Darjeeling, Dorji-Ling or 'The Land of Thunderbolt' for the Sikkimese monks building the monastery on the Observatory Hill in 17th century, but perhaps also 'Dar-Tzu-Lyang' or 'The Abode of the Heavenly Goddess of Beauty' for the original inhabitants of this region, the Lepchas.
The Queen of the Hills, created by the British in the middle of XIX century as a health and educational centre for the troops families, sits on the wondrous ridge in front of one of the highest peak of the world, the mighty Kanchendzonga.
On the one hand, as a planetary Chakra, she represents the accumulated wisdom of the East, as well as a cradle for Western civilization via the Indian sub-continent.
The Chinese embargo for tea shipments to Britain in the 1830's, prompted the British Government to experiment with tea planting in the erstwhile colonies. Planting commenced in the 1850's in Darjeeling. MAKAIBARI was the first garden to be planted in Darjeeling by G. C. Banerjee, the great grand-father of Rajah Banerjee.
Darjeeling produces only 0.5% of global tea annually. However, the spectacular terroir of the region which factors the slope, the soil, the genus of the plant, the season of harvest and the unique environment its grown in, has earned the sobriquet of the best tea in the world.