Guide to Road Tripping in Arunachal Pradesh
Lying in the North-East corner of India, the most prestigious Arunachal Pradesh is home to numerous peaks, valleys, greenery, lakes, Buddhist monasteries and temples. It is the perfect place for people to explore in the country as it offers great insights into beauty and culture. Flora and fauna of this state are known to leave many mesmerized. Numerous endangered species visit here enhancing its uniqueness to another level. A big favourite among adventure enthusiasts, exploring Arunachal Pradesh is said to be best done on a road trip. But which places should you explore in the state?
Located at a height of 3048, Tawang resides in the beautiful Indian state of Arunachal Pradesh. The place is popularly known to be the birthplace of the sixth Dalai Lama, Tsangyang Gyatso. Tawang is famous among tourists for its numerous beautiful Buddhist monasteries and Buddhist monks residing. The place has a numerous number of tourist attractions that one can thoroughly enjoy while touring the place.
Places to Visit in Tawang
- The Taktsang Gompa is one of the holiest Buddhist monasteries of Arunachal Pradesh. The monastery resides on top of a hill that has an altitude of 12,500 to 13,000 feet. Serene holiness surrounds the monastery leaving Buddhist and non-Buddhist visitors in an enchanted state of mind. Taktsang Gompa sits pretty in between a dense forest and steep mountains, making it the ideal spot to spend some peaceful moments. The subtle wind that blows around the monastery alongside the beautiful surrounding will certainly leave you with goosebumps.
- Many tourists love exploring Tawang on their two feet. One of the most popular treks of Tawang is at Gorichen Peak. The peak is an altitude of 22,500 feet, making it the highest peak of Arunachal Pradesh. It is also the third highest peak of Arunachal Pradesh. The trek towards the peak is known to be slightly challenging. But, the struggle will certainly be worth it once you come across the stunning 360 backdrops. Hence if you have a great love for everything adventurous then do not forget visiting the Gorichen Peak.
- Located on the border between the Tawang and West Kameng District, the Sela Pass is the sole way through which travellers can visit Tawang from any part of the country. The pass is located at an elevation of 13,700 ft., making it among the top high-altitude motorable passes in the world. It is said that the pass is surrounded by around 101 which as preached to be highly auspicious by the Buddhist community. Out of the numerous lakes Sela Lake is considered as the most beautiful lake. Hence, do not forget to take a halt to witness the sheer amazement of the place.
- One of the breathtakingly beautiful sites to witness in Tawang are the Nururang Falls. Also known as the Jang Falls, it descends through a couple of steps further down a hundred metres. The Nururang Falls are encircled by stunning elements of nature that will surely make your trip worthy. Visit here anytime between July to September.
- The popular Shonga-Tser Lake of Tawang gained popularity when in the year 1977 a song from the popular Bollywood movie Koyala was shot. The beautiful views of the lake are experienced by numerous tourists around the country. People love spending time at this spot, many can be seen laying down a mat and soaking in the scenic beauty. Shonga-Tser Lake is the perfect peaceful spot for you if you wish to get away from city crowd and noises. The place is also famous for bird watching.
One of the smallest towns of Arunachal Pradesh, Bomdila is known for its astonishing natural beauty. The place is not known to many but tourists that manage to travel up to here are greeted with an amazing view of the eastern Himalayas. The town has many Buddhist monasteries that one should surely visit. It is also famous for its vast apple orchards and trek trails that are explored by major adventure enthusiasts.
Places to Visit in Bomdila
- The Bomdila Monastery is one of the most famous tourist attraction spots of Bomdila. Also known as the GRL Monastery or the Gentse Gaden Rabgyal, the monastery is visited by a large number of tourists and pilgrims. The Bomdila Monastery was constructed in the year 1965 as an initiation to the 12th reincarnate of Tsona Gontse Rinpoche, who got this monastery built before his death.
The monastery has been divided into three parts:
- The Upper Gompa is the most significant part. It features an educational centre for new monks, a Buddha temple and a prayer hall.
