India's North East

The states of North East India are...

…blessed with scenic natural beauty, salubrious weather, rich biodiversity, rare wild life, historical sites, distinct cultural and ethnic heritage and warm and welcoming people; the region offers unforgettable visit for tourists makes it exclusive from rest of India. There is also great scope for mountaineering, trekking, adventure tourism, river cruises, golf and a host of others in the region.

Must Visit Places

Arunachal Pradesh

Formerly known as North Eastern Frontier Agency (NEFA), is also called as “The Land of Rising Sun” or “Land of Dawn-lit-Mountains”. The state is situated in the northeastern part of India, bounded by China in the north, Assam and Nagaland in the south, Myanmar in the southeast and Bhutan in the west.

Tawang

is home to Tawang Monastery which is the second largest and oldest in Asia. The monastery is 3-stories high and is enclosed by a 282 meters long compound wall. Other nearby places of interest are like Sela Pass, Jang Waterfalls, PTSO Lake etc.

Bomdila

is inhabited by tribes like Aka (Hrusso), Miji (Sajalong), Monpa, Sherdukpen, and Khawas. The craft centers, monasteries, ethnographic museum and emporium etc. are worth visiting. One can also watch various snow clad mountain peaks from Bomdila including the Kangto and Gorichen Peaks which are the highest peak of the state.

Mechuka

also known as Menchukha, is a small picturesque town nestled in a forested valley, surrounded by pine trees and thorn bushes with the river Yargyapchu flowing through the valley.

Ziro

is a picturesque town and home to the Apatani tribe. Famous for gentle pine clad hills and rice fields it also hosts the popular Ziro Music Festival in September every year. Ziro is also included as in India’s Tentative List for UNESCO’s World Heritage Site.

Daporijo

327 km from Itanagar and 160 km from Ziro it is situated by the side of Subansiri River. It is a small scenic town where one can see suspension bridges over Subansiri River made from bamboo and cane – a testimony of rich tribal craftsmanship. The Sigem-Daporijo Reserve forest and Kamala Reserve forest with its rich avi-fauna diversity are worth seeing. Subansiri River is also ideal for river rafting, angling and picnic. Museum and Craft Centre are other places which could hold your interest.

Pasighat

is the oldest town founded in 1911 A.D. by the British. The Brahmaputra emerges from the foothills of Pasighat under the name of Dihang or Siang.

Dehang

This biosphere reserve covers covers an area of 5111.5 sq km that leads to snow clad peaks and glacial lakes. The reserve accommodates 8 types of forests namely- sub-tropical broad leaved, sub-tropical pine, temperate broad leaved, temperate conifer, sub-alpine scrubs, alpine pastures, bamboo groves and grasslands. It is one of the identified biodiversity hotspots in the country. 

Aalo

Aalo is a picturesque valley at the confluence of Sipu and Siyom River. Surrounded by hills and beautiful orange orchards, this is another exotic nature getaway in Arunachal Pradesh. For sightseeing or nature walks, there are places like Ramakrishna Mission Campus, Patum Bridge, Bagra Village, Donyi Polo Temple etc. The Kamki Hydropower Dam is 25 km from Aalo and a beautiful place to visit. Siyom hanging bridge is a 70m long bamboo and cane bridge. If you are zealous enough, go for rafting under this bridge.

Bhalukpong

It lies on the banks of the mighty Kameng river and borders along the dense forests that form the periphery of the Pakhui Game Sanctuary. Bhalukpong is a gateway to popular destinations like Tawang and Bomdila. It is a favorite picnic spot. Fish angling and river rafting are the other principal tourist activities. Attractions include the Pakhui Game Sanctuary and Tipi Orchidariurm, which hosts over 2600 cultivated orchids from 80 different species.

Pangsu Pass

lies on the crest of the Patkai Hills on the India-Burma(Myanmar) border. The pass offers one of the easiest routes into Burma from the Assam plains. It is named after the closest Burmese village, Pangsau, that lies 2 km beyond the pass to the east. It is the reputed route of the 13th century invasion of Assam in India by the Ahoms, a Shan tribe from Mongolia origin. 

