Arguably one of the most picturesque locations in India, Sikkim has rightfully earned the moniker of being a window into the Himalayas. The experiences that the state has to offer are diverse though equally endearing. From beautiful mountain valleys in the North to the many Buddhist Monastries in the west, religious statues in the east and urban centers in the west, the state is a veritable treasure trove! For nature lovers, the view of Khangchendzonga, the third highest mountain in the world, is breathtaking to say the least! Add to it the delicious local food and opportunities for some great hiking and what you have is a fun filled holiday.
If you are wondering what is a good time to visit this picture postcard state, here is all the information that you need on its weather conditions.
Sikkim’s location and altitude allow it to experience tropical, temperate and alpine climactic conditions. While the southern part of the state has sub tropical climate, the northern areas are snowy. Here is a quick overview if the temperature and rainfall conditions:
Summer Temperature- 13 degree Centigrade to 28 degree Centigrade
Winter Temperature- Maximum of 13 degree Centigrade. Minimum temperature varies basis altitude.
Annual Rainfall: 325 cm
Cold Season-The state’s experiences its cold weather season from December to February. Heavy snowfall is witnessed in the high altitudes. Maximum average Winter temperature is recorded to be 13 degree Celcius while the minimum temperature drops below zero degrees depending on the altitude. The snowy deserts in the north, particularly experience biting cold. On account of the snow, routes to high altitude places such as Tsomgo lake and Nathula Pass often get closed. Winter is also the period of heavy fog that blocks view and is a deterrent for travellers.
Spring– March and April marks the advent of spring. The sun shines in all its splendor. There could still be a nip in the air but the weather is pleasant. This is a great time to see the snow mountains and indulge in adventure activities.
Summer– With average temperatures hovering around the 22 degree centigrade mark, May and June is high on tourist influx in the state. This is also the ideal time to undertake White Water Rafting , although there could be intermittent showers.
Monsoons– Late June to early September is the time for the south west monsoons. The weather is humid. Monsoons also make the place prone to landslides hence tourists have to tread with care. On the positive side, however, the place turns lush green. Monsoon is also the time for a number of festivals that display the spirit of the state.
Autumn– September through mid November is the autumn season. With clear weather and great views, little surprise then that the state is thronged by a number of tourists at this time.
To sum up:
Sep–Mid-Nov/ March to May- Clear Weather that is perfect for sight seeing sees the place thronged by tourists.
Late Jun–Sep Monsoon plays spoilsport. However on the positive side the place offers a charm of its own without it teeming with people. The fact that there are discounts on offer is an added perk.