Indian & Chinese
Just about 56 km away from the heart of Gangtok, Nathula is a mountain pass in the Northern Part of Sikkim. Located at an altitude of 14,140 feet above the sea level, it is used to be a corridor of passage between India and Tibet.
Nathula near the Indo-China border, overlooking the Tibetan Plateau and the picturesque hamlet of Chumbi Valley, Nathula Pass offers one of the finest vistas of the Himalayan peaks as well as the surrounding valley in the entire Sikkim.
Sightseeing Places to Visit near Nathula pass
Nathula, one of the highest motorable passes in the world, captivated the travellers' mind and soul by offering a magnificent view of the surrounding as well as the snow-clad Kanchenjunga. The renowned sightseeing attractions near the pass are-
- Baba Mandir: To honour martyred Sepoy Harbhajan Singh Old Baba Mandir has been created and well maintained by the Indian Army. On the top of the temple, you can find the bunker of Sepoy Harbhajan Singh.
- Gangtok: Gangtok is one of the major tourism hubs in Sikkim and also the capital town of this Indian state. There is a plethora of sightseeing attractions one can witness such as Tashi View Point, Rumtek Monastery, Ganesh Tok, etc.
- Tsomgo Lake: Tsomgo Lake aka Changu Lake is one of the highest altitude lakes in the Eastern Part of Sikkim. Tsomgo with its green emerald water and a breathtaking view of the mountain peaks in the backdrop has bewitched many travellers towards it.
How to Visit Nathula Pass
Being a protected area to visit Nathula, one has to obtain a valid protected area permit. The permit is issued by the Sikkim Tourism Department in Gangtok or at Police Check Post and all you have to show any photo ID proof like Passport or Voters Id Card and two passport size photos. It is worth mentioning that except Indian, no other nationals can visit Nathula Pass.
Two reach Nathula Pass from Siliguri, NJP, Gangtok or Bagdogra Airport, one has to hire a car or taxi. Bagdogra is the nearest airport and NJP is the nearest railway station. As the permit is issued from Gangtok, one has to spend a night and complete all the necessary steps to get a permit.
Best time to Visit Nathula
Nathula Pass is open to visit for 5 Days in a week from Wednesday to Sunday. It can't be visited during Mondays and Tuesdays as it remains closed for the public.
May to October is considered to be the best time to visit Nathuala as the weather stays charming and the temperature floats around 10 to 15-degree Celsius. The mountain peaks are also quite visible during these months.