Nathulla Pass

Nathulla Pass

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Nathula Pass was a major corridor of passage between India and Tibet before it was closed in 1962. Located around 56 kms from Gangtok at an altitude of 14450 ft, the road to Nathula passes through the Tsomgo lake. It is one of the highest motorable roads in the world and is richly surrounded by alpine flora. On a clear day you can even see the road winding down the Chumbi valley. Tourists are allowed to go close to the international border from where you can see Chinese soldiers on the other side of the barbed wire.
Nathula Nathula is open for Indian nationals on Wednesday, Thursday, Friday, Saturday and Sundays. The visitors have to get the permit to visit the place by applying to the Tourism and Civil Aviation Department through a registered and recognised Travel Agency. Foreign nationals are not allowed to visit Nathula. Photography is strictly prohibited. One can find ATM facility here which is the worlds highest Automated Teller Machine (ATM).

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The border was opened for trade on July 6th, 2006 after prolonged negotiation between the two countries. Dignitaries from both countries met at Nathula on this historic occasion and trade between the two countries resumed on a limited number of items. The future of the pass seems to be bright as state and the Central government plans big for the Pass. Tourism may also get a major boost as the boarder is planned to be opened for tourists in the future. At present the tourists are allowed to get close to the international boarder and the Chinese soldiers can be seen protecting their side of the boarder. On specific days the Chinese authorities also allows tourists to visit the area and on those days the tourists of the two countries can see one another.