Merely 28 km away from Darjeeling and 4000 ft above sea level, Takdah greets its visitors with spell-binding views and drifting mist. Drive some more, and you will find the tea estates spread across the slopes of the hills. During picking days, a beautiful aroma wafts in the air. What’s more? Teesta river flowing nearby adds to the quaint ambience of this place.
Takdah was originally pronounced as “Tukdah”, meaning mist or fog in Lepcha. The name is apt because of the fact that it remains covered in mist for the most part of the year.
A military cantonment area for the Britishers in the 1900s, Takdah is now an upcoming tourist destination near Darjeeling. The old-world charm of Takdah is reflected through its British Bungalows, which are now converted into guesthouses, schools, office buildings and hospitals, which are now more than 100 years old.
Places to explore in Takdah
The pebbled off-roads, nature trails and tea gardens offer a lot for the tourists to explore in Takdah. Here are a few places that you can see here:
You will find an old hanging bridge when you move towards Gielle tea estate and cross the Gielle Bazar. This 100-year-old suspension bridge connects two villages. Walking on this hanging bridge is indeed a great experience and is a unique piece of relic located in Takdah.
Rungli Rungliot Tea Garden, Takdah
Literally meaning, ‘thus far and no further’, Rungli Rungliot Tea Garden is situated just 2 km away from the Takdah local market. The tea gardens spread across the rolling hills offers a splendid view. One will find this tea estate mentioned in many Bengali storybooks. A legend goes that a monk came looking for the finest tea in Darjeeling. His search ended here, and he named this garden “Rungli Rungliot”.
Takdah is known for its orchids. At the Orchid Center, you will be able to find rare orchids and medicinal plants spread across its well-manicured garden and greenhouses. The Orchid Center also has beautiful fountains installed, offering pleasing ambience.
Takdah Monastery, originally known as Dechhen Pema Tshoiling Monastery, follows the beliefs and ideologies of the Buddhist Nyingma sect. Built in 1985, the monastery is situated on the top of a steep hill. Tourists need to climb flights of stairs to reach this monastery. From here, one can get the view of the entire region, including the Rungli Rungliot tea estate, Kalimpong and more.
Orange Orchards in Bara and Chota Mangwa
For those who wish to taste and witness as to how orange juice is bottled, can head to Bara and Chota Mangwa. It is about 12 km away from Takdah. The orange orchards offer beautiful produce and the juice factories located nearby bottle the orange juice. You may even be able to buy a few bottles.
The Dara Durpin Viewpoint, situated 10 km from Takdah, offers beautiful views of the nearby mountains, with Teesta River making its way through them. It is a sight to behold.
Other places close to Takdah include:
Situated 3 km from Takdah, Tinchuley is a village that offers panoramic views of the hills. Flora and fauna of the village are stunning, and the tourists can also explore organic farming here, done by 17 families living here. Other attractions here include the Tinchuley monastery, orange orchards, Peshok Tea Garden and witness the confluence of river Teesta and Rangeet.
Lamahatta, literally meaning, a “monk’s hermitage”, is a quaint village, situated at about 20 km from Darjeeling. Being promoted for eco-tourism, Lamahatta offers natural beauty for the tourists to witness. Things to do here include visiting the Lamahatta monastery, checking out natural trails, meditation, and understanding farming.
About 30 km away from Darjeeling, Mongpu is a small town that is known for tea estates, clear water streams and plant nurseries. Mongpu is also known for Cinchona plantations, which is a source of quinine. Things to do here include a visit to Rabindra Bhawan, cinchona plantations, flowering orchids and visiting Dinchhen Sherap Chhoeling Gumba, a monastery.
Dokan Dora, a weekly market, sets up every Thursday, selling wares and local handicrafts. It is a must-visit for tourists.
Good to know:
- October to March is the best time to visit Takdah and the nearby areas
- The nearest airport from Takdah is at Bagdogra which is 80 km away
- You can reach Takdah from Darjeeling in an hour by road
- The nearest railway station is at New Jalpaiguri 76 km away
Takdah is perfect for a laidback, serene, peaceful, and refreshing vacation, especially at Sterling Darjeeling.