Yuksom is a small town in the district of West Sikkim, located at the longitude of 88.2 and latitude of 27.4 with an altitude of 1880 M., 40kms from Geyzing. Yuksom is very calm and peaceful place. A real get-away for those who want to avoid the tourist crowd.
Background: Yuksom was the capital of ancient Sikkim. It was also the origin of the Buddhist civilization in Sikkim. History aside, what makes Yuksom the paradise of Sikkim is its mystifying beauty. Yuksom was always considered a special place on the map of the state. Since the capital city of the state was shifted to a more centrally-located Gangtok, Yuksom lost its importance. Since then, little development has taken place here. The lack of attention is largely due to the distance from the focal point of the state.
Things to do and Tourist attractions in Yuksom
Equally as diverse are the peoples of Yuksom, Bhutia, Lepcha, and various Nepali ethnic peoples reside in scattered villages, practicing centuries old traditions and speaking languages including Nepali, Hindi, English, Bhutia, Lepcha and Limbu.
Forest and Wildlife
Dubdi Monastery :
Tashi Tenka : When Yuksom was Sikkim’s capital, a royal palace complex known as Tashi Tenka sat on a slight ridge to the south with superb almost 360 degree views. Today barely a stone remains but the views are still superb, to find the site take the small path marked by two crumbling little whitewashed stupas near the village school. The site is less than five minutes walk away through tiny Gupha Dara, a sub-hamlet of around a dozen semi-traditional houses.
Kathok Wodsallin Gompa near Hotel Tashi Gang exudes a wonderful Chinatown kitsch and enshrines a big gilded Padmasambhava statue. Similarly colourful is Ngadhak Changchub Choling, accessed through an ornate gateway opposite Hotel Yangri Gang.
Kathok Lake :
The Phamrong waterfall : is situated approximately 9 km from Yuksom. The bridge present nearby this waterfall provides awesome scenery of the Phamrong waterfall.
Trekking In Yuksom : Info
Permits and Logistics :
Individuals are not allowed to undertake this trek. You’ll need to be accompanied by a guide or atleast a porter. Also trekkers need to register themselves at the Yuksom police station and also pay the permit fee to the forest department (and take an inventory of all your disposable plastic items) before entering the Kanchendzonga national park.
As of 2007, the rates were 300 Rs/day for guides and 150/day for porters. Pack animals cost an additional 150Rs/day. Although these rates might’ve changed in the 4 years since i’ve been on the trek. Trekking gear like sleeping bags (they have nice down filled sleeping bags available), sleeping pads, gloves etc can be rented at the Yuksom market. Your guide or porter can help arrange everything.
For a fully supported trek with a guide, cook, tents, porters etc the cost was around 1500/Rs per person per day. Although all these costs might have changed considerably in the years passed.
This is not a tea house trek. The only restaurant available enroute is at Tshoka (the settlement above Yuksom and the first day’s halt). The chowkidars at the various trekking huts may be able to whip you up something hot or share their Dal Chaawal with you (remember it was about 50Rs a plate) but do not be overly reliant on it. It is better to carry as much food as you can carry, remembering the fact that the load will get lighter as you climb higher.
Recommend carrying lightweight, high energy food items like dry fruits and nuts and a few chunky cheese cubes. Also carry oral rehydration packs like Electral to replenish your salts after a hard day of trekking. The glacial streams are pure and the water should be safe for drinking (especially after Tshoka), carry purifying tables for your peace of mind.
Accommodation in Yuksom
There are trekker’s huts at Bakhim, Tsokha, Dzongri, Kokchuran, Thangsing and Samiti Lake. Most have neither furniture nor mattresses. So one has to bring a mat and good sleeping bag. Huts sometimes get booked out during high trekking season, so some camping might be involved. You or your porter will need to carry supplies, but limited food (and tongba) is available at Dzongri.