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Tourist Places To Visit In Namchi
Namchi is a picturesque spot situated in the southern district of Sikkim that has recently become a top tourist destination in the region as well. Blessed with numerous sightseeing opportunities and religious monuments that are nothing less than architectural marvels, a trip to Namchi is something that should be a part of everyone’s itinerary.
Apart from being a scenic haven for nature’s most glorious bounties, Namchi boasts a cultural heritage that makes it a favorite among history buffs and religious devotees as well. With a town as versatile as this, here is a list of the top places to visit on your next trip to Namchi.
Siddheshwar Dham/Char Dham
A major pilgrimage centre for the locals as well as tourists, the Char Dham is located on top of the Solophuk Hill, which is also considered sacred by the devotees who believe their sins are washed away upon visiting the hill itself. The highlight of the area is the towering statue of Lord Shiva at a height of 108 feet, along with replicas of the 12 Jyotirlingas and the four most prominent Dhams in the country; Jagannath, Rameswaram, Badrinath and Dwarka. A 17 feet high statue of Lord Kirateshwar, an incarnation of Lord Shiva, is also a prominent feature of the temple complex. The structure has been established by the Government of Sikkim to promote religious eco-tourism in Namchi and makes for an impressive cultural showcase of the region.
One of the most well known pilgrimage locations in Sikkim, Samdruptse Hill is situated at an altitude of over 2100 m and features the tallest statue of Guru Padmasambhava in the world. Standing 148 feet tall, the statue of the revered Buddhist saint is plated in gold and offers magnificent views of the Kanchenjunga in the background.
The hill itself is considered sacred by the local monks who believe that it is a dormant volcano and the only way to keep it dormant is to keep praying to it; the name Samdruptse itself means ‘Wish fulfilling Hill’. There is also a beautiful monastery present under the statue with a number of historic paintings, sculptures and statues.
Shirdi Sai Mandir
A little distance away from the Char Dham in the Assangthang region of Namchi, is the Shirdi Sai Mandir that was established as a gift from the Chief Minister Pawan Chamling to the state of Sikkim. It is a stunning 2-storey gilded structure with a statue of Shirdi Sai Baba and paintings of Lord Vishnu depicting him in ten different incarnations.
There are two halls on each floor, with a magnificently designed ceiling that is testimony to the brilliant architecture of this monument. The prayer room on the first floor often resonates with prayers of the devotees, creating a poignant ambience for everyone present in the area. The temple grounds are surrounded by lovely gardens that offer amazing views of the Kanchenjunga and are also great for taking relaxing strolls.
One of the oldest monasteries in Namchi, Ngadak Gompa is believed to have been constructed in the 17th century. The monument was initially a palace built for the queen Pendi Ongmu during the rule of Chogyal Gyurmed Namgyal. It has a dark history attached to its origins; the queen had her half brother overthrown and had taken his place, only to be killed by his followers a few years later. The structure was then converted into a monastery; the stone and wood building has been substantially ruined over the years during an earthquake and a new monument has taken its place nearby that serves as the present day Ngadak Gompa. However, the old structure still depicts hints of old Sikkim architecture and is a living testament to the town’s ancient history.
Serdup Choling Monastery
A monastery that was built in the year 1967, Serdup Choling features an amazing display of three statues depicting Guru Padmasambhava, Santaraksita, and Tri Detson. Numerous prayer flags decorate the monastery on the outside with paintings of Guru Padmasambhava on the walls inside.