‘Shangri-la is a mystical harmonious valley ‘ or so goes in the description of James Hilton’s 1933 novel ” lost horizon”. As a garden of Eden on earth: a land of milk and honey in a hidden Himalaya valley, where nobody grew old or ugly.
The last of great sangria-last
Over, the years there’s been no shortage of contenders for the title of ‘lost Shangri-la’ but now there’s a new kid on the block: ‘‘Arunachal Pradesh”.
The thunderous Himalaya peaks so little known, that few have even been named, let alone climbed, plus jungles teeming with life forms that scientists are yet to catalog, tribal peoples of delicate piercings and tattoos who live in longhouses in the woods, beautiful Buddhist temples, and a severe dose of near-endless adventure
Eastern tip of India, Arunachal Pradesh
In the Eastern tip of India, Arunachal Pradesh, a veritable treasure house of nature, invites you to relax in its picturesque hills and valleys, which are surrounded on three sides by Bhutan, China, and Myanmar. Come to Arunachal Pradesh to completely appreciate its beauty.
Take advantage of the pleasant environment and meet the friendly locals. Snowy mist, famous monasteries, unexpected passes, and tranquil lakes conspire to create one of Arunachal Pradesh‘s most beautiful mountain spots. For a visitor, there are numerous choices, each more appealing than the last.
Arunachal Pradesh is:
– The largest state in the Northeast that covers an area of 83,743 sq. km with evergreen forests covering more than 80 percent of the state.
– Average rainfall of above 3000 mm per year and climate variation from the sub-tropical in the South to alpine in the north.
-It- Inhabited by 26 major tribes and a number of sub-tribes.
– Thinnest population density in the country with only 17 persons per sq. km.
– Home to more than 500 varieties of orchids.
An Invitation by Nature.
Arunachal Pradesh, called “the Land of Dawn-lit Mountains,” has unsurpassed natural beauty and a wide range of climatic conditions, ranging from tropical to temperate and alpine, with a diverse range of wildlife, flora, and fauna, and has quickly attracted international recognition as one of the world’s richest biodiversity and heritage sports.
Four different types of forests exist as a result of differences in altitude and climatic conditions, each of which provides natural shelter and food to a diverse range of flora and fauna, some of which are unique to Arunachal Pradesh.
The tiger, leopard, clouded leopard, and snow leopard are the only four major species of big cats found in the state’s jungles. The golden cat and marbled cat are two lesser feline specialties found in the province.
More than 500 bird species have been identified, many of which are critically endangered and only found in this state, including the white-winged duck, scatter, and monal bangal.
Also, there are seven species of primates, including the takin, which is only present in Arunachal Pradesh. The glorious “Mithun,” a large mammal native to the state, is a beautiful animal.
Wildlife Sanctuary, Molding National Park,
A number of wildlife sanctuaries and national parks have been developed in an attempt to protect the natural environment, including the Sessa Wildlife Sanctuary, Molding National Park,
Dr. Daying Ering Memorial Wildlife Sanctuary, Mehao Wildlife Sanctuary, Dihang-Debang Biosphere Reserve, and Namdapha Wildlife Sanctuary, among others. So, if you want to see nature in its purest form, Arunachal Pradesh is the place to go looking.
A delight for Adventure seekers
Arunachal Pradesh is endowed with thick evergreen forests covering more than 80 percent of its total area and has five major rivers-Kameng, Subansiri, Lohit, Siang, and trap winding their way through the sylvan hills, it is the ideal place for trekking, angling, boating, and rafting. The upper reaches offer an ideal landscape for adventure tourism.
There are multiple mountainous trekking routes that attract tourists, especially for their adventurous activities. Rafting on the Siang River is a once-in-a-lifetime experience. The Siang river was once known as the missing link,’ an unexpected channel that connected the Tsang-po of Tibet and the Brahmaputra of Assam in the early days of geographical exploration.
It is a wide river that reaches Indian territory near Gelling in the upper district, close to the Indo-China border. It is the horse mouth river in Tibetan mythology, with emerald sands streaming, and it is said that those who drink its water will become as powerful as horses.
