Tawang is a blooming tourist destination in the Indian state of Arunachal Pradesh. The location is popular for its splendid natural landscape and climate. Apart from these, the town is also a spiritual center where a lot of monasteries can be seen. Among the tourists to the city of Tawang a majority is formed by the visitors to these monasteries.
The ancientness of these monasteries is also commendable. This is another reason why historians are fond of this place and its vibes. Locals also do treat these monasteries with due respect and visit them more than often making the crowd in them never-ending.
But surprisingly, the population count in the town of Tawang is quite less when compared with the other towns and cities in India. It has got the title “eighth least populated city in the country” on account of this fact. Some of the best sight visits in the city of Tawang and the most memorable of the destinations are mentioned below.
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This is a Buddhist pilgrim center located in the town of Tawang. This temple is also a prominent feature making the town of Tawang significant in the tourist map of India. When compared to the rest of the monasteries in India, the Tawang monastery is the largest. The sect of Buddhism maintaining the monastery is Gelug.
There are a total of 65 buildings inside the monastery complex built for residential purposes. Mera Lama Lodre Gyasto is the founder of this magnificent monastery. Apart from being the largest monastery in India, it is also the second largest one in Asia. The ancientness of the monastery has also given the “oldest” title to the monasteries in Asia.
It was during the period, 1680-1681 that the establishment of the Tawang monastery took place. You must visit the popular painting of a goddess, Palden Lhamo kept inside the monastery. This painting was gifted to the founder of the monastery by the then-Dalai Lama. Accommodation and interaction with the monks are also possible inside the monastery.
This is one of the most delightful lakes you can find in the territory of Tawang. The scenic sights and the atmosphere will accentuate the experience in the lake and its premises. The lake is situated at a higher elevation making it more special and distinctive. Nature lovers visiting the town of Tawang should never miss out on the location of the lake.
Water from the lake takes its origin from the majestic mountain ranges in Tawang making it much clearer and pristine. If you are fond of the biodiversity and vegetation of different landscapes, this place will never disappoint you. The exotic Brahminy duck can be spotted extensively in the region of Nagula lake.
Apart from the duck, there are also a lot many flora and fauna found on the lake premises which will be much more interesting to see. The lake is quite near the border and owing to the fact, the military presence in the location would also be relatively greater.
Sela Pass in Tawang is a picturesque and vibrant location where adventure tourists are mostly spotted. The pass also acts as a political border between West Kameng and Tawang. The pass is located in a greater elevation with certain spiritual aspects. Tibetan Buddhism and several customs and beliefs associated with the system are also practiced in the location.
Lakes found near the pass are considered sacred. Pilgrims visiting Tawang take an effort to ascend the pass and visit the lakes for a couple of spiritual gains. The name “Sela Pass” is derived from the name of a woman who belonged to the tribal community. She served food and water to an Indian Army official named Jaswant Singh Rawat on a regular basis.
Honoring this kind-hearted lady, the pass came to be known by her name. There aren’t any entry restrictions in the Sela Pass region. However, it is recommended to visit the region during the months with lesser snowfall.
This is a sensitive location for the countries, India and China since their border is situated in this pass. To visit the pass, you need a special permit and this can be easily available from the starting point of the pass. If you are going along with a guide or a local driver, they can help you with obtaining the permit.
However, during the time of processing, the authorities will ask for several supporting documents hence make sure to keep them handy while visiting the pass. Cars and cabs having local registration are only permitted through the pass hence you can’t choose your private vehicles for the tour.
You will have the golden opportunity to indulge in the spectacular sights of the location on the trip to Bumla Pass. There are certain restrictions for photography since we have already mentioned that this is a military-regulated zone for both countries viz. India and China.
Shonga Tser Lake
Shonga Tser is the older name of the now popular lake called the Sanestar Tso. Madhuri Lake is another name for the same. If you have plans to visit Bumla Pass, from the city center of Tawang, the lake is on the way. This high-altitude lake can be a beautiful sight visit in your Tawang vacation if you are interested to soak in the delicacy of hilly nature and landscape.
Typical of the hill stations in India, the lake and the surroundings would have street vendors selling hot tea and Maggi which would add many yummy flavors to your vacation. If you are interested to take portraits, the surroundings are blessed with countless picturesque backdrops.
There is also a hut situated in the area which serves as a good viewpoint to enjoy the magnificent nature of the area. Kids and adults can equally enjoy the play zone naturally set up in the region making it a truly active and delightful tourist destination in Tawang.
Another religious destination you can visit is the territory of Tawang. Being a center for Tibetan Buddhism, you will come across countless centers, temples, and corners where religion and spirituality will get unfolded in their brightest colors.
But if you wish to visit only the best and the most prominent ones in your Tawang vacation, Taktsang Gompa should be on the list without fail. The center rose to fame when the religious Guru Padmasambhava took a visit to the location.
It is believed that he meditated in a cave nearby for a while. Keep your warmers and sweaters handy since this location won’t be that tolerable on account of its lowest temperature rates. The translated meaning of the place Taktsang Gompa is “Tiger’s Den”.
There is also a cliff in the location of this religious center making it a naturally fascinating place too. The peaceful and pristine atmosphere of the center would make you feel like visiting it again and again for sure.
