Expedition to Indian Tibet for Myoku festival of Apatani tribe, Aulyang festival in Nagaland and Cherrapunjee living root bridges

NORTH-EAST INDIA


March 16 to April 4, 2020.
Tour Noth-East India

Tour to India expedition to Arunachal Pradesh Tawang Nagaland Konyak Cherrapunjee tour to North East India Indian Tibet

Kaziranga Assam Majuli Torgya Monpa Mon
Burmese headhunters, showing you their trophies, unique Apatani women worshiping of Moon and Sun and wearing rattan pieces in their noses, 20-meter long living root bridges, sophisticated trekking and stirring Tibet landscapes! All that you can find in remote North-East appendix of India in Himalayan foothill - absolutely authentic part of the planet, hardly touched by the time.

Our third expedition to the North-East India aims at visiting two main festivals – Apatani animistic Myoko festival and Aoleang festival of Naga Konyak headhunters.

Tour to India. Dancing Buddhist monks dressed in ceremonial masks and theatre costumes, Burmese headhunters showing you their trophies, unique Tibetan tribes worshiping of Moon and Sun and wearing rattan pieces in their noses, 20-meter long living root bridges, sophisticated trekking and stirring Tibet landscapes... All that you can find in remote North-East appendix of India in Himalayan foothill - absolutely authentic part of the planet, hardly touched by the time.

SCHEDULE AND COST:

Dates: March 16 to April 4, 2020

Duration: 20 days / 19 nights

Number of participants: 6 to 12

Cost per person: USD 2400 subject to 10 persons, USD 2600 subject to 8 persons or USD 2800 subject to 6 persons, based on double accommodation.

Everything is included (local flights also), except for international flight to Delhi, medical insurance for international trips, Indian visas and meal in Delhi.
Estimated cost of flight Moscow - Delhi - Moscow: USD 450 - 550 (bought on your own).
Indian visa obtained upon arrival to Delhi. Visa fee – USD 60.


Single supplement: USD 430




TRAVEL PROGRAM: TOUR TO NORTH EAST INDIA



Day 1. 16th March 2020. Your city – Delhi
Flight to Delhi (from Moscow – direct flight with Aeroflot). Arrival in the late evening. Overnight in Hotel City Star or similar in the center of local life.
Accommodation: Hotel City Star in Delhi or similar
Meals: no


Day 2. 17th March 2020. Delhi
After breakfast we start exploring old Delhi – the huge megalopolis, true city of contrasts. We stay in the very center of local life, so right from the entrance door you are in the middle of Indian universe: loud and frequent car signals, hustle and bustle of crowded streets, crazy traffic and often elephants on the roads! We can visit the most notable historical places or choose "another way", take rickshaw and see true Indian color in such amazing places like Railway station, Spice market or roofs of the slum area. That is the best way to explore Delhi! Overnight in Hotel City Star or similar.
Accommodation: Hotel City Star in Delhi or similar
Meals: breakfast


Day 3. 18th March 2020. Delhi – Guwahati (Shillong) – Nongriat (158 (66) km / Approx 5 - 6 (3) hrs drive)
After breakfast early morning transfer to the airport for direct flight to North East India. Morning arrival (around 10 a.m. or earlier) to Guwahati or Shillong airport, depending on the availability of the flights for this date. Meeting the guide at Guwahati (Shillong) airport and transfer to Nongriat (Cherrapunjee) – en route visit Umium Lake (Barapani). Once reached Cherrapunjee, trek down to Nongriat village (about 3500 steps). Overnight in basic Guest house in Nongriat.
Accommodation: homestay/Guest house in Nongriat or similar
Meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner


Day 4. 19th March 2020. Nongriat – Dawki (96 km / 3 Hrs Drive)
Early wake-up, explore the village and visit Living Root Bridges. Living root bridges are created entirely by manipulating the roots of the Indian Rubber Fig Tree by hand, and without the aid of a scaffolding or any other natural or manmade materials. Trek to Rainbow waterfall (2 hours trek). After breakfast leave for Dawki. En route stop at Mawsmai Cave and Nohkalikai falls. Overnight in the tented camp on the Dawki river bank.
Accommodation: tented camp at Dawki river or similar
Meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner


Day 5. 20th March 2020. Dawki – Tezpur (Approx. 320 Km / 7 - 8 Hrs Drive)
Early morning after breakfast, visit to Umngot River, also known as Dawki River, famous for its crystal clear water. This river is also a prime fishing spot for both Indian and Bangladeshi fishermen. We observe fishing with nets. One can also see the Indo-Bangladesh border nearby. After visit continue for Tezpur. En route quick visit to Mawlynnong, the cleanest village in Asia. Overnight in Hotel KRC Palace, Tezpur.
Accommodation: Hotel KRC Palace in Tezpur or similar
Meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner


Day 6. 21st March 2020. Tezpur – Ziro (273 km / 7 - 8 Hrs Drive)
After breakfast proceed to Ziro. En route visit Local vegetable market in Itanagar, the capital of Arunachal Pradesh. Stop in Joram village with the long common house to meet Nyishi tribe famous for their long houses and the closest people to Apatani. Arrive to Ziro, the area of Apatani people. Ziro is almost a level valley enclosed on all sides by pine-clad low stooping hills. This area, also called Apatani Plateau, is famous for Paddy-cum-Fish culture. Discovering the local culture of the Apatani tribe whose old ladies still practicing the unique tradition of nose plugs piercing and facial tattooing. Apatani practice Doniy Polo animism and believe in Sun and Moon. Overnight in homestay with Hibu Tatu family in Siiro village.
Accommodation: Hibu Tatu homestay in Siiro or similar
Meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner


Day 7. 22nd March 2020. Ziro
The next two days, will be spend on exploring Apatani villages and witnessing Myoko ceremony of this community. Myoko is a spring festival celebrated when apricot trees start to bloom. This is a biggest celebration of Apatani community related to agriculture, spiritual, nature and communal harmony amongst the Apatani and its immediate neighbor Nyishi. Since most of the tribes in the region doesn't have their own script. So as far Apatani legend it's believed that they being a mongoloid stock migrated somewhere from Mongolia long time back. They were told to celebrate this Myoko festival by their ancestors wherever they settle down when the peach tree start to bloom, which they brought along with them.
This day you will witness a palm procession carried out by all the male member of the village. This is the ritual where they invoke the spirits of their departed ancestors to join the festival. A skull of long tailed macaque which they purposely hunt down for this ritual is used during the ceremony.
It is Sunday, so we can also attend the prayer in Donyi Polo temple in Pap village, where many traditional Apatani women get together.
Accommodation: Hibu Tatu homestay in Siiro or similar
Meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner


Day 8. 23rd March 2020. Ziro
Another day in Myoko Festival to witness an animistic ritual of Apatani tribe and to enjoy the hospitality of the community. They have an early morning Pig offering ceremony by a married couple. This happen near a apricot tree. All the married couple willing to offer a pig brings a pig to this sacred altar called "Yugyang". Later these animals are sacrificed in the name of Myoko deity. Apatani has a unique way of killing this animal. A person is appointed for this work with an assistant. They are called 'Aha Pornw'. They move from house to house to take the heart out from the pigs. He cut the chest open of the pig when the animal is still alive and put his hand inside to grave the heart of the animal and pull it out and put it in the basket of hearts he has already taken. After this ritual he is taboo to take any food which doesn't belongs their community for more than a month. Dozens and dozens of pigs are slaughtered ritually. This appears one of the massive and bloody animistic ceremony.
We also make an excursion to the interior of Ziro valley visiting the Hong village, the largest village of Apatani Community, and some other Apatani villages such as Bulla, Hari, and Hija. Apatani women traditional dancing in Michi village.
Accommodation: Hibu Tatu homestay in Siiro or similar
Meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner


Day 9. 24th March 2020. Ziro – Raga – Ziro (Approx 120 Km / 6 Hrs Drive)
A day visit to Raga (60 kms), home to another indigenous tribe called Hills Miri. Off late this community has merge into a Nyishi tribe but they still have their separate festivals and colorful dresses. This community is also the keen hunters and their homes are decorated with the trophies of the animals. Evening drive back to Ziro and overnight at homestay.
Accommodation: Hibu Tatu homestay in Siiro or similar
Meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner


Day 10. 25th March 2020. Ziro – Majuli (157 km / 5 - 6 Hrs Drive)
After Breakfast drive to Majuli. Majuli is famously known as the world's largest (or, arguably, second largest) river island. It is located in between two streams of mighty Brahmaputra River. En route stop in a Nyishi traditional village and Mishing tribal village to know more about their culture and way of living. On arrival check-in at Le Maison de Ananda. Dinner and traditional dances of Mishing (Miri) people. Overnight at Majuli.
Accommodation: Hotel Le Maison de Ananda on Majuli island or similar
Meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner


