Tawang Backpacking Trip (7D/6N)

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  • 7 Days 6 Night
  • Group Size: 4 - 12
  • Difficulty : Easy
  • Starting Location : Guwahati

Overview

Hello travelers!

Presenting Tawang Backpacking trip from Muddie Trails & Monks on Wheels 🚐

The Tawang valley, situated at a varying height of 10,000 feet above sea level is a sight to behold. Tucked amidst the high passes of eastern Himalayan range and home to The Lamas, Tawang boasts the largest Buddist Monastary in the country that houses 28 feet high golden Buddha statue.

The high passes of Tawang are home to many glacial lakes that are an epitome of peace and tranquility. To reach Tawang, one has to pass through Sela pass at an altitude of 13,700 feet. Naturally, this is one of the highest passes in the world close to the international borders where travelers can enjoy a beautiful journey sighting hoards of Army vehicles.

The stone village of Dirang, the apple orchards town of Bomdila, the Indo-China border pass Bum La at an altitude of 15200 ft above sea level are added attractions. Bumla pass is a great example of how Indian soldiers protect our country at harshest of terrains and climates. Arunachal is the least densely populated state of India which is pure, peaceful, unpolluted and unmatched scenic beauty.

The colorful and ancient architecture of monasteries & stupas is well complimented by the smile & hospitality of people, and rich traditions of the Buddist culture.

Come, join us on a backpacking trip to a “silent paradise” called Tawang!

Highlights of the trip:

  • Tawang Monastery
  • Bum La Pass (India China Border Post)
  • The Paradise Lake of Sela Pass
  • Soul soothing Sangti Valley trip
  • Dirang Monastery
  • Nuranang Waterfalls
  • Tawang War memorial
  • Beautiful Sangetsar and Ptso glacier Lakes
  • Giant Buddha Statue of Tawang
  • Captivating sights of eastern Himalayas
  • Café run by Indian Army at 13000 ft above sea

Inclusions

  • Travel for 7 days (Guwahati to Guwahati)
  • Stay for 6 nights
  • 6 Breakfasts
  • 6 Dinners
  • Inner Line Permit (ILP) charges
  • Special vehicle for BumLa pass
  • All permits for all scheduled activities​
  • Trip Guide (for groups above 5 members)
  • Airport pickup and drop (fixed timings)
  • Once in a lifetime experience visiting all places mentioned in Highlights section

Exclusions

  • Lunches
  • Any additional snacks, drinks ordered at the stays
  • Any entry tickets, misc. expenses that are not in inclusions above
  • Any extra cost arising due to any change in the itinerary/stay/route on account of bad weather, traffic-congestion, landslides/roadblocks, natural calamities, political disturbances and/or any other factors beyond our control.

Itinerary

Day 1 - Guwahati to Tezpur/Bhalukpong

  • Travelers coming by Flight will get picked by our vehicle at Guwahati Airport at around 12.30 – 1.00 PM in the afternoon.
  • We will start our journey towards our first stop Tezpur/Bhalukpong, along the highway that runs parallel to the massive Brahmaputra river.
  • It’s a drive of 200 Km that takes 5 hours usually along with a Lunch stop.
  • Check into the guest house by late evening. The accommodation is hosted either at Tezpur or Bhalukpong based on availability.
  • Take a walk in the market, you can shop for items needed for the trip.
  • Finish Dinner and rest for the night.

Day 2 - Tezpur to Dirang

  • Check out of the stay after Breakfast and start our journey towards the Arunachal border checkpoint of Bhalukpong where we have to show our ILPs (Inner Line Permits) to enter Arunachal Pradesh.
  • The BRO (Border Roads Organization) have done such a tremendous job with the roads that most of the time, one wouldn’t even feel that we are passing through mighty Himalayas.
  • Along the way, we will stop by at beautiful view points to appreciate the sights of free flowing Tenga and Kameng rivers of Arunachal & stop for a Lunch break close to Bomdila pass.
  • Take a pit stop at a seasonal waterfalls, Bomdila view point and move towards our next destination for the day – Dirang which is also called a stone village.
  • We will explore the colorful Dirang monastary and call it an end for the day.
  • Based on the availability, the accommodation would be either in Sangti Valley or Dirang at a guest house.
  • Social gathering, Dinner and rest.

