So, you have almost made your preparations? You are prepared to take on dizzying heights and chilly winds, coupled with the tranquil valleys?
Let’s just go through some mild revision as I help you with some tips for your Arunachal Pradesh trip- based on my experience.
Don’t forget your authorized permit. If you have all valid identification documents, verification is a quick process, after which you get the permit to for Arunachal Pradesh. This is like your pass- keep it handy but safe. Since the area is under intense armed surveillance, this is a key point to remember- make no mistake. Make it a top priority- apply at the earliest to avoid any last minute hassle. (Don’t be alarmed by the mention of the Army- they’re really nice guys, and are responsible for making sure your journey is comfortable and safe. They even offer you free chai! In absence of their family, they treated us as theirs.)
If you have fear of heights, or travel with someone who has – take necessary precautions. Keep some anti-vomit medicines like Avomine or sleep-inducing ones in your first aid kit. Also, keep some mild antacids. Since, the long journeys involve snaking roads at what I would call ‘insane’ heights, its better to play safe.
Even if you don’t have such fear, prepare your first aid kid, just in case. People suffering breathing problems like asthma are advised to exercise suitable caution, as oxygen levels decrease at height. (Actually the air pressure does. But whatever, you get the hint.)
You can reach up to heights of more than 14000 feet, looking below at clouds.
Pack snacks along- some dry foods, juices in your backpacks. You don’t know when you might feel hungry or the urge of munching on something might overcome you! The scenery can only satisfy a certain appetite, after all! You can say,’The scenic beauty satiated my hunger’ but some food in store is always helpful in long mountain journeys.
The vehicles stop at some intervals so that you can revive yourself, though. I found the places to be quite clean and hygienic and the food at these restaurants the right blend of sumptuous and succulent. You got to love the food, even though it’s comparatively expensive. This brings us to the next point.
Expect expense. The rate of food is generally 80-100 INR for basic vegetable thali/meal- which I found quite high, coming from a city(Kolkata) that is known for its prudent budget saving services. But the rates are justified, given the hassles in transportation of products (But I found it value for money – the quality of food!). Even the cars for hire have a higher rate. So it is recommended to have some cash in hand, although ATM services were easily available in Tawang or Dirang, and most towns, I expect. Share transportation to reduced expenditure.
Be prepared for the chill.
The altitude changes happen so frequently when you are travelling in Arunachal Pradesh, and you barely have any idea of the outside weather unless you step out. And I excitedly stepped out and rushed towards the Paradise Lake at Sela Pass, with sheer disregard for precautions- my parents and I felt the chill bad (Luckily, no frost bite) and came down with cold a while later. So, yeah – keep the thermocots and jackets- so that, you can easily change and swap through them. Since liquor is cheaply available, some brandy or vodka should take care of the chilly winds.
Try out the cuisines of Tibet– Thukpas, momos.
They make it really delicious. Moreover, the dishes seem to go well with the weather- trust me on this. Also, have the chai– the beverage for some mountainous memories!
Here’s one very important tip (consider this a mantra I attained and am passing to you):
Keep at your toes, be at your watch because the larger sights are mesmerizing, without doubts, but there are some small things that you might miss – waterfalls springing out every once a while, the vast collection of flowers – Arunachal Pradesh will not give you a moment to blink! It was almost torturous how I had to keep my eyes wide open for every moment of a 12 hour long journey- I never knew what I could miss with each blink. It is that beautiful – the intricacies of the entire arrangement is an experience in itself.
‘The Land of the Rising Sun’,’the Heaven for Botanists‘- expect to be flabbergasted by your Arunchal Pradesh trip!
This is a person who is into the trade of the quintessential Indian youth- Engineering.
He is currently pursuing Computer Science and Engineering from Haldia Institute of Technology. (You shall be spared the boring details.)
He has an interest in photography, exploration and travel; which is only superseded by a passion for writing and reading. Observant and pensive blended with an adventurous, instinctive personality. A game for challenges!