New Jalpaiguri to Darjeeling

New Jalpaiguri or NJP is a major railway junction located about 88kms south of Darjeeling. Many long distance trains terminate or pass through this station. So if you are planning to visit Darjeeling by train, this is where you are likely to get off. 
However, the twin city known as Siliguri is only few kilometers away. There are some trains that stop at Siliguri Junction as well. 
New Jalpaiguri Railway Station Entrance 
NJP Railway Station 
Once in NJP, there are several options to get to Darjeeling including taxi, shared jeep, bus, Darjeeling Himalayan Railway operated Toy Train etc. The taxis take about 3 hours to reach Darjeeling. The buses are a bit slower. 
But the toy train which is hauled by diesel engine, takes over 7 hours and leaves at a fixed time in the morning. 
There are actually several roads to approach Darjeeling from New Jalpaiguri. Hill Cart Road is the main road and is generally maintained very well. This is a national highway (NH-110). 
The road via Rohini is quite scenic and meets the National Highway at Kurseong. This is a shorter route and most commonly used by the local drivers. 
The road via Pankhabari is very narrow and winding but quite shorter compared to the others. One of the most scenic routes is the Route via Mirik with lovely views of tea gardens, but it's a longer route. 
Numerous food stalls have come up just outside the NJP railway station. So if you plan to have your breakfast or lunch before heading for Darjeeling, there are ample options right here. 
Stalls outside NJP Station 
Otherwise, you can take a rickshaw or a taxi to Siliguri town some 5-kms away, and ask the driver to take you to a proper restaurant. There are plenty of better and more hygienic eateries available in Siliguri town. 
If you reach NJP by train and like to take your breakfast or lunch there, then you can just walk outside the station premises (2 minute walk) and see a series of stalls and eateries lined up. 
One of the better eateries here is Kalpana Hotel which serves Bengali style meals. In breakfast, you can get Luchi Sabji (Puri Sabji) prepared in Bengali style, and accompany that with tea. They also make nice non veg preparations. 
While boarding your train at NJP, this eatery can also pack your food and provide disposable plates so that you can have your meals in the train... a much better option than ordering food in the train. 
Now you are all set to head for Darjeeling. Visit Roads To Darjeeling to know about all the road routes, directions, attractions and villages on the way to Darjeeling. 
Recommended Resources 
If you are planning to visit Darjeeling or Sikkim, the eBook on Darjeeling &áSikkim can be very handy in knowing all the best places, sightseeing tours &áoperators, eateries, nightlife, shopping and lot more, and would serve as a guide to effectively make your tour plan. 

New Jalpaiguri to Darjeeling by Taxi

If you plan to take a taxi from the NJP station, there will be hundreds of them just outside the station. The taxis are usually small cars or vans. You get larger vehicles like Sumo, Tavera etc as well. 
Remember that the local drivers always try their opportunistic chances and there is always a scope for bargaining if you are taking a full taxi. 
The rates usually increase during the high tourist season and the scope of bargaining reduces during such time because of higher demand. 
However for a reserved taxi, I would always recommend that you take a pre-paid taxi. There is a pre-paid taxi booth located opposite to the station entrance and next to the taxi stand. Here the rates are fixed and the taxis will be more reliable. 
You will be given a slip against a full fare advance payment. Once you reach Darjeeling, you only need to hand over the slip to the driver, and that's it. The pre-paid counter at NJP station usually remains opens 24 hours these days. 
Prepaid Taxi Counter at NJP Station (the yellow booth) 
NJP Pre-Paid Taxi Booth 
If you reach NJP late at night, you may find a few taxi drivers outside offering a drop to Darjeeling or other places. First, check if the pre-paid taxi counter is open. If pre-paid taxi is available, then always take that as the first option. 
While taxis do ply on the main roads to Darjeeling late at nights, but watch out for the fog. It can get extremely risky if fog hinders visibility which is often the case at night. 
So unless absolutely necessary, avoid driving at night and plan in advance to stay back for the night at Siliguri (a twin city only 5kms from NJP). I would anyway avoid driving for over 3 hours in darkness and on winding mountainous roads with an unknown driver. 
Visit Transport Fares to know about the reserved taxi fares. 
Note that the taxis usually drop you only at the Darjeeling town center, i.e. either at the Clubside Taxi Stand (across Gandhi Road Police Point) or Chowk Bazaar Taxi Stand at the lower level.  
If your hotel is located at a good distance from the town center, sort it out with the driver before you take the ride. Otherwise, be prepared take a local cab once the driver drops you somewhere near the town center, in order to get to your hotel. 
On request, some taxi drivers do agree to drop you at the hotel and sometimes at a nominal extra charge which you pay directly by cash. 
Note that in Darjeeling, there are some pedestrian only zones where vehicles are not allowed like the area around Chowrasta Mall. 
If your hotel is located in such an area, you need to walk from the nearest taxi stand. The hotel often sends their staff to carry the luggage, if you let them know by phone 

