North East India: A Complete Travel Guide
North East India is an unexplored paradise with uncountable delights. Known as the ‘Seven Sisters’, the North Eastern frontiers of India is a treasure chest of culture, heritage, history, traditions, natural beauty, adventures and soulful experiences. Thus, a Northeast India tour offers an experience of a lifetime. Though previously seven, the eight states of North East, comprise of Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Sikkim, Nagaland, Mizoram, Tripura, Manipur, and Meghalaya.
Not much is established on the travelers’ map, however, there is a myriad of own charms. North Eastern India is blessed with unique experiences and whenever you travel, you return with unforgettable memories.
Scan the detailed North East India Travel Guide, for your vacation plans.
Tourist Attractions in North East India
While you are amid in unexplored region, you will be obviously in awe of the natural beauty. Adding to its charm, tourist attractions in North East are abundant and quite exciting. There are beautiful treks, charming caves, wildlife sanctuaries, scenic lakes, waterfalls, picturesque villages, adventures and so much more. You will literally be blown away with the delights while on your trip to Northeast India.
North East India Hill Stations
Stretching over the Himalayas, there are hill stations found quite in abundance. Hill stations in North East India are blessed with impressive views of mighty peaks, blissful weather, misty mountains, tea estates, small villages, ancient monasteries and charm, unique of the hills.
National Parks and Wildlife Sanctuaries
One of the world’s most diverse regions, the bio-diversity of North East India is amazing. The sight of endangered animals such as Tigers, One-horned Rhinoceros, Snow Leopard, Yaks, Musk Deer, Red Panda and Sambhar enthralls even the most experienced travelers. Besides wild mammals and a large variety of flora and fauna, avian population, reptiles, fishes, etc. call these wildlife sanctuaries home.
Besides the Seven sisters, a brother and a neighbor that form Northeast India have been blessed with various wildlife havens. Manas National Park, Kaziranga National Park, Mouling National Park, Kanchendzonga National Park, Keibul Lam Jeo National Park, Pobitro Wildlife Sanctuary, etc. are some popular names of wildlife sanctuaries in North East. Learn more about them, before you make Northeast India travel plans.
Monasteries in Northeast
Monasteries are an important aspect of North East India, owing to its shared roots with Tibet. Buddhism occupies a great place in the religious lives of the people. While on your Northeast India trip, do not miss out to explore the monasteries in the region. These holy sites throw light on their ancient traditions and rituals.
Places to go for honeymoon
A truly beautiful escape for couples, honeymoon places in North East India are among the most popular honeymoon destinations in India. The abundance of natural beauty, the plethora of hotels, homestays and resorts and the warm hospitality of the people create cherished vacations.
Things to do
To list all the possible things to do in North East India is quite a difficult task. The unexplored region has so much to offer. Incredibly unbelievable things to do include the following:
- Stay on a floating island on a lake. The Loktak Lake is not only the largest freshwater lake in Northeast India but also a home to the floating islands called ‘phumdis’.
- Walking through tea estates in Darjeeling and Assam offers a delightful escape away from the chaos.
- Attending the colorful festivals is truly memorable.
- Think of adventures and the mountains offer enthralling opportunities. Go for trekking, mountaineering, river rafting, rock climbing, etc.
- Cycling, paragliding, skiing and cave exploring are some of the popular activities you shouldn’t miss.
- Joy rides like the Yak rides and cable car rides raise the fun quotient to the next level.
- Adventure lovers are rendered in a state of awe with a superb range of activities while planning a trip to India, especially to the Northeastern part.
- Go for sightseeing to discover the best-kept secrets of Northeast India.
- Visit villages and hang out with the locals. Learn about the culture and lifestyle of the people. Do savor local cuisines.
- Explore the mountain passes like Nathu La in Sikkim or enjoy a leisurely river cruise.
- Visit temples and ancient sites to learn about the heritage of the sheltered region of the country.