Sela Pass

near China border it connects the Indian Buddhist town of Tawang to Dirang and Guwahati. The pass carries the National Highway 13, connecting Tawang with the rest of India. The pass supports scarce amounts of vegetation and is usually snow-covered to some extent throughout the year. Sela Lake, near the summit of the pass, is one of approximately 101 lakes in the area that are sacred in Tibetan Buddhism. While Sela Pass does get heavy snowfall in winters, it is usually open throughout the year unless landslides or snow require the pass to be shut down temporarily. 

Itanagar

the capital city, Itanagar is set in the foothills of the Himalayas, the city is home to medieval Ita Fort and the Jawaharlal Nehru State Museum, which exhibits textiles and handicrafts. The nearby Gompa, a yellow-roofed Buddhist temple, was consecrated by the Dalai Lama. West of town is Geker Sinying, also known as Ganga Lake, surrounded by forests, orchids and ferns. It is the starting point for the tour itinerary sector of Ziro, Daporijo, Aalo and then lastly Pasighat. 

Assam

Termed as “the land of Blue Hills and Red River” Assam is the gateway to the north eastern states and has been aptly described as the sentinel of Northeast India. Assam is surrounded by hills, major rivers such as Brahmaputra & Barak and its tributaries, thick forest, tea gardens which enhances the scenic beauty of Assam. In fact the mighty Brahmaputra river of Assam is the only male river in the country.

Kaziranga National Park

A World Heritage Site, the park hosts two-thirds of the world’s Great One-horned rhinoceros and also boasts of the highest density of tigers among the protected areas in the world and declared as Tiger Reserve.

Majuli

Located in the middle of mighty river Brahmaputra, Majuli is the largest inhabited river Island in the world. Witness to see the pottery art, visit to Chamaguri Satra to witness survival of a centuries-old art but also try your hands in learning the artistic tricks of mask making. Masks are the part of ‘Onkiya Bhaona’ (act based plays).

Kamakhya

A famous Hindu Temple dedicated to the mother goddess Kamakhya (Parvati, the wife of Lord Shiva). It is one of the oldest of the 51 Shakti Pithas. Situated on the Nilachal Hill in western part of Guwahati.

Sivasagar

Was the capital of great Ahom Kingdom (after which the name of state “Assam” was derived) and is well known for its Shiva Temple, Ahom palaces and monuments, tea gardens and oil industry.

Dibrugarh

Known as “Tea City of India”, also popular for adventure activities like kayaking, river rafting, trekking and wildlife. Opportunity for an excursion to the ancient Barekuri or Namphake Tai Ahom Village.

Tezpur

Lush green tea gardens, picturesque landscapes and endless paddy fields framed by the snow-clad Himalayas, all come together to make the beautiful city of Tezpur. Fringed by the feisty Brahmaputra river, Tezpur is considered to be Assam’s oldest city. Straddling the state of Tezpur is gateway to Arunachal Pradesh.

Manas National Park

Located in the Himalayan foothills in western Assam, it was originally a game reserve and later became a Tiger Reserve, a World Heritage Site and a Biosphere Reserve. Then finally declared as a National Park,  it is contiguous with the Buxa Tiger Reserve in West Bengal and it was declared as part of Chirang-Ripu Elephant Reserve which serves as the international corridor for elephant migration between India and Bhutan. Spread over an area of 500 sq. kms., the park has extensive grasslands and is famous for its unique scenic beauty. The park harbours more than 20 endangered species.

Jorhat

Spread across a lush green landscape dotted with imperial bungalows that exude colonial charm, Jorhat, the second-largest city of Assam, is an eclectic mix of cultures, diverse tribal communities, vibrant festivals and bustling markets. A major hub for exquisite Assamese jewellery, Jorhat has several renowned craftsmen who have been practicing their art for generations. The city is popular for pure gold jewellery made in Ahom (Assamese) style, and is a little dull in its shine. The gold jewellery is filled with lac, in which gemstones are embedded with the help of gold leaf. Not just jewellery, Jorhat has been one of oldest and the most important centres of commerce and trade in Assam. Jorhat also boasts some of the most spectacular tea gardens in the state that are sprawled across vast expanses. With the distinctive aroma of tea in the air, one can stroll through breathtaking lush greenery and enjoy the serenity of the beautiful gardens.

