Parks and Sanctuaries

:: Khangchendzonga National Park ::
(Best Season to Visit : March to late May and September to mid- December.)
Bird of SikkimSpread across an area of 1784 sq km, the Khangchendzonga National Park is the largest wildlife reserve in Sikkim. The third highest peak in the world, the Khangchendzonga, straddles the western boundary of the park, from which the reserve gets its name. The reserve also includes the vast Zemu Glacier. The National Park occupies a premier place amongst the high altitude National Parks in the country and is endowed with one of the most magnificent eco-systems in the world.

Sikkim GlacierSituated in such an inaccessible expanse in the North and South districts, the region has remained untouched to quite a large extent. The reserve is home to the snow leopard, Himalayan black bear, Tibetan antelope, wild ass, barking deer, musk deer, flying squirrel and the red panda who live in blissful isolation amongst giant magnolias, rhododendrons and pine forests.

A special pass is required.
For National Tourist: Permit is issued from the Home Department, Government of Sikkim
For Foreign Tourist: If it is a trek to the Zemu Glacier, permit is issued from Ministry of Home, Delhi

:: Fambong Lho Wildlife Sanctuary ::
Altitude: 1524 - 2749 meters
(Best Season to Visit : March to late May and September to mid- December.)
Sikkim Butterfly20 km from Gangtok, sprawled across an area of 52 sq km is the Fambong Lho Wildlife Sanctuary. The sanctuary supports a large variety of birds and butterflies along with a population of leopards, red pandas, civet cats and the Himalayan black bear. The sanctuary is also home to a large number of wild orchids and rhododendrons. A log house with two rooms is available at Golitar and Tumin.

Permission is required from the Forest Department for National as well as Foreign Tourists.

 

:: Singba Rhododendron Sanctuary ::
Altitude: 3048 - 4575 meters
(Best Season to Visit: From March to May and from October to December.)
Sikkim RhododendronSpread over 43 sq kms through which flows the Yumthang River, Singba Rhododendron Sanctuary is located near Lachung in the North district. The Sanctuary is known for its wild abundance of rhododendron shrubs and trees. Rhododendron Niveum the state tree is present only in this sanctuary which is also rich in ground flora like primulas, potentillas, gentians, poppies and aconites. The best time to visit the sanctuary is from April to July, when the rhododendrons are in full bloom and the sanctuary turns into a riot of colours. Lachung is the last frontier village before reaching the sanctuary. There is a Forest Rest House here, as well as one in Yumthang.

:: Kyongnosla Alpine Sanctuary ::
Altitude: 3293 - 4116 meters
(Best Season to Visit: April - August and October - November.)
Red PandaLocated at a distance of 31 km east of Gangtok on the way to Nathu La, the Kyongnosala Alpine Sanctuary lies spread over an area of 31 sq km and is rich both in flora and fauna.

The sanctuary supports a fascinating array of rhododendrons, primroses, poppies and a variety of wild flowers. Rhododendron Nevium the State Tree of Sikkim and Cypripedium Tibeticum, the ground slipper orchid on the verge of extinction, have been introduced here.

The reserve is home to the gravely endangered musk deer, red panda, Himalayan black bear, serow [long haired goat] and some species of pheasants.

Sikkim Leopard :: Maenam Wildlife Sanctuary ::
(Best Season to visit: March to late May and September to mid- December.)
Maenam Wildlife Sanctuary is spread over an area of 35 sq km above the town of Ravangla in South Sikkim. “Maenam-la” meaning “Treasure-house of Medicines” and the sanctuary is a repository of a variety of medicinal plants.
The temperate forest is home to the red panda, leopard, black eagle and civet cat amongst other animals and birds found in the region. The 3,263 meters high Maenam Peak also lies within the confines of the reserve.

:: Varsey Rhododendron Sanctuary ::
(Best Season to visit: March to April.)
Sikkim RhododendronNear Hilley, in West Sikkim is the Varsey Rhododendron Sanctuary. Sandwiched between the Singalila National Park in the south and Khangchendzonga Biosphere Reserve in the north, this small 104-sq-km sanctuary is at an altitude of 2200 - 4100 meters and supports a wide variety of bio-diversity. But the main attractions of the sanctuary are the rhododendrons which bloom in April-May.

Hilley is the last motorable point before Varsey. A four-km walk through beautiful pine forests takes you to the Sanctuary. You can stay at the Guras Kunj trekker’s hut here.