Nestled in northeastern India, Sikkim is a mesmerizing destination that offers a unique blend of natural beauty, rich culture, and adventure. Whether you are an avid trekker, a nature enthusiast, or simply seeking a peaceful escape from the hustle and bustle of city life, Sikkim has something to offer to every traveller. However, before you embark on your Sikkim adventure, there are some pre-trip essentials you need to take care of. Here, we guide you through the necessary preparations to make your Sikkim trip a memorable and hassle-free experience.
For Sikkim, you do not want to pack in abundance. Remember to pack a few woollen garments to beat the cold. Packing lightly will also help you in mobility as Sikkim is quite hilly with uneven terrain. Carry a bottle of mineral water or water purification tablets since regular tap water may be unfit for drinking. Also, you must pack a first-aid kit, prescribed medicines and sanitary napkins for any unsure circumstances. It is advised to pack antibacterial creams and sunscreen lotions to avoid getting any skin infections.
The weather in Sikkim can change rapidly, so pack layers and be prepared for various conditions. Even during the summer, it's advisable to carry warm clothing, especially if you plan to visit high-altitude areas.
It is essential to obtain official permits to visit certain restricted regions in Sikkim, which is located near Nepal, Bhutan, and Tibet. A complete Sikkim journey should include these areas, and obtaining either a border permit or a regular permit before starting your excursions is strongly recommended. Do obtain these permits to avoid long wait times or even the cancellation of your day's tour. There are two main types of permits: the Restricted Area Permit, also known as Inner Line Permit, which is mandatory for foreign nationals, and the Protected Area Permit, which is required for both Indian and foreign citizens to access nearby attractions located near certain regions of Sikkim due to their proximity to international borders.
When visiting Sikkim, respecting the local culture and traditions is crucial. This means maintaining proper decorum inside monasteries or other sites of religious and cultural significance. When trekking, keep the trails and camping zones clean to preserve their beauty for all visitors. It is worth noting that Sikkim has achieved the distinction of being the first region worldwide to achieve 100 per cent sustainable agriculture. For this, it received the Future Policy Award Gold Prize from the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) in 2018.
Sikkim offers a range of accommodation options to suit all budgets. From luxury resorts to budget-friendly homestays, there's something for everyone. It's advisable to book your accommodation in advance, especially during peak tourist seasons.
Best Time To Visit
Sikkim's weather is highly variable, so the best time to visit depends on your preferences. Spring (March to May) and autumn (September to November) are considered ideal due to pleasant weather and blooming flowers. However, if you're a snow enthusiast, visit during winter (December to February) for the magical experience of snowfall. Monsoon season (June to August) is best avoided due to heavy rainfall and landslides.