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Tourist Places To Visit In Rinchenpong
Nestled in the western regions of Sikkim, Rinchenpong-Kaluk area is stunning space; two small villages that are merely 3 km apart. Renowned for offering some amazing Kanchenjunga views, Rinchenpong is a charming town that boasts a wide range of local attractions and scenic locations that make perfect picnic spots.
The picturesque setting of Rinchenpong has a rich history that dates back to ancient times. The famous battle between the British and the native Lepcha tribe was won by the latter after they managed to poison the only source of water for the opposing forces; a feat that still has its remnants today in the form of the ‘Poisoned Lake’, which is one of the most visited tourist spots in the village. Read on to know more about some of the best places to visit in Rinchenpong.
This small lake is all but dried up today, but it has a significant history attached to it. It marks the location of the battle between the British forces and the king of Sikkim at the time. The Lepcha, who are the native tribe of Sikkim, had poisoned the pond that was the only source of drinking water for the British, leading to the loss of majority of the forces’ lives. The pond locally came to be known as ‘Bikh Pokhri’, or Poisoned Lake, which can be assumed to be one of the earliest forms of biochemical warfare known in history.
Built in the early 1700s, this ancient monastery is home to a rare Ati Buddha statue portrayed in the Yab-Yum position-a position that depicts a meditating Buddha embraced and straddled by a woman. The monastery is usually not open to everyone; however, there is a peep hole in the front door that allows visitors to take a look at the statue.
Close to the Rinchenpong monastery, a flight of stairs reach the small Reesum monastery that may not be an impressive structure in itself, but is known for providing some of the best 360ᴼ views of the Kanchenjunga in the region in the midst of some very peaceful surroundings. The path that leads here also features some ancient stupas that have almost collapsed under the tests of time but still make for an impressive sight.
Situated about 8 km away from Rinchenpong, Maggi Dara is a monastery with some splendid paintings on its walls, making it one of the most visited tourist spots in the area. It is also well known for being a temporary home to the famous Indian poet Rabindranath Tagore, where he penned down numerous verses inspired by the beauty of the region. A marble plaque engraved with words from his Gitanjali has been set up a little distance away from Maggi Dara to commemorate his stay.
Around 11 km away from Rinchenpong, Sribadam is a forest village that is most famous for the Phuntsok Choeling Monastery, which features prominently as a meditation centre as well. It is also visited by a lot of ailing devotees who believe this place can help heal the sick with religious practices and rituals. Apart from the monastery, a number of other attractions like the Bhaishi Pokhari, Jhor Pokhari and the Woodwork Industry are worth paying a visit as well.