Day 11. 26th March 2020. Majuli
Full day Majuli sightseeing, visiting the temples with age old history and learn about the monks staying in the temple, folk dance by the monks (Gayanbayan), visit mask making temple, pottery village and Mishing tribal villages. Majuli is the cultural capital of Assam. Shrimant Sankardeva established this practice of Vaishnavism in 16th century. Vaishnavism is a sect of Hinduism where they worship Lord Vishnu, The Protector, and his re-incarnation. The major population of this island is in habitat by Mishing tribe, who are believed to be migrated from present Arunachal Pradesh. History says that they were bond laborers of Adi Tribe for finding gold in river bed. To escape this they follow the river and migrated down to Assam. Now most of this tribe is settled down in Assam closed to water body.
Accommodation: Hotel Le Maison de Ananda on Majuli island or similar
Meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner


Day 12. 27th March 2020. Majuli – Pasighat (205 km / 5 - 6 Hrs Drive)
After breakfast leave for Pasighat, the oldest town of Arunachal Pradesh. Pasighat is home to various Sub-tribes of Adi community and situated at the bank of River Siang. River Siang is the main course of mighty Brahmaputra River and also called a Yarlung Tsanpo in Tibet. En route visit Adi Galong (Galo) village. After In the evening visit traditional Adi villages such as Gangyng with Donyi Polo temple, Rebo and Balak. Overnight at Takar Guesthouse.
Accommodation: Takar Guesthouse or similar
Meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner


Day 13. 28th March 2020. Pasighat
After early breakfast at 7 am drive towards Rottung/ Babuk put-in point (1.5 hrs drive). Meet up with the Rafting crew, safety talk for class 3 & class 4, paddling practice with commands. Slowly start our 30-35 km rafting distance, 1st rapid is a class 3 (Rottung Buteng) with a big stopper wave in the middle. After Rottung Buteng we come to the Pongging Ponrung cave that can only be approached by water.
We stop near Pongging village for lunch and continue to Hit Pongging rapids (class 4) and carry on to our put-out at Rane Ghat at Pasighat.
Bonfire and traditional dance of Adi Minyong women.
Accommodation: Takar Guesthouse or similar
Meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner


Day 14. 29th March 2020. Pasighat – Roing (Approx. 85 km / 3 Hrs Drive)
After breakfast drive to Roing, home to another ethnic community called Idu Mishmi. This tribe is also animists like Tanis but they don't follow Sun and Moon as their god but has a goddess called Nyani Intaya. On the way visit Adi Padam village and upon arrival visit Idu Mishmi villages to get acquainted with their culture and traditions. Traditional dance of Mishmi shaman. Overnight in Mishmi Hill camp.
Accommodation: Mishmi Hill camp or similar
Meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner


Day 15. 30th March 2020. Roing – Kaziranga (Approx. 400 km / 7- 8 Hrs Drive)
After early breakfast drive to Kaziranga. En route one drive across Dr. Bhupen Hazarika Setu, the longest bridge in India. Upon arrival, board to jeep for evening safari in western range of Kaziranga National Park, famous for one horn rhinos. Check-in at Wildgrass.
Accommodation: Wildgras Resort or similar
Meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner


Day 16. 31st March 2020. Kaziranga – Mon (Approx. 273 km / 7- 8 Hrs Drive)
Early morning, Elephant Safari to Kaziranga National Park, which is famous for One Horned Rhinos. Besides one horned Rhinos one can encounter other mammals like wild boar, hog deer, swamp deer, Asian buffalos and wild Indian Elephants. After breakfast drive to Mon in Nagaland. En route visit historical monuments of Ahom dynasty, such as Shiva Dol and Kareng Ghar . Mon is the home of the Konyak Nagas who were the last of the headhunters. They are famous for their accomplished craftsmanship in making woodcarvings, headgears, necklaces etc. Overnight at Taipha Guest House/ Vingghoi Resort.
Accommodation: Taipha Guest House / Vingghoi Resort or similar
Meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner


