“Thousands of tired, nerve-shaken, over-civilized people are beginning to find out that going to the mountains is going home; that wildness is a necessity”
|A FOGGY BEAUTIFUL MORNING IN PEDONG|
The beauty of wildness is a great natural wealth. Such a tone is aptly sounded in the quotation of John Muir. North Bengal is indeed a place of natural beauties, a place which seems to be a paradise for nature lovers. 20 kilometers away from Kalimpong, at an altitude of 1240 meters, Pedong is located on a ridge, and commands a panoramic view of the Kanchenjunga. The town is divided in two parts- upper Pedong and lower Pedong. Pedong is a vital part of the old “Silk Route” which has connected China with the European Region for the propagation of trade and commerce. Lying in the cradle of exquisite natural beauty, Pedong acted as the gateway to the old "SILK ROUTE".
- HOW DO YOU REACH THE PLACE?
The travelers first have to board a New Jalpaiguri-bound train from Howrah or Sealdah station or the intermediate stations. They then are to get down to New Jalpaiguri station from where they can easily reach Pedong by hired car. The journey takes nearly three hours to cross about 100 kilometers to reach the destination. The car fair is about Rs.2500-3500. One can also take the Flight upto Bagdogra airport, after which you will find ample cars and buses to take you to your destination. If you are not tight on schedule, reserve a seat in the NJP-GHUM toy train, get down at darjeeling , put up for a night, and complete your journey the next day.
- ACCOMODATION ?
There are some private hotels and guest houses Pedong, both lavish and ordinary appealing to all economic classes. The travelers may have their comfortable night halts at “Damsang Guest House”, “Pedong Holiday Home”, “Pedong Valley Resort” in lower Pedong and at “Neel Pahari Resort” and “Prakriti Resort” in upper Pedong in the bosoms of nature. The cost of putting up in any of these resorts per night is nearly Rs.1000-1200.
|DAMSANG GUEST HOUSE, PEDONG|
- ATTRACTIONS ?
|DAMSANG FORT IN RUINS|
The tourists have great attraction for Pedong for its enriched, wonderful, hilly and foggy environment. One can trek to reach Sillerygaon from Pedong. The journey usually takes about one hour. It can be a exciting experience to walk through the stony tracks along the forests. On the way to Sillerygaon one can see the Damsang Fort's ruins. It is a historical fort which was built in 1690 by the Lepchas. It was once used to ward off the forces of the British East India Company. After the Anglo-Bhutan war of 1864, the fort fell into decay.
|THE TREKKING ROUTE|
The Valley of the Rishi River is situated at the West Bengal-Sikkim border, 13 kilometers away from Pedong. It's a paragon for bird-watchers and nature lovers alike. In the thick foliage of mesmerezing nature, the place is famous for being an abode for many different species of birds.
|THE VALLEY OF THE RISHI RIVER|
Many nature lovers cannot avert the irresistible call of this Himalayan region which is magnificently furnished with unending green vegetation. One can make a good feast of his eyes with the romantic sight of the Kanchenjunga amidst the clouds and golden beams from the sun. Pedong is really a wonderful picturesque with intoxicating natural beauties.
Ecstatic already? Want to visit this idyllic natural extravagance? Pack your bags, hit the town this december and come back to tell us whether we were right ! Happy journey !
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ABOUT THE AUTHOR :-
Rammyani Ghosh from S.A. Jaipuria College is pursuing Journalism and Mass Communication. She is an avid traveller, a bibliophile and a music-head. Rammyani is a travel columnist for ExPRESS Magazine.