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Tourist Places To Visit In Geyzing (Gyashaling)
Situated at an altitude of almost 1000 m, Geyzing or Gyalshing is a small yet commercial district in the western part of Sikkim. The name Gyalshing refers to ‘King’s Garden’; Geyzing served as the royal gardens for the palace at Rabdentse and was once the capital of Sikkim till the 18th century. Today, it is mostly a tourist hotspot that features prominently on everyone’s list who takes a trip to Sikkim.
The renowned monasteries of Geyzing attract Buddhist pilgrims from all over the world. Being a family friendly destination, it also features a number of spots that are perfect for camps and picnics along with providing ample opportunities to view the magnificent mountains and valleys. Read on to know more about some of the best places to visit in Geyzing.
Belonging to the Nyingmapa order of Buddhism, the Pemayangtse gompa is located in the town of Pemayangtse, around 6 km away from Geyzing. It is situated on a hilltop at an altitude of 2000 m, and is dedicated to Guru Padmasambhava – the saint who revived Buddhism in Tibet. The monument, which is one of the oldest monasteries in the state, is filled with his statues, decorative paintings and splendid sculptures. The wooden carving of Zandog Phalri, a seven tiered structure that represents the heavenly abode of Guru Padmasambhava, is one of the most important parts of the temple.
Be sure to check out the famous Chaam, or monk dance festival that is celebrated every year on the 28th and 29th of the 12th month in the Tibetan calendar. The festival ends on the third day with the unfurling of the Ghyo-Ku.
The Rabdentse Ruins begin in the town of Pelling and end in Geyzing, and can be reached after a 2 km trek through dense forests. This archaeological site is the remains of what was once the capital of Sikkim; today, it is one of the best places to view the Kanchenjunga and the rest of the valley while admiring the historical nature of this region.
Located just a short walk from the Pemayangtse Monastery, the Rabdentse Ruins feature a number of key structures worth noting that were part of the old palace grounds. The ‘Namphogang’ are the three standing stones of the throne from where the judges pronounced their verdict. Taphap Chorten used to be the entry point of the palace, and the ‘Dab Lhagang’ is where the royal family prayed to their deities.
This gompa is located on a hilltop that overlooks the Pemayangtse monastery and is one of the oldest monuments in the district. Reaching the monastery involves approximately an hour long walk through dense undergrowth and forests on a steep slope. Visiting this monastery is an important part of the pilgrimage circuit made by Buddhist devotees that also includes other regions in this part of Sikkim.
At a distance of around 3 km from Geyzing, Yangtey is a gorgeous little village at an altitude of 1800 m that boasts amazing views of the mountains, meadows, waterfalls and vast skies. The vantage point is also well known for offering clear views of the River Rangit and Mt. Kanchenjunga.
A peaceful retreat away from the relatively more commercial Geyzing, taking a trip to Yangtey is a great way to combine sightseeing with experiencing the hospitality of the local villagers and their native culture.