Pelling is located in the state of Sikkim at an average elevation of 2,150 meters above sea level. The town (which is also a hill station) lies amidst the foothills of the snowcapped Eastern Himalayas and provides panoramic views of the surroundings and mountain peaks like Kanchendzonga which is the 3rd highest peak on Earth. Most of the terrain is rocky with montane forests and few hill slopes which have been converted into terraced farms.
Pelling is a primary location for trekkers and mountaineers who prefer to set their base here before moving on to the high altitude trek routes into the snow capped Himalayas. The culture in Pelling is highly influenced by Tibetan Buddhism with several Buddhist monasteries located across the town. Tourism is recently popular activity in Pelling due to his incredible natural and cultural treasures.
Pelling enjoys one of the most perennial climates in India due to its location at the Himalayan foothills with mild summers and chilly winters with occasional snow. The summer months from March to May enjoy a mild and pleasant weather with temperatures rarely exceeding 28 degrees. The monsoon months start from July and last till early September with heavy rainfalls which prohibit tourists from visiting. The winters start from late-November till February with chilly temperatures which can drop to -5 degrees during December and January with occasional snow.
Best Time to Visit
The only time of the year that Pelling cannot be visited is during the months of Monsoons due to heavy rainfall and risk of landslides. The best time to visit Pelling is between the months of October and December when the weather is cool with occasional showers from the retreating monsoons.
Attractions/Places to Visit
Village tourism is being largely promoted in Pelling by the Sikkim Tourism Department due to the natural and cultural resources that the town houses. It is also a favorite spot for the trekkers to setup their base before their trek expeditions into the higher altitudes. Pelling is also famous for its various waterfalls, monasteries and lakes which attract a large number of tourists.
Khecheopalri Lake, Pemayangtse Monastery, Changey Waterfall, Kanchendzonga waterfall, Rabdanse Ruins, Traditional Cultural Program, Sangachoeling Monastery and Sewaro Rock Garden etc. are few of the most popular attractions in Pelling.
How to Reach
The town is well connected via roads from the neighboring towns of Siliguri and Gangtok with several buses and taxis available from the bus stations. Shared jeeps are also available from Geyzing with also lies at a short distance from Pelling. The new Jalpaiguri railway station is the closest station to Pelling. The closest airport is located in Siliguri with connecting flights via Kolkata, Guwahati, Mumbai, Delhi and Chennai.
Distance from Major Cities
1. Geyzing – 10 Kilometers
2. Gangtok – 116 Kilometers
3. Siliguri – 130 Kilometers
4. Guwahati – 558 Kilometers
5. Shillong – 651 Kilometers
6. Kolkata – 686 Kilometers
7. Lucknow – 1,017 Kilometers
8. Delhi – 1,628 Kilometers
9. Jaipur – 1,675 Kilometers
10. Chandigarh – 1,695 Kilometers
11. Ahmedabad – 2,236 Kilometers
12. Mumbai – 2,322 Kilometers
13. Hyderabad – 2,120 Kilometers
14. Chennai – 2,333 Kilometers
15. Bangalore – 2,539 Kilometers
Accessibility and Accommodation
The best way to stay and enjoy the culture of Pelling is by arranging a home stay with the locals. This will not only save you heaps of money but will also allow you to understand the culture and custom of the Sikkimise people. However there are several budget and luxury hotels and lounges in the town that suit most types of tourist budgets. Getting around in Pelling is mostly done on foot as heavy vehicles are not much welcome in this quaint village town.