In fact, the beautiful haven inspires you to spend time here. Dedicate your time in volunteering and learning about the culture. There is so much to do that words fall short to list all that you can do. Learn more about all the things to do in North East India in detail.
Waterfalls in North East India
The North East Indian States are home to some of India’s tallest waterfalls. Meghalaya is known for its number of mighty waterfalls. The 1,106 ft. high Langshiang Falls is India’s 4th tallest waterfall by height and formed by Kynshi River. Nohkalikai Falls at 1,099 ft. is tallest plunge waterfall in India, located near to the second wettest places on Earth, Cherrapunji.
Nohsngithiang Falls at 1,033 ft. is one of the most beautiful and scenic waterfalls of Meghalaya. Also known as the Seven Sisters Waterfalls, the cascade is located at Mawsmai village.
Kynrem Falls at 1,001 ft. and Vantawng Falls at 751 ft. is the tallest waterfall of Mizoram.
The festivals in North East highlight the region’s indigenous culture with folk songs, tribal dances, food and crafts. Assam celebrates Bihu with much fun & fair. Festivals form an essential aspect of Socio-Cultural life of the people of Arunachal Pradesh. Throughout the year, Manipur is busy with the cycle of festivals.
Nagaland is replete with festivities throughout the year. As a matter of fact, all the tribes have their own tribal festivals which they greatly enjoy. Hornbill Festival is one of the grandest celebrations of the tribal legacy of Nagaland. Partaking in these festivals allows cherishing the gist of the complete northeast India trip in a nutshell.
Mizoram celebrates a host of heritage festivals, all connected with such agriculture operations. The Festivals of Meghalaya also signifies agricultural activities of sowing and harvesting. The main festivals celebrated here are Ka Pemblang Nongkrem, Behdiengkhlam, and Wangala.
As people of Sikkim mostly follow Buddhism, the festivals celebrated here are the Buddhist fiestas. Mostly the festivals take place in the Gompas or Monasteries of Sikkim, where people gather in large number to commemorate the occasion.
The main religious festivals of Tripura are the Durga Puja, Dussehra, Karchi Puja, Diwali, Dol Jatra (Holi), Pous Sankranti, Ashokashtmi, Buddha Jayanti, Christmas and New Year. The Garia, Ker Ganga and Gajan festivals are important tribal festivities.
Places to visit
A multitude of places to visit in Northeast India is heaven for every person who is traveler by heart. Whether traveling solo or with family, these places must find a space in your bucket list. Let’s take a look at them one by one in detail.
Of course, the small state must be a part of your itinerary, no matter how many days you’ve to spare. Go for camping at Goecha La, explore the Valley of Flowers in Yumthang or simply unwind yourself. A number of places to visit in Sikkim like the popular Tsomgo and Pemayangste Monastery will urge you to visit here often.
Home to scenic tea estates, Himalayan Darjeeling Railway, serene monasteries and Mount Kanchenjunga in the backdrop. That’s Darjeeling for you! Trekking to the Tiger Hills, embarking on a toy train ride, cycling, etc. are some of the unforgettable things to do in Darjeeling.
Standing out amongst rest of the holiday destinations in India, Assam features rich flora and fauna. Besides its scenic tea estates which sprawl over a huge area, the state beguiles visitors for a feel-good vibe. One-horned rhinoceros are not just the pride of Kaziranga but also of the entire state itself.
Not as popular as rest of the sisters, Arunachal Pradesh flaunts nature’s bounty. The ethereal beauty of Tawang Monastery, the largest in India adds to the charm of the already beautiful destination. Then there is Namdapha National Park, Pakhui Wildlife Sanctuary, Parshuram Kund and so much more to explore.
Boasting of having Mawlynnong – Asia’s cleanest village, Meghalaya is truly magical. Popular as the ‘Abode of Clouds’, the place has so much in store for everybody. Caves, peaks, living root bridges, the wettest place on Earth share space with lakes and other attractions here. No wonder, why it is known as the ‘Scotland of the East.
