|Norbugang Coronation Throne||Locatde 15 min walking distance from Yuksam|
|Dubdi Monastery||Situated about 3 kilometers from the center of Yuksom|
|Tashiding Monastery||19 km south east of Yuksom|
|Kartok Lake||Situated quite close to the renowned Dubdi Monastery|
|Khecheopalri Lake||Located near the Khecheopalri village of West Sikkim district|
|Phamrong Waterfall||Located about 9 kilometers from Yu|
|Kanchenjunga National Park||Situated in the North Sikkim District|
Norbugang Coronation Throne
Norbugang Coronation Throne was erected in Yuksom in the year 1642 in the memory of crowning of the first monarch (‘Chogyal’) of Sikkim - Phuntsog Namgyal. He was the fifth generation descendant of Guru Tashi whom the three Lamas, namely Lutsum Chembo, Sempa Chembo and Rinzing Chembo had found from the region near Gangtok and recognized as the chosen one for the purpose of spreading Buddhism. Lepchas and Magarsof of the surrounding areas in Sikkim and Tibet had gathered in a huge number to witness the coronation ceremony of Phuntsog Namgyal and offered a large number of gifts to the Lamas on that occasion. After completing the coronation, the lamas decided to build a Trashi-wod-hBar-Chorten at that place to mark the event.
They collected earth and stones from every part of Sikkim and constructed a Chorten under which all the gifts received from the people were buried. Thus, Norbugang Chorten is the time capsule that stands as the witness of the historical event of consecration of the first Chogyal of Sikkim. A park named Norbugang Park in Yuksom encloses a large prayer wheel, a prayer hall, the Norbugang Chorten (stupa) and the Norbugang Coronation Throne. This coronation throne which looks like an old Olympic Medal Podium is set up below a large cryptomeria pine and a wooden head board set up alongside appears like an altar. The throne containing four seats is made of stone. The Pine Tree under which the accession took place still stands here surviving the test of time.
The Norbugang Chorten is situated just opposite the coronation throne and the holy Kathok Lake that had provided water for the consecration ceremony can be still seen here. A footprint is discovered which is supposed to be of one of the three Lamas.
Dubdi Monastery, also called Yuksom Monastery at times, is the first monastery established by The Chogyal Phuntsog Namgyal in the year 1701. Considered to be the oldest monastery of Sikkim, Dubdi Monastery is the part of Buddhist religious pilgrimage circuit of Sikkim. Closely associated with the history of the settlement of Yuksom as the capital of Sikkim, this monastery is the only survival of the four monasteries built at that time. Also known as ‘Hermit’s Cell’, Dubdi Monastery is nestled at the top of a hill situated about 3 kilometers from the center of Yuksom. The term Dubdi means ‘the retreat’ in the local language.
Perched facing west at the altitude of 7000 feet amidst the snow crowned mountain peaks of the Himalayas, this is a two storied square shaped structure built in stone. The elaborately painted interior of the monastery houses several Images of deities, saints, religious symbols and a wide collection of texts and manuscripts. A unique green image of Lutsum Chembo as well as the statues of the three legendary lamas is enshrined in the monastery. The exteriors of Dubdi monastery are ornamented with a tapering tower built in iron sheets with projecting eaves. The flat roof of the monastery is topped with a bell shaped dome called ‘Gyaltshen’. Initially, the Dubdi Monastery was inhabited by more than 30 monks but today only one monk resides here. Tourists need to acquire prior permission from him to get the access into the monastery.
Dubdi Monastery is held in much esteem for its religious significance and it’s a must visit place of Yuksom. This monastery belongs to the Nyingma sect of Tibetan Buddhism. Magnificent views of majestic Kanchenjunga Ranges can be enjoyed from here.
Tashiding Monastery belonging to the Nyingma sect of Tibetan Buddhism is stationed 19 km south east of Yuksom at the apex of a Himalayan hill standing between the Rathong Chu Valley and the Rangeet River. Considered amongst the auspicious destinations in Buddhist religious pilgrimage circuit, this monastery is regarded as one of the most scared monasteries of Sikkim. The word Tashiding means ‘The Devoted Central Glory’. Tashiding Monastery was set up by Ngadak Sempa Chempo Phunshok Rigzing (Rinzing Chembo) of Nyingma sect, in the year 1641. During the governance of the third Chogyal of Yuksom - Chakdor Namgyal in the year 1717, this monastery was renovated and expanded.
As per the legend, the holy Guru Padmasambhava shot an arrow into the air. The place where the arrow landed was selected as the site for meditation by him. Later, Tashiding Monastery was established at the same place. Another legend says that the Lama Trinity had perceived a miraculous bright light at this very vicinity. Tashiding Monastery and Tashiding Town are bounded by four caves in four sides. Each cave boasts of its religious and historical heritage of furnishing as a meditation venue of various Buddhist Monks. Sharchog Bephug Cave is located in east, while the cave in west is called Dechenpug Cave. The one in north is dedicated to Lhari Nyingphug and the south cave is named after Khandozangphu.
