‘Lachung-Yumthang to open for tourists from Dec 1’

‘Lachung-Yumthang to open for tourists from Dec 1’

There are good tidings for all the travel bugs just before the festive season. Following the devastating flash floods on October 4, that severed road communications with different parts of North Sikkim, the government of Sikkim has decided to open the Lachung-Yumthang axis to tourists from

December 1.

However, this comes with some pre-conditions. The tourist hotspot Lachen-Gurudongmar point will remain closed for tourists till further notice.

A Government of Sikkim notification on Wednesday stated: “Tourists intending to visit North Sikkim will be allowed to visit the Lachung-Yumthang axis w.e.f December 1, 2023 on the following conditions…” The conditions include tourist vehicles carrying tourists shall move in convoys on Sankalang-Toong-Chungthang Road, no tourist vehicles will to be allowed on Sankalang-Toong-Chungthang Road after 4 pm and in case of any exigencies related to tourist movement through this route, representatives of TAAS and Tourism department should provide necessary assistance. The travel industry has welcomed the decision.

“This is a welcome move by the government. The flash flood caused a major dent to our livelihood. With the roads opening up, we have got a lot of queries from tourists. Many want to visit and see North Sikkim post the devastation. Even if we don’t get huge numbers, we can send out signals that North Sikkim is normalising. This will help in the next tourist season. We have conducted reiki and seen the roads for ourselves. It is absolutely safe,” stated Yangchen Tongden Lepcha, vice-president, Travel Agents’ Association of Sikkim, while talking to Millennium Post.

Every year around 10 lakh domestic tourists visit Sikkim. “This will enable the entire circuit to come back to normalcy just before the festive season. Christmas-New Year is a major tourist season. Already North Sikkim has started to witness snowfall. This would add to the advantage,” stated Samrat Sanyal, General Secretary, Himalayan Hospitality and Tourism Development Network.

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