(GIST OF KURUKSHETRA) Arunachal Pradesh : Ziro Valley
Arunachal Pradesh : Ziro Valley
About 110 km from Itanagar is Ziro—a popular destination for those looking at spending a few days in a perfect rural setting in Arunachal Pradesh. While Ziro is a small district town, the Ziro Valley itself is a wonderful rural setting perched in the Eastern Himalayas, and offering an entirely different experience to the visitors.
Situated on the banks of the Pange river, Ziro is a musical valley comprising of several ancient villages like Hong, Hari, Hija, Bula, Baro, and Siiro. A visit to any of these villages, and more particularly to Hong and Hari - the two larger villages - one gets a feeling of travelling through a living anthropological museum, with older women wearing facial tattoos and large nose-rings.
Being home to several colourful Himalayan bird species nesting amid tall pine trees and wild floweringshrubs, Ziro Valley is also a bird-watchers’ paradise. Moreover, visitors are also amazed with how inhabitants of Apatani village rear fish in their paddy fields, a rare farming practice in the world. While Dolo Mando is a popular hiking destination nearby, one can also trek to the Kile Pakho ridge to have a panoramic view of the Ziro Valley on one side and the lofty Himalayas on the other. There are also two ancient temples nearby- the Meghna Cave Temple and Sidheshwar Nath Shivalinga.
Most tourists carry home colourful fabrics woven by the Apatani women, as also beautiful cane and bamboo baskets made by the men.
Ziro also figures in India’s Tentative List for UNESCO’s World Heritage Site, seeking global recognition for the distinct Apatani civilization with systematic land use practices and rich traditional ecological knowledge of natural resources management and conservation, acquired over the centuries through informal experimentation. Intricate handloom designs, traditional cane and bamboo crafts, and vibrant traditional village councils called Bulyan have made Ziro Valley an interesting example of a living cultural landscape where man and environment have harmoniously co-existed through changing times.