Homestay in Northeast

22 Days
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Northeast is about its people so the best way to discover this region is to stay with its inhabitants.

They are the best ambassadors of their villages and hospitality hasn’t been learned in a Tourism School. Offering something a night in a hotel can never provide, they give you a real experience of local life. No one knows a place better than the local residents, and by staying with someone local you have access to the best information on the place. You will not find this in those guide books. Even online, most information on exploring a place is repetitive, as sites copy from each other, so trust your host to tell you where to go and what to do. Plus, homestay owners make it their business to know more about the local area so that they can point out shortcuts and scenic routes to their guests, making exploring all the more convenient.

Furthermore you will get to see your food getting prepared, even get a cooking class and finally enjoy a delicious meal made with love. The service is also more personalised, because they can afford to cater to the demands of their few guests.

Being generally cheaper than a hotel, your money goes for longer at a homestay, so you can afford that extra sightseeing excursion or trek that you might not have done if you were spending more on just accommodation. Instead of staying 1 night as planned, you might end up staying 3 or 4 days to enjoy the slow path of the countryside life.
Last but not least, by staying at a homestay, you are contributing to the livelihood of the local community. Though homestays have now become quite common and are available in more cosmopolitan cities as well, in places like Sikkim, Nagaland or Orissa, often these are the only stay options, and an easy and good way of earning for the host community. During the Hornbill Festival in Nagaland, for instance, a large section of the local community depends entirely on tourism for their living. Often, you also end up buying handicraft from local artisans that your hosts may point to and, best of all, return and spread the good word around. It’s a great way of giving back to the chosen place of your travel.

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Day 1

Arrival in Guwahati

Welcome at the airport and transfer to Guwahati. On the way, drive up the steep curves of Nilachal Hills to visit the Kamakhya Temple dedicated to the Mother Goddess; the divine female energy of Hindu religion. Night in homestay. Option: Enjoy a sunset cruise on the River Brahmaputra. In case of arrival in the morning, you can proceed to Manas NP, Nameri NP, Kaziranga NP or Shillong. Please contact us.

Day 2

Guwahati - Balipara

After breakfast, drive to Balipara where you arrive for lunch. Delight in the contrasting experience of riding a hulking, rugged elephant to an elegant tea party… in fact the most aptly named tea party in the world… one laid out in the tranquil setting of a genuine tea garden! Gaze down the road framed by towering trees and experience the full impact of seeing your majestic ride trundle towards you. Clamber on top of the magnificent beast, one of the most revered creatures in India. The mahout (elephant minder) then gives the signal to ride out of the estate through local villages, bamboo groves and farmland, across babbling brooks and dried up river beds where, on a clear Jour the distant Himalayas are visible, and finally into the neighbouring tea garden where a white lacy cloth-covered table set with classic bone china awaits. Night in Heritage property.

Day 3

Balipara - Dirang

After breakfast, you go to Dirang. In Bhalukpong, which is the border between Assam and Arunachal Pradesh, you will ask permission to enter Arunachal. The journey is along a very scenic road traversing forested hills and crossing over the Nichephu pass to the Tanga valley. Traversing the Tanga valley, the road climbs through a series of hairpins to the town of Bomdila, located at 2800 m height pass of same name. En route, stop at Tipi to visit a greenhouse of orchids with more than 7,500 flowers. You will also stop in the temple of Nag Mandir in Dedza. Visit the village inhabited by the ethnic Rupa of Shertukpen. Lunch at Bomdila and will continue to Thembang. Night in Monpa homestay. We highly recommend you to add 1 extra night in Thembang to explore the surroundings.

Day 4

Dirang Valley

Spend the day exploring Thembang, an ancient fortified village of high historical and cultural significance and inhabited by the indigenous Monpa tribe. The village has witnessed very little impact of urbanisation. Clans residing inside the fort still live in stone houses that were constructed following indigenous Monpa architecture. There are many caves with religious significance and numerous Mani and Chorten in and around the village. The village is surrounded with lush green majestic mountain peaks with oak and blue pine forest slopes, with cascading high speed perennial rivers flowing down below the deep gorges. Night in homestay.

Day 5

Dirang - Tawang

After breakfast, visit the hot springs of Dirang and then drive to Tawang, the birthplace of Mahayana Buddhism. To reach Tawang, pass through the mountain pass Sela, at 4 170 m. Night in homestay. A scenic drive through the serpentine roads along the river Kameng with beautiful landscapes. Dirang, the sub- divisional headquarter of West Kameng district is situated between Bomdila and Tawang. This town is situated in the valley of river Kameng. Inhabited by the Monpa tribe.

Day 6


In the morning, visit of Tawang monastery. In the afternoon, excursion to Sungester Lake. Road back to Tawang. Night in homestay. Tawang was in the route chosen by the Dalai Lama to enter India from Tibet. A stunning 8 m high gilded statue of Buddha dominates the sanctum. Attached to the monastery, there is a Museum and a library with priceless collections. The monastery is one of the largest in Asia with a thousand monks. The craft centre sells beautiful masks, hand-woven carpets, tangkhas, and jewellery in silver, turquoise, coral and amber. The museum presents the rich cultural diversity of Tawang.

