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Darjeeling, Sikkim & Bhutan

READING AND TRAVEL GUIDE

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Enrich your travels with reading! Here's a hand-picked list prepared for your journey in conjunction with the book experts at Longitude.

Essential Reading

Item EXHML63. Buy these 4 items as a set for $59 including shipping, 20% off the retail price.
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So Close to Heaven, The Vanishing Buddhist Kingdoms of the Himalayas

So Close to Heaven, The Vanishing Buddhist Kingdoms of the Himalayas

by Barbara Crossette

  • TRAVEL NARRATIVE
  • 1996
  • PAPER
  • 297 PAGES
  • FAVORITE

Asia correspondent for the New York Times Crossette portrays Bhutan and neighboring Ladakh and Sikkim as strongholds of Tantric Buddhism in an increasingly homogenized world. (NPL04, $16.95)

Odyssey Guide Bhutan

Odyssey Guide Bhutan

by Francoise Pommaret

  • GUIDEBOOK
  • 2009
  • PAPER
  • 326 PAGES

An authoritative overview of the kingdom, enhanced by color photographs, well-chosen literary excerpts and many maps, this guide by Bhutan expert and ethnographer Pommaret is exceptionally good. With a general introduction to the history, geography, economy, flora and fauna, festivals and the arts. (BHU03, $23.95)

Sikkim & India Northeast Map

Sikkim & India Northeast Map

by ITMB

  • 2012
  • MAP

A full-color detailed map of Sikkim, the state between India and Chinese-controlled Tibet. Includes interesting temples/pagodas and an inset map of Kolkata. Scales are 1:135,000 and 1,5000,000. (HML75, $12.95)

Bhutan & Northern India Map

Bhutan & Northern India Map

by ITMB

  • 2012
  • MAP

A double-sided traveler's map at an excellent scale of 1:345,000 with a larger scale map of Northern India and Bhutan on the reverse. (BHU06, $12.95)

 
Love Delhi

Love Delhi


by Fiona Caulfield

  • GUIDEBOOK
  • 2013
  • BOXED
  • 166 PAGES

Packaged in very fashionable locally woven cloth, this beautifully made, discerning guide captures the soul of the city, pointing with authority to neighborhoods, shops, markets, restaurants and attractions. A labor of love by the Bangalore-based Fiona Caulfield and friends. Third edition. (IDA403, $50.00)

Shangri-la: A Practical Guide to the Himalayan Dream

Shangri-la: A Practical Guide to the Himalayan Dream


by Michael Buckley

  • GUIDEBOOK
  • 2008
  • PAPER
  • 191 PAGES

With marvelous chapters on the many meanings and myths surrounding Shangri-La, Buckley's practical guide covers the contenders for this mythical Himalayan paradise in Southwest China, Tibet, Nepal, Sikkim and Bhutan. With many maps and color photographs. (HML84, $25.99)

A History of the World in 6 Glasses

A History of the World in 6 Glasses


by Tom Standage

  • FOOD
  • 2005
  • PAPER
  • 240 PAGES

A highly enjoyable chronicle of the prestige, power, politics and pleasures of key beverages through the ages. Standage argues that the drinks that have mattered, since the Stone Age, are, in chronological order: beer, wine, spirits, coffee, tea and cola. Each chapter is a vivid history of politics, prestige, colonialism, commerce and society. (GEN333, $17.00)

The Empire of Tea, The Remarkable History of the Plant That Took over the World

The Empire of Tea, The Remarkable History of the Plant That Took over the World


by Alan & Iris MacFarlane

  • FOOD
  • 2009
  • PAPER
  • 308 PAGES
  • OUT OF PRINT

Alan and Iris MacFarlane recount the history of the humble Camilla plant from its origins in the eastern Himalayas to role in ancient China, spread through Asia and current popularity in this absorbing cultural history. (ASA75, $14.95)

