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Tourist attractions in Darjeeling

Top 7 Tourist Attractions In Darjeeling | Sightseeing In Darjeeling

Darjeeling, also known as the “Queen of Hills,” is the most popular tourist destination in the northern part of West Bengal. There are several tourist attractions in Darjeeling that you can visit during your stay.

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These places provide breathtaking views of the Himalayas and will give you a beautiful experience.

In this article, I have shortlisted some of the places I visited during my stay in Darjeeling. These places include,

  1. Batasia Loop
  2. Darjeeling Mall
  3. Japanese Temple
  4. Peace Pagoda
  5. Rock Garden
  6. Ghum Station
  7. Happy Valley Tea Estate

All these places are close to the city center and can be reached by local car or cab. Now let’s see a bit more about each of these tourist spots.

Famous tourist spots and attractions in Darjeeling

1. Batasia Loop

Batasia Loop (Ankur P from Pune, India, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons)
Distance from Darjeeling Mall5 km
Timings5:00 AM – 8:00 PM
Entry FeeRs.15 per person
Time Required1 hour

The Batasia Loop is a spiral railway built to lower the sudden sharp descent of about 140 ft from Ghum Railway Station of the Darjeeling Himalayan Railway in West Bengal.

When I went there, I learned that the slope’s angle had to be reduced for the toy train to negotiate the fall. Thus, the track spirals around itself through a tunnel and over a hilltop.

Batasia loop was commissioned in 1919.

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It will take around 15 minutes to reach Batasia Loop from Darjeeling mall. This is one of the must-visit places in Darjeeling. You will get an incredible 360-degree view of the Darjeeling landscape from here.

There is also a memorial to the Gorkha soldiers of the Indian Army who sacrificed their lives in various wars after the Indian Independence in 1947.

2. Darjeeling Mall

Darjeeling Mall
Distance from Darjeeling Mall
TimingsAll Day
Entry FeeFree
Time Required2 – 3 hours

Darjeeling Mall, also known as Chowrasta, can be termed the heart of Darjeeling. This place is the main tourist attraction in Darjeeling.

You can come here in the evening and relax on the benches on one side or shop at vintage shops on the other. This place is like the town center with a lot of activities going on.

The place is known as Chowrasta because it is the meeting place of four roads. “Chow” means four, and “Rasta” means roads. The four roads are Nehru Road, Dr. Zakir Hussain Road, Mall Road (East), and Mall Road (West).

You can walk down Nehru Road to the famous market square of Darjeeling if you want. There you will find many tourist stores lined up. There are also a lot of eateries, clothing stores, gifts and souvenir stores, etc.

3. Japanese Temple

Japanese Temple, Darjeeling
Distance from Darjeeling Mall5 km
Timings4:30 AM – 7:00 PM
Entry FeeFree
Time Required1 hour

The beautiful Japanese temple is located about a 10-minute ride from Darjeeling Mall.

This temple is known as the Nipponzan Myohoji Buddhist Temple. It is a two-storied traditional Japanese-style temple founded in the year 1972. In front of the temple is a small pillar with inceptions in Japanese.

Walk a short distance after parking your car before climbing a short flight of stairs to enter the temple.

4. Peace Pagoda

Peace Pagoda, Darjeeling
Distance from Darjeeling Mall5 km
Timings4:30 AM – 7:00 PM
Entry FeeFree
Time Required1 hour

Another popular tourist attraction in Darjeeling is the Peace Pagoda, situated about 100 yards from the Japanese Temple in the same compound.

The foundation stone of the pagoda was laid in 1972 by Nichidatsu Fujii, a Buddhist monk from Japan and founder of the Nipponzan-Myohoji Buddhist Order.

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The pagoda was designed by M. Ohka and was inaugurated in 1992.

Darjeeling’s Peace Pagoda displays four statues of Lord Buddha glistened with gold polish, depicting Buddha’s four avatars. Also, eight sandstone carvings depict different stories from the various stages of Gautama Buddha’s life.

It has a resemblance to the Dhauli Peace Pagoda in Odisha.

The Peace Pagoda is open to people of all faith and is purposely made to propagate peace and prosperity in the world.

It is also the tallest free-standing structure in Darjeeling, with a height of about 28.5 meters. You will get a mesmerizing panoramic view of Darjeeling town from here.

5. Rock Garden and Ganga Maya Park

Rock Garden and Chunnu Summer Falls
Distance from Darjeeling Mall7 km
Timings10:00 AM – 4:00 PM
Entry FeeRs.20 per person
Time Required1 – 2 hours

The Rock Garden, also known as the Barbotey Rock Garden, is located at the Chunnu Summer Falls. This place is a multi-level picnic ground terraced around the natural waterfall.

This garden is located at a distance of about 7 kilometers from Darjeeling. The road that will take you to the location descends rapidly into the valley. With sharp bends along the way, you will get scenic views at many points.

Also, I found this steep descent along the hill quite thrilling!

The hill slopes are filled with Tea Gardens all the way.

Another beautiful park, the Ganga Maya park, is located 3 kilometers downhill from this rock garden.

6. Ghum Station

Ghum Station (Balaji Bharadwaj, CC BY 2.0 via Flikr)
Distance from Darjeeling Mall7 km
TimingsAll Day
Entry FeeFree
Time Required1 hour

Ghum Railway station, also known as Ghoom, is the highest railway station in all of India and the 14th highest railway station in the world. It is situated at an altitude of 2,258 meters (7,407 ft). The station is part of the Darjeeling Himalayan Railway (DHR).

The Darjeeling Himalayan Railway was founded in 1879. The Railway track reached Ghum on 4th April 1881.

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If you want to enjoy the Darjeeling Toy Train ride but don’t want to take the long, 6-7 hours route from New Jalpaiguri, you can enjoy the short ride on the tourist train from Darjeeling to Ghum and back.

This is one of the main tourist attractions in Darjeeling, and you should not miss it.

7. Happy Valley Tea Estate

Happy Valley Tea Estate (Matt Stabile, CC BY 2.0, via Wikimedia Commons)
Distance from Darjeeling Mall2 km
Timings8:00 AM – 4:00 PM (Sunday closed)
Entry FeeFree,
Rs.150 per person (for the factory tour)
Time Required1 – 2 hours

It will be a big miss if you visit Darjeeling and not visit a tea estate. There are a lot of tea estates to explore near Darjeeling.

The Happy Valley Tea Estate is the second oldest tea garden, established in 1854. It is just a few kilometers from Darjeeling Mall, and you can reach there by walking. But it is located a bit downhill, and the slope is steep.

So if you choose to walk there, remember that your way back could be cumbersome.

If you want to tour the tea factory, you must visit between 8 AM and 4 PM, from Tuesday to Saturday. There is also a fee of Rs. 150 per person. The staff of the factory will show you around.

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Note that the factory remains closed between October and February because tea plucking does not happen in winter.

That brings us to the end of the list of some beautiful and popular tourist spots and attractions in Darjeeling.

Time required for sightseeing in Darjeeling

It takes 1-2 days to have a complete tour of all the popular tourist attractions in Darjeeling. You can discuss this with a travel operator to set up a travel itinerary that fits your plan.

You can also visit the offbeat places and attractions close to Darjeeling, including Takdah, Lamahatta, etc.

Some of these places may require you to stay overnight.

Recommended hotels to stay

In Darjeeling, the best place to stay is near Darjeeling Mall.

You can also stay at various resorts in Darjeeling, like Central Gleneagles Heritage Resort, Mayfair Darjeeling, etc. These resorts will provide you with mesmerizing views of nature.

So if you are visiting Darjeeling, visit these places and enjoy your stay!


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