sikkim - Land of mystic splendor
Sikkim offers the magical feel of a Himalayan fairytale land. It is an amazing place of hidden valleys, mystical monasteries, snow-fed lakes and a mountain setting covered with flowers and forests. This former kingdom is home to three major population groups - the Lepchas, Bhutias and Nepalese - providing a colorful composite of cultures. Mt. Kanchenjunga , the third highest peak in the world at 8,586 m, dominates the landscape and is revered as Sikkim 's guardian deity. Sikkim is a state of India tucked in the Himalaya across Nepal 's eastern frontier. It is crammed in between Tibet ( China ) to the north, Bhutan to the east and Darjeeling to the south.
DARJEELING - The queen of the hills
Darjeeling (Darjeeling Gorkha Hill Council) in northeast India provides the perfect ambience of a hill resort with its mild climate and laid-back charm. Its verdant hills and valleys are steeped in color, and are interspersed with vast stretches of lush green tea gardens. Presiding over all these is the 8,586-m Mt. Kanchenjunga looming over the northern horizon, giving a magical aura to the land that entices thousands to its environs and leaves all the senses intoxicated. Situated at 2134m above sea level, Darjeeling is hemmed in by Sikkim in the north, Nepal in the west and Bhutan in the east. Darjeeling town, Kalimpong and Kurseong are the major urban centers. Heavily influenced by British India , Darjeeling still retains legacies of its colonial past. The toy train is one of the most striking examples of Darjeeling 's British Raj influence.

Darjeeling 's population of about 100,000 is made up of people of many races and religions. Gorkhas, Bhutias, Lepchas, Sherpas. Yolmos and migrants from the plains have all made Darjeeling their home, and everyone lives in perfect harmony; at the shrine at Observatory Hill, you'll find Hindus and Buddhists offering prayers alongside each other. The official language is Gorkhali (Nepali), but Hindi and Bengali are also spoken, and almost everyone understands and speaks a bit of English.