City of Djinns: A Year in Delhi

City of Djinns: A Year in Delhi


by William Dalrymple

  • CULTURAL PORTRAIT
  • 2003
  • PAPER
  • 350 PAGES
  • FAVORITE

Dalrymple infectiously interweaves his own experiences over a year in Delhi with its art, architecture, history and literature. (IDA06, $17.00)

Essential Tibetan Buddhism

Essential Tibetan Buddhism


by Robert Thurman

  • RELIGION
  • 1996
  • PAPER
  • 317 PAGES

The foremost Western scholar of Tibetan Buddhism, Thurman has chosen well from that tradition's sacred literature and helpfully includes suggested further reading, explanatory notes and a directory of sacred sites. (TBT15, $14.99)

The Life and Revelations of Pema Lingpa

The Life and Revelations of Pema Lingpa


by Sarah Harding

  • RELIGION
  • 2003
  • PAPER
  • 200 PAGES

A translation of the stories, meditations and discussions of Pema Lingpa (1450-1521), an important figure in Bhutanese religious history. (BHU24, $14.95)

The Raven Crown

The Raven Crown


by Michael Aris

  • HISTORY
  • 2005
  • HARD COVER
  • 160 PAGES

Aris chronicles the rise of the Wangchuk dynasty in this beautifully illustrated history of the kingdom and its 20th-century monarchy, featuring 106 rare photographs. (BHU02, $60.00)

Turning the Mind Into an Ally

Turning the Mind Into an Ally


by Sakyong Mipham

  • RELIGION
  • 2004
  • PAPER
  • 234 PAGES

A guide to meditation and practical introduction to teachings of the Shambhala Buddhist community, which has strong ties to Bhutan. (BHU25, $16.00)

Beyond the Sky and the Earth

Beyond the Sky and the Earth


by Jamie Zeppa

  • TRAVEL NARRATIVE
  • 1999
  • PAPER
  • 303 PAGES

Zeppa's memoir of her time as a teacher in a remote Bhutanese village shows her growing love and commitment to the people and culture. (BHU08, $16.00)

The Great Hill Stations of Asia

The Great Hill Stations of Asia


by Barbara Crossette

  • TRAVEL NARRATIVE
  • 1998
  • PAPER
  • 272 PAGES

A modern tour of the mountain enclaves of colonial Asia -- appreciative, magnificently researched and engaging. (ASA13, $16.00)

Plain Tales from the Hills

Plain Tales from the Hills


by Rudyard Kipling

  • LITERATURE
  • 2011
  • PAPER
  • 336 PAGES

Kipling's 40 short tales -- set largely in and about Simla, the mountain town and summer capital of the Raj -- capture the tensions and contradictions of colonial life in British India. (IDA629, $13.00)

The Circle of Karma, A Novel

The Circle of Karma, A Novel


by Kunzang Choden

  • LITERATURE
  • 2005
  • PAPER
  • 328 PAGES
  • OUT OF PRINT

The first novel by a Bhutanese woman, this lyrical coming-of-age story explores the rituals of daily life in Bhutan. When Tsomo's mother suddenly dies, the young girl must travel alone across Bhutan and into India. (BHU26, $14.00)

Travellers and Magicians

Travellers and Magicians


by Khyentse Norbu

  • LITERATURE
  • 2005
  • DVD

The first feature shot on location in Bhutan, this film, directed by a respected lama, follows a young official on his odyssey across the country. Along the way he is joined by a mischievous monk, an elderly peddler and an old man with his daughter. (BHU22, $29.99)

Birds of India

Birds of India


by Richard Grimmett | Carol Inskipp | Tim Inskipp

  • FIELD GUIDE
  • 2012
  • PAPER
  • 384 PAGES

Thoroughly revised, with 73 new plates and many others updated or repainted, the second edition of the masterful Birds of India now features all maps and text opposite the plates for quicker and easier reference. (FG43, $39.50)

More Recommendations

Here are some other groups of books that might be of interest

Longitude provides recommended reading for travelers in partnership with the leading tour operators and travel programs for hundreds of destinations worldwide. We've got the classic, new and hard-to-find books and maps to help you get the most out of your adventures.