Initially Author had a very bad idea about North-Eastern India before his visit to the exotic land of Arunachal Pradesh. As common people of the plains always said, North-Eastern India is rubbish, full of terrorism and anti-social activities. But, the experience in this exotic land of Arunachal is really worth telling.
The journey began with a 1 hour flight journey from Dumdum Airport to Guwahati. As soon as they reached Guwahati, they embarked on the new phase of the journey. They boarded a reserved car and left for Tezpur. Tezpur is a city, smaller than Guwahati located on the other side of Brahmaputra River. The journey is quite long and takes 4 hours. The amazing though of what lay beyond made them very enthusiastic. The journey from Guwahati, Assam’s capital to Tezpur via Nogaon City is an adventurous one. The Koliya Bhomora Bridge over the mighty Brahmaputra River is a special landmark of the tour.
After a night’s stay in Tezpur, author and their troop started the final phase of our journey. A ten hour journey to West Kameng district of Arunachal Pradesh, the largest state of north-eastern India had just started. It was an all new experience as author had been on a trip to mountains almost ten years ago and most of the memories had almost faded away. The journey was full of waterfalls, springs and rugged and treacherous landscape. You can not feel them until you are there yourself. If you have lived all your life in the greenery of plains and amidst the comfort of metro cities like the author, you will find yourself in paradise. Driving slowly through the foothills, they reached Bhalukpong, the border town between Arunachal Pradesh and Assam. While driving across the foothills, they could see the Himalayan ranges that they would eventually climb.
By the evening, they had reached Dirang, a small town located in the valley of the Himalaya with a small river, Kameng flowing besides it. For a person from Kolkata, it was like a village even though it was a megacity for people from the neighbouring valleys. Dirang: you won’t find this city on the tourist map, but this place has a lot to offer.
The economy of this city is mainly dependent upon the river Kameng. A small research centre on Yak has been set up by the government of India for the purpose of encouraging self-dependency among the local yak farmers, traditionally known as Brokpas. Author and his friend interacted a lot with the local people of the region and came to know a lot about their culture and traditions. In fact, you would be amazed to know that every tribe in a distance of 30 kilometres speaks a different language. A different dialect is still acceptable, but it’s hard to believe that they speak an altogether different language.
For the interest of the tourists, Tawang, a tourist spot is just 150 km from Dirang. Moreover, in Dirang you will find a lot of places for sightseeing amidst the green mountains. Soon, Asia’s largest Buddhist monastery will open up in the small mountainous city. When they went there, the building and its adjacent campus was already under construction. So, on your next summer vacations, pack your bags and head straight to amazing Arunachal.
Courtesy Avik Bhattacharya