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Darjeeling The 'Queen of Hills'

Darjeeling Darjeeling is the name of a town as well as a district in West Bengal state of India. Both the town and the district is famous as one of the most important tourist destinations in the country. Darjeeling is famous throughout the world for the tea it grows and the great view of Kanchenjunga range of mountains that it offers. It is also known for its richness in cultural & natural heritage and the famous toy train that has been declared an UN heritage. The district covering about 1144 sq km, attracts millions of tourists every year for the variety of attractions it offers.

The hills rise from the `Terai` and `Dooars` plains of Bengal and reaches an altitude of more than 12,000 feet. Three divisions of the district, namely Darjeeling, Kalimpong and Kurseong constitute the hilly areas and the Siliguri subdivision is in the plains. To the north of the region is the Indian state of Sikkim, it borders Nepal on the West, and Bengal plains in the South and East. In Darjeeling, those who grow up in the mountains identify themselves according to their ancestry: Nepalese, Bhutanese, Tibetan or Lepcha. The region also contends with a religious mix - Although Hindus represent the majority, there is strong presence of Tibetan Buddhism and other religions.

Darjeeling Weather

The town offers pleasant weather for most of the year. During summer the maximum temperature rarely crosses 25 degree centigrade. Since the town is located at an altitude of about 4200 feet only, the weather during winter also does not get lower than 10 degrees during the day. The town receives heavy rainfall during the Monsoon months of July to September.

Reaching Darjeeling

Take a train up to NJP (New Jalpaiguri). Darjeeling is only 88kms from here. You will get ample taxis and shared jeeps from NJP to reach Darjeeling in about 3.5 hours along the main highway NH-55 (also known as Hill Cart Road). Few long distance trains pass through Siliguri as well. You will also get plenty of shared jeeps, taxis and buses at Siliguri. You can even take a toy train ride from either NJP or Siliguri through scenic mountain route that takes about 7.5 hrs to reach Darjeeling. The toy train track runs parallel and next to the Hill Cart Road for most part. Fly down to the nearest airport Bagdogra which is 94 kms from Darjeeling town and take a private taxi. Shared taxis and buses are not available here. It takes about 3.5 hours to reach Darjeeling from Bagdogra airport. There are regular buses including Rocket and Volvo services from Kolkata (Calcutta) to Siliguri Main Bus Terminal (known as Tenzing Norgay Bus Terminus located on Hill Cart Road). From Siliguri main bus terminal area, you will get buses, shared Jeeps and private taxis for Darjeeling. Siliguri to Darjeeling is 80kms.


Darjeeling Himalayan Railway (DHR)

Darjeeling Himalayan Railway (DHR):A visit to the region is incomplete without a ride in the toy-train of DHR. The miniature train, given heritage status by UNESCO, covers the distance of 88 km between New Jalpaiguri station and Darjeeling. more about the Darjeeling Himalayan Railway

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