Sillery Gaon, a small hamlet at a height of 6000 feet is becoming one of the favourite destinations for the tourists who search for an offbeat place for a long weekend around Darjeeling, near the West Bengal and Sikkim border. Located in the newly formed Kalimpong district at a distance of 5 km from Pedong and 23 km from the Kalimpong town, this beautiful serene villege is lovingly called as ‘New Darjeeling’ by the locals.
The sweet name Sillery was taken from a local plant that grows there in abundance. This area is also replete with Cinchona Plantation which was introduced in this region by the British, as a source of Quinine used for the treatment of Malaria. However, despite alternative quinine derivatives,
The village has only a few families and they depend mostly on agriculture and now they are concentrating in growing the tourism at their place. There are rarely any hotels in the village; the places where the travellers stays are the homestays provided by the villagers. Almost every house of the village has its own garden and from the balcony and even from the windows of the rooms, the majestic Mt. Kanchendzonga along with its equally majestic ranges are visible.
Being a small remote village, it is quite surprising to find electricity in every homestay and if you are not unlucky enough then you do not need to worry a lot about the mobile network at least for making calls. The village does not has its own market, the nearest market is at Pedong.
All the villagers are making a well-organized effort to maintain the ambience of the clean village. Sillery Gaon offers a regal view of the Mt. Kanchendzonga and provide trekkers with a chance to hike to some of the awesome sights around the village like the Ramitey View Point, the Tinchuley View Point, Silent Valley, Ichhe Gaon and Damsang Fort. From the Ramitey View Point, you can see the 14 turns of the river Teesta and the small match box like mountain villages of Sikkim. All the treks to these view points are through forests which makes the place a paradise for the bird watchers and the photographers who are into birding. But be careful from the leeches during your treks and wear covered shoes or gumboots. And after coming to your homestay from your sojourn, you can light a campfire under the starry sky and enjoy the chilly mountain wind with your dear ones. The things which will make you fall in love with this place even more is the hospitality of the simple and friendly villagers.
Now as I have already warned you about the leeches so it is obviously advisable not to go there during the monsoons except if you really want to enjoy the unique beauty of rains in a peaceful mountain village in the monsoons. The best time to be there is from October to May. In the winters, as the weather remains clear so the visibility becomes high and the view of the ranges becomes even clearer and beautiful.
So, what are you waiting for? winter is here, so book your tickets to Darjeeling and breathe in a bit of mountain air with WeCare Holidays.