Sikkim’s capital is mostly a functional sprawl of multistorey concrete boxes. But, true to its name (meaning ‘hill top’), these are steeply tiered along a precipitous mountain ridge. When clouds clear, typically at dawn, views are inspiring with Khangchendzonga soaring above the western horizon. While Gangtok’s manmade attractions are minor, it’s a reasonable place to spend a day or two organising a trek or trips to the north.
Gangtok’s crooked spine is the Rangpo–Mangan road, National Hwy 31A, cryptically referred to as 31ANHWay. The tourist office, banks and many shops line the central pedestrianised Mahatma Gandhi (MG) Marg.