Rise of the sun at Tiger Hill

Rise of the sun at Tiger Hill
Nestled in the foothills of the Himalayas, Darjeeling is a small town in West Bengal defined by its diverse inhabitants and the eclectic blend of natural beauty, contrasting cultures and colonial splendour. The moment I set foot on its soil, a mystic charm drew me in and I forgot all about the rough journey along the serpentine paths that had ferried us there from Sikkim.


Darkness fell upon as early as five in the evening and despite the winter chill, the town, especially the Mall Road, was bright and bustling where one would be spoilt for choice for eateries and shopping options. The following morning, we set to explore the various attractions of the town — the magnificent Kanchenjunga forming its backdrop, the Batasia Loop where the Darjeeling Himalayan Railway had exceeded the yardstick of
innovation during the British era, the sprawling misty tea gardens, the elaborate architecture and heritage of the old Ghoom Monastery and the Peace Pagoda, the unique native Himalayan animals in the Himalayan Zoo — were a few to name.
The one experience that is close to my heart is indeed the ethereal vision of sunrise at the Tiger Hill. Waking up at three in the morning had never seemed so easy, and the enthusiasm was tangible even at that hour. Also, we were aware of the unpredictable regional weather. Fog, mist, clouds could come out of nowhere as blankets and could play spoilsport. Nevertheless, the clear dark starry sky kept our hopes of having a
glorious spectacle alive. It was an 11-12 km uphill drive that took us about an hour, with several other vehicles on streets, to reach the vicinity of Tiger Hill. Few more minutes of walk in biting cold led us to the summit where there was an under-construction building which would be an observatory deck after completion. People of all ages were thronging around, and amidst them we secured convenient positions in the open terrace. Also rampant were the small time vendors selling woollens and other accessories like
selfie sticks. A cup of hot coffee from a local vendor warmed me up and revived my numbed senses, and then I calmly looked around. The horizon on the eastern side was tinged in deep red and in the twilight, silhouette of the surrounding hills appeared tranquil and transcendent. Bit by bit, the glow toned down to composite hues of orange and pink. As the sky got brighter, the panoramic view became more vivid.

By 6.20 am, it was time for the sun to surge past its confines. People waited with bated breath, and there was a terrific round of applause as the giant sphere made a spell-binding appearance. I could not take my eyes off as the sun sliced through the hills within minutes like a brilliant ball of fire. One moment, the cameras clicked and videos taped the celestial event and the next, focus was shifted to the Himalayan range lying across the spectrum. Drenching the initial golden beams, the exquisite Kanchenjunga glimmered joyously. Even the Everest was evident in the clear blue cloudless sky, but being farther it seemed quite smaller.
From the summit of Tiger Hill, the sun can be seen emerging right against the horizon of the eastern sky. That is what makes the experience of an everyday natural phenomenon so special. Having had a blessed and blissful vision, the day had begun on a sparkling note for us and it was time to leave. While walking back to the car, I glimpsed at the prayer flags fluttering around and spreading exuberance into air.

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Darkness fell upon as early as five in the evening and despite the winter chill, the town, especially the Mall Road, was bright and bustling where one would be spoilt for choice for eateries and shopping options. The following morning, we set to expl...

Read more at: https://www.deccanherald.com/supplements/travel/rise-of-the-sun-at-tiger-hill-795474.html
Darkness fell upon as early as five in the evening and despite the winter chill, the town, especially the Mall Road, was bright and bustling where one would be spoilt for choice for eateries and shopping options. The following morning, we set to expl...

Read more at: https://www.deccanherald.com/supplements/travel/rise-of-the-sun-at-tiger-hill-795474.html
estled in the foothills of the Himalayas, Darjeeling is a small town in West Bengal defined by its diverse inhabitants and the eclectic blend of natural beauty, contrasting cultures and colonial splendour. The moment I set foot on its soil, a mystic ...

Read more at: https://www.deccanherald.com/supplements/travel/rise-of-the-sun-at-tiger-hill-795474.html
estled in the foothills of the Himalayas, Darjeeling is a small town in West Bengal defined by its diverse inhabitants and the eclectic blend of natural beauty, contrasting cultures and colonial splendour. The moment I set foot on its soil, a mystic ...

Read more at: https://www.deccanherald.com/supplements/travel/rise-of-the-sun-at-tiger-hill-795474.html
estled in the foothills of the Himalayas, Darjeeling is a small town in West Bengal defined by its diverse inhabitants and the eclectic blend of natural beauty, contrasting cultures and colonial splendour. The moment I set foot on its soil, a mystic ...

Read more at: https://www.deccanherald.com/supplements/travel/rise-of-the-sun-at-tiger-hill-795474.html
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Rise of the sun at Tiger Hill - Nestled in the foothills of the Himalayas, Darjeeling is a small town in West Bengal defined by its diverse inhabitants and the eclectic blend of natural beauty, contrasting cultures and colonial splendour.

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