Lolegaon, also spelled as Loleygaon, is a picturesque destination located in the Eastern Himalayas, surrounded by a lush alpine forest of conifers and fir trees. It is situated 24km from Lava and 58km from Kalimpong, at the extreme end of the Himalayan Ridge. Recently, it has gained popularity among nature lovers visiting Kalimpong as it offers a peaceful retreat from the hustle and bustle of the town. Sitting at an altitude of 1675 meters, Lolegaon and its surrounding areas offer breathtaking views.
From watching the mesmerizing sunrise over the world’s tallest snow-peaked mountains to walking on a suspended bridge, travelers can find it all in Lava Lolegaon. Blessed with scenic beauty and serene ambiance Lolegaon’s magnetizing aura and enchanting charisma never cease to amaze travelers.
Some of the popular attractions in Lolegaon include:
Jhandi Dara: Jhandi Dara located at a 15mins walking distance from Lolegaon is a famous sunrise point. On a clear day, visitors can catch the panoramic view of the snow-clad peaks of Mt Kanchenjunga and Mt Everest from the hilltop of Jhandi.
Neora Valley National Park: Lava is recognized as the entrance to the renowned Neora Valley National Park, which is located just 10km from the center of Lava. Nature and bird lovers should not miss a visit to this park which is known for its diverse array of flora, fauna, and avian species, including the rare Red Panda.
Canopy Walk: Within Lolegaon there is a hanging bridge called Canopy Walk. The 180mt long bridge hovering above the ground leads towards the wooded forest enclosing Lolegaon which gives a sense of closure towards nature.
Changey Waterfalls: Located 12 km from Lava is the renowned Changey Waterfalls. The waterfall can be reached by traversing narrow boulder roads. The sight of water cascading down from the towering mountains and into the lush green coniferous foliage is breathtaking. The peaceful surroundings and the sound of rushing water create a soothing melody for the ears and tranquility for the soul.
Lolegaon Eco Park- Located in the center of the village, opposite the Eco-Park, is a flat area surrounded by local shops and food stalls. Visitors can purchase souvenirs or sample traditional village cuisine. This is a must-see destination for nature enthusiasts.
Lava Monastery: The Lava Monastery, also known as the Lava Jamgyong Kongtrul Monastery, is located near the local market. It is an ancient monastery, featuring stunning Tibetan architecture. Inside the monastery, visitors can experience a sense of serenity and peace.
Lolegaon View Point: A viewpoint that offers a panoramic view of the surrounding area and its natural beauty, including the valley and the Himalayan range.
Samthar Plateau: For the adventurous, a trek to Samthar Plateau should be a must-do. The trek begins at Gompa Dara, which is located close to Lava. Additionally, many other trekking trails are available through the towering mountains and dense coniferous forests.
Trekking and hiking: Lolegaon is surrounded by beautiful alpine forests, hills, and valleys, making it an ideal spot for nature walks and treks.
Nature Interpretation Centre: The Nature Interpretation Centre of the Neora Valley National Park, located in Lava, offers a glimpse of the diverse array of flora, fauna, and avian species that can be found inside the National Park. The center is situated at the end of a scenic pathway surrounded by mountainous vegetation and plantations. It is open to visitors and tourists every day except Thursdays.
Bird Watching: The forest and valley of Lolegaon are home to various species of birds, and it is a popular spot for bird-watching enthusiasts.
Local Villages: Lolegaon has many small, traditional villages nearby where visitors can see the rural way of life in the area.
Both Lava and Lolegaon have similar climates due to their high altitude locations. They have cool temperatures throughout the year, but can get chilly in the evenings. They have distinct seasons: summer, monsoon, and winter, with a brief period of autumn that blends into winter. Lava and Lolegaon have relatively consistent daytime temperatures. The summer season is pleasant, winter is cold, and the monsoon season brings heavy rainfall.
Summer in Lava Lolegaon- Lava and Lolegaon have summers that run from March to June, with daytime temperatures reaching a maximum of 25 degrees Celsius and nighttime temperatures ranging from 12-15 degrees Celsius. These months have clear skies, making it the ideal time to see the Himalayan mountain range. This is also the peak tourist season, as the weather is mild and pleasant, offering a respite from the hot summers of lower elevations.
Winter in Lava Lolegaon- September to February is the optimal time for nature enthusiasts to visit Lava and Lolegaon. Daytime temperatures can reach up to 15 degrees Celsius, and nighttime temperatures can drop to as low as 7 degrees Celsius, sometimes even below freezing. Despite the cold weather, the clear skies during this time offer spectacular views of snow-capped peaks such as Kanchenjunga and Mount Everest.
Monsoon in Lava Lolegaon- July and August are the monsoon months in Lava and Lolegaon. During this time, the area experiences heavy rainfall, with an average of 2030mm (80 inches). This can lead to landslides and poor road conditions. The temperature during monsoon season ranges from 22-30 degrees Celsius, and the air is highly humid. The misty clouds surrounding the mountains can also obstruct views of the snow-capped peaks.
