Yuksom is a small village located in the lap of the lush green Himalayas on the Western side of the Indian state of Sikkim. This beautiful small village is located at an altitude of 1880m and is also a part of numerous historical events. The name Yuksom means the meeting place of three holy Lamas. In the books of history, Yuksom has been recorded as the first capital of Sikkim and the first Religious King “Chogyal” of the independent Kingdom of Sikkim was consecrated in 1642 AD by three learned Lamas. Yuksom is a popular base camp for various trekkers since most of the treks start from this place. One can trek to the high altitude Dzongri peak, Goecha La peak from this place.
Trek to Pelling via Khecheopalri is also possible from Yuksom. The trails of this trek route are mostly covered with lush green jungles with rich flora and fauna. This is also home to various species of birds and their chirping sounds create a wonderful atmosphere. Bird photographers would surely love the trails.
View of Snow capped Himalayan Peaks from Yuksom
Star Trails, Yuksom
Yuksom is the home of the oldest Buddhist monastery of Sikkim. The monastery which was established in the year 1701 is popularly known as Dubdi Monastery. One has to climb a steep uphill of about 3 km through the lush green, verdant forested trails from Yuksom to the top of a hill to get an access to this monastery. History says that Dubdi Monastery was built soon after the consecration ceremony of the first Chogyal of Sikkim. Dubdi, which forms a part of the Buddhist religious pilgrimage circuit was erected by Chogyar Namgyal. It is a double storeyed, Southern facing structure built out of stone. The upward portion of the structure is tapering and has a flat roof of iron sheet surmounted by a bell shaped dome of guilt known as Gyalthsen. The interiors of this monastery are beautifully decorated with the paintings of several divinities, saints, demons and symbols that represent Buddhism. There are also some rich, ancient Buddhist manuscripts preserved inside this monastery. The atmosphere in the monastery premises has a serene ambiance and gives one a majestic view of the snow-capped peaks of the Himalayas. The surroundings of the Dubdi Monastery is very well ornamented with the religious Buddhist prayer flags and well maintained gardens.
View from Dubdi Monastery
The coronation stone throne of Norbugang is another important historical site located at a walking distance of 20 minutes from Yuksom. This is the place from where the journey of the Chogyals of Sikkim started with the crowning of the first Religious King of Sikkim in the year 1642. The coronation of the first Chogyal Phuntsog Namgyal took place under a pine tree which is still existent. The stone throne has four seats. Just opposite to the coronation throne is a Stupa known as the Norbugang Chorten. According to the ancient beliefs, the Stupa contains water and soil from all parts of Sikkim. A holy Kathok Lake is located nearby. The site contains a wide spectrum of trees including oak, maple, birch, chestnut, rhododendrons etc. and chirping birds with their resilient energy make this place full of life.
Coronation Stone Throne of Norbugang
Norbugang Chorten (Stupa)
Access: One can easily reach Yuksom by reserving an entire jeep from Siliguri. There are many counters beside the Tenzing Norgay Bus Stand of Siliguri from where jeeps are abundantly available for Sikkim. However, shared jeeps for Yuksom are very less these days. In that case, one has to make a change at Jorethang to reach Yuksom. However, one thing should be kept in mind. The last shared jeep for Yuksom from Jorethang leaves at 1:30 PM. Fares for Siliguri to Jorethang and Jorethang to Yuksom vary between 100-150 INR in both the ways.
Accommodation: There are many hotels in Yuksom. Most of them are budget hotels and fits well for someone looking for a cheap accommodation. However, somebody looking for a luxurious accommodation can try out Hotel Tashi Gang.