Day 3 - Sangti Valley, Dirang to Tawang

  • Experience the morning vibes of picturesque and serene Sangti Valley with flowing river, mountains on one side, huge swathes of grassland on the other side, grazing cattle, and greenery all around.
  • Sangti valley is just a half hour drive from Dirang main town.
  • Have Breakfast and check out of the stay.
  • Today we will head to our next destination Tawang by passing via one of the highest motorable roads in Himalayas called Sela pass.
  • It will take about 6-7 hours of total journey along with Lunch and different pit stops mentioned above to reach the land of Lamas – Tawang.
  • We will take a stop at the Paradise lake of Sela Pass at 13,700 feet above sea level to soak into the serene setting.
  • One of the things to look forward to is the Cafe run by Indian Army at Sela pass and their warm hospitality.
  • Owing to the proximity of border with China, one can find large swathes of Army vehicles all around. It really feels safe and secure out there, and a sense of pride.
  • Check into our Tawang guest house and refresh.
  • Dinner and socialize.
  • Sleep on the cozy beds.

Day 4 - Tawang Local

  • Early Breakfast and check out of the stay.
  • Explore every nook and corner of mesmerizing Tawang Monastery, the largest of its kind in India. The only monastery bigger than Tawang monastery is the one in Lhasa, the capital of Tibet. The colorful architecture and peaceful surroundings inspired by Buddhist way of life will touch your soul and heart.
  • Have Lunch at a local restaurant.
  • Explore giant Buddha statue of Tawang located on a hill where we get panoramic views of Tawang.
  • Give a visit to the 1962 Tawang War memorial and salute to the sacrifices of Indian soldiers who bravely defended our mother land.
  • Dinner and take good rest at our Tawang guest house.

Day 5 - BumLa Pass Day Trip

  • Start the day with Breakfast in the tranquil town of Tawang.
  • Today is an interesting day where we will go on a special permit road trip to the highest point of the trip – BumLa pass. Our tourist vehicles are not allowed to go there, and hence we will take a special cab from Tawang.
  • The journey takes us along the scenic glacier lakes straight to the Indo-China border post.
  • Along with peeking into the Chinese side, visitors can also view beyond the border by a few binoculars.
  • One can get refreshed at the Army canteen that serves hot snacks, tea and desserts.
  • On our way back, we will take stops at picturesque Sangetsar lake (famously called as Madhuri lake) and Ptso lake. ​​
  • Take an evening walk in the Tawang market to shop some souvenirs before wrapping up things for the day.
  • Get back to the stay, rest for the night.

Day 6 - Tawang to Bomdila

  • Pack your bags, check out after Breakfast and say goodbye to Tawang.
  • We will now take our 5 hours return journey back to Bomdila pass traveling through dense forest.
  • Stop by at towering Nuranang waterfalls and take some pictures. On a sunny day, one can even spot a rainbow at this gushing waterfall which is usually gushing during rains.
  • Enroute we will also stop by at hot water springs and have Lunch at Dirang.
  • Reach quite, hilly town of Bomdila by evening and take a stroll in the market.
  • Gather at a common area to socialize one last time during the trip.
  • Dinner and rest for the night.

Day 7 - Bomdila to Guwahati

  • Check out after Breakfast at our guest house.
  • With all the spectacular images of Tawang valley, Buddhist culture and sweetest people fresh in our mind, we will take our return journey back to the planes of Assam. It feels like leaving a part of paradise and coming back to earth.
  • You may book flights after 9 PM or we shall help you with pointing a guest house in Guwahati for the night so that you could leave the next day.
  • Note: Our team can assist you in booking your flight tickets at discounted rates.

