Durpin Gompa

Buddhist Monastery in Kalimpong

Kalimpong’s largest monastery, formally known as Zangtok Pelri Phodang, sits atop panoramic Durpin Hill (1372m) and was consecrated by the Dalai Lama in 1976. There are impressive murals in the main prayer room downstairs, presided over by Padmasambhava (the Indian sage credited with spreading Buddhism in Tibet in the 8th century), interesting 3D mandalas (visual meditational aids) on the 2nd floor, and stunning Khangchendzonga views from the terrace. Prayers are held at 6am and 3pm.

The monastery is about 5km south of the town centre, most easily reached by taxi (one way ₹200). It's a pleasant mostly downhill walk back to town, passing the army golf course and canteen. You can stop for a tea at the 1930s English-country-style Morgan House, now a state-government-run hotel.