New Jalpaiguri to Darjeeling by shared taxi or jeep

Usually there are plenty of shared taxis available outside the NJP station. The shared taxis are usually jeeps and take two persons in front next to the driver, four in the back seat and four others at the rear seat. 
So they won't start unless they have 10 passengers. While the shared jeep is convenient, fast and cheap, one constraint is you can not carry too much of heavy luggage. All the bags and suitcases are carried on the roof without any additional charge. 
If you want a little more comfort, you can book both the seats in front or a row of seats at the back by paying for those extra seats. Then the driver won't let other passengers occupy the seats you reserved even if they go empty. 
Sometimes, you may get shared taxis in form of smaller vehicles like Maruti Vans as well. 
If you like to avail a luxury class shared taxi (like Innova) to Darjeeling, you can get one from Siliguri but you need to book seat online in advance. 
Go through Shared Taxi Service for complete information about both conventional cheap shared taxis as well as luxury class shared taxis. 
If you for some reason don't get a shared jeep or a taxi from NJP station, another option is to take an auto or a cycle rickshaw to the Siliguri main bus stand known as the Tenzing Norgay Central Bus Terminus. It is about 8kms away. 
From here you will get plenty of shared jeeps leaving for Darjeeling. The jeeps have a small board in front of them with the destination written on it. The system of seat sharing is followed here as well. Visit Transport Fares to know about the shared jeep fares. 

New Jalpaiguri (NJP) to Darjeeling by bus

You can go down to Siliguri and take a bus. There are several bus services from there. You will need to come to the Tenzing Norgay Central Bus Terminus at Siliguri located on the Hill Cart Road. It's only about 8kms from NJP. You can take a taxi, auto rickshaw or a cycle rickshaw from NJP to reach there. 
From Siliguri bus terminus you will get plenty of state run (NBSTC) and private buses for Darjeeling that leave frequently and throughout the day. You can buy NBSTC bus tickets across the counter at the Siliguri bus terminus or online (to be available soon) through their new website NBSTC.IN. 
Check out Transport Options between Siliguri and Darjeeling for more details and options of reaching Darjeeling once you come to Siliguri. 

New Jalpaiguri to Darjeeling by Toy Train

There is a toy train which is run by Darjeeling Himalayan Railway. It starts from the NJP station and goes all the way to Darjeeling. The narrow gauge track climbs uphill and passes via the highest altitude railway station in Asia known as Ghoom. 
The toy train which is part of UNESCO World Heritage Site, was introduced during the British colonial days in 1800s and is still operational. 
Earlier, the train was hauled by steam engine and took over 10 hours to reach Darjeeling. Nowadays, it is hauled by a diesel engine and takes about 7 hours. 
Visit Toy Train Rides &áServices and check out the section under Regular DHR Toy Train services to know about the toy train, its timing and how to book the tickets. 
The toy train goes through a scenic route offering breathtaking views of the mountains and valleys. You will also experience the village life. The narrow gauge track has several zigzags and loops on the way to negotiate steep gradients. 
Visit Toy Train Route to know about the journey and all the stations it passes through. 

Retiring Rooms at NJP Station

If you arrive at New Jalpaiguri late at night or depart very early in the morning, then you can consider staying overnight at the railway retiring room at NJP station. 
This is unless of course you have a hotel booking at Siliguri for overnight stay and a car to take you there. It's not recommended to travel in the mountains late at night. 
The good news is NJP station has several 2 bedded, 3 bedded a/c and non a/c retiring rooms as well as dormitory beds for this purpose. Such accommodations can be availed only by passengers holding valid and confirmed railway tickets and they are quite cheap. 
The railway site has launched online booking of its retiring rooms all across India including NJP. All you need to do is visit their site and click on the link 'Retiring Room' under the 'Stay' tab. 
It will ask you for railway ticket PNR number, source or destination where you want to make the booking, date etc and then show you the current availability. 
You can pay online and make the retiring room booking easily. Booking is allowed for minimum 12 hours to maximum 48 hours. 

