Sikkim Shinsore Bridge far view


The Hiking gateway to the Higher Himalayas
Situated on the extreme western frontier with Nepal, the village Uttaray used to be a trade link between India and Nepal via Chiyabhanjang Pass in the Singalila Ridge. At 7600ft altitude, Uttaray is a base to explore the higher ridges of the Himalayas, and one can reach the famous Dzongri Top in the Kanchenjunga National Park at the height of 3600 meters. About 35kms from Pelling, a central tourist hub in West Sikkim, Uttaray is fast developing as an adventure trekking and village tourism destination.
The village of a mixed population of Limbu, Rai, and Tamang belonging to Nepalese communities remained hidden for many years from the outside tourists. With the proximity to many exciting trekking trails in the Singalila, including the Singalila Ridge trek and alternative trek to Dzongri Goechala at Mt Kanchenjunga's base, this place is getting immensely popular for serious trekkers. Another exciting trek from here goes to Barsey Rhododendron Sanctuary, Phalut and Sandakphu via Singalila Pass in Darjeeling in West Bengal.
Many small scale lodges and homestays have been developed to offer a real Sikkimese village experience. The travellers can stay with the villagers and explore the simple lives of the peaceful villagers. All hotels serve Indian and local food – mainly Bengali dishes.

Activities in Uttarey

  • Bird watching - The upper ridges of Uttaray have rich forest cover, which offers a brilliant opportunity for birding of higher Himalayan species like Satyr Tragopan and blood pheasant and much important wildlife like Red Panda, Sherow – the mountain goat, and Himalayan black bear.

  • Hiking and village activity - Uttaray is the base to explore the higher ridges on Sikkim Singalila, bordering Nepal. A fascinating long Singalila Ridge Trek reaching the core of Kanchenjungha National Park at Goachala starts from here. Uttaray is also known for several sacred caves, lakes, waterfalls, Buddhist Gompas and temples. The most famous and legendary cave – Leydham Holy cave can be reached in a 3 to 4 hrs trek from Uttaray. The area is also rich with agricultural land, and several small villages dotting the valley provide an exciting base for village-based tourism.

Attractions in Uttarey

  • Barsey Rhododendron Sanctuary

    From Uttaray, an interesting trek leads to Barsey Rhododendron Sanctuary at 3000 metres, a natural habitat for Red Panda. Hike to Chiyabhanjang Pass bordering Nepal and Sikkim, Sinsore Bridge and Dentam Valley, along with a day visit to Pelling.

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  • The Kagyu Monastery  

    A small colourful Buddhist Gompa was built in 1711 and is one of the oldest in Sikkim. This is a highly sacred place for the Buddhist Monks and a place for worship and prayers. The monastery has lovely surroundings with panoramic views of mountains and forests.

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  • Chiwabhanjang Pass 

    Chiwabhanjang Pass lies on a 10 km steep trek to the Indo Nepal Border and is a famous place to observe the vast Himalayan ranges, including Mt Everest and Kanchenjunga peaks. At 3010mt altitude, Chiwabhanjang Pass is a popular trek recently opened for mountain lovers.

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Uttaray can be reached from Siliguri in a 6hr drive through Via Melli – Jorthang – Rinchenpong Dentam road or from Gangtok – the capital of Sikkim via Singtam – Rabangla – Legship - Pelling Dentam road in 7hrs. October to April is the best travel time for the area. The period between May and September is better to be avoided. Due to excessive rains, the road to Uttaray may be damaged during this time.

Location of Uttarey

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