Darjeeling: Snowfall in Tumlong near Sandakphu in late March took locals by surprise and tourists in Darjeeling made a beeline for the hamlet 39 km away on Thursday. The news also came as a bonus for those in the city who are planning a trip to Darjeeling soon.
Hotel owners were caught unawares as they were suddenly flooded with enquiries on Tumlong. “All of a sudden, visitors began asking about trip to Sandakphu. Later we came to know that it had snowed at Tumlong. I just about managed to get a vehicle for my guests,” said hotelier Pranab Rai.
According to reports, Tumlong received 5 inches of snowfall even as weather conditions remained unpredictable throughout the day. Hailstorm accompanied by lashing wind struck Darjeeling town in the afternoon.
Rajesh Rajak, general manager of Hotel Anand Palace, said, “Since the snowfall is completely unexpected at this time of the year, it generated huge excitement. Over the next couple of years, we expect a good demand for trips to Sandakphu,” he said.
Hooghly resident Joydeep Talukdar, who arrived in Darjeeling on Thursday, said: “As soon as I learnt about the snowfall, I asked my hotel to book a vehicle. My wife and I have never seen snowfall. We are extremely excited.”
It had snowed on February 17 for the last time in the Hills when Tiger Hill near Jorebungalow, 10 km from the town area, was covered in flakes.
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