Chatakpur In Darjeeling: Sightseeing & Stay
The best way to spend your vacation is by connecting with nature. Many places around us let us soak mother nature to its fullest and one among these places is the forest village of Chatakpur in Sonada town of Darjeeling District. Nature Canvas Travel offers best deals and discounts at Chatakpur in Darjeeling tourism. For Booking of Chatakpur homestay at best price Call +91-90732-08322.
Chatakpur in Darjeeling area is one of the most famous tourist spots for people living in West Bengal. It’s like the go-to place for people who want a vacation that does not make a hole in their pockets. So people who have been to Darjeeling know Chatakpur to be a timber forest with no settlements until recently after the Forest Department has taken an initiative to built small tourist huts and turn this timber den into an eco-village. This step was taken to, first of all, control the timber smuggling by the local people and secondly, to let the people around the place earn a living through tourism. There are near about 18 families at this small Chatakpur area where you can take a sunrise view from your homestay.
What is the height of Chatakpur?
Chatakpur eco village is placed at an altitude of 7887 feet above sea level within Darjeeling hill. Chatakpur homestays are situated 7 km away from Sonada among Senchal reserve forest. Chatakpur has become very famous among North Bengal bound tourists as it offers panoramic view of snow clad mountains Himalayan range and lush green forest of alpine trees.
Elevation of Chatakpur 7,887 Ft | Coordinates: 26.9671° N, 88.3112°E
Elevation of Sonada | Coordinates: 26.961997°N, 88.268367°E
Stay at Chatakpur:
The West Bengal Forest Department has set up two eco-cottages for the tourists to stay at Chatakpur in Darjeeling. As these cottages are situated inside the Senchal Wildlife Sanctuary the forest department charges a minimum fee of Rs. 120 per day for the Indian tourists and Rs. 500 per day for foreigners to enter here. The stay in the cottages, thereafter, has additional charges. The Eco Cottages of Chatakpur Darjeeling charge Rs. 3,800 per night for two people with meal and Rs. 2,000 without a meal. However, the nearby homestays of Chatakpur village huts take a minimum charge of Rs. 1500 per night with meals. These Chatakpur homestays are also very close to the sanctuary and it offers a deep dive into the lives and culture of the people of Chatakpur.
The two wooden Eco Cottages are made side by side and each one has two bedrooms consisting of a double bed each with an extra bedroom along with attached balconies on both front and backside. These cottages can accommodate up to 12 people in total. The rooms are well furnished with proper bedding and enough quilts to keep you warm in the cold. The bathrooms have a geyser for warm water but there is no T. V. The local people of Chatakpur come to the cottages to make the meals and serve them. Dinner is served around 8 p.m. and after that, the tourists are left alone without any service till the next morning. This is also a reason why you should travel in groups because once it is dark there is nothing much to do.
Now that you know how to go to Chatakpur Darjeeling and where to stay, let’s talk about more serious matters like what to do there. Chatakpur, instead of being a very small village, offers quite a several activities and sightseeing to do and places to visit.
Sightseeing (Activities and Attractions) in Chatakpur:
Trekking is the most beloved activity to do during your stay at Chatakpur. The eco-village itself is a hill station situated at an altitude of 7887 feet, has several mountains and plateaus surrounding it. Many routes take the trekkers to the popular Tiger Hills. While trekking if you are lucky enough or if you get yourself a good guide then you might see Mount Everest or Chumbalumba. Another addition to this is Mount Kanchenjunga which constantly accompanies all the travelers during their entire stay at Chatakpur.
Sunrise at Sundakphu:
Another breathtaking view to witness while in Chatakpur is Sandakphu from Watch Tower. It is situated at just a 10 minutes distance from the tourist huts and it is the sunrise point. This tower offers the same view as Kanchenjunga which is at a distance of 40 meters from Chatakpur. Sunrise view is available from almost every homestay in Chatakpur.
Just beside the tourist cottage, or 100 meters from it is the jungle. It is advisable to take a local guide with you as this forest consists of wild animals like leopards, barking deers, and even red pandas, which are otherwise rare. You will also find birds here like Bulbul, Blue Magpie, Pipit, long-tail Shrike, Prinia, Warbler, and many other species. This forest consists of towering timber and alpine trees that make the view of this forest picture-perfect so do not forget to take your camera with you.
Explore the Village:
Chatakpur is a very small place which only consists of 18 village homes. The villagers are very hospitable and will do anything to make you feel at home. At tourist request, they even perform traditional dances or tell stories about the village while soaking the sun on a winter afternoon. While exploring the village you might find farmlands where they grow organic vegetables and on asking they might let you pick some of those. You can even buy organic vegetables and pulses at a cheaper rate and take them back home.
Best time to Visit Chatakpur:
Chatakpur in Darjeeling is a beautiful eco-village located amidst the Senchal Wildlife Sanctuary with lush greenery and the snow-clad Eastern Himalayas surrounding it. The unique location of Chatakpur has made the village very popular among the photographers and bloggers who keep on visiting this place for its greenery. This magnificent view will only be seen if you visit Chatakpur in Darjeeling between Octobers to December when the sky is clear. It is highly advisable not to visit Chatakpur during the monsoon season because then you’ll neither be able to enjoy trekking, nor nature.
How to Reach Chatakpur in Darjeeling?
Get in - The minimum distance from chatakpur to darjeeling 20.7 km via NH110 and the approximate travel time is 1 hr 15 min. There are three dissimilar roads to Chatakpur in Darjeeling hills. One originates at the 3rd mile on the Peshok road, second one initiate at Dilaram on the Siliguri Darjeeling connecting Hill Cart Road, and the third one from Sonada near Darjeeling. Whichever route you follow, keep in mind that it is a forest area and entering here without permission of the forest department is fault. Anyone visiting the forest or wants to spend a night at Chatakpur village has to get authorization from the forest department which is arranged by your tour guide.
Among the three routes, the Sonada – Chatakpur path is the shortest and also the most difficult to negotiate. If you are going to Chatakpur at the beginning of your tour, that is you are traveling from NJP, Kolkata or Bagdogra, you should be traveling to Dilaram first and then catch an eastbound road to reach Bagora couple of kilometers ahead. From Bagora an 11 km journey through the forest will take you to Chatakpur. Chatakpur tour guests roaming from other important tourist spots such as Darjeeling, Kalimpong or Sikkim, has to reach 3rd mile check post on the Peshok road. From here take a southbound jungle way and drive for about 10 km to get to the Chatakpur village.
Chatakpur can potentially be your next weekend trip destination as it is cozy and pocket-friendly. Even if you are not someone who enjoys trekking or exploring the wild then also you should come here to chill on a lazy weekend afternoon away from all the hazards of city life enjoying the beautiful Kanchenjunga. Nothing is better than the time spent amidst nature, it relaxes you and freshens you up and Chatakpur is the right place to provide you with that kind of environment.
Darjeeling to Chatakpur car fare - Small car fare from Darjeeling to Chatakpur is roughly Rs. 2000. But it is advisable to travel with a big car for better service and control. Those who wants to spend one or two nights in Chatakpur homestay can also take Ola outstation cab to arrive at this tiny himalayan hamlet. Visitors can cover Darjeeling to Chatakpur distance through Senchal Wildlife Sanctuary via Sonada within 1.5 hrs by cab. You have to drive through and cover Chatakpur to Sonada distance whish is about 7.5 Km via (Chatakpur Road) in this journey.