What comes to your mind when you think of a vacation – Beaches, mountains, deserts, cities? We are fond of the luxurious stays and stunning villas during the vacations. But have you thought of a holiday in the quaint villages amidst nature, staying with the locals just as they would do? You get to stay in the exotic natural environment, see the wildlife in open and not in zoos, know about the cultures and customs of the place while you have a unique holiday experience. Ecotourism in northeast India and elsewhere is all about giving you this natural and exotic experience. Northeast India is one of India’s best-kept secrets with unhindered beauty rich in biodiversity and traditional cultures. The tourism in this region is usually a symbiosis between nature and the locals, creating a beautiful mutually benefit relation between nature and man. Northeast India has a number of delightful ecotourism destinations that you can explore.
Mawlynnong in Meghalaya is located amidst the hills overlooking the plains of Bangladesh. The village is extremely beautiful and is also the cleanest village in Asia. Tourism had brought a positive change in the village. The Khasi tribes inhabiting the village are very conscious about the cleanliness of the place and conserving the forests and nature around. Mawlynnong is perhaps one such place where ecotourism has brought such a positive change for the villagers and unexpected and hidden delights for the travellers.
Umden is situated in the Ri-Bhoi district of Meghalaya and is another perfect example of ecotourism. It is the sericulture hub of Meghalaya where the villagers rear silkworms for eri-silk production and weaving as well. Umden is a beautiful village surrounded by the canopy of trees and an ideal getaway. You will find accommodation in bamboo huts giving you an insight into the traditional Khasi living. The serene hamlet is perfect places to take long walks and discover the wonders of nature.
Majuli is the largest riverine island in India and is the cultural heartland of Assam. Very recently, ecotourism has been given importance at Majuli. A serene place, Majuli is famous for its immense natural beauty and the numerous Satras (Satras are the Vaishnavite monastic institutions disseminating the philosophy of Sri Shankaradeva) dotting the island.
Nameri National Park is located in the foothills of the Eastern Himalayas and is a wonderful bird watching destination. Nameri is the home to more than 370 species of birds. At Nameri, you can simply experience the joys of camping in the wild amid plush greenery and wildlife. There are cottages also for accommodation that provide simple and comfortable stays. Also, you can enjoy a walk by the Jia-Bharali River and can also go for rafting trips.
Namphake is situated in the Tinsukia district of Assam and is inhabited by the Tai-Phake tribe. The Tai-Phakes are among the 6 Tai races who migrated to Assam in the eighteenth century. After roaming around for 75 years looking for a settlement, they finally settled down near Naharkatiya on the banks of Buri Dehing River and founded the Namphake village. The Tai-Phakes are followers of Buddhism and the village has a Buddhist monastery. The traditional stilt houses of this village is another attractive thing to be noticed here.
Touphema is a picturesque hamlet on a hilltop surrounded by thickly forested valleys and is situated close to Kohima and Mokokchung. The Angami tribes of Nagaland are the residents of this village and they are one of the most hospitable tribes of Nagaland. Community-based tourism is quite popular in Touphema. If you like to appreciate different culture and cuisines, then consider Touphema in your trip to Nagaland. You can stay in the community run cottages and can interact with the local people as you participate in their customs and cultures.
Loktak Lake, Manipur
Loktak Lake is the largest freshwater lake in Northeast India and is known for its circular floating swamps (known as phumdis in local language). The lake is home to 233 species of aquatic plants, more than 100 species of birds, and 425 species of animals. The Keibul Lamjao National Park located at the south-western part of the lake. It is the world’s only floating national park and is home to the endangered Manipuri brow-antlered deer, Sangai. Loktak Lake is one of the unique ecotourism destinations of Northeast. A visit to this place is worth the experience.
Dzongu, North Sikkim
Dzongu is situated in North Sikkim comprising of a number of picturesque hamlets. Dzongu is also the only Lepcha Reserve in India where the traditions and culture of Lepchas are preserved. Situated in the lap of the Kanchenjunga ranges, the village is an absolutely delightful place. The homestays here are immensely hospitable but have not compromised with their traditional ways of life. You will get lip-smacking Lepcha cuisines at the homestays in Dzongu.
Thembang, Arunachal Pradesh
Thembang is a beautiful village in Arunachal Pradesh situated at an altitude of 2300 m. The village has an ancient Dzong that was built by the Tibetans and many traditional stone houses and an old Buddhist gompa. Thembang is quite close to Dirang and is inhabited by the Monpa tribes. The village community has started a community-based tourism programme that has helped the livelihood of the villagers as well as the tourists to a great extent. With the natural beauty and the history of the village, Thembang is a must visit ecotourism destination of the Northeast.
Do you want to explore such offbeat and unexplored destinations? Are you looking for trips and customized tours to the exotic Northeast India? Get in touch with our Northeast specialists who offer the best rates to our readers and followers. Plan your trip here.