Yuksom

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Yuksom is a small village in Sikkim. It is said that it was the first capital of Sikkim. It's calm and peaceful; a real get-away for those who want to avoid the tourist crowd.

Get in[edit]

Reach here in 2.5 hours from Gezing using shared or private 4x4s

The nearest railway station is New Jalpaiguri (NJP) which is about 150km from Yuksom. From NJP, one can book a taxi to Yuksom for ₹2,000 (March 2009). Be careful to leave NJP by 11:00 as it takes around 6-7 hours to reach Yuksom via Jorethang. The road to Yuksom is poorly lit and it is not advisable to travel at night.

The nearest airport is in Bagdogra, 12km west of Siliguri, about 170km from Yuksom.

Get around[edit]

It is a very small village so get around on foot.

Yuksom is the base camp for many treks in Sikkim. One can trek to Tashiding/Dzongri peak/Goecha La from here. You will get many tour guides as well as reliable agencies like Hiddenparadise Adventure Tours(www.trekking-in-sikkim.com)this company is run by local guy name Mr. U.T. Bhutia,he has been doing this job for more than 21years,Red Panda, Yak $ Yeti, www.pacadventures.com, www.trekthe himalayas,com etc

You can also trek to Kachupuri lake from Yuksom. It's a relatively tough, steep trek (10km) if you not a high altitude trekker. There are no shared 4x4s to/from Kachupuri lake, but it might be possible to join a tour 4x4 for this journey.

See[edit][add listing]

It is a very beautiful place. It is surrounded by majestic green forested mountain peaks. On a clear day, the snow-covered tip of Kanchenjunga, the world's 3rd highest mountain, is visible in the distance.

  • Kathok Lake. This Lake is regarded as the ‘Lahtsho’ or soul lake of Lama Kathok Kuntu Zangpo, one of the pioneer lamas who introduced Buddhism to this land in 1642 A.D. He sanctified this lake for the purpose of his oracular practices. Lamas perform Tru-sol or purification ceremony every year to retain its sanctity.  edit
  • Norbugang Coronation Throne, [1]. Place where Phuntsog Namgyal was crowned the first Chogyal of Sikkim. Meeting place of three Lamas who came from Tibet. A Lama's footprint is etched into the rock. Peaceful hilltop park with big trees, prayer wheels, flags, etc.  edit
  • Kathok Wosel Ling Gompa. Small Buddhist temple and monastery on a small hill close to town and the lake with a big Padmasambhava figure and a nice view of the village and surrounding mountains.  edit
  • Dubdi Monastery. Said to be the oldest monastery in Sikkim. Steep 30 min walk through the forest, on a well marked trail starting at Yuksom hospital. Out the monastery back gate a path continues up another 10 minutes to a hilltop meadow with a panoramic view.  edit

Do[edit][add listing]

  • Goechala Trek (4990meter), yuksom sikkim (west), [2]. goechala trek who has run by experience with porter cook guide and agent that is glacier treks PAC Adventures it is local agent,contact to this company for goechala trek,it is well take caring with good manner and provide service well. 12,000.  edit
  • Tashiding Trek (2150 meter), [3]. This is a great one day trek from Yuksom along the mountains, passing by 4 monasteries, with panoramic mountain views the whole way. Trail rises about 400 mtrs to Hongri Gompa, then descends 900 mtrs to Tashiding village. No guide is strictly necessary as the trail is mostly obvious and there are many homes and villages along the way to confirm the correct path. Starting at Yuksom hospital, the path rises steeply to Dubdi monastery (30 minutes), then down to the unpaved road, around the side valley past a small waterfall to Tsong village (30 minutes) where begins the steep uphill to Hongri Monastery (1 hour), then along the mountain side descending slightly to Sinon Monastery (1 hour), and finally a steep downhill path to Tashiding village (80 minutes). Tashiding monastery is a further 30 minutes uphill from there. Lodging is available in Hongri and Tashiding, or return to Yuksom same day by jeep/car one hour. Shared Yuksom-bound jeeps occasionally pass hit-or-miss through Tashiding til mid-afternoon, otherwise a reserved car Tashiding-Yuksom will cost Rs 800.  edit

Buy[edit][add listing]

If you are one of those backpackers that like to travel light, you can buy basic clothes for your travel. Nothing fancy or touristy can be found here. It's not a regular tourist destination.

Eat[edit][add listing]

There are a few restaurants: Yak Restaurant (Mr Ugen), Norling, and Gupta restaurant at the main junction, which serves Himalayan, Indian and Italian food.

The restaurants open at 05:30 in the morning and are closed by 22:00 at night. Sometimes they have good food, especially the beef rice and morning alu parathas. But one may find decent pizzas and beer here.

You may also be lucky enough to encounter yak cheese momos. These are particularly fantastic after a long day's trek. They taste like they are filled with a very strong feta cheese.

Most of these restaurants also serve tongba (bamboo drink). Try this. It's a juice of the fermented millet served in a bamboo container, and you will also be given a small straw made of bamboo to sip the millet wine from the bamboo container.

Drink[edit][add listing]

There are two brands of bottled beer available: Hit and Dansberg. Dansberg is a wonderful mild beer brewed and bottled in Sikkim. Hit, on the other hand. is a strong beer.

The other option is to go for the local brew called Chang or Tongba. It consists of fermented Millet grains in a broad bamboo stem cut to be used as a tumbler. Hot water is added to the container, within a few minutes it acquires the flavour of port wine. It is drunk through a narrow straw also made of bamboo. More water is added to the tumbler when it runs out. With time the flavour of the Chang gets milder.

The potency of the drink is dependent on the ageing of the millet used. Millet fermented for ten to fifteen days result in a medium to mild drink. Up to three month old fermented drinks can result in a very strong brew.

Sleep[edit][add listing]

A very beautiful government guest house with two dormitories with 6 beds cost ₹50 pppn in Aug 2007. Three private hostels are also present.

Several small guesthouses and hotels have popped up here in recent years.

  • Demazong Hotel, Main street, Yuksom. Nice hotel in the village centre, in front of Gupta restaurant. Clean and well furnished, some rooms are en suite while others are not: prices for doubles are ₹500-1,000. The owner is a friendly Tibetan woman. ₹500-1000.  edit
  • Limboo Homestay, at the end of the main street, next to the health center, 9733084983 (), [4]. Spotlessly clean, small family-run guesthouse in a beautiful mountain setting at the back side of the village. Large organic garden supplies fresh veggies to the kitchen, which produces an astonishing variety of world-class vegetarian food. Owners are an ornithologist mountain trek guide and a nurse. Peaceful, comfortable, friendly. Hospitality here is first-rate. Rooms and garden cottages. Highest recommendation. ₹800-1500.  edit

Get out[edit]

There are several treks leading from this place. Also, the Khangchendzonga National Park is close by (which is a kind of heaven on earth). To get out of Yuksom, Jeeps are available but mostly they run in the morning, starting at 05:30. You need to book them one day in advance to be sure you get a seat. Goes to Pelling, Geyzing and Jorethang.



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