Small but beautiful,
Sikkim is situated in the Eastern Himalayas. Spread below the Mount Khanchendzonga, (8603
mts.), the third highest Mountain in the world and revered by the Sikkimese as their
protective Deity, Sikkim shares her borders with Tibet in the North, Bhutan in the East,
Nepal in the West and State of West Bengal in the South.
With an area of 7,300 sq. kms. and measuring approximately
100 kms. from North to South and 60 kms. from East to West, the elevation ranges from 244
mts. to over 8540 mts. above sea-level. Amidst the grandeur of the mountain peaks, lush
valleys, fast flowing rivers, terraced hills, Sikkim offers her visitors a rare and
singular experience. Within a matter of hours one can move from the sub-tropical heat of
the lower valleys to the cold of the rugged mountain slopes that reach upto the areas of
Flora and Fauna:Nature has been generous. Sikkim is noted for her
floral wealth and an estimated 4000 varieties of flowering plants and shrubs are found.
There are over 600 varieties of orchids. From an altitude of 2400 mts. Rhododendrons can
be found. The gentle slopes of the high altitudes are covered by a variety of beautiful
flowers like the primula, meconopsis, gentians etc.
The rivers have trout salmon and carp. Naturalists have catalogued over 550 species and
sub-species of birds, among them many flamboyant pheasants and over 600 species of
butterflies. Animals abound in the dense forest of Sikkim : The dreaded Himalayan bear,
musk and barking deer, marbled cats, red panda, the blue sheep etc.
People:Three main groups of people make up the population of Sikkim. The Lepchas,
Bhutias and the Nepalese. Sikkimese by nature are simple, polite and non aggressive-a
people with a natural gaiety.