Day 17. 1st April 2020. Mon
After leisure breakfast drive to nearby village called Hongphoi to witness Aoleang festival of Konyak tribe. Aoleang is a main festival of this tribe to mark the beginning of their agricultural cycle of the season. The main attraction of this festival is the dances in colorful traditional attires, beating of log drums in their community hall called "Morung" and muzzle loading gunfire. One can meet the tattooed Konyak elders and interact with them and also isit the modest king's house.
Accommodation: Taipha Guest House / Vingghoi Resort or similar
Meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner


Day 18. 2nd April 2020. Mon – Longwa (Approx 42 km / 2,5 Hrs Drive)
Spend the first half of the day at Aoleang festival and in the afternoon drive to Longwa village. Longwa is situated in the eastern most tip of Nagaland and the village itself is right on the border in between India and Myanmar. The villages are ruled by the hereditary chief the 'Angh' (king). The house of the Angh of Longwa is situated half in India and half in Burma. Overnight in basic guest house in the fantastic picturesque place, among the emerald hills.
Accommodation: basic guest house in Longwa or similar
Meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner


Day 19. 3rd April 2020. Mon – Dibrugarh (Approx130 km / 5 – 6 Hrs Drive)
After breakfast explore the village to meet and interact with the Angh, who has 16 villages in Myanmar and 4 villages in Indian territory under his sovereignty. Later continue driving to Dibrugarh. Evening, take a stroll to the upbeat market of Dibrugarh. Overnight at Hotel Tea County.
Accommodation: Hotel Tea County in Dibrigarh or similar
Meals: breakfast, lunch, dinner


Day 20. 4th April 2020. Dibrugarh – Airport for flight home (16 Km / 30 min Drive)
After leisure breakfast transfer to the airport for onward journey or flight home.
Accommodation: no
Meals: breakfast

Cost includes:

- flight Delhi - Guwahati (or Delhi – Shillong)
- flight Dibrugarh – Delhi
- double accommodation in hotels of Delhi and along the route
- transport along the route (4wd Innova, Scorpio or Xylo with 2 persons on a back seat of a car)
- three times meal along the route except for Delhi
- breakfasts in Delhi
- permit for Arunachal Pradesh
- all entrance tickets as per program for all sites and parks
- safari on elephants and CUV safari in Kaziranga national park
- National dances in Pasihat, Ziro, Roing and Majuli
- ferries
- tea, coffee, non-limited drinking water
- rafting
- local English speaking guide along the route and English and Russian speaking team leader
- financial support of local communities
- road fees and taxes



Additionally paid (on your own):

- international flight to Delhi (about USD 450 - 550)
- lunches and dinners in Delhi
- Indian visa (obtained upon arrival for USD 60)
- medical insurance for international trips
- tips


To take with:

- wear sets fitting weather conditions
- warm and wind stop clothes, thermal underwear (there is minus at night in mountains)
- swimsuits
- forehead torch
- raincoat
- set of long sleeve clothes, repellents, anti mosquito net
- comfortable closed trekking footwear, also warm
- sun and wind protection means (cream, sunglasses, sun hat)
- sleeping bag for 0 degrees
- personal hygiene means
- personal medical kit (analgetic, antiseptic, antibiotic, your personal medications)
- backpack, small backpack for radial walks
- photo and video camera

KEY FEATURES:
TOUR TO NORTH EAST INDIA
North East India

Best season: September - May


North-East appendix of India is absolutely exotic for tourists and short of rear travelers. It spreads along mighty Brahmaputra river by the root of Himalayas.

Humid Meghalaya jungles, which is considered the most rainy place on Earth, and a true wonder of the world hidden in a ravine - 30-meter long Cherrapungee living root bridges. Trekking to the bridges includes a descent to the ravine, which demand considerable effort when ascension back.

Unique Tibetan-Burmese tribes, such as Apatani, worshiping of Moon and Sun, and whose women are the only ones wearing rattan pieces in their noses. The most significant Apatani animistic festival Myoko with bloody scarification ceremonies.

Aoleang festival in Nagaland, where former headhunters Naga Konyak tribe makes a huge annual celebration. True headhunters, who are 80 years old now, will tell us by the fire stories of their trophies obtained.

Washed by Brahmaputra Majuli island, marked by Guinness Book of World Records as the largest in the world river island and Kaziranga National Park - home for Indian elephants, one-horned rhinos and Bengal tigers.
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