
Paris has been on my dream destination list for as long as I remember. And it was such a wonderful experience to be able to make it to Paris, finally! 

Although, I soon realized during my short trip to Paris that there is so much to see in Paris alone, that a three day trip will not do justice:(  I will need to go back to Paris again. I did manage to see some of the places that I have been wanting to, and Eiffel tower was one of those places of course.

 I loved Paris. This was my first solo travel to Europe and it was so wonderful! 

The very thought of travelling and seeing new places ...keeps me going:) 

Eiffel tower
Eiffel Paris

Eiffel at night

View of Paris from Eiffel Tower
Night view of Paris 

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

Valley of flowers;Yumthang,Sikkim, India

Yumthang valley, Sikkim
These amazingly beautiful and colourful Rhododendron flowers are found in abundance in Shingba Rhododendron sanctuary in Yumthang valley in North Sikkim. This sanctuary has around 25 species of Rhododendrons.

Yumthang valley is also known as the valley of flowers.

Located at a height of 3,564 metres, Yumthang is around 150 km from Gangtok. From Gangtok one has to drive towards Chungthang via Mangan and follow the road towards Lachung.

Here are some pictures of Rhododendrons from Soma's album. The sheer variety and colours of these flowers are truly out of the world.                                                                                            

Shingba Rhododendron sanctuary

Rhododendron, Yumthang

Sunday, June 14, 2015

Birds in North Sikkim, India

Waterfall near Lachen
North Sikkim is breathtakingly beautiful. The landscape is so much like Ladakh.

I am posting some more pictures of birds and the surroundings around Gurudongmar and Lachen from Soma Jha's album.
Lachen, Sikkim

Brandt's Mountain Finch
Horned Lark

House crow at 17000ft
Rufous-necked Snowfinch

Northern Raven
Red-billed-and-yellow-billed Chough

Ruddy Shelduck on the frozen part of Gurdongmar lake
Snow pigeon, Sikkim

Sunday, June 7, 2015

Gurudongmar Lake, Sikkim, India

Gurudongmar Lake, Sikkim
Gurudongmar lake in North Sikkim, India, is considered to me one of the most sacred lakes in Sikkim. It also happens to be one of the most sacred Buddhist places of worship and is protected.

The lake gets its name from Guru Padmasambhava (the founder of Tibetan Mahayana Buddhism) who visited this lake during the 8th century AD on his way to Tibet. A portion of the lake does not freeze during winter and the belief is that Guru Padmasambhava touched that part of the lake so that drinking water could be available to the local people throughout the year. This was a huge blessing for the people.

Gurudongmar also happens to be one of the highest lakes in the world. It is located at a height of  17,800 ft. The closest tourist accommodation can be found at Lachen which is around 3 hours distance away from the lake. One can reach Lachen via Gangtok. It will take around 6 hours to reach Lachen from Gangtok. The closest railhead is NJP and the nearest airport is Bagdogra near Shiliguri. There are special permits required to enter North Sikkim, the tourist operators can help with the permits.

The lake is stunningly beautiful; it is out of the world. The entire landscape adds a mystic air to it. There is a small all faiths temple near the lake where you will find monks meditating, and is open for all. This beautiful place is like a piece of heaven on earth.

I am posting pictures of this beautiful lake captured by Soma Jha.

Gurudongmar, North Sikkim
Gurudongmar in May

Around the lake
Around the Gurudongmar lake

The terrain looks a lot like Ladakh
The All faiths temple in Gurudongmar