Another spellbinding view of the distant Himalayas is to be had from the monastery of Zong Dog Palri Phodrang, whose gilded finials and Tibetan-style upswept eaves crown Rinkingpong Hill, above the hill station of Kalimpong. Unlike Darjeeling, 31 miles west, the town is neither a major centre for tea production nor tourism.

Formerly a way stage on the trade route to Tibet, it has a grittier, more down-to-earth feel than its sibling. The main attractions here are some beautiful market gardens – where orchids, amaryllis, palms, ferns and cacti are cultivated for export – and the unspoilt hill villages and deep river valleys to the south, where predominantly Lepcha communities still lead traditional lives.


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Whilst we stay at home, there is no better time to start thinking about your next holiday. Our Travel Specialists are ready to start planning your dream trip whether that is for some winter sun or a 2021 holiday. We don't need to confirm dates or lock-in deposits, let's just get the conversation going.

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