Our journey to a wild and relatively unexplored National Park in India, Namdapha National Park, started early in the morning. There was a well maintained road from Digboi in Assam to Jagun Check Gate in Arunachal Pradesh. But the road thereafter was horrible. Miao, a small town in Changlang district and our entry point to Namdapha National Park was only 40 Km from Jagun check gate but it took us around 2½ hours to reach there. It was a difficult journey mostly on the rocky surface to Miao. Our accommodation in Namdapha National Park and the tourist permits were made in advance through Mr. A.K. Das, an officer in the Office of the Field Director, Namdapha National Park at Miao in Arunachal Pradesh. So, we stopped at Miao to collect the permits and after a short halt we resumed the journey on a jungle road to Deban where our accommodation was booked in Forest Rest House. Deban was further 26 Kms from Miao which connects with Miao by a muddy jungle road.
Entry Gate to Namdapha National Park
We entered to a zone where no mobile network was available. In the jungles, we were cut off from rest of the world. Oh, it’s not only that, we were cut off from electricity too! Yet we were so engaged with the nature that we hardly felt their absence.
That’s the road to Deban Forest Rest House
Forest Rest House at Deban
It was mid-noon when we made it to Deban. Here, the caretaker of the rest house cooks and provides foods to the visitors against a nominal charge. He told us that our lunch would be ready within an hour. So, we decided to explore the nearby areas. Down to the hill where the rest house locates, flows the river Now-Dihing or Noa-Dihing. We went down to the river bed, walked along the river, crossed the bamboo bridge and took lots of pictures. There was nothing more to do and coming back for the lunch was the only option.
Noa-Dihing or Now-Dihing River at Namdapha National Park
On a Bamboo Bridge over river Noa-Dihing at Namdapha National Park
Our group photo at Noa-Dihing River side- Namdapha National Park
Namdapha National Park has dense vegetation with high hills and many streams. It is a paradise for bird watchers and those who love to see butterflies. Though big cats like tigers and leopards are said to be found in Namdapha National Park but due to dense forest they remain elusive and one has to be very lucky in spotting one of them. In the afternoon after lunch, when we drove deep into the forest to the view point, our journey started with full of excitement and adventures. In the dark forest, sounds of birds and that of some animals, may be of Gibbons, were exciting in the initial moments but really we could not spot anything big except a deer and a fox.
Days are small here. Soon we were in full darkness; sounds in the forest became louder but nothing really happened. We returned to the rest house. After a long time, I was staying in a dark night amidst the jungle. It was a lovely evening. No electricity, no lights, amidst the jungle we were in complete darkness. However, the rooms in the rest house had lights powered by batteries. Before dinner we kindled bonfire on the outside and enjoyed the evening discussing tourism in North East, politics and what not.
Namdapha National park is one of a few where no safaris are available and the only means to explore it is on foot. Next morning, we awoke early with a hope to spot varieties of butterflies, birds and Gibbons. Yes, it was much satisfying as we saw Indian great pied hornbill, Writhed hornbill, Trogon, Slaty back forktail, red start bird, gray-backed shrike and Hollock Gibbon.
Photo Galleries of Namdapha National Park
Indian Great Pied Hornbill
Indian Great Pied Hornbill
Red Start Bird
Slaty back forktail
You know the name of it :-)
How to reach Namdapha National Park: The nearest rail head is Ledo. But Tinsukia or Dibrugarh will be a more convenient station. From Tinsukia Rly station Deban is at a distance of 139 Km. Deban locates at a distance of 192 Km from the nearest airport at Dibrugarh.
Entry Permits, Tourist Permits and Booking of Forest Rest House : To enter Arunachal Pradesh one needs to obtain inner line permits from the Office of the Resident commissioner, Arunachal Pradesh in Delhi, Kolkata, Guwahati or Dibrugarh. The Tourist Permits are issued by The Field Director, Namdapha Tiger Reserve, Miao-792122, Changlang District, Arunachal Pradesh. We took the help of Mr. A.K. Das Office of the field Director, Namdapha National Park, Miao. He is available at +91-94366-32806. Mr. Das is a very helpful officer. He responds well in telephone and also does everything to get in advance tourist permits and booking of Forest Rest House at Deban. He responds too by email which is [email protected]
What expect to see at Namdapha National Park? If you like jungles and wish to spend some moments or days in solitude and serenity, it is one of the best places. You may perhaps see all those I mentioned and sighting any wild animal would be a surprise gift.