Bhumchu Ceremony is the most important annual festival celebrated at Tashiding Monastery on 14th and 15th day of the first month of Tibetan Calendar. Devotees from far and wide alight here to pay homage and enjoy the festival to the fullest.
Kartok Lake situated quite close to the renowned Dubdi Monastery is blessed with boundless natural beauty and the baggage of mythological background. Local people of Yuksom believe that Kartok Lake bears miraculous powers and it grants your wishes if prayed with pure heart. That’s why the banks of the lake are thronged by numerous prayer flags planted by the devotees. Legend goes that the first King of Sikkim Dominion - Phuntsog Namgyal was blessed with the holy waters which turned into the Kartok Lake.
This small but beautiful lake is always clean and the surface of the water is so crystal clear that it reflects the surroundings more translucently than the mirror. It is said that the birds working under the divine order carry off all the twigs, leaves and other litter that fall in the lake water and keep the holy lake as limpid as speculum. This vicinity where the sacred Kartok Lake is positioned is extremely calm and comely. The bewitching charm of the lake will release you of all your tension and deliver you rejuvenated and refreshed. Kartok Lake is a must visit place near Yuksom.
Originally known by the name ‘Kha-Chot-Palri’, this wish fulfilling lake is regarded to be a very scared water pool both for Hindus and Buddhists. The term ‘Kha-Chot-Palri’ means the heaven of Padmasambhava. Located near the Khecheopalri village of West Sikkim district, this lake is also called ‘Sho Dzo Sho’ by the natives, which means; "Oh Lady, Sit Here". Enclosed by the holy Khecheopalri hills, this lake is positioned inside the much revered Demazong Valley of Sikkim blessed by Guru Padmasambhava.
The Khecheopalri Lake is one of the pious destinations of the exalted Buddhist religious pilgrimage circuit. Just like the Kartok Lake, the Khecheopalri Lake too is kept clean by the birds by immediately picking up the leaves and twigs that fall into the water. Khecheopalri Lake, along with Kanchenjunga National Park is protected from the biodiversity perspective.
According to the folk lore, the Khecheopalri Lake represents the thorax; one of the four plexus of human body. Other three are represented by Tashiding (head), Yuksom (the third eye) and Pemayangtse (the heart). This lake is also believed to be the footprint of Goddess Tara Jestum Dolma. Natives also say that Guru Padmasambhava evangelized sixty-four yoginis at this place. The holy Khecheopalri Lake situated in the pristine natural surroundings, rich with variety of flora and fauna beckons thousands of devotees as well as nature lovers. Every year in the month of Maghe Purne (March or April), a big religious festival is organized for two days. A large number of devotees from Sikkim, Nepal and Bhutan arrive here and offer Naivedya to the sacred wish fulfilling lake. They also carry the lake water as a Tirtha Prasad. Pilgrims believe that Lord Shiva resides in the lake and performs perpetual meditation. Chho-Tsho is the harvest festival celebrated in the month of October here.
Located about 9 kilometers from Yuksom towards Gerethang, Phamrong Waterfall is the highest waterfalls of Sikkim. Set in the midst of lush greenery, this waterfall cascading down the magnificent Kanchenjunga Ranges presents a transcendental spectacle especially during the rainy season. The water gushing down the rocky plateau creates an amazing vista of a play between water and rocks. Phamrong Waterfalls is a must visit place near Yuksom. Tourists capture some very good views both from the top and the bottom of the waterfalls.
Kanchenjunga National Park
Kanchenjunga National Park, now renamed as ‘Khangchendzonga National Park’ is a wildlife sanctuary and a Biosphere Reserve set up in North Sikkim district. Named after the majestic Kanchenjunga (the third highest mountain in the world) this national park is spread over the total area of about 849.5 square kilometers. Nestled at the elevation from 1,829 meters to 8,550 meters, Kanchenjunga National Park is one of the high altitude sanctuaries of the country. This national park was established on 26th August 1977. Several Lepcha tribes still reside inside the premises. The vegetation of Kanchenjunga National Park can be listed under temperate broadleaf and mixed forests where the trees like oaks, fir, birch, maple, willow, alpine grasses and shrubs and a number of medicinal plants and herbs grow.
The animals that find shelter in this national park include mammals like musk deer, Himalayan tahr, sloth bear, Himalayan black bear, snow leopard, Tibetan wild ass, wild dog, civet, red panda, goral, serow, takin and Himalayan blue sheep, reptiles like Russell's viper and rat snake and more than 550 species of birds such as Himalayan Griffon, Blood Pheasant, Lammergeier, Satyr Tragopan, Tragopan Pheasant, Tibetan Snowcock, , Snow Pigeon, Osprey, Green PigeonImpeyan Pheasant, Sunbird, Asian Emerald Cuckoo and Eagle. The ideal season to pay a visit to Kanchenjunga National Park is April and May. The tourists have to obtain permissions from State Chief Wildlife Warden and an Inner-Line Permit from the State Home Department. Foreign tourists must acquire a restricted area permit from the Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India - Delhi to visit this national park.