The ideal time to visit Lava and Lolegaon is between September to June, depending on personal preferences. The mountain’s natural beauty is at its peak during this time. Visitors seeking relief from the heat of the plains prefer the summer months, while nature enthusiasts prefer the autumn and winter seasons. Many tourists also choose to visit the nearby city of Rishop during these optimal visiting periods.
Both Lava and Lolegaon offer a range of accommodations, from budget-friendly to luxury options. Visitors can also opt for a homestay for a more authentic, rural experience, though these accommodations still provide basic amenities. As both Lava and Lolegaon have become popular tourist destinations, there are a variety of accommodation options available. Many of the accommodations in Lava and Lolegaon, including homestays and hotels, are situated in picturesque, natural settings. Some resorts also offer good internet connectivity, although access to internet in higher altitudes can be tough.
Budget- friendly hotels in Lava and Lolegaon typically offer limited food options, with Chinese and Indian cuisine being the most widely available. However, some luxurious resorts offer a wider variety of cuisines to choose from. Accommodations in Lava and Lolegaon can also be found in the central parts of the villages, for those who want to be in the heart of the attraction. Many of these stays offer rooms with beautiful views from the backside of the establishment. For larger groups who want to stay together, there are also dormitory options available. No matter where you choose to stay, whether it is in the heart of the village or on the outskirts, there are a variety of options available to suit your needs.
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Perched at an altitude of 5590ft at a distance of 6km from Kalimpong town is Deolo Hill. Deolo hill is the highest point of Kalimpong town and offers a surreal view of Teesta River meandering through the mountainous valley. On a clear day travelers can see an astounding vista of snow clad mountains of west Sikkim along with the view of the third tallest mountain range from Deolo Hill. It is a famous picnic spot of Kalimpong. The hilltop of Deolo is beautifully landscaped garden where small ponies can be seen grazing the grass. On the edge of Deolo hill is a recreational park and Science Centre of Kalimpong. The science centre of Kalimpong is a knowledge based organization of high quality and dedication. The serene ambiance, fun learning program and pictorial sights has Deolo Hill a must visit of destination of Kalimpong.
Kalimpong is famous for being a rich historical town embedded with many prestigious heritage sites, Dr Graham’s Homes being one of them. Situated in the foothills of Deolo Hill, Dr Graham’s Homes was built in 1900 by Sir Anderson Graham of England. Formerly known as St. Andrew's Colonial Homes, Dr Graham’s Homes is sprawled across an area of 550 acres. Offering many vocational courses in baking, clothing, dairy management, farming, poultry, and medication the campus of Dr Graham’s Homes is sometime referred as a miniature town which is self-sufficient in providing its own food, clothing and lodging. The cottage shaped architecture and rich colonial background of Dr Graham’s Homes has hyped the interest of many travelers making it a must visit destination of Kalimpong.
Located on the South-West side of Kalimpong town at an elevation of 4501ft is Durpin Dara. It is the second highest point of Kalimpong. The name is derived from the nepali language where ‘Durpin’ stands for ‘Binoculars’ and ‘Dara’ stands for ‘hill’. The hilltop of Durpin Dara is famous amongst the travelers for offering the most pictorial view of the adjacent valleys. Tourist can enjoy the panoramic view of River Teesta and River Rangeet with the backdrop view of snow clad Himalayan range of West Sikkim, the luxuriant hilltop of Kurseong, Nathula and Tiger Hill from the quaint monastery sited atop the Durpin Dara. Built in 1978 Zang Dhok Palri Monastery or commonly known as Durpin Monastery is a Buddhist monastery which was hallowed by Dalai Lama. The uphill road leading towards Durpin Dara is dotted with well manicured shrubs and on the way tourist can see the army cantonment area of Kalimpong. The sense of serenity which is felt while witnessing the adjacent valleys has made Durpin Dara a must visit destination of Kalimpong.
Blessed with the abundance of flora and fauna Kalimpong is the only place in the Eastern Himalayan region which houses the largest and rarest collection of cactus. Housing more than 100 different varieties of cactus, Pine view Nursery AKA the Kalimpong Cactus Nursery has become a paradise for the botany enthusiast. Located in the isolated side of the town, Kalimpong Cactus Nursery is like a hidden gem amidst the thick wooded forest surrounding Kalimpong. Along with the exquisite collection of Cactaceae, tourist visiting Kalimpong Cactus Nursery can see a large collection of orchids. The versatile collection of cactus and orchid create a wonderful vista to capture some of the most astounding picture. Visitors as a souvenir can buy plants and seeds of cactus and orchid from the nursery itself. Showing the fine blend of two versatile plants, Kalimpong Cactus Nursery is a must visit place of Kalimpong for the tourist if they show keen interest towards horticulture.
