Charkhole is a beautiful village in the Kalimpong district of West Bengal. At an altitude of nearly 5500 feet, Charkhole is located just 27 km from Kalimpong town. The place is blessed with an abundance of natural beauty and thus has become a popular offbeat destination for its excellent view of the Kanchenjunga massif on a clear day. The panoramic view of snow-clad Kanchenjunga from Charkhole is a lifetime experience.
The village of Charkhole is dotted with Pine, Oak, Shal, and cypress trees. The village is adjacent to the forests of Pemling. This is a forest area that continues to Loleygaon and Pabong areas as well. The forests here are well known for a few rare species of butterflies.
Charkhole is also popular among birdwatchers. The popular local bird species are found here in abundance including Lemon Rumped Warbler, Hodgson's Treecreeper, Chestnut-tailed Minla, Green-backed tit, and many others.
Nature walks in Charkhole are also a popular activity. There are no formal sightseeing points here. The entire village is a natural gift for tourists. A day trip can be undertaken to nearby attractions from here.
Lolegaon is a nearby village that can be easily visited from here. The Jhandi Dara sunrise viewpoint of Lolegaon is about half an hour's drive from Charkhole and is a suggested early morning activity here. The canopy walk of Lolegaon is a popular tourist activity.
Pabong is also a nearby village. The two villages of Pabong and Charkhole are almost a continuous stretch broken by a strip of forest. Pabong can be visited even on foot as the distance between the villages is barely a km or so.
Charkhole is a very rural area. There is no marketplace in the immediate neighbourhood. So anyone visiting Charkhole must carry their requirements such as medicine etc. There are very few shops available in the area.
There are two routes to reach Charkhole. One is through Kalimpong town and the other is through Dooars. The route that you will follow will depend upon recent road conditions and the place where you are coming from.
If you are coming from NJP station or Bagdogra airport, the Dooars route is preferred. The road through Dooars is in decent condition and the distance through this route is about 70 km from NJP. Drive to Bagrakot in Dooars and take the only hill-bound road from Bagrakot, the route consists of about 45 km of plain terrain and about 25 km of hill drive. You will reach Charkhole via Chuikhim.
If you are coming here from Darjeeling Kalimpong or the Sikkim area, you would do better to travel via Kalimpong town. Even from NJP to Charkhole this route is just about 75 km in distance. However, this route is mostly through hilly terrain. Travel to Kalimpong town and then travel towards Relli Khola. Cross Relli Khola and immediately you will come to a bifurcation. The uphill road on the left will take you towards Lolegaon whereas the road on your right will take you to Charkhole on a half an hour's drive.
When to visit
Charkhole can be visited throughout the year. Although it is a hilly terrain, the altitude is relatively low so even during winters the place never gets extremely cold. On the other hand, the forest cover and less population density of the area ensure that summer temperature never becomes very high. The rainy season witnessed high rainfall as is customary throughout the eastern Himalayas.
There are a couple of resorts and several homestays in the area. For the latest update and booking, please contact our team members who will guide you about booking. Just fill up the form below or call us at the contact number given on the contact us page for information about accommodation. Humro Home, the largest network of homestays in the region, and a sister organization offer excellent accommodation options here.