Related Articles

1) Visit Bus/Taxi/Toy Train Fares For Darjeeling to know about fares for buses, private &áshared taxis, shared jeeps and toy train etc from NJP/ Siliguri/ Bagdogra and up to Darjeeling. 
2) Visit How to reach Darjeeling for complete information on reaching Darjeeling from various places in India and neighboring countries. 

Visitors' Reviews/Comments

Pradip Burman Ray (August 2023) 
Hi, You offer excellent suggestions Raj. We are 2 Senior Citizens from Kolkata. Visiting Darjeeling for 7 days end-Nov 2023. Shall take Darjeeling Mail to NJP. Few Queries: 
1. Are Shared Taxi (Not Jeep) available from NJP to Darjeeling. If Available, what would be the fare. 
2. Are Prepaid Taxi available at 8AM (The time Darjeeling Mail reaches NJP) at NJP Railway Station to Darjeeling ? áHow much fare is likely for a small Car ? 
Raj ( August 2023 
Hi, shared taxis are usually Tata Sumos, Mahindra Max or similar large vehicles. Pre-paid taxis are now available at NJP for almost 24 hours. The usual small reserved taxi fare from NJP to Darjeeling is around Rs. 3,000. However, the pre-paid fare is usually lower. 
Shivajit Dutta (September 2022) 
Excellent website, Mr Raj. Please let me know if Binayak Hotel mentioned by you is the same with Hotel Vinayak Inn and Banquet. 
Raj ( September 2022 
Hello, In 2013 when I wrote about Binayak Hotel, it was a good option for some refreshments before heading towards Darjeeling. It was located on Hill Cart Road. It seems to have closed down now. Hotel Vinayak Inn &áBanquet is a different hotel and located on a lane off Hill Cart Road. 
Deepika (August 2021) 
Our train will be reaching NJP at 10:30 pm will we get taxi to Darjeeling late night? 
Raj ( August 2021 
You might get some stray taxis around that time at NJP... it's advisable not to take such a taxi, often the drivers are drunk. You should either pre-arrange a pickup through your hotel or wait till the pre-paid taxi counter opens in the morning. The second option is better because driving in the mountains so late at night is not quite advisable. 
Sayan Saha (March 2020) 
We are going there in April 2020 at 4 am. We are 9 people. First question is should I wait for 1-2 hours before booking a taxi?? And second, which will be wise for booking a taxi... at njp or bus stand?? Thanks in advance. 
Raj ( March 2020 
The prepaid taxi counter at NJP opens at around 7am. You can take a taxi from NJP itself. But try to avoid taking a stray taxi from the station. 
Shrinidhi Padaki (February 2020) 
Hello, we are 3 friends we have a train from NJP at 11:30 in the night, so will we be able to get a bus or a shared taxi from Darjeeling? 
Raj ( February 2020 
Hi, shared taxis and buses operate during the day time. 
Ritvik (December 2019) 
Hi, I will reach NJP @21:55 hrs by 15635. According to your one of the replies, prepaid counter will be closed by 7PM. Shall I proceed with Wizzride to Darjeeling in night only or should wait till morning. Night transfer is safe or not. Also I wish to travel to Darjeeling and Gangtok both, shall I hire a reserved cab for full tour or should change and hire cabs separately for separate locations to save some money. 
Raj ( December 2019 
Wizzride is safe if you get one as per your timings. Avoid taking stray taxis from the station for night transfer... you can however ask your hotel for pick up service, which should be okay. Otherwise, better to go next morning. West Bengal taxis can not be used for local sightseeing in Sikkim and vice versa (but a one-time drop is allowed from one place to the other). So use separate reserved taxis at both places. 
Hitprakash (November 2019) 
It is quite tough to get a bus from New Jalpaiguri Junction if you arrived at station after 10:30 a.m. So the only option is to take a shared taxi to Darjeeling if you prefer economical mode and it will cost around Rs. 250/- per head in a old Tata Sumo. Many travel agents are even roaming around the station who will offer you many attractive schemes such as cheap packages which will include accommodation, sightseeing, etc. These agents will even take you to Darjeeling in 150/- just to attract you to avail their scheme. But if you want to go by bus then you can get it from siliguri. 
Joydip Roy (June 2019) 
Dear Raj, Thanks for your nice and informative website. Just wish to add one issue which I experienced recently, specially applicable for those who are travelling with elderly people and for the overall safety of the passengers.  
