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Tourist Places To Visit In Lava
Hidden in mist, surrounded by clouds and virgin pine trees is the charmingly beautiful mountain village of Lava. Located close to Kalimpong on the trade route to Bhutan, Lava is all about nature and unadulterated beauty. It is a paradise for nature and bird lovers and for trekkers. Over the last several years Lava has become an attractive tourist destination but has still been able to protect its riches from onslaughts of the tourists. It is the perfect hideout for ravaged souls, the peace and serenity of the village are both refreshing and rejuvenating. A quick getaway to the twin hill stations of Lava and Loleygaon is truly therapeutic. Let us take a quick look at the places to be visited in and around Lava.
Lava Monastery is also known as Kagyu Thekchen ling Monastery is located in Lava. The monastery which started with only a handful of monks today accommodates 110 monks. Built in 1980, the monastery is very well maintained. The monastery building has bright and bold colors on its walls and looks beautiful. Buddhist monks are engaged in daily study of Buddhist literature and meditation. The monastery looks stunning amidst the beautiful surroundings. They offer a brilliant view of the mountains, the chirping of the birds and the serenity and tranquility of the place has a calming effect on the visitors. A visit to Lava monastery during one’s stay in the region is a must.
Nature Interpretation Center
Nature Interpretation Center is a museum that is located about 1 km from Lava Jeep Stand on Rishi Road. It is situated at the entrance of the Neora Valley National Park and a great place to experience Lava tourism. It is among the best places for nature lovers who are looking for comprehensive knowledge about the wildlife of the region. It is famous for dioramas that are found here in the form of photographs, models, stuffed animals, and birds. Maintained by the forest department one comes across a good display of wildflowers and orchids in the Nature Interpretation Center.
Changey La Waterfall
At a distance of 10 km from Lava and 4 km from Kolakham is the beautiful waterfall of Changey La. Lying in the Kalimpong area, the waterfall is truly mesmerizing and gorgeous. It cascades down from a height of 150 feet and is set amidst a surrounding of dense forest and hills. It is also a great place for bird lovers as one can detect a number of beautiful birds and listen to the chirping of birds like Verditer Flycatcher, Niltava, Capped Water Redstart, Grey Treepie, Blue Whistling Thrush, Indian Robin, etc. Bird lovers can come here and spend hours watching the beautiful winged-creatures at play. The Changey La waterfall is a mere 1-hour drive away from Lava.
Neora Valley National Park
Lava lies very close to Neora Valley National Park and is a protected wildlife sanctuary. In entire Eastern India it is one of the richest biological zones. The park is sprawled across an area of 88 sq.km and boasts of an elevation of 10,600 feet. Rachela Pass is the highest point of this park. Its southern boundary is connected with Gorumara National Park and Chapramari Wildlife Sanctuary. Neoara Valley is the home to a large number of wild animals like Black Bear, Barking deer, Sambar, Goral, Tiger, Chinese marmorata, Pangolin, Wild Boar, Clouded Leopard etc. One comes across red panda which is a rare endangered species in the world. Apart from animals, it is also the home to different species of birds like Pheasants, Cuckoos, Golden Headed Black Finch, Minivets, Partridges, Sunbirds and many more.
Loleygaon is the twin hill station of Lava. Lava and Loleygaon are often toured together because of their proximity to each other. Loleygaon is located 50 km from Lava and 30 km from Kalimpong. It is another show-stealer surrounded by cypress and dhupi forests. Wilderness and tranquility that prevails at an altitude of 5500 feet are truly intoxicating and rejuvenating. Loleygaon offers a fascinating view of the Himalayan snow ranges. There are a number of viewpoints in Loleygaon which are worth a visit for the brilliant view it offers of the surrounding landscape. It is also home to a variety of species of wild animals like black bears and birds. There are quite a number of attractions here like the Canopy Walk etc.
Located 21 km from Lava is the picturesque hill town of Pedong. Located at an altitude of 3970 feet Pedong lies between Kalimpong and Lava on a ridge offering a fascinating panoramic view of Kanchenjungha ranges and the surrounding landscape. Pedong is named after a 200-year-old pine tree located at the center of the town. It is an old historical town and used to serve as a major transit hub on the silk route that connected India to Lhasa. It is certainly the destination for nature lovers and tourists can engage in a number of activities here like camping, bird watching, trekking, fishing, rock climbing, river picnicking etc.
Tiffin Dara View Point
A visit to the mountains is incomplete without a trip to a sunrise point or sunset point. One such sunrise point is Tiffin Dara viewpoint located 2 km from Rishop and 4 km from Lava. A frequently visited tourist spot, Tiffin Dara is one of the best points to catch a stunning view of the early morning sunrise from behind the mountains. It is located at an altitude of 2360 meters and is popular for catching a glimpse of both the sunrise and sunset. It offers a 360-degree view of the entire Kanchenjungha range. The 4 km walk uphill to the point from Lava is a charming one through dense forests of pines, orchids, and rhododendrons.
If tourists are looking for a romantic hideout then they will not find a better place than Rishyap. It is a quaint village endowed with pristine beauty. Rishop or Rishyap is located a mere 4 km uphill from Lava and offer a great opportunity for trekking enthusiasts. The scenic trekking trail offers a mesmerizing view of the vast Eastern Himalayan Hills and Nathu la Pass and the Kanchenjungha ranges. One can also catch a glimpse of Gangtok city and the town of Pedong. It is an opportunity to cherish the unadulterated beauty of nature.