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Want a healthy holiday? Visit Tinchuley, the organic village of Bengal

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After a back-breaking work schedule for months, me and my family decided to enjoy a quaint stay somewhere near. And that’s when we stumbled upon North Bengal’s Tinchuley, which is only 80 km from Siliguri by car and 32 km from Darjeeling. So near home, yet we hardly knew! We decided to take a car from Darjeeling because the drive from Darjeeling to Tinchuley is heavenly. The picturesque spiral road goes through the lush green Peshok Tea Garden and you get to see rolling hills with green corridors.

Lush green tea garden

Located at an altitude of 5,800ft, Tinchuley is famous for its wonderful 180-degree view of the entire range of Eastern Himalayas, with majestic Mt. Kanchenjunga, vast orange orchards, full of natural flora and fauna, and of course emerald green tea gardens. It is interesting that Tinchuley also offers a breathtaking view of Teesta River. The weather here remains pleasant all year and you need a just a warm jacket or a woolen sweater.

Mist cover Tinchuley

Tinchuley is a tiny village, consisting of around 20 families, who have developed Home Stay facilities for the tourists. They have also turned Tinchuley into a model organic village of Bengal. Most of them do organic farming and have also developed floriculture and vermiculture. We stayed with a very nice family with two generations, who were happily looking after us by providing breakfast, lunch and dinner as per their tradition. They even made mouthwatering home-made pickles, which were so yummy! We were indeed touched by their heart-warming hospitality and felt like home in the lap of the Himalayas. Colorful Buddhist flags atop every house made the place look like heaven.

Teesta and Rangeet Confluence from Lover's view point - a tourist attraction

Apart from relaxing, Tinchuley offers various activities too, like a walk amidst pine and oak trees and blooming wild flowers, which grow in abundance in the area, bird watching, cave hunting, photography or just roaming around with binoculars. Several species of birds like sparrows, cuckoos, thrushes and warblers are found in the forests of Tinchuely.

Tall Pine, Fir trees at Tinchuley

One can also go sight-seeing to Tinchuley Monastery, Durpin Dara Hill, the Teesta River and Rangit River and Gombu, Orange organic farm, Chotamangwa, Takdahand and many more. There are few nurseries on the way too if you want to enjoy the local plants. Nirmal’s Orange Orchard on Lopchu road, just 8km away from Tinchuley is a family owned farm with a factory, producing fresh orange juice, marmalades and pickles which you can buy too. The sweet and fresh taste of orange juice was delicious. There are also various spices and coffee plantations enroute.

Edge of the hills

The monastery at Tinchuley is for those who would like to enjoy some solitude with meditative chants, gong of prayer bells and flutter of prayer flags. The view of the confluence of river Rangeet and Teesta is simply magnificent from Lover’s View Point, which is 9km from Tinchuley. The hills on the left side are in Sikkim while to the right is Kalimpong. Tinchuley is indeed a place where you get to relax, rejuvenate and soak in the mystical magic of the hills.