What to Expect

About Trip:

This is a No-luxury, shared-model trip.
It involves standard/comfort local stays & travel.
It best suits for people who wish to socialize and prefer group travel.
If you wish to have privacy & luxury, then check out our Private Trips.
.


Travel:
  • Trip starting/ending point: Guwahati
  • Pick up and drop at Guwahati Airport
  • Innova, Tempo, or similar tourist vehicle (6 days journey)
  • Start time: First day, 12 PM (afternoon)
  • End time: Seventh day, 8 PM
  • You can book flights to/from Guwahati based on the above timings.
  • Note: Our team can assist you in booking your flight tickets at discounted rates.
  • There is no night journey on this trip. All travel is during day time.

Stay:
  • Comfortable, standard shared stays with bedding, hot water.
  • 2 or 3 or 4 sharing rooms (based on group combination).
  • Tawang: Homestay for 3 nights.
  • Dirang/Sangti: Homestay for 1 night.
  • Bomdila: Guesthouse for 1 night.
  • Tezpur/Bhalukpong: Guesthouse for 1 night.

Food:
  • Breakfasts & Dinners included.
  • Lunches are self-sponsored as we will be outside at that time.
  • How much you have to spend for good food?
    200 – 250 per meal

Misc. info:
  • Batch size: 4 to 10
  • Trip guide will be included only for big groups (Tempo Traveler). Not for smaller vehicles like Innova.
  • Trek Difficulty: No trekking
  • Max altitude: BumLa pass at 15,200 feet above Sea level
  • Climate:
    Very cold at Tawang, BumLa pass
    Cold at Dirang, Bomdila, Sangti Valley
    Warm at Tezpur/Bhalukpong

Booking Procedure:

There are 2 ways of booking this trip

  • Directly book through Book Now option.
    > Full payment.
  • Book with Partial Payment
    > Booking amount of  INR 10000 shall be made.
    > Send screenshot to Booking Team on 9880539183. An e-mail confirmation will be sent after acknowledgement.
    > Remaining trip amount shall be paid 1 month before trip start date.
    > Booking amount is non-refundable if cancelled later or failed to pay balance amount on time.
  • Note: Within 1 month, ONLY full payment option is applicable.

Special Notes:
  • Expect seasonal variations and unpredictable weather in Arunachal depending on the month we are travelling
  • Travelers are expected to come with an open heart by appreciating the complexities of mother nature based on seasonal variations, monthly or even daily weather conditions.
  • There is no luxury involved in any part of this trip. This is a backpacking trip with basic facilities.

Seasonal Variations:
  • Mid March to June: Summers are pleasant in Tawang which pull tourists in good numbers. 
  • July to mid Sept (monsoons): The rains hit the eastern Himalayas starting from mid June. Journey would be tough during this time. We usually avoid traveling to Arunachal in these months.
  • Mid Sept to Nov (Post monsoon): Another good season to travel before extreme winter sets in. One can expect high tourist footfall in these months. 
  • Dec to mid Mar: Temperatures will drop below 0 degrees towards the end of the year with the onset of snow fall covering the entire valley. It will be very difficult to travel and important roads will be closed by Indian Army.

FAQ

Things to carry

  • Toiletries, moisturizer, light towel, lip balm, wet wipes, toothbrush, toothpaste etc.
  • A lightweight large Backpack for the entire trip (50-60 liters). Strictly no trolleys. Remember this is a Backpacking trip.
  • A small backpack for basic items (to carry valuables, water bottle, snacks, etc. for outdoor activities).
  • Photo identity proof with address (Aadhar/Passport/Voter ID).
  • Thermal inners and warm clothes (cold climate).
  • A rainproof jacket with a hood (to protect from cold winds, sudden rain).
  • Thick socks, track pants, full sleeve t-shirts (to keep your body warm).
  • Cap/Hat/Sunglasses (to protect from harmful sun rays).
  • Sunscreen (SPF 50 or more).
  • Power bank, charger, camera, binoculars (if you wish to).
  • Hand sanitizer and liquid hand wash for outdoors.
  • Proper water bottle for your trip. You may fill at our stays.
  • Disposable garbage covers (to separate used/unused clothes).
  • Water-resistant good grip shoes for travel, extra slippers to use at stays.
  • Personal medications that you may feel necessary (remember ghat roads, cold climate), basic first aid kit.
  • No need to carry snacks/chocolates. You may buy at local shops to support local people in Arunachal Pradesh.

