Top Tourist Attractions in Upper Siang
Upper Siang is an administrative district located in the Indian state of Arunachal Pradesh. It is the country’s fourth-least populated district.
Best Places to Visit in Upper Siang
- Mariyang – Pekimodi Circuit
- Tuting – Gelling Circuit
- Yingkiong – Ekodumbing – Riutala Circuit
- Mouling National Wildlife Sanctuary
Upper Siang has been lavished with all of Almighty God’s splendour and natural beauty. The mortal hands have yet to touch the gushing waterfalls, unfathomable valleys, and majestic snow-capped mountains, raucous streams, silent lakes, and virgin woods. The natural surroundings, unusual nature, and location make it an ideal tourist destination. Upper Siang is home to four major tribes: Adi, Memba, Khamba, and Mishmis. They have coexisted with each other since time immemorial, albeit having diverse socio-cultural lives. The Adis and Mishmis are animists who worship the Sun and Moon, respectively, whilst the Membas and Khambas are Mahayana Buddhists.
As a result, this area exhibits a wide form of culture in terms of dances, festivals, and clothing. In addition, there are several holy spots, caves, and shrines that are accessible by footpaths. His Holiness the Dalai Lama and His Holiness Penor Rinmpoche of Mysore visited Tuting a few years ago and lay the foundation stone for a Gompa / Monastery.
Adventure activities like as hiking, river rafting, and angling have enormous potential in this area. The International White Water Rafting Expedition has been taking place in Upper Siang on the powerful Siang river for the past few years. Upper Siang merits its deserved place as a tourist destination because of its magnificent environment, diversified cultural background, and huge number of Buddhist pilgrimages. For religious, cultural, ecological, and adventure tourism, the following six tourist circuits / locations have been identified.
Mariyang – Pekimodi Circuit
Mariyang is the home of the Padam, Pasi, and Millang villages and is located 52 kilometres from the district headquarters in Yingkiong. It is also accessible through the Pasighat-Ranaghat route, which crosses the Siang River by boat. It is perched on a knoll overlooking the junction of the Yammeng and Yamne rivers. Aside from the scenic splendour, one may visit Damro village, which is the largest settlement in Upper Siang (10 Kms from Mariyang). Mariyang is 34 kilometres away from Pekimodi, which is prominent in Adi mythology. The traditional culture of the Padams, Millangs, and Pasis is rich. In the month of September, a festival called Solung is held. The village belles perform Ponung, a traditional dance style, during this event.
Where to stay? :- Inspection Bungalow (IB) at Mariyang.
Best time for visit :- All round the year.
Main tourist attraction :- Scenic beauty, trekking, angling, picnic spot, etc.
Tuting – Gelling Circuit
Tuting Monastry in Upper Siang
Gelling is the final Circle HQ that is connected to China’s International Boundary. This circle is crossed by the well-known MacMohan Line. Tuting is 34 kilometres away. BRTF has transformed half of the road into an all-weather road, while the other half will be covered by a foot track. The river Tsangpo arrives here from Tibet and is known locally as Tsang Chu. It is also known as the river Siang in the south and the Bramhaputra in Assam. Gelling Cricle is inhabited by Memba, a Nyingma Sect. of Mahayana Buddhists. Memba’s primary festivals are Lossar, Torgya, Dhruba, and Tsobum. The festivals are observed in accordance with the Buddhist calendar. BARDOH CHAAM, also known as Mask Dance, is performed at the Gonpas during various festivities. Animal masks are worn by the dancers. The primary topic of the dance is the triumph of good over evil, as well as the value and protection of all living species. It takes 3 hours to climb from Gelling to Bishing, where a succession of spectacular waterfalls cascade down from a peak over 300 feet. The ruins of Kapangla Pass can still be found near Gelling. Previously, this pass served as the primary trading route between Adis and Tibet.
Where to stay? :- Inspection Bungalow (IB) at Gelling.
Best time for visit :- September to February.
Main tourist attraction :-
Dampo Tso lake near Gelling
Sibe-Re waterfall at Bishing
Trekking and scenery.
Yingkiong – Ekodumbing – Riutala Circuit
Simong territory includes Ekodumbing (Riutala). People from Simong come here in groups throughout the months of October and November to gather EMO (Aconite), which is used for hunting. Many uncommon kinds of animals such as Takins and Muskdeer (Sikung), birds such as PEDE, TANE, and SIKO (all local names), medicinal plants such as NYODO (Coptis tita), TALAP (a sort of wild garlic), and so on may be found here.
Nowadays, the location holds religious significance for Buddhists. They refer to Eko Dumbing as Riutala and consider it to be a paradise of AWALOKESHWARA, which translates to the paradise of CHENRISI, the Dalai Lama. It is a three-day foot march via Simong village and a six-day trek through Tuting, Tashigaon, and Singha. Buddhist Pilgrims from all over the world come here to pray during the months of August and September. Riutala is a hill with several lakes strewn about it. This river gave rise to the rivers Sipit, Yammeng, Simong Patang, and Tangam Patang. Many caverns surround this location, providing pilgrims with refuge. Eko-natural Dumbing’s beauty is amazing.
How to reach?:- 3 days trekking Via Simong, 7 days trekking Via Tuting.
Best time for visit:- August to November.
Main tourist attraction:- Sipit Lake, Yammeng Lake, Komji Lipik (Caves), Simong & Tangam Patang caves.