A Legacy of Colorful Culture
Arunachal Pradesh is home to at least 26 major and over 100 sub-tribes, each with its distinct tradition and customs. The majority of the population, comprising of tribes like- Adi, Galo, Aka, Apatani, Nyishi, Tagins, Bori, Bokar, etc are rooted in their ancient beliefs and indigenous practices of worshipping the moon religion known as Donyi-polo (which literally means sun and moon).
Monpas and Sherdukpens in West Kameng and Tawang districts, Memba of Mechuka and Khamba of touting of West Siang and Upper Siang who came in contact with the Tibetans in the North, adopted the Mahayana form of the Buddhist faith, while the Khamptis in Lohit district and Singphos practice Hinayana Buddhism.
Mishmis in Lohit, upper and lower Dibang valley, Noctis and Wanchos in Tirap and longing districts also still continue with their traditional beliefs and indigenous practices of worship, which is animistic in nature.
Events are an important and integral part of the socio-cultural life of the people in Arunachal Pradesh, as it is a distinctly tribal state. The bulk of these festivals are connected with agriculture and are celebrated with ritualistic merriment, either to thank god for his blessings or to pray for a plentiful harvest.
The festivities reflect the people’s culture, artistry, and ability in music and dance.
A Treasure Trove of Heritage
Many monuments and archaeological sites in Arunachal Pradesh have served as sources of inspiration for historians for many years. Every year, pilgrims flock to places of worship and pilgrimages such as Parasuram Kund, the 400-year-old Tawang Monastery, and Gorsham Chorten.
Archaeological digs in Malinithan, Ltafort, Bhismakngar, Vijayanagar, and Nakshaprabhat, among many other locations, are a historian’s dream.
The famed 17th-century Tawang Monastery, perched atop a hill overlooking the ridge and surrounded by thick clouds, is the spiritual heart of the Gelukpa sect of Mahayana Buddhism. The structure is about 113 feet long and 80 feet tall, and it houses archaeological treasures, books, and manuscripts (both handwritten and printed).
Malinithan is associated with Lord Krishna’s legend and is home to ruins of stone-ruining temples and precious sculptures. It is said that on their way to Bhismaknagar, Krishna and Rukmini stopped here, and goddess Parvati in the form of Malini offered them the flowers of their choosing.
Bhismaknagar is a torched hill fort in the Lower Dibang Valley district. The hill fort’s ruins date back to the 12th century A. D. and are linked to the Mahabharata era when its king Bhismak had a beautiful daughter named Rukmini, who later married Lord Krishna.
Every year, during the Makar-Sankranti Mela., a large number of pilgrims from all over India visit Parasuram Kund for a dip in the Kund. Parasuram washed away his sins of killing his mother in the water of Brahmakund, according to legend documented in the Kalika Purana.
Recently the discovery of the world war-2 cemetery in the eastern district of Cheng Lang’s led to renewed interest in the famous still well road built by allied forces linking Ledo in Assam to Kunming in China and was the only road communication that existed during the pre-independence day.
36 miles of this road lies within India running from Ledo through Chang lang district to Pangsau-pass on the Arunachal -Myanmar border. The discovery drew international media attention and attracted historians and archaeologists. The departments of research and tourism are set to preserve and develop the site as a historical monument and tourist attraction.
A Traditional Artistic Craftsmanship
Arunachal’s people have a long history of artistic craftsmanship, which can be seen in a number of crafts such as cane and bamboo work, weaving, painting, pottery, smithy work, basket making, and wood carving. Each tribe has its own distinct technique and artifacts, making it the state’s most attractive feature.
Monpas, for instance, carves and paints wooden vessels. Their weaving is known for its vibrant colors and intricate patterns. In cane and bamboo, the Apatanis, Galos, Nyshis, and Adis make attractive posts.
The Wancho and Nocte tribes are known for their wooden carved figures and elaborate necklaces of colorful beads. Monpas and members are skilled in the creation of wooden masks, carpets, and other objects.