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Visit The Hamlet Of Oranges In Bengal - Sittong

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Each of us would be longing to spend time amidst nature and natural surroundings away from the noise, pollution and chaos of a city. A serene village, which is located in one of the most untouched parts of the Eastern Himalayan foothills, is Sittong; the hamlet is well known for its orange orchards and is a treasure chest which opens up to showcase the best of nature away from the cities.

The village is home to the Lepcha tribes and is split by a stream named Khola. It is also protected by the greenery of the Darjeeling Hills. Almost every household here has a garden and in these gardens one would come across an orange orchard, which gives the hamlet the name Orange Village.

Sittong
 

PC: Priyamkajal

A visit to this beautiful hamlet is like stepping into a time machine which take you back in time with its old bamboo bridges and a century-old church along with a rivulet, which flows right through the village. When it comes to winter, the entire place is engulfed in the various hues of orange.

Trekking And Hiking Routes

The place has a number of trekking and hiking routes, which would take you to the nearby villages. One such trek would take you to the nearby Labda village, where one would get the opportunity to interact with the locals who belong to the Lepcha community.

Orange Village

PC: laolijia

One would come across the traditional households of the Lepcha tribe who would welcome you into their homes and would offer to take around their orchards and treat you with some yummy local delicacies.

Two of the most well-known birding hotspots of the region are Mahananda Wildlife Sanctuary and Latpanchar, which are homes to the great Indian hornbills and the rare rufous-necked hornbill, which make the place a must visit when in the village of Sittong.

 Mahananda Wildlife Sanctuary

PC: Kalyanvarma

Best Things To Do

The best thing to do here is absolutely nothing. It is a place where one would simply choose to relax and enjoy the beauty of nature at the very best. One can choose to go on long nature walks through the village by following the serpentine paths and move around the place without any worries.

Make it a point to visit the orange orchards and taste the fresh oranges, which definitely is a must-do activity that one cannot miss when here. If you happen to be here during the blossoming season, then don't miss the chance of plucking oranges from the trees, which is welcomed by the locals who are simple people and allow you to enter their orchards and relish some fresh fruit.

Oranges

PC: Rolf F. Katzenberger

Best Time To Visit

The place is a year-around destination; however, the blossoming season of oranges is from November to January, which makes it the best time to visit the place. The harvesting season of oranges is between late December and early January.

How To Reach

Sittong

PC: Unknown

By Air: The nearest airport is the Bagdogra International Airport which is located at a distance of 37 km from here. The airport is well connected to some of the major airports across the country and to a number of the cities abroad.

By Train: The nearest airport to Sittong is the New Jalpaiguri station which is located at a distance of 57 km from here. The station is well connected to major towns and cities across the state of West Bengal and to a number of stations across the country, such as Delhi, Mumbai, Bhubaneshwar, etc.

By Road: One of the best ways to reach the place is by road as the place has an excellent connectivity by road network with buses and taxis operating from New Jalpaiguri and Siliguri. Siliguri is located at a distance of 55 km from here.

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