Discovering the Northeast: Arunachal Pradesh

Discovering the Northeast: Arunachal Pradesh
Photo Credit: Ashok Dilwali

The largest among the northeastern states of India, Arunachal Pradesh--with its raw and unspoiled charms-- is also one of the most beautiful destinations that should be on every nature-lover's list

Our Team
November 17 , 2015
02 Min Read

The largest state in the Northeast, Arunachal Pardesh, is a sleepy giant, displaying few signs of the social or environmental crises that routinely scar other parts of the country. The topography of the state is marked by a series of valleys that run from the Himalayas in the north to the Brahmaputra in the south and since roads generally follow valley this is not a state you can traverse from east to west. So pick one of these trips instead—or try all three.

Arunachal’s most popular tourist destination is in many ways its unlikeliest. Tawang only came under de facto Indian administration in the 1950s and then fell briefly to the Chinese in 1962. It’s still some 350km of winding hill road from Tezpur, but visitors flock there in (relatively large numbers) for the icy thrills of the Se La pass en route, and of course for the grand 16th-century Buddhist monastery that dominates the town. Other tourist attractions include the ‘Madhuri’ Jheel which was a location in Koyla. But there are plenty of opportunities to get away from it all too. Rugged adventurers can try walking the Bailey Trail, an epic trek along the old road to Tawang. Contact Himalayan Holidays (03782-22017, Stay at Hotel Alpine (03794-222515) or Hotel Buddha (222359).


It’s a whole lot better than it sounds. In the heart of the Apa Tani Plateu in central Arunachal, Ziro is the ultimate destination to get away from it all. It’s a quiet world of paddy farming, mithun herding, and spectacular bamboo architecture. Visit the small district museum and buy your souvenirs at the Government Handicrafts Museum. Make a day trip to the Talley Valley Wildlife Sanctuary, just 35km away). Stay at the Hotel Blue Pine (03788-224812/ 996). You can ‘do’ Ziro as part of the well-established central Arunachal circuit (Itanagar-Ziro-Daporijo-Alon-Pasighat) or just come to stay. Ziro is 100km from the nearest airport Lilabari.

Namdapha and Lohit
Arguably the most unspoiled—and undiscovered—of our National Parks, Namdapha is lovely, dark and deep. The park is unique for the variety of terrain it encompasses, with elevations ranging from 200m to over 4,000m above sea level. It also boasts an unusual variety of wildlife, from the Hoolock Gibbon to the Bengal Florican but top of the heap, as always, are the big cats, including Snow Leopards and Tigers. Appropriate then that the local administrative HQ is called Miao. Stay at the Forest Lodge in Daban village (contact the Field Director, Project Tiger, 03807-222249) or book a tour with Maunglang Tours who operate a lodge across the Noadheng River from Miao (03759 240368). Miao is 160km by road from Dibrugarh which is well-connected by air and train. When you’re done with Namdapha go north to Lohit District next door. Stop in the Forest Department’s bungalow, in the middle of a botanical garden (03804-222258), take a day-trip to the Lohit View Point in the hills for an unforgettable sight.

Related Articles

Where to Take a Chai...

Uttara Gangopadhyay December 13 , 2021

Don't Go Home Without...

Piyali Sen April 17 , 2019

Road Trip: Bengaluru to...

Team OT December 07 , 2021

Here to there

Explore Directions(Routes) and more...
to Go

Our Other Editions

Outlook’ is India’s most vibrant weekly news magazine with critically and globally acclaimed print and digital editions. Now in its 23rd year...

Explore All
  • Check out our Magazine of the month
  • Offbeat destinations
  • In-depth storytelling
  • Stunning pictures
  • Subscribe