Offbeat Places near Darjeeling

Nestled in the lap of the Eastern Himalayas, Darjeeling’s allure extends far beyond its famous tea estates and panoramic views of the Kanchenjunga. Venture off the beaten path, and you’ll uncover hidden gems that add a layer of mystique to this enchanting region. Here, we explore the offbeat places near Darjeeling, where every trail leads to a story waiting to be unfolded.

1. Lamahatta – Tranquility Amidst Pine Groves

Distance from Darjeeling: 23 km

Escape the tourist buzz and head to Lamahatta, a serene hamlet cradled amidst pine groves. The tranquil landscape is adorned with prayer flags fluttering in the breeze, creating an atmosphere of peace and spirituality. Take a leisurely stroll around the lake, surrounded by colorful flowers, or immerse yourself in the quietude of the meditation center.


  • Row a boat on the pristine Lamahatta Lake.
  • Meditate at the eco-friendly meditation center.

2. Tinchuley – The Hidden Jewel

Distance from Darjeeling: 32 km

Tinchuley, a hidden jewel in the Darjeeling hills, welcomes you with open arms. This quaint village offers panoramic views of the Teesta Valley and the majestic Himalayas. Stay in charming homestays, interact with the warm locals, and savor the flavors of organic farm-to-table meals. Tinchuley is a haven for those seeking a retreat into nature’s embrace.


  • Experience rural life with a homestay in Tinchuley.
  • Trek to the Tinchuley Monastery for breathtaking views.

3. Lepchajagat – A Forested Retreat

Distance from Darjeeling: 19 km

For a rendezvous with nature in its purest form, head to Lepchajagat. This forested retreat is surrounded by dense pine and oak forests, creating a haven for birdwatchers and nature enthusiasts. The village offers a cozy eco-lodge experience, allowing you to wake up to the melodies of birds and the aroma of the forest.


  • Explore the nearby Mahananda Wildlife Sanctuary.
  • Camp under the star-lit sky for a surreal experience.

4. Gorkhey – Serenity by the River

Distance from Darjeeling: 105 km

Venture farther into the Himalayas to discover Gorkhey, a pristine village nestled by the banks of the river. The trek to Gorkhey is an adventure in itself, passing through lush forests and offering glimpses of the Singalila Range. The village, surrounded by rhododendron forests, is perfect for those seeking solitude and natural beauty.


  • Trek through the Singalila National Park to reach Gorkhey.
  • Indulge in birdwatching along the riverbanks.

5. Rongbull – A Cultural Sojourn

Distance from Darjeeling: 29 km

Immerse yourself in the rich cultural tapestry of Rongbull. This offbeat village is home to the indigenous Lepcha community, and a visit provides a glimpse into their traditions and lifestyle. Walk through terraced fields, interact with the locals, and witness traditional Lepcha dances against the backdrop of the Himalayas.


  • Attend a traditional Lepcha cultural performance.
  • Visit the Rongbull Monastery for spiritual tranquility.

6. Bijanbari – Amidst Tea Gardens and Orchards

Distance from Darjeeling: 40 km

Bijanbari, often overshadowed by its famous neighbors, offers a unique charm of its own. Surrounded by tea gardens and orchards, the village provides a serene setting for those seeking a quiet retreat. Explore the lush landscapes, indulge in tea tasting sessions, and take a leisurely stroll through the vibrant orange orchards.


  • Visit the Thurbo Tea Estate for a tea tasting experience.
  • Explore the Bijanbari Orange Orchards.

7. Rishikhola – Riverside Bliss

Distance from Darjeeling: 109 km

If a tranquil riverside retreat is on your agenda, make your way to Rishikhola. Tucked away near the border of West Bengal and Sikkim, this hamlet is embraced by the murmuring Rishi River. Camp by the riverside, enjoy bonfires under the starry sky, and let the soothing sounds of nature serenade you into blissful relaxation.


  • Camp by the Rishi River for a riverside experience.
  • Take a day trip to Sikkim for a cultural excursion.

8. Kurseong – Land of White Orchids

Distance from Darjeeling: 32 km

Known as the “Land of White Orchids,” Kurseong is a charming hill station that often escapes the limelight. Delve into its colonial past as you explore the narrow-gauge railway and visit the historical Castleton Tea Estate. Kurseong exudes an old-world charm, inviting you to slow down and savor the unhurried pace of life.


  • Take a ride on the Darjeeling Himalayan Railway.
  • Visit the Ambotia Shiva Temple for panoramic views.

9. Mirik – Sumendu Lake Serenity

Distance from Darjeeling: 49 km

Mirik, cradled around the picturesque Sumendu Lake, is a hidden gem waiting to be discovered. Surrounded by orange orchards and cardamom plantations, Mirik offers a tranquil escape. Enjoy a boat ride on the lake, stroll through the tea gardens, and breathe in the crisp mountain air.


  • Boat on the Sumendu Lake with the Himalayas in the backdrop.
  • Explore the Thurbo Tea Estate for a tea plantation experience.

10. Chatakpur – Ecotourism Haven

Distance from Darjeeling: 27 km

Our exploration concludes in Chatakpur, an ecotourism haven perched at an altitude of 7,887 feet. This village offers panoramic views of the Eastern Himalayas and serves as a model for sustainable tourism. Stay in eco-friendly cottages, embark on nature trails, and relish the tranquility of this Himalayan gem.


  • Stay in eco-cottages for an immersive experience.
  • Hike to the nearby Jalsa Bungalow viewpoint for stunning vistas.

Final Thoughts: Unveiling Darjeeling’s Hidden Treasures

Beyond the mist that veils Darjeeling’s famous landscapes lies a world of hidden treasures. From the serenity of Lamahatta to the cultural richness of Rongbull, these offbeat places near Darjeeling promise a journey into the heart of the Eastern Himalayas. Whether you seek tranquil retreats, cultural sojourns, or riverside bliss, Darjeeling’s lesser-explored gems beckon with open arms. Pack your bags, lace up your boots, and let the mystique of these offbeat destinations unfold before you. The hills are alive with stories waiting to be told.