Changu Lake, also known as Tsomgo Lake, is a mesmerizing high-altitude lake located in the Indian state of Sikkim, nestled amidst the Eastern Himalayas. This pristine glacial lake is a popular tourist destination and offers a serene escape for nature lovers and adventure enthusiasts alike. Here's a comprehensive guide to help you plan your trip to Changu Lake:
How to Reach Changu Lake: Changu Lake is situated approximately 40 kilometers away from the capital city of Gangtok. To reach Changu Lake, you can follow these options:
By Road: The most common way to reach Changu Lake is by road. You can hire a cab or take a shared taxi from Gangtok. The journey takes around 2 hours, and you'll be treated to scenic views of the Himalayan landscape along the way.
By Shared Jeep: Shared jeeps are a popular and cost-effective mode of transportation in this region. You can find shared jeeps at the M.G. Marg in Gangtok that will take you to Changu Lake and back. Also read > Shared tour to Nathula Tsomgo @900/- pp
By Bike: Adventurous travelers can rent bikes in Gangtok and ride to Changu Lake. However, be prepared for challenging terrain and varying weather conditions.
Best Time to Visit Changu Lake: Changu Lake is open to tourists throughout the year, but the best time to visit depends on your preferences and what you want to experience:
Spring (April to June): This is the most popular time to visit Changu Lake. The weather is pleasant, and you can witness the beautiful rhododendron blooms during this season.
Summer (June to September): While the monsoon season can make the roads to Changu Lake slippery, the landscape is lush green and stunning. Just be prepared for occasional rain.
Autumn (October to November): This is another excellent time to visit when the skies are clear, and you can enjoy panoramic views of the surrounding mountains.
Winter (December to March): If you want to experience snowfall and see the lake frozen, winter is the time to go. However, the roads might be blocked due to heavy snowfall, so be sure to check road conditions before planning a winter trip.
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Changu lake at East Sikkim
Tsomgo Lake at East Sikkim
Tsomgo Lake Sikkim
Tak at Changu Lake
Foreigners must obtain Inner Line Permit (ILP) to visit Sikkim. These can be obtained from all Indian Missions, Sikkim Tourism Offices at New Delhi, Kolkata, District Magistrates Office of Darjeeling, Siliguri, and Rangpo on the strength of an Indian Visa. The 30 days duration Permit is issued on the spot without any delay provided photocopies of the passport and visa along with two pass port photos of the applicants are made available. The permissible duration of the stay for foreign tourists is 30 days initially.
The State Government is authorized to extend the same by a further period of 30 days. The extension of the permit can be obtained from FRO at Gangtok and office of Superintendent of Police of the North, West and South Districts.
For those interested in going for trekking in the interior region of the state, the Tourism and Civil Aviation issues Protected Area Permit (PAP) at Gangtok which is available for certain specified area for groups consisting of two or more foreigners subject to condition that the trekking programme is arranged through a registered travel agency.