Adorned with natural marvels, Manipur mesmerizes with a number of incredible experiences. Truly a little jewel in the heart of Northeast India, the places gives you a number of reasons to explore it till your heart’s content. From indigenous games, majestic hills, rich culture to martial arts, you can find them all here. Nowhere else you can cherish the experience to shop in a market run wholly and only by women.
Home to different tribes, Nagaland is as inviting as the other places to visit in Northeast India. Once here, you will be glad to meet the warm, amicable and curious people. For avid holidaymakers, the exciting options abound here. Indulging in bird watching, trekking, wildlife safaris is an absolute must here.
Though small yet breathtakingly beautiful! Tripura ranks amongst the offbeat places in Northeast India. Dotted with spellbinding palaces and striking temples, the state never fails to amuse travelers. Learn the art of handloom weaving, as the aboriginals show extraordinary skills in it. The charm of Ujjayanta Palace will surely take you by surprise.
Owing to dense bamboo forests, awe-inspiring landscape, gushing rivers, plunging waterfalls and what not, Mizoram is much more than just a destination. Known as the ‘Land of the Mizos’, the state is blissful beyond description. Get a good dose of its unique culture by attending the festivals which are celebrated here with great enthusiasm.
Special highlights of Northeast India
There are some of the things Northeast India is famous for. Many of the destinations in this part of the country are eco-friendly. You can get the lip-smacking momos here. Besides, you can also savor local dishes. Spiritual awakening is also possible in Northeast India. A meditative atmosphere prevailing in the monasteries urges for introspection. In addition to all these, there is a lot you can experience in only Northeast India.
North East India is diverse and has distinct climate variations. The rapid changes in topography result in climate changes within a short distance. However, this all-inclusive travel guide of Northeast India gives you a clear idea of weather in this part of the country along with the temperature. Generally, in the month of January, the temperature is about 15°C in the plains of Brahmaputra, Barak Valley, Tripura and the western portion of Mizo Hills. The other parts of the region in the same month experience around 10° C.
From April it rises and in July except the south-eastern portion of Mizo hills and Shillong, the temperature ranges from 25°C to 27.5°C. During October, the daily mean temperature in the hilly areas ranges between 20°C and 25°C. Whereas in Brahmaputra and Barak Valley, Tripura and the western portion of the Mizo hills, it is above 25°C. Further, the lowest temperature is experienced below freezing point in the upper Himalayas in Arunachal Pradesh.
Best time to visit Northeast India
The best time to visit North East India is between October and April. Due to heavy monsoon rains at other times, traveling becomes very difficult and possibly dangerous due to the possibility of landslides. Also, these months mark the winter season in the higher parts of the Himalayas, so, it will be pretty cold there. Interestingly, December is the best time to visit Darjeeling.
How to plan a trip to Northeast India?
To start with, make a plan, mark the dates and select your destinations. Thereafter, choose from a wide range of Northeast India holiday packages. Get it customized if you want to and when the day comes, embark on a memorable sojourn.
How to reach
The gateway to North East India is Guwahati, the largest city of Assam and the most developed and ‘Indian’ city in the region. Furthermore, it has rail connections to the rest of India (although it’s a really long journey). Regular flights offer their services to and from Delhi, Kolkata and Mumbai and the rest of India.
Guwahati Airport and Bagdogra Airport services flights to North East India. Both these international airports have maximum air traffic. Almost all states have a number of domestic airports and airfields for air connectivity.
Guwahati and New Jalpaiguri are two cities that serve as a gateway to the North East. Also, both cities have well-connected railway stations with rail connections from all over India.
North East India has some of the most beautiful roads. In fact, the stunning scenery is a true bliss when you go exploring by road. Except for the monsoon, and mostly in the higher mountains the road gets closed due to landslides. Otherwise, all through the year, it is quite enjoyable to travel by road.
If you haven’t explored this part of India till now, do plan your dream holidays in Northeast India in 2019.
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