A few partially rebuilt wall stubs are all that remain of the palace complex at Rabdentse, which was Sikkim's royal capital from 1670 until it was sacked by Nepali forces in the 18th century. However, it's worth the 1km forest walk from the main car park to contemplate the fabulous viewpoint on which the ruins are located, best photographed between a trio of small, bare-stone stupas.

The entrance gateway is 3km from Upper Pelling along the Geyzing road, 800m further east than the Pemayangtse turn-off. Access to the ruins (on foot only) is free: you only have to pay the ₹50 entry ticket if you wish to peruse an aviary of local pheasants en route.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Sikkim attractions

1. Pemayangtse Gompa

0.39 MILES

One of Sikkim’s oldest and most significant Nyingmapa monasteries, Pemayangtse (literally ‘Perfect Sublime Lotus’) is 500m off the Geyzing road – turn…

2. Helipad

1.56 MILES

Just 10 minutes' stroll from Upper Pelling's Zero Point junction, the helipad is about the best viewpoint around, with almost 360-degree views.

3. Sanghak Choeling Gompa


Near the foot of the vast new Chenrezig Statue, this monastery complex is a contrastingly calm, meditative place with fabulous views, with seven stone…

4. Chenrezig Statue

2.28 MILES

Officially unveiled in November 2018, this huge, four-armed statue of Chenrezig (Avalokiteshvara) sits around 500m beyond the attractive little Sanghak…

5. Tashiding Gompa

2.61 MILES

The ridge between Ralang and Yuksom ends with an upturned promontory (1450m) on which sits the multibuilding complex of Tashiding Gompa, an important…

6. Chorten 'Forest'

2.62 MILES

At the southern end of the Tashiding Gompa complex, this unusual compound contains a 2008 dharma bell, two giant Kashmir cypress trees and a series of…

7. Drakar Tashiding

2.68 MILES

If you're visiting Tashiding Gompa, a minor 'extra' sight is this tiny prayer cave, accessed via 250m of mossy stairs down to a small, tin-roofed hut…

8. Silnon Gompa

3.53 MILES

Like Tashiding Gompa way, way below, Silnon (see-non) was founded by Ngadhak Sempo Chempo. Its fairly modest central temple has a spectacular backdrop of…