Planning a trip to Tawang? Then, extend it by a day or two to visit Dirang, a small village situated on the banks of River Kameng in Arunachal Pradesh.
Snow-capped peaks, natural springs and lush greenery is what Dirang is all about. You’ll also find a lot of Bhutanese influences thanks to its close proximity with the country. One of them is the 150-year-old Dirang Dzong or Dirang Fort that boasts of stone houses (built to deal with the harsh weather) believed to be over five centuries old - a must-visit for its architectural brilliance and breathtaking views of the surrounding areas.
Rejuvenate yourself at the Hot Water Spring, said to be rich in sulphur with great medicinal value. Head to the National Research Centre on a yak (prior permission required) that works to conserve the Indian yak. Go hiking to Sangti Valley and spot the migratory black-necked cranes! Enjoy panoramic views of kiwi and apple orchards, paddy fields and the pristine Sangti River. Love birdwatching? Take an early morning stroll to get a glimpse of birds like Redstart, Sunbird and Trogopan. Interact with locals and buy artifacts from the Dirang Market. Gorge on local food like Yak cheese delicacies, meat curries and thukpas prepared by the Monpa tribe.
Stop by the 500-year-old Kalachakra Gompa and the Thubsung Dhargyeling monasteries. The latter, built in 2017 by His Holiness the 14th Dalai Lama himself, is a learning hub for Buddhism and Tibetan culture. Visit at sunrise to see the monks offering prayers. Sit by the Dirang Chu River for stunning mountain views.