Bong Bong Falls is the other name of the falls. It reaches the ground level from an altitude of 100 meters. This is an underrated waterfall in the town of Tawang. The beauty and charm of the falls are spellbound and will let you reach the zenith of happiness if you could just watch the cascade for a while.
From the town center of Tawang, there is a 40km drive to reach the location of the Nuranang Falls. The thunderous sound of the falls is another special feature about the falls which you will fall in love with even from a distance. Tawang river is where the falls finally reach after cascading.
The origin of these falls is the Sela Pass region. In some areas, people call the Nurunang Falls by the name, Jang Falls. A hydroelectric power project is also part of the falls. Hence the falls are also significant when it comes to the daily lives, agriculture, and irrigation of the locals here.
When it comes to a hill station, all the adventure buffs would be in search of the highest peaks in the destination. If you are one among them and are curious about ascending and conquering peaks in the territory of Tawang, the Geshila Peak is where you must go.
Even if you are not an adventure enthusiast, you can climb the peak just to enjoy the serene vibes on the top of the hill. Enjoying some quality time with your family, friends or loved ones on the peak would be the best experience you can ever have from the Tawang vacation. Pilgrims and devotees are also seen in the location since there are also several religious centers located on the top of the hill.
The locals believe that the peak of Geshila acts as a guardian angel for them by saving them from natural calamities and serving their well-being. Backpackers can also prefer this location since it is best for relaxing and meditating.
This is another spectacular monastery you can visit on your trip to Tawang. The 14th century is believed to be the construction period of the Urgelling Gompa monastery. Moreover, the 6th Dalai Lama is also believed to have been born in the location of the monastery. This is also an easily accessible location in Tawang.
You will reach the monastery at just a distance of 3km from the town center of Tawang. If serenity and joy are your concerns in the Tawang vacation, Urgelling Gompa would be an inevitable destination. Moreover, the believers of Buddhism visit the monastery so as to wash their sins off and save them from the troubles and challenges in life.
The surroundings of the monastery are also well maintained so spending some time in the region would be quite relaxing and refreshing for the visitors. The enchanting premises of the monastery with gardens can also be enjoyed even if you are not a believer in the faiths followed in the center.
Undoubtedly peaks serve as one of the major attractions in the tourism of Tawang or any other hill station in the country. But the distinctiveness of the peak of Gorichen is that this peak is entirely fed by glaciers. It belongs to the region of the Eastern Himalayas. 6530m is the altitude measurement of the peak.
The snow and the pristine white color of the peak are maintained throughout the year so that you can visit the destination without the constraints of time and season. Mountaineers are mostly found in the location enjoying their adventure time with the Gorichen Peak. Trekking and other forms of adventure activities are also available in the location facilitating better tourism in the location.
It was T. Haralu an army official who first climbed the peak in the year, 1966. The ascending was part of a military expedition. While taking into consideration the entire peaks in the Northeastern side of the country, the Gorichen peak attains the third-highest position.
Peng Teng Tso Lake
This is another picturesque and high-altitude lake situated in the Eastern Himalayan ranges in the Tawang region. With snow-laden mountains surrounding its sides, the beauty and elegance of the lake are always in a state of supremacy. The size of the lake is also huge making it a prominent landmark in the Tawang area.
On account of its distinctive geographical location, vehicle transport is not possible in the region. You need to take a walk to reach the premises of the lake. The pavement is exclusively built for tourism purposes by the government.
If you are visiting the location during the winter months of the year, all you can find is the lake is frozen and fascinatingly beautiful. Lapis flowers are the other major attraction of Tso lake. Eastern Himalayan vegetation and biodiversity are also expressive in the location of the lake.
Tawang War Memorial
Just as the name suggests, this is a war memorial situated in the territory of Tawang. The memorial commemorates the soldiers who lost their lives in the Indo-China war that happened in the year 1962. The location of the memorial is quite close to the city center of Tawang.
The structure is built integrating the architectural designs and textures of the Buddhist style. The flags, prayer wheels, dragons, and colorful serpents are elements expressing the same style. The construction of the memorial was not just the effort of any particular group or the government.
The locals of the region as well as the tourists visiting the town have also significantly contributed to the construction expenses and ornamentation. This has enhanced the beauty and pride of the Tawang war memorial in multiple ways by making it a marvel of collective effort. Since the memorial is located in a Buddhist region, several spiritual elements and idols can also be seen in the location of the memorial.
This is also another war memorial found in the location of Tawang. If you are historically driven and would like to know more about the significance of the city of Tawang in the political trajectories of the country, the Jaswant Garh war memorial should not be missed out.
Unlike the Tawang War Memorial which honors the entire soldier who sacrificed their lives in the war between India and China, this war memorial is exclusively built as a tribute to the soldier named, Jaswant Singh. He had fought 72 hours non-stop in the war to defend our nation from the Chinese invaders.
Unfortunately, the nation could only honor him posthumously. He was awarded the Mahavir Chakra for proving his bravery and strength on the war front for the country. His portraits and military belongings are also exhibited in the war memorial.
Best Time To Visit Tawang:
March – September
How To Reach Tawang?
Nearest Railway Station
Tezpur Railway Station (TZTB)
Nature, spirituality, history, and patriotism are opening their hands wide to welcome you to this hill station town in Arunachal Pradesh. Analyze your interests and plan your vacation accordingly.
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