We hired a Wagon-R from NJP at about 5am and the driver agreed at Rs. 2000 for dropping upto Ghoom. From the very beginning the driver started driving rashly and inspite of several reminders to slow down and my mother (73 y/o) requesting to drive slowly, he rudely said that he has 32years of experience so we need not worry.  
It was extremely scary to see him driving at 70Kmph+ at an altitude of 5000 ft and above, where narrow roads and load bearing trucks make the driving quite dangerous. He took just 2.15hrs to drop us at Ghoom which is at 7500ft!! Immediately after check-in my mother fell sick, having hugely increased heartbeat and head started spinning, which made us terribly scared. There was no hospital in Ghoom so the only option was to go to Darjeeling, but the traffic is so bad that it would have taken more than 2hrs to cover the distance.  
Thankfully Sterling Resorts arranged a local doctor, Dr. Agarwal, and he was really an excellent person and a godsend for us. He came over almost immediately and told us that this has happened due to the sudden change in altitude. It took almost two days for my mother to stabilize and it affected our itinerary since we did not dare to go out leaving my mother at the hotel.  
It is a warning for all those who travel with elderly people: do not let the driver drive in a rash manner (as they want to make more trips in the shortest period) and deal with it in a firm manner immediately otherwise your trip will be badly affected. It is not only dangerous to drive rashly(specially after several accidents that happened in Sikkim) but also specially unsafe for senior citizens. Also, incase you are in need of medical attention near Ghoom, please call Dr. Agarwal immediately. He is an extremely helpful person and will be of great use in such a situation.  
Rajshekhar K (December 2017)  
Is there a good place to stay in New Jalpaiguri, I will be getting down at NJP in the middle of night and not sure how this place is. Will it be a good idea to book a cab and drive to Darjeeling at night from New Jalpaiguri. 
Raj ( December 2017 
There are several stray hotels in NJP. Better stay in a hotel at Siliguri (10 minutes by cab from NJP). There are plenty of good hotels there. Better avoid driving to the hills at night. 
Jesus (June 2017) 
Hi. Thank you very much for your nice and helpful comments. I was wondering if there is some kind of locker room or something to leave some of our luggage in the station during a few days (5-7 days) while we will be in Darjeeling and Sikkim, in order to carry out less weight during our trekking. Thanks a lot. Kind regards. 
Raj ( June 2017 
Hi, cloak room facility is available at NJP station where you can keep your luggage. You need to pay a nominal fee per day for each baggage. All bags bust be locked. You need to have a valid railway ticket reaching or leaving NJP to avail this facility. Contact the station master at NJP station once you reach. If you reach late at night or early in the morning, you need to wait until the station master's office opens. 
Khanh Van Nguyen (March 2017) 
I will visit Darjeeling on 29th - 31th March. I'm planning to reach NJP by train, and then take a shared jeep to head to Darjeeling. But the train reach NJP quite late around 6pm - 7pm, so I am wondering if there is any shared jeep or car still works at that time? Thanks a lot. 
Raj ( March 2017 
You will get private taxis, but not shared Jeeps. 
Sarbojit Shome (February 2017) 
Hello, We are a group of 11 people, reaching Darjeeling on 23rd April, 2017. Can you please confirm if there is an option all 11 of us could be accommodated in a single car from NJP to Darjeeling. 
Raj ( February 2017 
You can consider a Tempo Traveler or a minibus which can be organized through a travel operator in Siliguri. 
Dhiman Bhattacharya (January 2017) 
Hi Raj Sir, Once again I have a question for you. What are the direct options of coming from njp station to Kurseong? Is there any prepaid booth like bagdogra airport? Please inform. Thank you very much and regards. 
Raj ( January 2017 
There is a pre-paid taxi booth just outside the station platforms. You can also avail a shared jeep. Or go down to Siliguri main bus stand for a bus ... there are four buses daily. 
Manish Wadhwani (June 2016) 
