Hilley - Varsey hike is a no sweat trek which can be completed
within a day or two. Varsey is called the valley of rhododendrons
– they are available in all shades and shapes here.
The Hilley - Varsey trail is ablaze with a riot of colors
during March and April created by many species of rhododendrons
blooming across the valley. The Rhododendron Sanctuary at
Hilley Varsey is spread across an area of 104 sq. km along
the Singalila Ridge which forms the natural boundary between
India and Nepal. The dense forest of Varsey is covered with
hemlocks, silver firs, magnolia and rhododendron trees and
The trek from Hilley to Varsey is about
4 km and the path bridled with vegetation takes about 1 ½
hours. As you walk along the Singalila, you will be greeted
with glorious views of Kanchenjunga Range. Stay at Varsey
overnight to enjoy the rhododendron forests and sweeping view
of the mountains.
- Varsey is also associated with Joseph Dalton Hooker, the
man who thoroughly documented the flora and fauna of this
region, and published the book called the “Rhododendrons
of Sikkim” in 1849 – his work is still followed
as an authentic text on this subject. Even the golden yellow
rhododendron, scientifically called the Dendobrium hookeriana,
is named after him.