Discover Arunachal Pradesh

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It was a mild morning in May with barely a wisp of cloud in the cobalt sky over Tawang, a perfect day for our visit to Mukto, a village inhabited by Monpa tribals who are known for their traditional papermaking craft. When paper was first made in the Himalayas cannot be dated back exactly, but archaeological finds indicate that it has been used for writing Buddhist manuscripts for over a thousand years…. Read More

Think of bananas and tropical images may first spring to mind. But bananas also grow in Bomdila, at an altitude of 2200 meters, and cooks here have devised a clever way of using their huge leaves. These have a light grassy scent and cooking food wrapped in fresh banana leaves infuses it with some of that subtle flavor while sealing in delicious juices. There is no fat added making this a very… Read More

The greatest culinary gift of the streams, pastures and forests of Arunachal Pradesh is an abundance of fresh produce. The Monpa people of West Kameng district live in close connection with nature and have a deep knowledge of both farmed crops and wild edible food resources. Being non-vegetarian, the meat of both wild and domesticated animals like fish, yak and chicken is also used in the preparation of traditional Monpa cuisine. The… Read More

Imagine an alpine valley flanked by a patchwork of woodland and meadow where silence is broken only by the gurgle of a nearby river, the maw of grazing cattle and the bluster of the wind. Here, ancient trees raise their gnarled branches skyward and rough stone walls speckled with furry green moss line the fringe of the forest. Here, houses snuggle on either side of the meandering silver stream, their roofs uncluttered… Read More

Across Arunachal Pradesh, women practice traditional methods of weaving and textile production in home industry with great dexterity. A means of expressing and preserving their tribal identity, skills are passed from one generation to the next with care and enthusiasm; and the results are as varied and enchanting as the colours of a rainbow. In West Kameng district, the tribal dress worn by Monpa ladies includes the ‘shingka’, a light red sleeveless… Read More

My home in Bomdila is perched on a steep hillock that overlooks an entire valley. There is a small door in the stairway which when swung open lets the grandeur of the panorama beyond rush into view. Cloud vapour materialises, rolls and floats ethereally upward. Lungta prayer flags flutter between evergreens that stud the mountainside and tidy rows of potted azaleas, snapdragons and orchids bloom in welcome. At the bottom of the… Read More

Did you know? Arunachal Pradesh is one of only four states in India which has yaks. The roughly 7000 animals are reared and herded by semi-nomadic Brokpas at altitudes above 2000 meters. In high alpine communities, the yak is a multipurpose animal of high economic significance delivering hide, dung, meat and milk. Cheese made from the raw milk of yaks grazing on verdant pastures dotted with herbs, roots and wildflowers is simply… Read More

Morel mushrooms feature prominently in the local cuisine of Bomdila. Dried and smoked, they impart a note of finesse on various gravies, sauces and soups. At first glance, sweet peas and mint seem unlikely to ignite a fire of flavour. But topped with a swirl of rich morel cream, this soup suddenly tastes sophisticated and delicious. Planning a summer garden party or picnic? Hungry eyes are guaranteed when you pull this out… Read More

It was a cool afternoon and the sky above the valley was lined with lacy clouds. Through the open window I watched as we drove by green hillsides plump with orange and kiwi groves. Curiosity and anticipation were tangled inside me, like I already knew something big was coming. Our car turned up a rough road and stopped at the edge of a meadow. A flock of tawny sheep was being led… Read More

Walking down Main Street in Bomdila, I felt nostalgia well up in me like a spring. The timbered houses and pots beaming with flowers, the crisp breeze and cobalt sky were all reminiscent of distant places in the Alps. But instead there I was, in the foothills of the Eastern Himalayas, and the similitude was comfortable as a plush old recliner. About half way into the stroll, we turned into a covered… Read More