Nestled close to the periphery of Neora Valley National Park is a nature bound settlement called Lava. It is located at a distance of 34km from Kalimpong. The road leading towards Lava from Kalimpong offers an astounding vista of changing vegetation from tropical deciduous forest to wet alpine tree which is a visual treat for all nature lovers. Situated at an altitude of 7016ft Lava is one of the few places around Darjeeling which receives snowfall during extreme winter. Lava has become a famous destination among the travelers who wants to catch an unhindered view of Mt Kanchenjunga range. Blessed with abundance of flora and fauna, Lava has become a sojourn for the nature lovers who want to find solitude in the lap of Mother Nature. Being the gate way of Neora Valley National Park, Lava is dotted with astounding trekking route which has hyped the interest of trekkers’ visiting Kalimpong. Neora Valley is known for being the home of many Himalayan Migrant birds like Broad-billed Warbler, Satyr Tragopan, Blue-fronted Robin, Rusty-bellied Shortwing, Yellow-throated Fulvetta, and Scarlet Finch making Lava an ideal birding destination for avid bird watchers. For all inquisitive learners, a Nature Interpretation Centre is located near the quaint settlement which gives detailed information about the exquisite flora and fauna found in the verdant forest of Neora Valley National Park. The beauty of Himalayas can be seen at its prime form in the scenically blessed hamlet Lava. The serene ambiance with the rustic style of living and pictorial sight of Himalayan range has made Lava a place to find solace for all nature lovers who admires the simplicity of life.
Cuddled in the foothills of Tiffin Dara in the Neora Valley National Park is a small village called Rishop. It is located at a distance of 28km from Kalimpong and 11km from Lava. Travelers can also choose 4km trekking route from Lava to reach Rishop. Hidden amidst the wooded forest of alpine trees, Rishop is a new found jewel of Kalimpong tourism. Sited amidst the dense forested region, Rishop is endowed with rich flora and fauna making the sighting of wild animal a common event. Rishop is dotted with numerous nature trails the famous one being towards the hill top of Tiffin Dara. An easy 30-45minutes walk through the conifer and birch forest leads visitors towards the hilltop of Tiffin Dara which offers the most exquisite sunrise over the Kanchenjunga range. Throughout the uphill trek towards Tiffin Dara, travelers are accompanied by the melodious chirping of exotic Himalayan birds residing in the luxuriant forest of Neora Valley National Park. The nature trails of Rishop are ideal for bird watching making it a paradise for avid bird watchers. Perched at an altitude of 8500ft the best time to visit Rishop is during spring season (April to May), when the weather is soothing and the valley surrounding Rishop is bursting with the vibrant color riot of blooming rhododendron and orchids. Unscathed by the modernized society Rishop is an ideal destination for the travelers who to spend some quality time in the nurturing lap of Mother Nature.
Surrounded with lush alpine forest of conifer and fir trees in the Eastern Himalaya is a pictorial destination called Lolegaon also spelled as Loleygaon. It is located at distance of 24km from Lava and 58km from Kalimpong. Sited in the extreme end of Himalayan Ridge Lolegaon has recently grabbed the attention of nature lover visiting Kalimpong. Far from bustling town Kalimpong, Lolegaon has its own pace of life which has made it a gateway to escape from the mundane life. Perched at an altitude of 1675mt there are few places nearby Lolegaon which offers the most astounding sight. Jhandi Dara located at a 15mins walking distance from Lolegaon is a famous sunrise point. On a clear day visitors can catch the panoramic view of snow clad peaks of Mt Kanchenjunga and Mt Everest from the hilltop of Jhandi. Within Lolegaon there is a hanging bridge called Canopy Walk. The 180mt long bridge hovering above the ground leads towards the wooded forest enclosing Lolegaon which giving a sense of closure towards nature. From watching the mesmerizing sunrise over the world’s tallest snow peaked mountains to walking on a suspended bridge, travelers can find it all in Lolegaon. Blessed with the scenic beauty and serene ambiance Lolegaon’s magnetizing aura and enchanting charisma never ceases to amaze the travelers.
Built in the 18th century atop a luxuriant hillside of Kalimpong, is a cottage styled British Bungalow called Crockety. It is located at a distance 50km from Darjeeling. Surrounded by the most pictorial lawn and garden, Crockety bungalow of Kalimpong still holds the nostalgic essence of the rich colonial era within its finely crafty walls. The cottage style bungalow of Crockety has ensnared the heart of many travelers with its amazing fusion of rustic and classic architecture. Earlier Crockety used to be the hub of wool traders and at the present time it’s the hub for tourist visiting Kalimpong. Even after many decades Crockety bungalow has a magnetizing charisma which has lured many photography enthusiast and nature lovers visiting to Kalimpong towards it.