- The Middle Gompa is the oldest part that houses the Blue Medicine Buddha which is believed to cure diseases.
- The last part, the Lower Gompa is the last part that boasts of a spacious prayer hall.
- If you love hiking and wish to go on one in Bomdila then the Bomdila Viewpoint is what you should explore. The viewpoint is one of the most famous trek spots that attract a lot of visitors throughout the year. The Bomdila Viewpoint is the highest point of Bomdila. The point provides visitors with the most stunning views of roads that lead up to the amazing Bhutan and Tawang. You will also get to witness the beautiful view of the Nechipu Pass that upon a single glance leaves many mesmerized.
- Bomdila is famously known for its beautiful and vast apple orchards that covers a massive area of land. The apple orchards are one of the major attraction spots to witness that provide great views of blooming apple trees. A great tourist attraction spot of Bomdila, the apples can be seen blooming in their full form in the winter months. Stroll through the orchards and take some of them back home with you too. The prices of these fresh apples are quite low, hence you wouldn’t have to worry too much about your pocket.
- Located on the West Kameng District of Arunachal Pradesh, the Sessa Orchid Sanctuary is one of the most beautiful places to visit. The sanctuary comprises of more than two hundred orchids of eighty different species. It is said to be the only sanctuary for orchids in the entire state of Arunachal Pradesh. The sanctuary spreads around a 100 sq. km between Bomdila and Bhalukpong. Most of the species of orchids present are known rare, endangered, and ornamental. You will also be able to spot some animals such as the red panda, pheasants and serow.
The capital city of Arunachal Pradesh, Itanagar is one of the most beautiful places to visit. It forms the state’s administrative hub along with the town of Naharlagun. Itanagar is famous for its numerous Buddhist temples that have been consecrated by the Dalai Lama. While entering Itanagar one will also get to witness the stunningness of the tropical evergreen rain forests that merge with the temperate Himalayan jungles.
Places to Visit in Itanagar
- One of the most mesmerizing spots to visit in Itanagar include the Ganga Lake. Defined to be one of the dreamiest spots, the lake is surrounded by thick lush forests and tall peaks in the backdrop. Ganga Lake is located 6 km away from Itanagar. Many tourists visit here to enjoy its picturesque surroundings. It is also a great place to enjoy some boating or trekking.
- History lovers all over should definitely visit the beautiful Ita fort of Itanagar. Named after its city Itanagar, the fort was built in the 14th Century by the Chutiya Kingdom. It is marked to be one of the most historical sites in the entire city. The Ita Fort offers some of the most phenomenal views of the valleys nearby. Many artefacts of archaeological importance from the fort can be witnessed at the Jawaharlal Nehru Museum in the city.
- Wildlife enthusiasts or admirers should drop by the Namdapha National Park in Itanagar. The beautiful park is known to be one of the most popular places in the entire city to explore. The Namdapha National Park is marked as the third-largest national park in India and is one of the places with the richest biota in the country. The park is home to many big cats such as tigers, snow leopards, clouded leopards, and other kinds of leopards. It is also known for being the habitual place of almost 425 migratory and resident birds. Tourists can choose to take a wildlife safari to explore the entire park or trek throughout to witness everything from a closer view.
- The Gompa Buddhist Temple in Itanagar is a known centre for the Buddhist culture in the region. The temple is marked as one of the most beautiful sites to explore a sense of spirituality. Establishment in the year 1986, the Gompa Buddhist Temple has been build on top of a hill. The beauty that surrounds the temple makes it one of the most magnificent structures to witness. You will also get to experience the beautiful surroundings of the temple that enhance your visit.
The town of Ziro has gained numerous popularity over the years. Known to be a hidden paradise for many, the place prides away with its unique tribal group called the Apatani tribe. Ziro has also been known for its pine hills, small villages, rice fields, green hills and vibrant flora. The place is also known for adventure seekers. Tourists can always opt-in for a wonderful trekking experience, camping in the jungle or some wildlife exploration.
