"One's destination is never a place, but a new way of seeing things" ~ Henry Miller


Sikkim: Adventure

Sikkim with it's spectacular mountainous terrain offers opportunities for mountaineering, trekking, river rafting, yak safaris, mountain biking and gliding.

It is impossible to visualise Sikkim without seeing it in the broader context of the Himalayas. The unspoiled natural splendour and tranquility of the countryside has made certain regions in Sikkim ideal for trekking. These mountains, which form an intrinsic part of the lives of the Sikkimese, also offer adventure to the brave hearted. Listen to the sound of the wind among the trees, feel the way of the rocks, watch the snow clad peaks as you trek up a mountain side, dwarfed by the ramparts of echoing cliffs.

Trekking from Yuksam situated 5,800 feet above sea level to Dzongri at 13,800 feet takes 2 days. All along the route one is amazed and spellbound by the spectacular mountain scenes. For those who would like to push themselves more, the trek from Dzongri to Gochala, is equally rewarding, through spectacular majestic, mountain ranges.

TIf you feel so inclined you can go on a yak safari - an experience unique to Sikkim.

For those who want to see some white water action - get ready for the sparkling ice-cold mountain rivers of Sikkim. River rafting tours and kayaking are organised on the Tista and Rangit Rivers.

The adventurous at heart may indulge in the following activities that Sikkim has to offer: Mountaineering, Trekking, River Rafting, Yak Safari, Mountain Biking, Gliding.

More about Sikkim
An Overview
People & Culture
Off the Beaten Track
Wild Life
Monastery Magic
Tourist Information
Getting There

Journey to Remember
Rumtek Diary
Yumthang Valley

Freedom From Fear
Classic Dzongri Trek
When Climbers Trek


The first European to explore the Khangchendzonga area was Douglas W. Fresfield who reached its base in1899 from the Green Lake Basin area. A German expedition led by Paul Bauer made the first attempt to reach the summit in 1929 followed by another attempt in 1931 when they reached an altitude of 26,000 ft. In 1955, Charles Evans reached Khangchendzonga, a few feet below the summit from the Nepal side. In1977, an expedition led by Major Prem Chand reached a few feet below the summit. In 1987, an Assam Rifles expedition attempted the peak. In 1991, an Indo-Japanese expedition led by Hukam Singh and Yoshio Ogata reached the summit of the peak.

TThe Kabru was first climbed in 1935 by a British, C. R. Cooke. The Pyramid Peak was first conquered in1949 by a Swiss, R. Dittert. A British, A. M. Kallas, climbed the Paunhri in 1911. The summit of Siniolchu was first reached by a German in 1936. It was later again climbed by the famous Sikkimese Everester Sonam Gyatso. Pandim was climbed in 1993 by a team from the Sonam Gyatso Mountaineering Institute.

The summit of Rathong was reached by an Indian expedition in 1964.


Yuksam- Dzongri- Goecha La Trek

Yuksam (1630m) - Bakhim (2,740 m) - Tsokha (3050 m) - Pethang ( 3,760m) - Dzongri (4025 m)--Thangshing / Bikbari (3,840 m) - Samiti Lake (4,200 m) - Goecha La (4,940 m) and back.

One of the most popular treks in Sikkim, the trek to Bakhim is scenic and invigorating with more than 20 varieties of rhododendrons setting the forest aflame with colours. Dzongri at 3,963 m welcomes the climber with a heavenly close-up of the Khangchendzonga. The sunset views leave memories of a spectacular Sikkim.

Trekkers' huts en route are the best places to stay. During the season, there is not sufficient accommodation, so it is imperative to carry tents.

Some of the other treks that can be organized through Sikkim Tourism or recognized travel agencies are:


Monastery Trek

An 11 day, relatively leisurely trek that is spiritually elevating. Pemayangtse - Sangacholing - Khecheopalri - Dubdi - Sinon - Tashiding - Ralang .

Rhododendron Trek

(March - May, when the rhododendrons are in bloom) Naya Bazar - Hilley / Soreng - Varsey - Dentam - Pemayangtse.

Khangchendzonga Trek

A 15-day incredible trek that gives you enchanting views of Mt. Khangchendzonga that will remain with you forever. Savour this beautiful and unspoiled area with its tiny jewel-like lakes and exotic flora and fauna against the backdrop of the majestic Khangchendzonga.

No technical climbing experience is necessary as most of the treks are between 6,000 and 14,000 feet. However one needs to be totally fit. Camping and trekking equipment is available on hire from the tourism department and from reputed travel agents. Whenever you are planning a trek, keep in mind the need to acclimatize gradually to avoid high altitude sickness.

River Rafting

River rafting enthusiasts have two rivers, the Tista and Rangit gushing through Himalayan country. The Tista experience takes you rafting from Makha down to Sirwani and Sirwani to Rangpo. The Rangit expedition is from Sikip to Nayabazar to Melli. Beginners as well as experienced adventure enthusiasts can seek the assistance of the Department of Tourism and recognised travel agents for arranging river- rafting trips.

Tista Experience

Makha - Sirwani - Bardang - Rongpo
Rangit Experience
Sikip - Jorethang - Majitar - Melli


Kayaking is undertaken on the Tista and is arranged for special groups. Some experience in kayaking is required. Kayaks are available with Sikkim Tourism.

Yak Safari

A safari with a difference. Yak Safaris are organized from Dzongri onwards by Sikkim Tourism as well as private travel agencies on prior booking.

Mountain Biking

Mountain Biking is another adventure activity that has been recently introduced in Sikkim. Most of the roads in Sikkim are negotiable by mountain bikes. This sport is eliciting interest and will increasingly grow more popular in Sikkim in the near future. This sport is being promoted in most parts of North Sikkim and West Sikkim. Sikkim Tourism helps you organize a trip.


Gliding in North Sikkim and Jorethang in West Sikkim is a new activity being promoted by Sikkim Tourism.

Compiled by Romola Butalia

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Editor: Romola Butalia       (c) India Travelogue. All rights reserved.