Yingkiong – Tuting – Dewakota Circuit
NAY DEWAKOTA :
Nay is a Sanskrit word that signifies “sacred place” or “shrine.” Dewakota is a Sanskrit word that means “God’s home.” It is situated on a plateau and is encircled by the Nyigong (Yangshang Chu) river. It is around 40 kilometres (approximately) from Tuting and is only accessible by porter track. The locals think that Guru Rimpoche has hidden several precious treasures / scripts (TER) at Dewakota, which have yet to be discovered and decoded. Many sacred sites, such as SINDURA, Guru Durpuk, and countless caves, are reported to have been visited by Guru PADMA SABBAWA. The caves can hold more than 100 pilgrims at once. They are only open during the winter season; the rest of the year, the caverns are buried beneath the Yangshang Chu river. It is thought that anyone who visit Dewakota three times would enter paradise and be cleansed of all previous misdeeds.
The Membas of Gelling and Khambas of Singha believe that Lord Guru Rimpoche or Guru Padma Sabbawa – the Second Buddha – inscribed the current pilgrim sites of Dewakota, Riutala, Pema Shree, Dakar Tashi, and Jachung. His Holiness TERTON NYANGGOE later found and unravelled these sacred sites.
Accomodation:- Local Caretaker / Lama of Dewakota provide rest house.
How to reach?:- 2 days trekking from Tuting. One night halt at Nyukong enroute to Dewakota.
What to see?:- Holy Shrines, caves, lakes, Gompa and Chorten.
Yingkiong – Tuting – Tsitapuri Circuit
Tsitapuri is another pilgrimage site on the Singha Circle’s Yingkiong – Tuting Circuit. Tsitapuri is thought to be Lord Guru Rimpoche’s paradise. This location has more than 108 lakes, which is a wonderful sight. Lake Danakhosa is one of them, and it is the source of the rivers Nyigong (Yangshang Chu) and Jeying Chu. Buddhists believe that individuals who are lucky or have a pure heart may see various wild creatures and a Gompa with a line of Lamas holding their prayer wheel and beads on the island. The lake is flanked by bleak mountain valleys that are blanketed with snow all year. People are so taken with the scenery that they don’t want to leave.
Accomodation:- Staging huts / Inspection Bungalows. Trekkers are advised to carry their own bedding and fooding.
How to reach?:- 6 days by trekking (Tuting to Nyukong, Nyukong to Tashigaon, Tashigaon to Singha, Singha to Shibrang, Shibrang to Tsitapuri).
Best season for visit:- June to August.
Mouling National Wildlife Sanctuary
Foxtail orchard blossoming in the wild jungle
Mouling National Park was created in 1982 with the goal of providing a suitable environment for flora and animals. It is situated on the right bank of the Siang River and has an area of 483 square kilometres. This park provides a safe haven for a wide range of vegetation and species. The vegetation in the region changes with height. The top reaches are covered in temperate alpine and coniferous forest, while the lower portions are covered in tropical evergreen forest. This region is rich in ornamental plants such as foxtail and orchids.
The park also features an outstanding collection of animals and birds. Many endangered species have been observed here, including takins, snowclouded leopards, golden languors, hornbills, monal scalaters, and serrows. There are many more species that have yet to be recognised and reported. During the winter season, a seasonal walking road from Bomdo and Ramsing villages leads into this park.
There are several beautiful waterfalls within the refuge. There are two of them: Dabung Waterfall and Nirbung Waterfall. This park is a trekker’s and animal and bird lover’s paradise.
Accomodation:- Jengging Circuit House, Forest Rest House at Ramsing.
What to see?:- Rare birds, animals, orchids, waterfalls, etc.
Best season for visit:- October to 1st week of January.
Best Time to Visit in Upper Siang
Summer and the beginning of monsoon season are the finest times to explore Upper Siang. The temperature stays pleasant and suitable for touring. March, April, May, June, September, and October are the finest months to visit.
How to Reach Upper Siang
Entry Pass Formalities
Because Arunachal Pradesh is one of India’s protected states, travellers must get an Entry Pass in order to visit any of the state’s attractions in the following ways:
Inner Line Permits (ILPs) are issued to domestic visitors and can be obtained in the following ways:
- From the Resident Commissioner’s Office / Liaison Offices located at New Delhi, Calcutta, Guwahati, Shillong, Dibrugarh, Tezpur, North Lakhimpur, Jorhat.
- From the Office of the Secretary (Political), Govt. of Arunachal Pradesh, Itanagar.
- From the Office of the Deputy Commissioners / Additional Deputy Commissioners of the respective districts.
Protected Area Permit (PAP) or Restricted Area Permit (RAP) are issued to foreign tourists and may be obtained in the following ways:
- From All India Missions abroad.
- All Foreigners Regional Registration Officers at New Delhi, Mumbai, Kolkata.
- The Chief Immigration Officer at Chennai.
- Home Ministry, Govt. of India, New Delhi.
- Home Commissioner, Govt. of Arunachal Pradesh, Itanagar.
A visitor interested in visiting Assam must go to Guwahati (the state capital) via air or rail from any Indian city. Following that, one must choose one of the following routes for continuing roads travel to Upper Siang:
Via Pasighat (East Siang)
Both Arunachal Pradesh State Transport (APST) and Private daily bus services are available for journey from Guwahati to Pasighat (Headquarters of East Siang District).
For the travel from Guwahati to Pasighat, both Arunachal Pradesh State Transport (APST) and private daily bus services are available (Headquarters of East Siang District).
Via Aalo (West Siang)
Both Arunachal Pradesh State Transport (APST) and Private daily bus services are available for journey from Guwahati to Aalo (Headquarters of West Siang District).
From Aalo daily private Tata Sumo (Cab) services are available for onward journey to Yingkiong.
Note:- Roadways journeys via Pasighat or Aalo routes are almost same in terms of distance and fare.
For air travel to Upper Siang (Yingkiong) through Pasighat, the Pawan Hans Helicopter service is available. Every Wednesday at 10.05 a.m., it is available (IST). To go to Yingkiong, it takes 35 minutes.