- On 04-Jun-2019
- By Drive to Northeast
Entry Formalities to Sikkim
Sikkim is surrounded by three neighbouring countries China, Nepal and Bhutan which comes under restricted area regime. So to visit the beautiful state of Sikkim, foreigners are required to obtain Inner Line Permit (ILP) which is also known as Restricted Area Permit (RAP).
The Nationalities of Pakistan, China and Myanmar will not be issued Inner Line Permit (ILP) without the prior approval of the Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India, New Delhi.
How do I get the Inner Line Permit (ILP)?
Inner Line Permit (ILP) can be obtained free of cost on the strength of valid Indian Visa, Passport and 2 recent passport size photographs. Below are the offices from where you can get Inner Line Permit.
- Ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India, Lok Nayak Bhawan, New Delhi
- All Foreigners Registration Offices
- All Indian Mission Abroad
- Immigration Offices at Airports at Mumbai, Kolkata, Chennai and New Delhi
- Deputy Director, SNT Complex, Siliguri, Tourism Department
- Tourism Department, Sikkim House, Panchsheel Marg, New Delhi, Tourism Department
- Tourism Department, Sikkim Tourism Office, 4/1 Middleton Street, Kolkata
- Tourism Department, Melli, Near Melli Police Check Post, South Sikkim
- Tourism Department, Sikkim Tourism Office, Rangpo, East Sikkim
- Resident Commissioner, Government of Sikkim, Sikkim House, New Delhi
- Deputy Commissioner, Darjeeling, West Bengal
- Deputy Secretary/Under Secretary, Home Department, Government of West Bengal, Kolkata
The permissible duration of the stay for foreign tourists is 30 days initially and can be extended further for 30 days with the approval of the State Government. The extension of the permit can be obtained from Foreigners Registration Office (FRO) at Gangtok and office of Superintendent of Police of the North, West and South Districts.
Issuance of Protected Area Permit (PAP)
Indian and foreign tourists who like to go for a trekking or sightseeing interior regions of Sikkim has to obtain a Protected Area Permit (PAP) which is issued by the Tourism and Civil Aviation Department at Gangtok. This permit is given for specified areas and is not given to a solo foreign tourist.
Below is the list of popular places you can visit with a Protected Area Permit (PAP).
- Tsomgo Lake and Baba Mandir - Domestic tourists can obtain this permit from Police Check Post and foreign tourists can get this both from Tourism & Civil Aviation Department and Police Check Post. Foreigners are only allowed to visit until Tsomgo Lake.
- Nathula Pass - Permit is issued from the Tourism Department as well as at Police Check Post and is only allowed for Indians.
- Dzongri Trek & Singalila Trek- Permit is issued from Adventure Cell of Tourism & Civil Aviation Department, Govt. of Sikkim for both Indians and Foreigners.
- Yumthang Valley, Thangu Valley - Domestic tourists can obtain this permit from the Police Check Post and foreign tourists can get it both from Tourism & Civil Aviation Department and Police Check Post.
- Gurudongmar Lake - Permit is issued from the Police Check Post and is only allowed for Indians.
To visit South Sikkim no Protected Area Permit (PAP) is required for both Indians and Foreigners.