Places to Visit in Ziro
- Various kinds of fishes here are capable of surviving at high altitude. Fishes here are bred in ponds and sold to farmers during the paddy cultivation season. This helps the Apatani tribe in growing both fish and rice in their fields at the same time. Many Bamboo and Pine trees surround the paddy fields. If you are visiting here in the Paddy cultivation season then do not forget to witness the great cultivation techniques that are used by the Apatani tribe.
- One of the most famous places to witness in the Ziro valley includes the magnificent Megna Cave temple. The ancient temple was built around five thousand years ago. It was only in the year 1962 that the temple was discovered. Located at a great altitude of 300 feet, the Meghna Cave Temple offers one the most stunning views of its entire surroundings that comprise of the scenic mountains, thick forests and water streams flowing beside the arena. Visit here for a spiritual and peaceful experience.
- The popular Talley Valley Wildlife Sanctuary is home to some of the most exotic flora and fauna. Lying 32 km away from the Ziro Valley, the sanctuary spreads up to an area of 337 sq km. It is loved for its picturesque surroundings that are enhanced by the intersection of four tributaries- Sipu, Pange, Subansiri and Karing. Hence, making it the ideal spot to discover especially for nature lovers. The sanctuary is also an ideal spot for trekkers as they will get to witness a wide stretch of alpine and subtropical trees. Other dense groves include ferns, silver fir, bamboo, orchids and rhododendron. If lucky you might also be able to spot the endangered clouded leopards.
- The Tipi Orchid Centre is a popular home to a huge number of exotic orchid varieties. The Orchid centre stretches up to an area of 10 hectares. It has been majorly known for the Orchid Glass House that has a central fountain and pond. It is further surrounded by over thousand species of flowers that are grown in hanging baskets and pots. If you have a great love for all things related to plants then do further check out the tissue culture lab, orchidarium, herbarium, museum and garden at the Tipi Orchid Centre.
Daporijo is one of the most scenically beautiful towns of Arunachal Pradesh. Situated 600 meters above the sea level in the upper Subansiri district, it is majorly known for its Paddy Fields, rainforests with bamboo trees alongside the beautiful Subansiri River. The town is home to many tribes such as the Tagin, Galo, Hilmiri and the oldest Mishmi, which is known to exist since the Mahabharata era. A perfect blend of culture and nature is what Daporijo is known to offer.
Places to Visit in Daporijo
- Nature lovers visiting the town of Daporijo should definitely drop by the famous tourist spot, the Kamala reserve forest. The forest is one of the most mesmerizing naturistic sites to witness as it surrounds itself with an abundance of greenery and native animals strolling around the forest reserve. A famous protected forest of the state of Arunachal Pradesh, the Kamala reserve forest is also a great place to spot some birds chirping and flying around.
- Adventure lovers or seekers should visit the River Subansiri which is a prestigious tributary of the Brahmaputra River. The river runs through both the Indian states of Assam and Arunachal Pradesh. The river offers great conditions for rafting, hence, drop by with your group of friends and take your trio to Daporijo a notch above and memorable.
- The famous Daporijo Good Shepherd church is one of the major religious sites of Daporijo. The church is visited by many Roman Catholic natives. Every year a St. Mary Feast is held at the church where a huge number of Christians come to witness it. Heartfelt prayers are conducted during this feast which is followed by a grand feast.
- The Daporijo Museum and Craft Centre is one of the most ancient museums of Daporijo. Known to be one of the most popular tourist spots of the town, the museum provides great insights into the local tribal art and handcrafts collections. An absolute must-visit place especially if you love to witness ancient art and culture. The Daporijo Museum and Craft centre showcases a great collection of art and culture, headgears, weapons, tribal costumes; bamboo and crane artworks.
Along or Aalo is known to be the headquarters of the West Siang district in Arunachal Pradesh. The town lies next to various small villages and on the merging point of the two rivers of Along, Sipu and Yomgo. The place is popular among tourists especially those that love to discover offbeat spots of North-East India. Visit her to witness the beauty of nature and some adventure thrill.
