The Guwahati - Tawang - Bum La Cycling Expedition begins from Bhalukpong on the Assam - Arunachal border and takes you through a tour of the western regions of Arunachal Pradesh. The first few days consist of gradual altitude gain through lush tropical and alpine forests along the Kameng river, a major tributary of the Brahmaputra. After crossing three passes - Nechiphu, Bomdila and the icy and treacherous Se La at 4200 m, you enter the Tawang region, home to the nomadic Monpa tribes with their unique culture and one of the richest biodiversity hotspots in India, populated with red pandas and snow leopards. From Tawang, we ride towards the Indo - China border on icy dirt roads passing dozens of alpine lakes to Bum La at 4600 m. This route also loosely follows the route taken by the Dalai Lama on his escape to India from Tibet and is also the site of the 1962 Sino - Indian war. With its blend of history, culture and a landscape that changes from tropical forests to harsh alpine terrain, this is the perfect way to explore the Western Arunachal region.
Arrival at Guwahati
Report in Guwahati by the morning. Check-in to the booked hotel or orientation camp set up by Bikat Adventures. Proceedings will start after lunch with a round of introductions for the participants and organizers. The tour leader will brief about the expedition and after that fellow cyclists will be free to explore around Guwahati. Overnight at the hotel.
Guwahati to Bhalukpong (650 ft) - 240 km Drive
Today we drive from Guwahati to Bhalukpong at the Assam - Arunachal Pradesh border. The road up till here consists of busy highways so we will start cycling from tomorrow. Today, we cross the gigantic Brahmaputra river. Bhalukpong is a small town on the bank of the Kameng river. Stay in Bhalupong for the night.
Bhalukpong to Jamiri (4,265 ft) - 56 km
Today is our first day cycling. Our Inner Line Permits will be checked at Bhalukpong. The ride today is along the Kamen river through lush bamboo and banana forests in the East Himalayan foothills. Although we are riding at a low altitude, the route consists of gradual ascent till Nechiphu pass followed by a short 15 km descent to Jamiri. Stay in Jamiri for the night.
Jamiri to Bomdila (8,040 ft) - 44 km
Today is another day riding through forests on a mix of uphill and downhill sections. The ride till Tenga is mostly level ground followed by a sharp ascent to Bomdila. Bomdila is one of the bigger towns in the region with a beautiful gompa (monastery) and a busy marketplace. We stay in Bomdila for the night.
Bomdila to Sangti (5,413 ft) - 47 km
The route today begins with a small 4 km uphill section to the top of Bomdila Pass, after which it is an easy downhill ride on wide tarmac along the Dirang river. From Dirang, we descend to the riverbed and cross it, continuing on a 7 km level dirt road to Sangti, a lush and beautiful valley housing a large village with the same name. We will set up camp next to the Sangti river.
Dirang to Senge (9,515 ft) - 48 km
After an easy day yesterday, we have a long climb ahead of us. Senge is the last town before Jang after tomorrow's crossing of Se La. Stay in Senge for the night.
Senge to Jang (7,875 ft) via Se La (13,780 ft) - 66 km
Start early today as we have a long pass climb and an even longer descent ahead of us. The pass is generally covered with snow in early summers, although the road is kept open all year round. In summers, the area around the pass is used as yak pastures. There is a lake with the same name (Sela Lake) near the pass as well. On the descent from pass, there is Jaswant Garh, a war memorial to Jaswant Singh, who single handedly tried to hold off the Chinese army for 72 hours during the 1962 Indo China war. Descend all the way to Jang where we stay for the night.
Jang to Tawang (9,515 ft) - 40 km
Today's ride is initially a 10 km descent to the riverbed, where we cross the river and then follow a gradual uphill road to Tawang, home to the Monpa tribe. You can explore the Tawang Gompa and the town in the evening. Tomorrow, we start our climb towards our second pass.
Tawang to Bum La (12,140 ft) - 37 km
The route from Tawang consists of dirt roads and broken tarmac sections. Along with the condition of the road, the high altitude and uphill climb make it tougher than any of the previous days. The route is dotted with dozens of mesmerising alpine lakes. There is a gradual climb of 24 km to the TCP Checkpost at the Y Junction. From here, we take the road to right and begin a sharp ascent of 13 km to the top of Bum La on the Indo - China border. Once you finish the climb to the pass, return to Tawang by vehicle.
Tawang to Bomdila - 170 km Drive
Start you return journey to Guwahati today. Halt for the night at Bomdila.
Bomdila to Guwahati - 340 km Drive
Drive down to Guwahati today. The trip ends here.rive down to Guwahati today. The trip ends here.
Are you an avid biker or even a regular cyclist? If yes, then Guwahati - Tawang - Bum La Cycling Expedition is just the adrenaline boost for you. Guwahati - Tawang - Bum La Cycling expedition is an 11-day challenging expedition, consisting of difficult terrains and uphill riding conditions. Factors like high altitude, difficult passes, and hairpin bends make it completely different from cycling in plains. If you are a regular cyclist and have enough stamina to undertake this 11-day strenuous challenge, then give no second thoughts before signing up for this. This is a good alternative for people who have already done the Manali - Khardungla Cycling Expedition, or even those looking to prepare for the same.
Best time to do Guwahati - Tawang Cycling expedition
Pre-monsoon - Late March / Early April
Post monsoon - September, October
The base for the expedition is Guwahati, which is a major city connected daily by multiple flights and trains from Delhi and elsewhere.
There is 4G connectivity for all major networks throughout the Guwahati - Tawang Cycling expedition, with some exceptions. Vodafone has the best coverage, followed by Airtel.
See the packing list for cycling expeditions here
The accommodation will be a mix of hotel/guesthouse stays and camping.
Our community is an integral part of us and we take pride in our trekkers and climbers. When you complete at least three days on any trek or expedition with us, you become eligible for our membership and referral programs.
For us, a successful summit is not about reaching the highest point of a mountain but about making it safely back to base.
Cancellations up to 30 days prior to departure date
Between 30 days to 15 days prior to departure
Less than 15 days of departure
No Cash Refund
Cancellations up to 5 days prior to departure date
Cancellations less than 5 days prior to departure