Hi Raj! First of all, I would like to thank you for providing such detailed information about Darjeeling - Queen of Hill Stations. I am planning for Darjeeling in the month of November with my wife. I would be reaching New Jalpaiguri at 22:00 hrs. I wanted to know is there any way to move for Darjeeling late night and if not; where to stay overnight at New Jalpaiguri for one night before leaving for Darjeeling? 
Raj ( June 2016 
There will be several stray drivers offering you drops at night, but those will be risky and I won't recommend that. You can either stay overnight at the retiring room at NJP station or else stay in a hotel in Siliguri which is within 10 minutes driving distance. There are plenty of hotels of all types there. But ask the hotel to send a car for pick up from NJP station instead of taking a stray taxi. 
Harsha (April 2016) 
Hi sir please help me. I will reach New Jalpaiguri at 10/05/2016 by Shatabdi Express train at 10.30 night. And I go from New Jalpaiguri to Gangtok by road (cab or bus anything). So please tell me can I get any local bus or cab at night after 11 from New Jalpaiguri to Gangtok, thanks. 
Raj ( April 2016 
You can get some stray vehicles (taxis) at such late night who can charge high fares. I do not recommend late night drive in the mountains. Often car drivers remain drunk. Better stay back at a hotel in Siliguri, ask the hotel to send a car for a pick up, and move next morning. 
Sudip Bose (December 2015) 
Raj, hi!!! Just wanted to ask you whether there is an elevator at the NJP station to facilitate elderly senior citizens to climb up and down to cross the railway overbridge. 
Raj ( December 2015 
There is an escalator at the outer end (i.e. while going out of the station to the parking area), a stairway plus ramp at the platform end, and a long over-bridge to walk in-between. So it's wheelchair accessible, but otherwise requires a long walk. The escalator goes both ways - up and down, but only to bring you up to or down from the over-bridge. It's a short escalator at the entry/exit, but helps negotiate the gradient at this end. 
Kalyan Das (November 2015) 
Is it safe to stay in retiring room with family at night at NJP station &áis it clean enough. after booking to whom I will contact for room key. 
Raj ( November 2015 
It's safe and fairly clean. You should meet the station master on arrival. 
Digvijay Singh (October 2015) 
Hi, I am having a confusion sir, I am reaching NJP at 8pm and i have a toy train ride booked for the next day at 8am. What would you suggest so that I don't miss my toy train ride and at the same time reach Darjeeling. Thanks in advance. 
Raj ( October 2015 
You need to travel to Darjeeling at night. Better ask your hotel to send the car for a pickup rather than taking a stray taxi at night from the station. It might be costlier, but that is more sensible thing to do. 
Shailesh Shah (January 2015) 
I am coming to NJP with my family on 15 february 2015. My train (Guwahati Express) will reach NJP at 21.55 Hrs. Will it be possible for me to get a taxi right away and go to Darjeeling same night ? Or will I have to pass night in NJP and get the taxi next morning? If it's the case, are there hotels nearby NJP railway station to pass a night with a family ? Please guide me. Thanking you very much. 
Raj ( January 2015 
Pre-paid and regular taxis do not operate after 7pm. But you will get some taxis outside and the drivers may charge more than normal fare. Also driving late at night in the mountains is not recommended... drivers may be drunk, fog can create problems etc. Better to stay back at NJP station retiring room for the night or book a hotel at Siliguri (10 minutes from NJP). You can now book retiring rooms at NJP online through Proceed next morning. Pre-paid taxi booth opens around 7am. 
Satish Thombre (October 2014) 
I am traveling with my family including one infant. I was reaching NJP at 3am from Mumbai, so can I get transport to darjeeling at that time or else where to wait &áat what time I will get transport. Please guide me. Thank you Raj. 
Raj ( October 2014 
Wait at the retiring room at NJP station. There might be one or two drivers outside offering you a drop at that hour. Try to avoid. The pre-paid taxi booth just outside the station opens around 7am. 
Ranabir Deb (March 2014) 
Hi Raj, we are planning to visit Darjeeling on 14th Mar 2014. We shall be reaching NJP by 7:00 am approx, and we shall be taking the 3:00 pm train from Kurseong for Darjeeling (tickets already booked from irctc site). Can you please guide us how to reach Kurseong from NJP and whether we would be able to reach Kurseong by that time from NJP (from 8 am to 2 pm). How is the condition of the road to Kurseong (from NJP) now-a-days? Thanks &áregards, 
