Hidden Inside A Jungle | Munlom Nature Reserve
After three hours through the worst roads and hairpin bends, we reached this paradise. Dzongu in Northern Sikkim is a preserved land which belongs to a tribal clan called Lepchas, the original inhabitants of Sikkim. Munlom Nature Resort is a small place which has beautiful wooden cottages, as rustic and as comfortable as it can get. We reached there just before lunch and we were served some hot traditional tea. It’s was pretty cold as we went just after the monsoon and Munlom is situated at an altitude of approximately 5200 Feet above sea level.
Our host, Mr Kim welcomed us and gave us a little information about Dzongu. It’s a beautiful land with a luscious green forest full of exotic flora and fauna. There are monasteries hidden in their forests which are built by the Lepcha tribes. We were served some delicious rice and curry for lunch with a hot mug of tea!
Rice is a staple in Sikkim, and you’d find it in every corner. After a great lunch, Kim suggested to trek to the monastery on the other side of the forest. The trekking loving souls like us jumped at the idea of an afternoon trek. We walked through organic farms, and forests. We met some cute kids and local dogs. Just when we were about to reach the monastery, we turned back to see a beautiful rainbow across the mountains ahead. You absolutely must consider yourself lucky if you get to see a rainbow with green mountains for a background.
After a good 1 hour of climbing and walking through dense forest, we reach a paradise. There was an old monastery and a new one right next to each other. It was at a height and we could see the whole of Dzongu from there. Something absolutely therapeutic seeing the clouds move and the green trees sway with the wind. As we started our trek back to Munlom, it started to get windier and then the rain started to pour. It was consistent and heavy. By the time we reached, we were drenched. The adorable staff at Munlom was waiting to serve us some hot tea. We chilled in the little wooden common room with some board games, momos and soup. The rain never stopped that night. I heard it fall sharply on our wooden cottages and went to sleep in bliss.
Got up the next day to the sound of birds chirping and fog engulfing our cottages. We were gazing at the series of mountains one after the other.We quickly got ready and had a traditional breakfast of Khuri, a traditional breakfast and left for the Hot springs.
It was an hour’s drive from the resort. We dipped ourselves at the hot spring and when we got out, we were both extremely thirsty and very hungry. Thankfully Kim had warned us about this and we were prepared with bottles of water and some wai-wai.
We then got in our car and went to a river. Guess where we were eating our lunch that day. It was at the banks of a river and the staff from Munlom prepared fresh lunch by the river for us. We were so hungry and we devoured the food and got into the water. It was clean and fresh moving water. We were careful and avoided the crazy current. After a little bit of sunbathing, we got back to Munlom. In the evening, they served us a specialty drink called Chi. Its Millet beer served in a small wooden barrel in the beautiful wooden veranda!
Sat with a bunch of like-minded people, discussing life and happiness in a remote location in between mountains. “Life’s good,” I told myself :)
We were chilling with Mr Kim at the veranda when we heard it first. Amidst the sound of crickets, we heard the mystical music playing from the monastery we trekked to the previous day. The sound of the instruments Rabdong & Gyaling reverberated in the valley of Dzongu. The monks were paying their respects to mount Kanchenjunga before the festival of Pang Lhabso. It was a feeling I’d never forget.
Munlom Nature Resort in Dzongu is everything you need to switch off from your life. There are marvelous things to see, experience in and around and if you honestly, don’t want to do anything, its still your place. Come to Munlom, wake up to the view of endless mountains and a traditional and delicious breakfast served in an interactive open kitchen. Spend some time with Kim and understand his tribe, go for treks in the enchanting forest. It’s something you’d never forget and you can thank me for suggesting this.
How to reach?
Munlom is 45 km and 2-3 hours drive from Sikkim. Contact OurGuest to book and reach Munlom.