Day 7

Tawang - Bomdila

After breakfast, you go to Bomdila. En route we pass Nuranang Falls, the memorial of Jaswant Garh (in memory of the Indochina war) and the Dirang Ta Dzong (Tibetan old prison). Night in homestay.

Day 8

Bomdila - Itanagar

Today you drive to Itanagar, the capital of Arunachal, a modern enclave built where the ruins of the ancient capital of the fourteenth century reside. In the afternoon, stroll through the local markets. Night in homestay.

Day 9

Itanagar - Ziro

Today you drive to Itanagar, the capital of Arunachal, a modern enclave built where the ruins of the ancient capital of the fourteenth century reside. In the afternoon, stroll through the local markets. Night in homestay.

Day 10


After breakfast, drive to the Shiv Mandir and then come back to the valley. After that you can visit the high altitude fishing farms where they grow fishes in the paddy fields. Then visit Hong and Dutta (Apatani villages) and the craft centre where you could do some shopping as well. Drive up to the view point near old Ziro and enjoy the view of the valley from top. Night in homestay.

Day 11

Ziro - Majuli

Drive to North Lakhimpur and take a ferry ride to Majuli, the world's biggest river island in the middle of the mighty Brahmaputra. Rest of the day in Majuli Island visiting the weaving center, spending the time in the tribal villages & satras (monasteries). Night in traditional bamboo hut.

Day 12


Full day visit of Majuli by car/cycle/motorcycle. Explore the satras, its dancing monks and Mishing villages. This day will also acquaint you with Majuli's textile heritage as you visit small weaving villages along the Brahmaputra river that are entirely sustained by this cottage industry. After interacting with the weavers, it will soon become evident that the sociocultural life of these communities are significantly expressed in their textiles and patterns. Continue on to visit a mask painters’ workshop and a potters’ village. Pottery is made by hand from beaten clay (not on potters’ wheels) and burnt in driftwood-fired kilns; this is said to be the same method used by the people of the ancient Harrappan Civilisation. In addition, if you are interested, Majuli Island is a bird watchers’ paradise; it is home to nearly one hundred species of birds, including many rare and endangered species, such as the greater adjutant stork, pelican and the whistling teal. Night in traditional bamboo hut.

Day 13

Majuli - Shiyong

After breakfast, road for Shiyong in Nagaland. Hidden in the heart of a tea plantation, you arrive in an organic farm growing lemongrass, fruits and beautiful flowers. Night in a Konyak homestay.

Day 14


Walk through the hillsides of the tea plantation enjoying the spectacular scenery of the surrounding Konyak territory, learn how to pick tea leaves from the tea ladies at the tea estate, pick oranges from the orchard when in season, hike to the nearby waterfalls and forests, try your hand at milking cows, see how we smoked meat in the traditional method practiced for generations, help the local farmers in their fields and share lunch with them, hangout with the locals sipping home brewed rice beer, or just sit by the bonfire and soak in the experience at the farmhouse. Night in homestay.

Day 15

Shiyong - Jorhat

After breakfast, drive to Jorhat where you can enjoy a guided visit to a nearby factory, followed by a tea tasting tour of the different grades of tea produced in the factory or the Gibbon Wildlife Sanctuary or visit some nearby villages to observe the simple and sustainable lifestyle of the Indian countryside. Night in homestay.

Day 16

Jorhat - Khonoma

After breakfast, leave for Khonoma, the first Green Village of the country. Night in homestay.

Day 17


Spend the day exploring the village. You can check out the women weaving fine shawls in different colours as well as designs. Spear making art and cane basket craft can also be seen as an activity among the men of the village. You might meet National Winners in cane basket making here at the village itself. A visit to Morung is also possible. It is supposed to be a ceremonial gate according to the locals from where the history and culture of the place is passed on to the coming generations. There are some forts to cover as well. This is followed by a picnic lunch and then a short discussion on how the famous Jhum cultivation is done that was practised by the past generations along with Alder trees. Night in homestay.

Day 18

Khonoma - Sonapur

Long drive to Sonapur. Night in homestay.

Day 19

Sonapur - Cherrapunjee

After breakfast, drive to Cherrapunjee, where the sign 'the rainiest place on planet Earth' greets you. The road to Cherrapunjee through the East Khasi Hills winds through dense pine and oak forests, full of ferns and orchids. En route are dramatic gorges and ravines, waterfalls and limestone caves. After whole day of sightseeing, stay at homestay.

Day 20


After breakfast, go for a trek (around 3000 steps) to the root bridge of Cherrapunjee with a local guide. You have the option of visiting the single decker bridge or unique double decker bridge. Picnic and swim in natural pools. Night in resort. Options: 1. Trekking to Umkar Living Root Bridge (1 hr walk) - 2. Walk to Laitkynsew View Point (1 hr walk) - 3. Walk to Nongwar View Point (1 hr walk) - 4. Trekking to Umunoi Living Root Bridge (3 hrs walk) - 5. Trekking to double decker Root Bridge (5/6 hrs) - 6. Trekking to Kongthong Village (2d/1n)

Day 21

Cherrapunjee - Guwahati

After breakfast, leave for Guwahati via Shillong. Night in homestay.

Day 22

Departure from Guwahati

After breakfast, transfer to the airport. End of our services.