Raj (, March 2014 
Hi, NJP to Kurseong takes about 1hr 45 minutes by taxi. Take a pre-paid taxi or a shared Jeep from NJP station. They should take the road via Rohini, which has been newly repaired... it's in good condition now.  
Asha (March 2014) 
I would like to know about the frequency of the shared jeeps from NJP station to Pelling and Darjeeling to Pelling. Where is this taxi stand situated in Darjeeling.Are these direct jeeps to Pelling? When does the last jeep start from Darjeeling. Also what is the journey time to Pelling from Darjeeling and Njp. 
Raj (, March 2014 
NJP to Pelling takes about 6 hours via Jorthang (located about midway). You will get shared Jeeps from Siliguri near SNT (Sikkim Nationalised Transport) bus stand. They Leave at 7am and 1pm, and usually go up to Yuksom via Pelling. Note that the timings may change, but usually there are two shared Jeep services from Siliguri on a day, one in the morning and the other in the afternoon. Darjeeling to Pelling takes about 5 hours. You will get shared Jeeps from Clubside and Chowk bazaar taxi stands in Darjeeling. Note that they take more than 10 persons in a jeep and you will need to remain crushed in a pack of local commuters for hours. Good luck!  
Sameer Mehta (February 2014) 
Hi Raj, After 2 months I will be getting down at NJP railway station, late night. Just need to know if there are any transport from NJP to Darjeeling at late night 
Raj (, February 2014 
You are unlikely to find transport late at night at NJP. The prepaid counter opens around 7am. But you may start getting private taxis outside the station before 7am (several taxis come to drop passengers who catch morning trains). But I suggest not to travel even if you manage to get a taxi late at night mainly because of the fog problems. From all places you mentioned, you will start getting shared and reserved taxis from around 7am. 
Subhajit (December 2013) 
Hi Raj, At first I thank you a lot for this kind of informative and helpful website. No other website is as helpful as this one. Hats of to you Raj. Please note my little query which you please answer. I will go to Darjeeling on 30th Dec 2013. This is the 4th time for me. It is one of my most favorite places. We are now 14 persons including 2 children and 4 senior citizens. I want an advance booking of a suitable car. Can you please provide me contact details of a reliable travel agency/driver/person for traveling NJP to Darjelling and which car you suggested for us. Please reply. 
Raj (, December 2013 
Hi, For 14 persons, You will need two large vehicles (like Scorpio, Sumo etc) or a minibus. Best is to ask your hotel to organize the transfer and give you a good rate. Otherwise you can go through one of the several travel agencies in Siliguri (try google search). One of them is Kings Travel, they are good but usually their rates are also higher. Try to take a quick quote from 2 or 3 operators and decide on one. Note that for kids &áseniors, the route via Mirik would be better. It's longer (takes one hour more) but not that steep or winding. Rates will be higher for this route though. Talk to them over phone. 
Shampa Anand (September 2013) 
Hello, First of all thank you for this wonderful informational website which is very helpful. We would be travelling with elderly parents and children in a group of 10 adults and 4 children . Will be travelling by Teesta Torsa train and reaching NJP on 1 Feb 2014 at 2.40 am .Could you please advise if we would be able to get a TATA Sumo pre-paid car or Qualis at this time of the morning to take us to Darjeeling. I hope all of us fit in the same car or might be able to take a mini-bus if available. Also with family and children travelling with us, is it safe to travel from NJP to Darjeeling in the early hours of morning. On the way to Darjeeling vis the Hill Cart Rd, could we stop at Tea Garden etc? Please advise. Many Thanks Regards 
Raj (, September 2013 
Hi, The pre-paid taxis are usually available from NJP station from around 7am onwards. So you will need to wait at the station if you reach on time. You can get Sumo or Bolero on pre-paid as well. I won't recommend travelling for Darjeeling while it's dark. It's mainly because of the fog problems. Driving through the fog along winding road is quite risky. So start only after the daylight breaks. If you want to pre-arrange a vehicle, you will need to contact a tour operator or travel agency in Siliguri. There are plenty of them... search in google. 