Manipur

Manipur is called “A Jewel Land” of India. Manipur is a Jeweled land because it is surrounded by nine hills with an oval-shaped valley at the center, a naturally made Jewel. Affluent in natural as well as cultural beauty, the state boasts of rather unconventional ways to display its rich heritage. Manipur takes pride in honouring its wars and struggle for freedom through memorials and various other sites.

Loktak Lake

48 Kms from Imphal, it is the largest fresh water lake in the North East Region. Small islands that are actually floating weeds on which the Lake-dwellers live in the backdrop of the shimmering blue water of the Lake, labyrinthine boat routes and colourful water plants.

Khwairamband Bazar OR Ima Market

A unique all women’s market, having 3,000 or more “Imas” or mothers who run the stalls. It is split into two sections on either side of a road. Vegetables, fruits, fishes and household groceries are sold on one side and exquisite handlooms and household tools on the other.

Moirang

Situated near the Loktak Lake, this town is one of the main centres of early Meitei folk culture and has a special place in the history of the Indian Freedom struggle as it was at Moirang that the flag of the Indian National Army was first unfurled on April 14, 1944 and has an INA Museum containing letters, photographs, badges of ranks and other memorabilia of the sacrifices made by the INA under the leadership of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose.

Dzüko Valley

located approx. 80kms north at the borders of the states of Nagaland and Manipur. This valley is well known for its natural environment, seasonal flowers and flora & fauna. The valley is famous for its wide range of flowers in every season but the most famous one is the Dzüko Lily and it is found only in this valley.

Mapal Kangjeibung 

located in city centre, it is world’s oldest living Polo Ground. Modern polo, as we all know it today, traces its origins in the Manipuri game of Sagol Kangjei. Traditionally, this sport was played on the back of the Manipuri pony, a special breed used since ancient times. This game was to test the king’s martial and cavalry skills. 

Moreh (trade border)

located at a distance of 110 km from Imphal, a busy town right on the Indo-Myanmar border, it serves as a gateway to Southeast India. A huge commercial hub which is known as a shopper’s paradise. Visit Moreh to witness the confluence of varied cultures and traditions. This is the only exit from East India!

Meghalaya

Meghalaya is also known as the “Abode of Clouds“. It falls in one of the richest biodiversity areas in the world. The famed monsoons, the rich traditional festivals, and the dramatic terrain are just some of the many things this state is famous for. Whether you are looking for an adventure to give you an adrenaline high or a tranquil spot to recharge yourself, Meghalaya has plenty to offer.

Shillong

The State Capital of Meghalaya is also known as the “Scotland of the East” because of the rolling hills around the town. Shillong has steadily grown in size since it was made the civil station of the Khasi and Jaintia Hills in 1864 by the British. Shillong remained the capital of undivided Assam until the creation of the new state of Meghalaya on 21 January 1972.

Cherrapunji

The historic name Sohra is now more commonly used. It is credited as being the wettest place on Earth, but nearby Mawsynram currently holds that record. Cherrapunji still holds the all-time record for the most rainfall in a calendar month and in a year.

Mawlynnong

Is a village in the East Khasi Hills district about 90 km/s from Shillong and is famous for its cleanliness and natural attraction. Mawlynnong was awarded the prestigious tag of ‘Cleanest Village in Asia’ in 2703 by Discover India Magazine.

Dawki

A border town with Bangladesh, it is popular among tourists due to its beautiful crystal clear water of Umngot River.

Mawphlang Sacred Grove

Famous sacred forests preserved by traditional religious sanction about 25 kilometers from Shillong. The sacred grove has an amazing life form of plants, flowering trees, orchids and butterflies.

Balpakram

‘the land of perpetual winds’, is an important part of Garo folklore. Its unchartered jungles, massive cliffs, and powerful rivers have birthed many stories of the paranormal type, including that of the stalking ‘mandeburung’, or man of the jungle, straight out of the cryptozoologist’s handbook. If these tales don’t inspire you to tread through its forest paths, Balpakram National Park is also a treasure trove of animal and plant life, including the endangered wild water buffalo.

