toa BLOG

Taj Lake Palace
Shikarbadi Hotel
Anda Amed Bali
Indra Udhyana
Mimpi Resort
Alam Asmara
Indonesia Hotels

readers' submissions

Tsomgo the Frozen Beauty

By Saikat Roy

September 28, 2008 

Location: Sikkim, in the north eastern state of India.

Best time to find frozen lake: Jan to Mid Feb. Temperature: Around minus 3 deg C (min).

Tourist Season: March to late May, October to Mid-December. Temperature: Around 2 - 10 deg C.

Tsomgo Altitude: 12400 feet. Nathula: about 14000 feet. 

How to Reach: Tsomgo (Changu) lake is situated 35 km from Gangtok on the Gangtok - Nathula highway, the Silk Route forms a part of the old trade route from India to China.  

Tsomgo Lake (Changu). 
The Tsomgo Lake in Sikkim is a holy lake worshipped by the sikkimese. Tsomgo (Changu) lake, which is hardly 20 km away from the famous Nathula Pass, indo - china border and approx. 410 km from Lhasa, Tibet. Its cool, placid water harmonies with the picturesque beauty around, which are increased by its reflection in the lake. A small temple of Lord Shiva is built on the lakeside. Primula flowers and other alpine plantation grow around the lake. The Tsomgo Lake gets its water from the melting snow and sliding glaciers on the mountains around, The River Lungtze Chu originates from the Tsomgo lake Sikkim and meets the Rangpo-chu further down its course.

The Lake is Oval in shape and about 1 Km long and max. Depth is 15 M, provides a pristine beauty to this place. During the winter months the Tsomgo Lake becomes frozen. Though walking on frozen lake is restricted, till some local people’s foot prints are visible. It’s always advisable to not to walk on frozen icy water body. One can have a beautiful ride on Himalayan Yaks and have tea / momos in adjacent food huts. A footpath along the Tsomgo Lake takes one to a resting shed - a walk of about half a kilometre.

During summer Tsomgo lake shows a few rainbow trout and if you are lucky you may catch a glimpse at them.

Ancient days, Buddhist lamas used to study the colour of the water of the lake and forecast about the future. It’s a common believe, when the waters of the Tsomgo Lake had a dark tinge, it foreshadowed a year of trouble and unrest in community. 
Tsomgo lake Sikkim falls in the restricted area and hence an Inner Line Permit, which can be obtained from the Police through the Tourism Department or travel agent in gantok, is required by visitors to visit this place. Foreign nationals are also permitted to visit this lake. Also Foreigners need a permit to enter Sikkim (available at Siliguri, west Bengal).

Way to Tsomgo Lake in Sikkim. 
Tsomgo Lake in Sikkim is easily approachable from Gangtok, the capital city of Sikkim, India. Gantok is well connected to rest of India via air, road. Way to Gangtok from silliguri / NJP is very pleasant and picaresque and maximum way you will find blue & green river Tista beside your journey. 

Stay: You can stay in Gangtok for 2 - 3 Nights to Visit Tsomgo in second day and third day for sight seeing and return. Moreover one can also extend the visit to Yumthang, the Vally of flowers at an altitude of 12000 feet.  Estimated time for Yumthang is 2 days and 1 Night from Gangtok. There are many travel agents arrange the tour in gangtok. Plenty of different ranges of hotels are available in Gangtok. They offers upto 50% discount in winter.   
Airport: Nearest airport is Bagdogra in West Bengal (about 125 kms), from where scheduled domestic flights operates to and fro from Kolkata, Delhi, Guwahati. The Bagdogra airport is connected to Gangtok by a helicopter service operating between Gangtok - Bagdogra - Gangtok and also by surface by car.  
Railhead: Two nearest railway station are at Siliguri (about 114 km) and New Jalpaiguri - NJP (about 125 km) stabilizing link to Calcutta, Delhi, Guwahati, Lucknow, chennai, mumbai and other important cities in India.
Road Transport: Siliguri - Calcutta is connected through Volvo & Luxury bus services. Gangtok is connected with all weather mettaled road to Siliguri, Kalimpong, Gangtok etc. Gangtok, the capital of Sikkim is connected by all weather road to Darjeeling, Kalimpong, Siliguri and also to all the District headquarters within Sikkim.
Private Taxis, Qualis, Land rover and Sumos ply regularly on the Gangtok Siliguri Highway and are available for transfer of passengers between Gangtok and Siliguri/ New Jalpaiguri Junction/ Bagdogra. 
Local Sight Seeing in Gangtok: Local sightseeing at Gantok, fixed rates Cars may be reserved through Tourist Bureau, Govt. of West Bengal / Sikkim or IRCTC Help desk in NJP / Gangtok.
Gangtok Sight Seeing: Ancient rumteck monsry, rope ways, Japanese temple, Enchey gompa,, Namgyal Research Institute of Tibetology etc.  

-------------------------------------- Written by Saikat brata Roy, email: saikat0612@rediffmail.com, cell: +91 9339041923. 

                                                      Address: 118 Dibakar duttagupta Sarani, N.Baksara, Howrah -711110, India.

Readers' Submissions


Opinions expressed on Readers' Submissions pages do not necessarily reflect those of talesofasia.com, its publisher, or anyone else that could be remotely affiliated with the talesofasia name.

Unless otherwise credited, the copyright on all text and photographs appearing on a Readers' Submissions page belong to the credited author and are not the property of talesofasia.com. Inquirires regarding this material should be made to the author. Unless stated otherwise, all other text and photographs on talesofasia.com are 1998 - 2008 Gordon Sharpless. Commercial or editorial usage without written permission of the copyright holder is prohibited.