Phone : +91-353-2517561
Observatory Hill is a hill near Chowrasta square, or The Mall as it is popularly known, in Darjeeling, West Bengal, India. Magnificent views of snow-clad peaks, including Mount Kanchenjunga, are visible from the Observatory Hill. The Bhutia Busty monastery was originally located here. Now the hill has the temple of Mahakal. Two important arteries of the town, Nehru Road and Bhanubhakta Sarani, meet at Chowrasta. Another school of thought suggests that the presence of the megalithic core to have been a place of worship of the Rongs, representing a sacred location of the classic Long Chok (erect stones) type. The term ‘Dotsug’ was thus a literal translation of ‘Long Chok’
Chowrasta and The Mall around Observatory Hill are the main centers of tourist attraction in Darjeeling. They spread on hill slopes at an altitude of 2,134 meters (7,000 feet). In clear weather, one can see Mount Kanchenjunga and twelve other peaks, all above 20,000 feet. The view is clear during October to November. At other times of the year, it is a matter of luck, with clouds engulfing the entire area and some portions of the view available at opportune moments.
In spite of the high tourist flow, The Mall is the cleanest area in Darjeeling. Apart from the mountain views, tourists flock to the Chowrasta for pony rides (mostly by children) and collecting souvenirs.
There are several important places around Observatory Hill. Birch Hill, or Jawahar Parbat, an offshoot from The Mall, is an exclusive residential section where the Raj Bhavan is situated.The Himalayan Mountaineering Institute is located on the western spur of Jawahar Parbat, about a kilometre and half from Observatory Hill. The Windamere Hotel and West Bengal Government’s Tourist Lodge stand above The Mall. Windamere, a cozy boarding area of the bachelor English and Scottish tea planters, was converted into a hotel in 1939. There are a number of hotels and restaurants in and around Chowrasta or The Mall. A road from The Mall leads to “Step Aside” – the house of the eminent freedom fighter Chittaranjan Das. He died in Darjeeling on 16 June 1925. The latest addition coming up is a large “Ranga Manch” (theatre) overlooking the Chowrasta.
The range on which Darjeeling is located is Y-shaped with the base resting at Katapahar and Jalapahar and two arms diverging north from Observatory Hill. The northeastern arm dips suddenly and ends in the Lebong spur, while the northwestern arm passes through North Point and ends in the valley near Tukver Tea Estate.
Source : Wikipedia
Visiting hours : 07.00AM to 07.00PM all days of the week