Nestled at an altitude of over 17800 feet, Gurudongmar Lake is one of the highest freshwater lakes across the globe and is the second highest lake in Sikkim as well as in India. It lies on the northern side of the Kanchenjungha Range on a high plateau area, close to the Tibet border. The lake bordered on all sides by snow-clad mountains truly offers a visual delight to the tourists. The crystal clear icy water of Gurudongmar Lake and the Chola Mo Lake around 5 kms ahead of Gurudongmar Lake are the major sources of River Teesta.
Places to see at Gurudongmar Lake, North Sikkim
Surrounded by snow-covered peaks on all sides, the scenic beauty of the lake is truly captivating. The lake has been named after Guru Dongmar, a Buddhist monk, who is popularly called Guru Padmasambhava in Sikkim. The lake has an immense religious appeal. According to legends, the lake has been touched and sanctified by Guru Padmasambhava and thus, even in deep winter, when the lake continues to freeze, amazingly a portion of the lake does not freeze.
The water of the lake is also said to have curative properties. This high altitude lake is an important pilgrimage site for the Sikhs. It is said that Guru Nanak visited this destination during his third journey to support the Karmapa Nyingmapa sects, who were driven out of Tibet by the Gelugpa sect. A Gurudwara has been built at Gurudongmar Lake to commemorate the visit of Guru Nanak and it is worth visiting. A prime attraction near the lake is Sarva Dharma Sthal, which welcomes people of all faiths to worship. The surrounding regions of the lake also houses minor temples dedicated to eminent locally revered Gods and spirits. The place also offers breathtaking view of Mount Kanchendzonga and Mount Siniolchu.
Nearby attractions of Gurudongmar Lake, North Sikkim
Gurudongmar Lake is an ideal base for exploring the nearby destinations. Chopta Valley is a notable tourist attraction near Gurudongmar. Many tourists visit Chopta Valley combined with a trip to Gurudongmar Lake. An exciting trek through the Chopta valley will lead you to the spectacular Muguthang valley at an elevation of 15500 ft. Thangu is another nearby pristine village, which perches at an altitude of 14000 ft. Thangu is a stopover town to refresh and rest awhile for your journey towards Gurudongmar Lake. The road to Gurudonmar from Thangu Valley leads through high altitude alpine pastures, wrapped in colorful rhododendron bushes. On the way, you can savor the rare view of the Bramhakamal flower.
Things to do in Gurudongmar Lake, North Sikkim
The spectacular and charming beauty of the Gurudongmar Lake is truly a sight to behold. The famous Tso Lhamo Lake nestles some 5 km to the east of Gurudongmar Lake. If your are passionate about trekking, take permission from army to trek from Gurudongmar Lake to Tso Lhsmo Lake.
Best time to visit Gurudongmar Lake, North Sikkim
The region of Gurudongmar, nestled at a high altitude, experiences low temperature all through the year. The ideal time to visit the destination is the summer month and the beginning of winter, when the temperature is moderate and mild.
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