The Eastern Arch – North East India Motorcycle Tour
This particular ride takes us through some of India’s easternmost states namely Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland, Assam and Meghalaya. A rider’s delight, this route includes the dense forested tracts of Nagaland, the riverbed areas of eastern Arunachal, the tea growing regions of Assam and wettest places on Earth at Meghalaya and more. Incidentally this region has one of the highest densities of ethnicities and languages in the whole of India. During the tour we ride through territories of tribes such as the Galo, Adi, Idu, Khamti, Konyak, Ao, Lotha, Angami, Karbi, Dimasa, Jaintia and Khasi to name a few, Infact every single day takes us through territories of different tribes, each tribe totally different from the previous. The destination for the ride is Guwahati, which is the capital of Assam and the largest city among the seven states. The ride itself takes us through varying terrain, road conditions and vegetation.
Day Day 01: Arrive Delhi
On arrival at Delhi international airport, meet and greet transfer to hotel.
Day 02: Delhi – Dibrugarh (By Flight)
Dibrugarh is one of the largest towns in Eastern India; generally know for the lush tea estates that are in abundance in this region. This evening we take the opportunity to introduce you to your motorbikes and brief you regarding the latest local conditions and what can be expected in the coming days.
Day 03: Dibrugarh – Pasighat (160 Kms / 05-06 Hrs)
We start the day with a ferry crossing across the Brahmaputra which should take about an hour; following this we are on wide highways all the way to Pasighat. Today is a fairly short day and generally on excellent roads with perfect conditions to acclimatize and familiarize with your motorbikes and the road conditions.
Day 04: Pasighat – Roing (110 Kms / 05 Hrs)
Today we enter the watershed area of the Brahmaputra River with the main tributaries (Siang, Dibang and Lohit) coming together a little west from here. The first half is on generally well paved roads through Adi and Idu Mishmi villages with small sections which are under construction. The second section of this day is spent negotiating the Dibang and the other smaller rivers that come down from the Dibang valley with a couple of large water crossings. We end our day at Roing. One can expect a rough day of riding through the river sections with fair amount of dry riverbeds, water fording’s, mud sections and unpaved tracks. Overnight at camp.
Day 05: Roing – Tengapani (190 Kms / 05-06 Hrs)
The Tai Khampti people who are settled in this region are late entrants to the North east. Migrating from the mountainous valleys of the Irrawaddy they settled here on the rich plains of the Lohit River. Mostly a farming community, this area once had the distinction of having the richest villages in India due to the Logging and plywood trade. Most of the day is on good tarred roads except for a few river crossing. The latter half of the day is spent along the beautiful Lohit river valley. Overall the days ride is very scenic and varied.
Day 06: Tengapani – Mon (250 Kms / 08-09 Hrs)
The township of Mon is the central town for the Konyak Nagas. The Konyaks spread across this part of Nagaland, parts of Arunachal Pradesh and Myanmar are a martial race known as fierce warriors who in the days gone used to be headhunters. Even today the chief decides for the Konyaks across both sides of the border. This is a fairly long day with most of it spend in the plains parallel to the Patkai Range. We will be riding through rural Arunachal Pradesh, rice paddies and tea estates of Assam and into the forested tracts of Nagaland.
Day 07: Mon
We use his day to explore around the Konyak areas. We have a couple of village visits planned. We first head to the Myanmar border to the Longwa Village. Longwa is one of the larger Konyak villages situated on a spur on the Myanmar border, half the village being on the Indian side whereas the other half on the Myanmar side. Following this we visit the Local markets.
Day 08: Mon – Mokokchung (160 Kms / 08-09 Hrs)
Heading deeper into Nagaland we make for Mokokchung. The bustling township of Mokokchung is one of the major towns in Nagaland and is the nerve centre of the Ao people. The day’s ride takes us on a combination of deep forested Jeep tracks and double lane state roads. A fair amount of todays riding will be in wild country with deep muddy roads. You will most likely see see no other traffic on this road.
Day 09: Mokokchung – Kohima (160 Kms / 06 Hrs)
In modern history Kohima has been famously known as the turning point in the Asia pacific theatre of WW2, it is often referred to as the ‘Stalingrad of the east’ where the Japanese war machinery finally met its match and hence started its decline. The ‘Battle of Kohima’ and specifically the ‘Battle of the tennis court’ are examples of famous battles fought in this theatre. A good day of riding again, we take you to Kohima via the Doyang reservoir on village tracks. This area has become famous for the annual migration of the Amur Falcons who rest here for 40 days fattening up for their further flight to Africa.
Day 10: Kohima
In modern history Kohima has been famously known as the turning point in the Asia pacific This is a free day in Kohima. We will organize a small tour of places of interest in Kohima for the interested. Options include a day hike at the picturesque Dzuku Valley, visits to the Naga Heritage village, WW2 cemetery and Khonoma Village.
Day 11: Kohima – Haflong (290 Kms / 08-09 Hrs)
Leaving Nagaland we head back into Assam today. Our destination for the day is Haflong popularly known as the only hill station of Assam. The days ride takes us through Karbi Anglong and then into the Dima Hsao district. This is the longest day of riding during the entire tour. The second half of the day will be on newly built four lane highways which will someday connect India with South East Asia. Enroute we will come across settlements of Karbi, Dimasa, Rengma among other tribes.
Day 12: Haflong – Jowai (240 Kms / 8-09 Hrs)
Another beautiful day of riding, we start with a good initial climb up to the Jaintia Plateau. Enroute we cross the Umrangso reservoir with phenomenal views all around. We end our day at Jowai which is the district headquarters of the Jaintia hill district of Meghalaya.
Day 13: Jowai – Cherappunjee (180 Kms / 07-08Hrs)
Our destination for the day is Cherrapunji which has the distinction of receiving some of the highest rainfall ever recorded. We will ride close to the Bangladesh border on excellent roads with very little traffic. We shall stop over at a small Khasi village enroute for a scrumptious traditional meal. Cherrapunji has much to offer, including the natural root bridges and some of the deepest caves in India.
Day 14: Cherappunjee
Another rest day, with an optional hike to the living root bridges. This region other than being the wettest place on earth during the monsoons is also home to the Living root bridges. Over centuries the Khasi folk of this region have been entwining the roots of the Ficus Elastica trees to build bridges across the fast flowing streams that are found all over. Other options are visits to the Mawsmai cave and the border town of Shella in the Indo – Bangla border.
Day 15: Cherappunjee – Guwahati (200 Kms / 07-08 Hrs)
This last day of riding takes us down to the banks of the Brahmaputra River yet again, this time to Guwahati, the largest city among the 7 states. Enroute we will visit a sacred grove at Mawphlang, this forest and others like it are considered sacred to the Khasi, the indigenous tribe of this region, preserved for generations with traditional religious sanction.
Day 16: Guwahati – Delhi (By Flight)
In time transfer to airport to board the flight to Delhi, on arrival transfer to the hotel.
Day 17: Delhi + Departure
In time transfer to Delhi International Airport to board flight back to home. Good Bye !