Daribokgre

It is in the Nokrek Biosphere Reserve and the starting point for the famous trek to Nokrek peak – a short, fascinating route through vibrant plantations and terrain before the magnificent summit. You can also explore the forest trails and visit the source of the Simsang River, and you get to stroll around the orange orchards that surround the village. Nokrek is also believed to be the home of one of the oldest citrus species. 

Chandigre Rural Tourist Resort

Chandigre embraces you with its orchards and plantations – offering visitors a glimpse into the lives of the Garos. It is a place where you can spend all day strolling around on paths lined by lush vegetation, vivid flower beds, and fruit trees. The resort village is located in the foothills of the Nokrek Reserve, one of the biggest biodiversity hotspots in the sub-continent. Chandigre serves as a base for many who trek to the forest reserve.

Mizoram

Mizoram, the “land of the Mizos or the Highlanders” who belong to the Mongoloid race, exudes an exotic charm of its own. From the lush forests dominated by thick bamboo groves, numerous waterfalls that gush down the narrow gorges to confluence into large meandering streams in the deep valleys, dotted with unique landmarks of myriad folklores and picturesque villages of houses built on stilts, Mizoram is a land of dramatic seas of morning mists that enfold islands of hills and peaks.

Aizawl

is a bustling city set on ridges of steep hills. Aizawl literally means “a field of wild cardamom”. Places to Visit in Aizawl · Reiek Heritage Village, Solomon’s Temple, Durtlang Hills, Mizoram State Museum, Phulpui Grave, Burrra Bazar, Tamdil Lake, KV Paradise, Luangmual Handicrafts Centre etc. There is also a great scope for adventure sports like para gliding in the Durtlang cliffs and rafting in Tlawng river. 

Champhai

located at Indo-Myanmar border, it is a storehouse of ancient relics, monuments, legends and folklore.  It is also considered as the fast-emerging ‘fruit bowl’ of Mizoram. Well-tended vineyards, passion fruit and the recently introduced kiwi fruit plantations in the surrounding hill slopes provide a kaleidoscope of colours, which are captivating to look at. 

Lunglei

a storehouse of ethnic eticement, it is the 2nd largest city of Mizoram. Rich in flora and fauna, Lunglei is an ideal base for nature lovers for exploring the surrounding areas. At a distance of 175 kms from Aizawl, Lunglei is loftier than Aizawl. An engraved image of Buddha found near Mualcheng village, about 50 kms from the town, remains an enigma till date since no other Buddhist relics has been found elsewhere in the state. 

Thenzawl

A village located at a distance of 43 km/s from Aizawl. The Tropic of Cancer runs through this picturesque village. It is an important centre of traditional Mizo handloom industry and produce rich and colorful varieties of handlooms. Surrounded on all sides by undulating hills, is a wide expense of rice fields, popularly known as the ‘rice bowl’ of Mizoram, which presents one of the most spectacular views in the region.

Hmuifang

is covered with virgin forests reserved since the days of the Mizo chiefs. The Hmuifang mountain also has beautiful cliffs and offers great views of the surrounding hills. To the nature lovers, the surrounding forests abound with fascinating varieties of flora including rare orchids and wildlife especially avifauna. From here, one may visit the Mizo villages situated on the hillsides – Hmuifang village, Sumsuih village, Lamchhip village and Chamring village , to see the typical rural life of the Mizos.

Vantawng Falls

located at a distance of about 137 km/s from Aizawl, it is the highest and most spectacular of all the waterfalls in Mizoram. The height of the fall is recorded as 750 ft and though it is difficult to get close to it because of the sheer forested hillsides surrounding it, a comfortable viewing tower has been constructed. September to January are the best months to visit Vantawng Falls due to greater clarity. The waterfall is visible running at its full might through the verdant Mizo Hills. The greenery surrounding the waterfall is also accentuated and thick during these months of the year.

Falkawn Village

a typical Mizo village on a hillock. It belongs to the Lusei village of the olden days comprising the houses of the chief, the chief elder, the blacksmith and his workshop, the common citizen including the widow whom the society always treated with special care, and the bachelor’s dormitory or Zawlbuk. A large stone has also been erected here commemorating 7 Mizo patriots “who laid down their lives against British colonization.”

