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Tea, rivers, and hiking

Swaati Chaudhury | New Delhi |

For adventure buffs ready to head for a trip in and around the Darjeeling Hills, there’s Glenburn Tea Estate offering them a reason to feel happy with a torrent of adventurous activities. It’s not always that one gets to experience such mesmerising adventure in the stunning landscapes of the eastern Himalayas with breathtaking views of snowcapped Kanchenjunga.

Husna Tara Prakash, proprietress, GlenburnTea Estate and Boutique Hotel, said, “The area around Glenburn Tea Estate has a diverse landscape replete with avian species, butterflies, beetles and crabs in the nearby springs that form a perfect retreat for those seeking a break from their fast-paced life. It is an ideal destination where adventure lovers can take up hiking and retire to a high level of comfort at night. Those seeking solitude can always spend some time in the verandah of Glenburn bungalow sipping their favourite Darjeeling cuppa. Our Glenburn Tea Tour involves exploring the estate and tea factory, taking our visitors into a wonderful journey of beverage making.”

There are a number of hiking trails including both gentle and arduous treks that last for a day along the River Rung Dung. Prakash informed, “Tourists can spend the night at the Glenburn Lodge with utmost comfort on the banks of the River Rangeet and can camp, trek across the river to Sikkim, play a game of beach cricket, take a dip in the river or go for fishing in Rangeet from October to May. The fishes include Golden Mahseer, brown trout, rainbow trout, snow trout and carp. Tourists can also go on sightseeing tours of Darjeeling or Kalimpong.”

Other interesting adventure options are hiking along the river Rangeet to Manjit hamlet in Sikkim, hiking to Ramitay Daara, afternoon hike to Shikari Dura hamlet, river Rung Dung hike or exploring the Lamhatta orange orchard and Cluny Sister’s church.

The Glenburn Tea Tour offers a guided tour of the factory with opportunities for tea tasting sessions where one can get a taste of an exciting range of tea including black, green, oolong and white. At the Glenburn Campsite excursion, tourists are offered the choice from a range of activities like paddling in rock pools, fishing, bird-watching, beach activities on Rangeet, relaxing on sandy beaches and going on short treks on the river banks. Barbecued dinner and bonfire are popular options for tourists on the beach. There are amazing avian species along the Rangeet to watch out for like cormorants, wild geese and hornbills.

Tourists are required to take up precautions while venturing out for the campsite like using insect repellants since there are sand flies along the river. Care should be taken while swimming or paddling along the river since there is a strong current and the rocks are quite slippery. Moreover, the river has quick sand that has to be avoided.

Rangeet passes through dense jungles and tourists can get to explore the rich biodiversity, identify the avian species and the floral life.