Situated at an altitude of 1300 metres on the Bhutan-Tibet-Sikkim boarder on the eastern part of Darjeeling Himalayas, the sub-division town Kalimpong was an important trading center in the earlier days, when the trade routes/silk routes between Tibet, Bhutan and Sikkim were very much active. The brilliant climate of Kalimpong attracted the British, who later set up their establishments there. The old churches, the Graham's home, the Morgan House, golf course still hold the memory of the British Raj. Once a small Leptcha village slowly turned into an ideal place for holydayers.
The beckoning Himalayas, dense virgin forests, vast valleys and meadows and of course the perennial shinning but chilling weather together have placed Kalimpong in the map of the most important tourist destinations in the Eastern Himalayas. The climate of Kalimpong has helped in the production of orchid, cactus and ornamental plants. A huge quantity of orchids and gladiolus are produced in the numerous nurseries and are exported to different countries. Kalimpong is a majore center for traditional handicrafts. The wood curving, thanka paintings, metal crafts, Tibetian and Leptcha jewelries, wooden mask attract a large number of tourists through out the year.
The journey from Siliguri to Kalimpong is a memorable one too! The first phase of a total 64Kms journey on the NH31 passes through the dense forest of Mahananda Wild Life Sanctuary. Remember, this is a silence zone and must be driven cautiously so that the natural habitat for elephant, bison and tiger is not disturbed. Finally, you may be rewarded with a sight of majestic tusker on the roadside, a glimpse of fleeing deer or a sudden colourful flashy flight of peacock. The journey through the sanctuary ends at Sevok and you are suddenly exposed to a huge canvas painted with forested hills, mighty river and vast river basin. The landscapes change rapidly as your car takes the zigzag hilly road on the NH31A. The mighty Tista River will accompany you throughout the second phase's journey up to Tista Bazaar. Tista is dancing, twisting, bending; fly high with her! But the speed of the car must remain within 40kmph limit. The final phase starts from Tista Bazaar as you take a sharp upward turn through the winding roads towards Kalimpong. Tista is no more with you now. She is left behind far below and lonely. You will not miss her for long though as the vacuum will soon be replaced by the great Kunchanjungha-burning in the blues!
Kalibari: Kalibari is about 2 km from the town.
Pedong Monstery: Established in 1837, Pedong Monastery near the Damsang fort is of Bhutanese origin. It is situated about a kilometer from the Damsang fort.
Flower Nurseries: Kalimpong is famous for flower nurseries which export exotic flowers. Kalimpong is the only place where many commercial flower nurseries are situated. One should visit the beautiful laid out 'Universal Nursery' about 3 km from the town. The Sri Ganesh Moni Pradhan Nursery at 12th mile is specially renowned for its varieties of orchidsand the Udai Mani Pradhan Nursery are among the most important in the area. If you are interested in Rose, Gerbera and Dahlias you can visit Standard Nursery at Chibo Busty.
Dr. Graham's House: It was founded by Dr. John Anderson Graham in 1900 on the lower slopes of Deole Hill. This Extraordinary educational institution is situated in a sprawling campus of 500 acres. The institution has its own farmhouse, bakery, dairy, poultry, hospital and clothing department. Every year in the month of May a gala festival called May Fair is organised here. It is a unique institution still supported by part by charitable collections and sponsors from all over the world.
Mangal Dham: This recently constructed place of worship is a marvellous piece of architecture.