Phawngpui Tlang

Phawngpui is the highest peak in Mizoram. There is a semi-circular series of cliffs on the western side called Thlazuang Khàm, which have a sharp and deep fall, and serve as the natural home of mountain goats. These cliffs are believed to be haunted by spirits. On the peak, there is a level ground of about 2 km2 in area. Eco-friendly visit to the mountain is allowed only during November to April. The area is encircled by matted bamboo groves and other alluring vegetation. The Farpak area in Phawngpui is a huge grassland adjacent to a cliff area where one can sight birds like peregrine falcon, Blyth’s tragopan, sunbirds, grey sibia, golden-throated barbet,  Mrs. Hume’s pheasant, hornbill, dark-rumped swift, mountain bamboo partridge, black eagle and other birds.The very rare clouded leopard has been recorded in the Farpak area since 1992. 

Nagaland

The state is also known as the “falcon capital of the world.” Mithun (a semi-domesticated gaur) is the state animal of Nagaland and has been adopted as the official seal of the Government of Nagaland. Encompassing hills, mountains, plains and plateau, the region has many cultural groups and communities with varied cultural background and biodiversity hotspot where it lies which can easily attract tourists from the world over.

Kohima

Known for the World War II battleground fought between the then British India and Japan. Places of Interest are- World War II Cemetary, Khonoma Green Village, Japfu Peak (3048 metres), Kisama Heritage Village (12kms, venue for famed Hornbill Festival celebrated in December each year), Tuophema Tourist Village (41kms, celebration ground of Angami Sekrenyi festival in February each year).

Khonoma

A historic village located about 20 km from the state capital Kohima it is recorded to have resisted British rule in the region from 1830s to 1880 and etched its name into the history of Indian resistance to the colonial invasion.

Wokha

Home of the Lotha tribes, a land of beautiful mountain ranges and rivers and is known for its vibrant dances and folk songs. Wokha literally means Census in Lotha. It was a place where Lothas counted heads before spreading out into the villages during their waves of migration.

Pfutsero

Nagaland’s highest altitude town and coldest inhabited place. The Baptist Theological College in Pfutsero is one of the oldest. Take a day trip to Khezhakeno Village; it is said that the first Nagas stayed at this village before moving on to other parts of Nagaland.

Mokokchung

Home of the Ao tribe and is the culturally nerve centre of the Ao people. Tourist attractions in Mokokchung, which are great places to visit, are Longkhum, Mopungchuket, and Ungma.

Phek

Phek is the home district of the Chakhesang and the Pochuries. The Chakhesang consists of three sub-tribes, the Chakhru, the Kheza and the Sangtam. The people here are known for their wrestling prowess and robust health. They live off agriculture and are known for their adeptness in terrace cultivation. The carved fields for such cultivation provide a sight to behold and admire is this region. Attraction here are: Dzudu Lake / Zanibu Peal, Pfutsero & Glory Peak, Khezhakenu village, Meluri, Shilloi Lake. 

Sikkim

The Tibetan name for Sikkim is Drenjong, which means “valley of rice“, while the Bhutias call it Beyul Demazong, which means ‘”the hidden valley of rice“. At an altitude ranging from 300m to 8,586m above sea level, it is a wonderland blessed with natural abundance from icy cold deserts, flowering alpine meadows, to lush green forests and emerald mountain lakes.

Gangtok

The capital city of Sikkim is located on a ridge. With a spectacular view of the Khangchendzonga, the town provides the perfect base for travel through the state. Gangtok is a cosmopolitan town which offers the tourists all possible amenities. Nearby attractions are Ropeway, Namgyal Tibetan Institute, Flower Exhibition Centre, Ranka Monastery, Nathula Pass excursion.

Lachung

Surrounded by beautiful waterfalls, crystal-clear streams, snow-capped mountains and orchards of peaches, apricots and apples, lies the picturesque town of Lachung, in Sikkim. A mountain hamlet, about 120 km from Gangtok, the quaint town of Lachung invites adventure lovers, who come here for trekking and snow sports. The popular trekking destination of Zero Point is where visitors can get sweeping views of the panoramic surroundings. Other nearby attractions are  Yumthang, Chungthang, Lachung Monastery. Mt Kato’s pristine slopes are popular for skiing, snowboarding and snowtubing. Lachung comes to life during the Saga Dawa festival, celebrated in the month of June.