Places to Visit in Along
- The beautiful valley of Mechuka is home to stunning mountains and green forests. It is also the place where the Memba, Ramo, Bokar and Libo tribes reside. The place is not just famous for its picturesque views but also a Buddhist monastery. Located in the western region of Along, the ancient monastery called the Samten Yongcha is around four hundred years old and is known to house many precious Buddhist scriptures and ancient books. Mechuka is one of the most beautiful locations in the country but due to lesser exploration, many people are unaware of its existence.
- The Mithun and Jersey Cross Breeding Farm in Along is one of the most unusual farms that you can witness in the region. Located in the West Siang District of Arunachal Pradesh in the Kamaki Town, the breeding farm is considered important because of its milk production in the state of Arunachal Pradesh. The Mithun and Jersey Cross Breeding Farm has gained importance because of its greatest hygienic practices that it is known to follow. The farm feeds its animals one of the best fodder and gives them the finest medical assistance as well. Tourists will be able to see cross breeds of Jersey Cows and already crossbred animal Mithun. If willing you can opt for milking the cow and feeding them experience.
- The Hanging Bridge of Along has been made out of roops and bamboos. The bridge is estimated to be 60 to 70 metre in length. It majorly functions as an easier route to commute through for tribal people who have to travel up to the hilly regions. Tourists will love visiting the Hanging bridge as the views of the river with fishes swimming is marked as magnificent. People can choose to further enjoy this place bu either fishing or angling.
- The Kamaki Hydropower Dam is one of the famous places to visit in Along. The dam is a known water reserve that is not only visited by human mankind but also various kinds of birds flying in and around the area. Spend an evening here witnessing the beautiful surroundings.
Popularly known as the Gateway of Arunachal Pradesh, Pasighat is a true paradise. The town sits next to the magnificent River Brahmaputra that transcends from Tibet to the state of Arunachal Pradesh. The town was founded in 1911 A. D. by the British as a gateway to administrative convenience of the greater Abor Hills. Pasighat is not just for nature enthusiasts but also for adventure seekers. Just like many other towns of the state you can also experience adventure activities such as white river rafting, boating and angling.
Places to Visit in Pasighat
- The famous Daying Ering Wildlife Sanctuary is one of the most prestigious places to visit in Pasighat. Named after an Indian politician, the sanctuary is famous for being a home to various migratory birds, especially during the winter season. Birds are known to fly all the way from Siberia and Mongolia to the Daying Ering Wildlife Sanctuary. The sanctuary stretches up to 190 sq km where it is accompanied by the Siang River and grasslands. It is also known to house many wild buffalo, deer, elephants and many other species. It is also a shelter for various migratory birds, especially in the winter months. The densely wooded area of the sanctuary is inhabited by animals such as the leopard, leopard cat, barking deer, civet cat, sambar, jackal, wild boar, python, and porcupine.
- Located in the Siang district, the small town of Panga is where you need to visit if you are looking for some quiet soothing times. The town is one of the most beautiful places to witness in the entire region of Pasighat. Many people travel up to this town to see the magnificent merging of the two most prominent rivers of Arunachal Pradesh, the River Siyom and River Siang.
- Located near Rottung in East Siang, is the famous mountain cliff known as the Kekar Monying. Not just a major tourist spot, the mountain cliff has been known to serve as a place of great historical importance. The cliff is noted to be 500m long and 50 meters high that offers a wonderful view of its surroundings. In 1911, the Kekar Monying was there when a confrontation against the British was led by the Adis. A black stone memorial can be found on top of the cliff. It has been dedicated to the Assistant Political Officer of the British, Noel Williamson who was killed by Matmur Jamoh, a native of Yagrung Village.
- Located on the left bank of Siang river, the beautiful Komsing village is the perfect place to visit in Pasighat. The place became famous after Noel Williamson was murdered while he was carrying the message of the death of King Edward VII to the tribal chiefs. Visitors will be able to witness it by visiting the grave of Captain Noel Williamson’s. The grave has its original stone inscription even today.