The Hill Cart road is closed before Kurseong for the past several years due to landslides. So you can't take that road. You can go via Mirik (pre-paid charges are more and takes about 4.5 hours). You can see lots of beautiful tea gardens along the way. The best tea gardens (on the mountain slopes) are on the stretch between Mirik and Darjeeling. There is a view point on that stretch for viewing the tea gardens. It'll be on your left. Unless its foggy or cloudy, you will get sweeping view of the tea estates from there. Ask the driver to stop. They generally do. The extra fare is worth this trip. Also, this is a route with gradual slope (unlike the usual Pankhabari route which is quite steep). Children &áold persons will find it easier. Regards, 
Jill Roehr (June 2013) 
I'm travelling to India, Darjeeling, in less than 2 weeks and I am very happy to have found a website like yours which is very useful for my preparation. I've read your information very well but I still have a question concerning the pre-paid taxis which I want to use to get from New Jalpaiguri to Darjeeling. I'll probably arrive very early on a Monday morning (6.15am, according to train schedule) in New Jalpaiguri and my question now is: are the pre-paid taxi counters inside the station already open so that I can get a pre-paid taxi? If not, how else could I then get to Darjeeling so early? I would be very pleased if you had an answer to my question! Thanks in advance, Best Regards, 
Raj (, June 2013 
Hi Jill, The pre-paid taxi counter at NJP station opens around 7am and operates until 10pm. It's actually located just opposite to the station entrance. So if your train reaches on time, you may need to wait for a while to get a pre-paid taxi (which I think is worth doing). Otherwise, there should be taxis outside the station around that time. You should be able to get one for Darjeeling. The drivers are likely to jack up the prices at that hour and you may need to get into some bargaining act to get a fair deal :) 
Ghufran Ahmed Khan (April 2013) 
Hi Raj, Your website is really informative. I need help. I am reaching NJP @ 2:00 AM in the night. I will be with my wife, so where could I stay/wait near NJP railway station. When do we start getting Taxi/Shared Jeep early in the morning. Thank you 
Raj (, April 2013 
Hi, There are waiting rooms as well as retiring rooms (both AC and Non-AC, although limited) and also dormitories at the NJP station. There are 2-bedded AC &áNon-AC rooms, 3-bedded non-AC room, and ample dormitory beds. At that hour you will be better off staying back at the station rather than trying to check into a hotel. Taxis &áshared jeeps start operating by 7am. You may get private taxis even earlier. 
Capt. S. A. Modak (February 2013) 
Dear Mr. Raj, Really appreciate your thoughtful, practical and informative guidance provided in these web pages. We are a family of 3 adults (myself, spouse and mother) and 2 kids (ages 4yrs &á7yrs) intending to take a 5 days Gangtok-Darjeeling trip this May. I request you to provide me information on eating options, particularly breakfast and dinner at or near NJP railway station. I will be arriving NJP around 9am by Padatik express and leaving NJP after 5 days thence by Darjeeling Mail around 8pm. 
Ideally we would like to finish breakfast around 8am in the Padatik express train itself and so also for dinner around 9pm in Darjeeling Mail. But I do not know if catering is available in these trains. Also please advise me about standards at NJP as regards cleanliness and family safety. How are the waiting hall conditions at NJP railway station? I am holding 1A tickets either way. Once again, I congratulate you on maintaining this wonderful site and wish you success in all your ventures. Warm Regards 
Raj (, áFebruary 2013 
Hello, There are lots of stalls that have come up just outside the NJP station and by the side of the road selling all kinds of food. They all thrive on train passengers and serve breakfast, lunch and dinner. But I doubt the hygiene factor. See the photo above. 
If you want proper restaurants, then take a rickshaw/auto or a taxi and go down to Siliguri town (5kms). There are many nice restaurants there. One of them (although not upscale) is the restaurant below Binayak Hotel (it belongs to the hotel). It's a multi-cuisine restaurant. Bengalis prefer Kalpataru - a simple restaurant serving good Bengali food. Regards,