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Often considered as a transit destination to the picturesque Mechuka valley, Aalo is much more than that. Tucked in the lap of untouched nature, Aalo can give you some serious wanderlust. The offbeat Aalo flaunts unmatched natural beauty, the pristine rivers, traditional Galo villages, hanging bridges, and warm Galo hospitality. The enchanting beauty of this place can mesmerize you beyond your expectations.
Aalo is the headquarter of the West Siang District and a promising destination for discerning travelers. The compelling beauty of offbeat Aalo commands at least a few days to soak into her serenity. Earlier known as Along, it offers numerous places around to explore its rustic charm. The immersive experiences like trekking, paragliding, river rafting, make this destination quite inviting in nature.
Encircled by the hills and sprawling orange orchards, Aalo is an ideal destination for slow travelers. Whether it is strolling in the local market to explore the local lifestyle, taking a hike in the hills, sitting on the bank of the Siyom River just to embrace the ambiance with the music of the river, or spending time with the Galo tribe, you can do plenty of things at your own pace. In addition, the best part of this sleepy little place is that it allows you to discover the offbeat destination and get amazed by its rawness.
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WHERE IS AALO
Located at the confluence of rivers Sipu and Yomgo, Aalo gives you a pleasant feel the moment you arrive. Far away from chaos and city life, the tranquil town is surrounded by lush hills and famous orange orchards.
HOW TO REACH
The nearest railway station to reach Aalo is Murkongselek Railway and it is 131 km from the city. One can hire a private cab or opt for a bus to reach Aalo town. However, there is no direct flight to Aalo.
You can take a road trip to reach Aalo which is 95 km from Pasighat. But, if you are traveling from Itanagar which is the capital of Arunachal Pradesh, it is 303 km in total. However, there is the State Road Transport Corporation (APSRTC) available for travelers.
The best way to plan your trip to Aalo is to travel with the most reputed Tour and Travel agency, The Holiday Scout. Find out why you should plan your Northeast India trip with The Holiday Scout.
WHICH ARE THE PLACES TO VISIT IN AALO?
You will be overwhelmed not just by the inestimable scenic surroundings of offbeat Aalo in Northeast India, but the number of places and the impeccable experiences that make you put this destination on your bucket list. Find out a few must-visit places and also experiences below.
VISIT PAYA VILLAGE
If you haven’t seen any traditional Galo village in Arunachal Pradesh, you have a great chance of visiting one in Along. One can find traditional villages tucked in the hilltops, making it look like a perfect postcard. I visited a traditional Galo village named Paya which is located a few km away from Along town.
The road to the village is quite a scenic one. The winding road along with towering hills let you cross the hanging bridge to reach the other end. A small hike from the bridge on a muddy road leads you to the traditional Galo village in Along.
Strolling around Paya village allows you to get a glimpse of the authentic Galo lifestyle. The traditional houses, villagers in traditional Galo attire and their daily life can be experienced once you let yourself be in the most gorgeous natural setup.
EXPLORE HANGING BRIDGES
The hanging bridges in the western part of Arunachal Pradesh in Northeast India are one of the fascinating sights. More than that, walking on those daggling bridges over the swelling river is an experience in itself. Your adrenal rush pumps high as you walk on those sloppy planks over those pristine rivers. The adventure it offers is priceless. Along with that, the tranquil scenic beauty is a bonus.
EXPERIENCE RIVER RAFTING
The river rafting in Aalo is one of the must-do things. The white water rafting in the Siyom River with captivating natural views around gives you a rousing experience. If you are an adventure lover, rowing your raft in the Siyom River with rapids should be on your bucket list. Like Pokhara in Bhutan, the confluence of rivers Sipu and Yomgo gives you a unique river rafting experience in Aalo.
GO FOR A HIKE
Aalo is the perfect destination for hikes and treks. The place is blessed with virgin forest and numerous hiking and trekking routes in the dense forest of Aalo. Walking on those untrodden paths in one of the most unexplored destinations is a must-do thing for adventure enthusiasts.
The untouched forested area, bamboo groves, rapidly flowing rivers, and the majestic Himalayan view can make you fall in love with this sleepy little destination. Imagine waking up early in the morning to hike and watching the rising sun behind the hills in complete silence, making it an exceptional experience.
EXPLORE LOCAL MARKET
Markets are an integral part of the cultural identity of any community. So if you wish to know the lifestyle and the culture of the community, visiting a local market is a must. The local market doesn’t just only give you glimpses of their daily food habits, attire, and other things, but it mirrors the local lifestyle of that community.
When in Aalo, don’t miss visiting the local market in the town. From fresh vegetables, cane products, traditional handlooms to authentic local food, one can get to see everything that helps you to know the Galo tribe better. Don’t forget to buy juicy oranges from the local market as they are freshly plucked from the orange orchards. You can also buy traditional jewelry, fresh produces, homemade pickles, etc.
Another place to visit in Aalo is the Donyi-Polo Temple. The Galo tribe follows Donyi-Poloism which is one of the oldest religions. It is believed that this religion is older than the Hindu religion as well. The followers of this religion worship the Sun and Moon from ancient times.
The temple has a large ground where the Mopin festival is celebrated in a grand manner every year in the month of April. One can also travel to far remote places like Basar to be part of the Mopin festival on a grand scale.
VISIT PATUM HANGING BRIDGE
Another attraction of Aalo is the famous Patum Bridge. This 146 m long Patum Cable Bridge was constructed for smooth transportation from one end to another. The bridge has become the tourist’s point of interest due to the breathtaking views it offers around. One can admire the compelling views of the Siyom River with the majestic Himalayas as a backdrop while standing on the bridge. In addition to that, the sunset views from the bridge are quite enchanting. This bridge gives an enticing view of the snow-clad mountains which gives a soothing touch to end a day.
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