Departure: New Delhi
Duration: 15 Days
Trip Grade: Moderate
A journey through the remote and untouched beauty of Sikkim, this tour offers an amazing variety of experiences. Big cities, tiny villages and massive mountains await, with some spectacular cycling in between! The riding on this tour encompasses all sorts of terrain, from smooth tarmac to rough dirt roads. There are also some hilly sections, but days in the saddle are generally short.
Day 01: Arrive in Calcutta
You'll be met at the airport and taken to a comfortable hotel, with the rest of the day free to either relax or take in some of Calcutta's many sights.
Day 2: Day in Calcutta, overnight train to Siliguri
We'll spend the day having a look round Calcutta before boarding an evening train for Siliguri, and a chance to experience India's amazing trains!
Day 03: Siliguri to Darjeeling by bus (3½ hrs)
On arrival in Siliguri we'll transfer to a private bus for the twisty, scenic climb up to Darjeeling. Once there we'll head straight for our hotel, and a chance to relax in Darjeeling's cool, soothing air.
Day 04: Day in Darjeeling
Famous for it's tea, Darjeeling is also a great place to experience Tibetan culture and offers great views of the Himalayas, and Kanchenjunga in particular. For early risers there'll be the chance to go up to Tiger Hill at dawn today – the sight of the sun rising over the Eastern Himalayas is truly amazing. Later on you'll be able to visit a tea plantation or just wander around this intriguing town. We'll also assemble our bikes and take them for a test ride to make sure we're all ready to hit the road in the morning.
Day 05: Darjeeling to Jorethang (30km)
A beautiful day's ride sees us enter Sikkim for the first time; after crossing the border at Malli the scenery becomes picture perfect; terraced landscapes dotted with friendly villages welcome us in to this enchanted world.
Day 06: Jorethang to Sombaria (35km)
A more taxing ride today; the road becomes dirt in patches, and is uphill for most of the way, but the scenery's fantastic!
Day 07: Sombaria to Dentam (58km)
Again a mixture of tarmac and dirt, today's ride starts uphill but soon heads down again through beautiful green hills; classic, fertile Sikkim.
Day 08: Dentam to Pemayangtse (25km)
Today's brief ride will leave us time to visit spectacular Pemayangtse monastery, the most prestigious in Sikkim and famed for its intricately carved pagoda. We'll spend the night in the shadow of the mighty Mt Kanchenjunga.
Day 09: Pemayangtse to Gangtok by jeep
A day off the bikes today as we go by jeep to Sikkim's capital, Gangtok. We'll have time in the afternoon for a wander around this fascinating, multi-cultural city.
Day 10: Gangtok to Assam Lingtse (40km)
Today we head in to the less populated region of East Sikkim, where we'll come across occasional thatched villages and even a water-powered prayer wheel! Most of the riding is downhill on well-made dirt roads.
Day 11: Assam Lingtse to Roeleap Bridge (40km)
Most of the day's ride will be through a lush green valley, which only opens out just before we get to Roeleap Bridge.
Day 12: Roeleap Bridge to Arithar (35km)
An exciting ride takes us along a ridge road, with sharp drops on either side but more than enough space for your bike! We'll be passing through cultivated farmland, and coming across some charming, untouched villages.
Day 13: Arithar to Lava (50km)
A similar landscape to yesterday's ride as we continue on the ridge road almost as far as Lava.
Day 14: Lava to Kalimpong (50km)
A change of scenery today as our final ride takes us through dense green forest, with a good chance of seeing Sikkim's famous wild orchids along the way.
Day 15: Drive to Bagdogra, fly to Calcutta and home
An early morning flight gets us to Calcutta with enough time for some final sightseeing/shopping before heading for the airport and home, bon voyage!