What's next after booking your trip?

  • Organizers will get in touch with you, or vice versa.
  • Once minimum number of people book this trip (at least 4 members), Organizing team will give a green signal to book your flights.
  • A Whatsapp group will be created for all the registered folks 5 days before the event.

Terms & Conditions

  • The itinerary is fixed. No special requests to change itinerary/schedule shall be entertained. Do not give advice(s) to the Trip Leader(s) to change the itinerary.
  • Cooperate with the organizer(s) in following the schedule set for the day (especially getting up and getting ready in the morning). This will ensure travelers won’t miss out on the real fun part that is traveling.
  • Every traveler is responsible for his/her for your own safety. Don’t indulge in any illegal or silly activity that causes harm to you or fellow travelers.
  • Do not wander into the forest away from the designated trail for treks. There may be snakes, scorpions, and dangerous animals.
  • Unexpected situations: It may happen we do not cover all the places mentioned in the itinerary because of unpredictable reasons like bad weather, landslides, wild animal presence, abrupt blocking of sites by the police/forest department, delay in travel because of an issue with our group itself, traffic conditions, etc. In most cases, if the time permits, the organizer(s) will take travelers to an alternative place. But in some cases, we may have to skip a place altogether.
  • Absolutely no littering. We swear to protect our environment.
  • No alcohol & smoking during travel, treks, and other outdoor activities. There would be a separate window and space (usually at night) to have these at the campsite/homestay for interested people.
  • Travelers are expected to respect each other and help each other. Avoid discussing sensitive matters like sex, politics, and religion/caste/race.
  • Using foul or abusive language, eve-teasing, arguing with fellow travelers/organizer(s), and/or involving in the physical assault will not be accepted and will stand a chance of being deserted by the group then and there.
  • The event will stand canceled if less than 8 travelers signed up for the trip/trek which will be informed 24 hours before the trip start time.
  • Every traveler is expected to sign a liability/waiver form given by the organizer(s) after boarding the vehicle. This liability form will discharge Muddie Trails of any unexpected incident like injury/death/theft etc.

Cancellation & Refund

Cancellation by Traveler

  • 80% refund if a cancellation request is sent 30 days before the trip start date.
  • 50% refund if a cancellation request is sent between 30 to 15 days before the trip start date.
  • An email has to be sent to muddietrails@gmail.com to raise a cancellation request.
  • No refund within 15 days of the event start time whatever is the reason (Health, COVID, Accident, Family crisis, Office issue, or anything else).
  • No refund during/after the event.
  • No refund on the partial payment (advance) done to block your seat for the trip.

Cancellation by Muddie Trails

Muddie Trails may decide to cancel the event if there are less than 3 travelers signed up for the trip/trek.

What if we don’t get the minimum number of people for the trip?
We have 2 options in this case:
Option 1: Complete refund.
Option 2: Switch to any other trip of the same weekend or future weekends. The difference amount will be collected from you or paid back according to the new trip cost.


Cancellation due to external factors

Muddie Trails may have to cancel the event in case of external factors that are beyond our control like Natural Disasters, Extreme Weather Conditions, Red Alerts, Political Disturbances, Bandh/Curfews, Local Issues, Road Blocks, Train cancellations, Covid-19 or any other disease outbreaks etc.

In these scenarios:

  • No Refund is allowed.
  • 100% trip amount can be used for any other new trip of the same weekend or future weekends. The difference amount will be collected from you or paid back according to the new trip cost.
  • Once you confirm your participation on the new trip, all the above Cancellation policies will apply for the same.
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