Tinkitam is a small village tucked away in the mountains of South Sikkim. The village is often overshadowed by neighboring towns like Rabong and Namchi however, it is a place that is known for its breathtaking views of Mt. Kanchendzonga and Mt. Kabru. Due to the small population there, the place is still protected from modernity and the culture here is still embedded with the love for simplicity peace.
Chekhim Kothi is the childhood home of India’s former football captain Bhaichung Bhutia, where his family still lives and visits the farm from time to time. The home that guests have access to is the family home where cousins and relatives come annually to celebrate traditional holidays, family prayers etc. Because most my family members live in other cities today, we have decided to convert it into a travel sanctuary for travellers to come and experience rural community living. Surrounded by vast farming lands, guests can see vast fields where corn, beans, rice and potatoes are grown seasonally. The farmhouse also keeps animals like cows, goats and chickens which we take care of and utilize. Our place is meant to feel unfamiliar yet comforting and we encourage guests to be involved in our daily activities in order to truly understand the living style here.
As a fully organic farm, we grow most of our own food and source our own produce (dairy, eggs, meat, poultry, etc.) and offer guests a selection of local cuisines based on the availability of seasonal vegetables and food trends. We have no set menu but will ensure that guests receive an exciting variety that will promise to excite your taste buds throughout your stay with us.
Our rooms are simple, spacious and have only the basic necessities that we think would make your stay here as comfortable and blissful as possible. Because we want to encourage our guests to really connect with nature and people here, we don’t have TV’s in the rooms. Guests have access to the living room space and the sit outs where they can read, complete pending work (although we hope you have the opportunity to really escape from it!) or just interact and share conversations with each other.
ACTIVITIES WE OFFER
Other than this, we also offer a selection of activities for guests who can request us prior to coming here or on your first night. We would be happy to plan and create an amazing, enriching experience for you! Some of our activities include -
Exploring Nature and the Village - Since the village is a rural area, walking is the most common form of getting around. We have paths that snake across fields and hills and the slow ascent of the hills ensures that your walk will be a mild, easy one. In this walk, you can visit the village school that has an amazing cliff-side view of West Sikkim and you could also explore the bamboo forests that surround our home.
Hiking and Trekking - Tinkitam also holds secret, unexplored hiking and trekking trails that only the locals here know about. We can organize a hiking trip for you as you get to explore our forests and cardamom fields. During the trail, you could also look out for exotic orchid species, native birds and animals and discover a world that is still unharmed and tucked away.
Learning Sikkimese cuisines - Because everything here is local and organic, we also host cooking classes where you can learn to make traditional Sikkimese food that is known for its simple yet tasty and colorful flavor palettes. Whether you want to learn how to make momos and the different types of stuffing for it, or simply want to learn how to make a good chicken curry or momo chutney, we would be happy to arrange this opportunity of cultural exchange with you. You would not only learn to cook the food but also see where the food comes from as you go into the fields to harvest the ingredients you would need.
Sightseeing in Rabong and Namchi - Because there two relatively touristy towns very close to Tinkitam, we can also arrange for a day of sightseeing with a local guy from Tinkitam. Namchi boasts some really beautiful and interactive tourist attractions like the Samdruptse Statue (statue of Guru Padmasambhava), Char Dham, Rock Garden, Rose Garden, etc. and you could pick the sites you’d like to visit. After that, you can visit the Tathagata Tsal (Buddha Park) a clean and beautiful garden where you can take a stroll in the park as the 40m high statue of Buddha watches over you in the small, foggy town of Rabong. You can also visit the Ralang gompa (monastery) have coffee and cakes at Cafe Pem before making your way back to Tinkitam.
Reshi, Legshep and Hot-springs - One of the many things Sikkim is known for is her various sacred hot springs that are scattered all over the state. Just 30 minutes from the farmhouse, the riverside settlement of Reshi has hot springs and is home to a sacred Buddhist cave site which is inhabited by eager monkeys that you could go visit too. However, because this requires arranging for transportation, etc. we would be grateful if you mentioned your interest at the time of booking or on the night of your arrival (we will try to organize this depending on your length of stay with us!) Legshep also has a Hanuman temple -caves by the riverside that the guests can visit as well.
Guests have access to the ‘Center’ (the home where you’d be staying), the barn, vegetable gardens, farming lands, cardamom fields, etc. Additionally, if there are places you see that ignites your curiosity, we would be more than happy to make appropriate arrangements for you to explore that upon your request.
Our home is mostly surrounded by farms, open nature spaces, forests and adorned by colorful prayer flags and proud and noble mountains as our backdrop. It is a quiet and peaceful place with the occasional mooing of cows, chirping of birds and bleating goats but we assure you that it is not something you will be maddened by. We have our own space and live in an area inhabited by just three families as most homes are scattered throughout the village. The neighborhood has only one small shop that sells basic rations for the villagers so we encourage guests to buy any specific supplies you may need prior to your arrival here.
Tinkitam, Sikkim, India