Sinchita Mitra

Thick green forest cover, sprawling lush trees and the aroma of the pine woods swirling around the air, such as the serenity at the Eaglenest Wildlife Sanctuary.

Located in the heart of North East, the Eaglnest Sanctuary quite a mystical forest reserve. It is a great place to explore the hidden gems of the North East, and to get lost in the magic of nature. This reserve is situated in the heavenly state of Arunachal Pradesh, in the West Kameng District.

The Eaglenest is nestled amidst the Sessa Orchid Sanctuary and the Pakhui Tiger Reserve which makes it even more alluring. This sanctuary is also part of the campus Kampeng Elephant Reserve. If you have time by your side, then you must explore both to make this trip even more enchanting.

How To Reach

By Air: Tezpur is the nearest airport (150 km), and from there you can hire a cab. You can also land at the Guwahati airport (335 km), from where you can hire a taxi/ cab till the sanctuary.

By Train: Bhalukpong is the nearest railway station (94 km). From there you can get shared jeeps, cabs or you can trek as well, with an overnight stay at the Lama Camp.

A Little Bit Of History

The Eaglenest Wildlife Sanctuary was established by the Indian Army, and the name comes from the Red Eagle Division of the Indian Army. This division of the army had its bases there during the 1950s.

The Sanctuary

eaglenest wildlife sanctuary
source: Resort In Asia

The beauty of this reserve not only lies in its exotic and rare flora and fauna, but also in its breathtaking landscapes and surreal avenues which makes it a great place for peace seekers and nature lovers.

The Eaglenest Wildlife Reserve is situated by the foothills of the Himalayas, making the view quite something to look out for. When you walk through the forest, you will notice misty clouds playing hide and seek with the Himalayas from a distance. This is complemented perfectly by the tall trees, little bushes, and scattered leaves.

This entire region is covered with sprawling green grass and a forest cover, making it filled with national parks, forest reserves, and wildlife sanctuary.

The Flora And Fauna

This Wildlife Sanctuary is home to several species of rare and exotic animals and plants. From colorful birds to unique animals, you will find everything here. All you need to do is keep your eyes open and alert and let the forest do the rest. You might come across animals like the capped langur, the Bengal Tiger, the red panda, gaur, and the famous Asian elephants. It is quite easy to spot these animals, and your guide will take you to spots where they are met frequently seem.

When it comes to flora, the Eaglenest has a wide variety of vibrant flowers, trees, and bushes that will keep you enthralled for ages. Trees like bamboo, coniferous trees and pine trees make the area more fragrant and ethereal.

Bird Watching

The Eaglenest acquired wide popularity and acclaim after serval types of birds were spotted here. This place is quite a haven for bird lovers, and you will often find bird watches flocking here.

Try and catch these birds in action, as they swoop over you, or glide through the sky. The sight is quite delightful and picturesque. Sometimes the birds also hide behind the tall trees, and you can only hear their melodious chirping. It is quite soulful to just stand there and listen to the sounds of nature.

There are about 700 species of bird here, making it one of India’s top bird-watching spots. Throughout your journey you will surely find people with binoculars lining up, trying to catch some glimpse of the birds.

Some of the guides use bird calls or bird whistles to tempt the birds. Even though it is quite a wonderful sight to watch the birds hover around looking for the sound, you should avoid it as much as you can. These birds respond to the whistle, which they believe to be the sound of their loved one. It is quite gut-wrenching to see them fly around looking for their loved one and find no one.

Some of the highlights of this forest are the Bugun Liocichla,  the Rufous-necked Hornbill (try and spot this sitting atop the first canopy), Wren Babblers, Ward’s Trogon and the Mesia.

Apart from birds, the park is also home to several species of snakes, lizards, and fluttering butterflies.

Some Activities At The Sanctuary

The Eaglenest has become quite a popular spot, especially for wildlife and nature lovers. Once you are here, you can partake in many activities inside the sanctuary to make your trip even more memorable.

You should take a jeep safari. The guide will take you to the most prominent areas and you can witness the best of the sanctuary through this activity. The guide will also tell you all about the history and geography of the place, making your trip more insightful.

Please note: Jeep Safaris are not allowed from June to October.

The other activities here are trekking and camping. You can just set up a tent in the middle of all this nature and admire the beauty that is in front of you. Wake up to the chirping of the birds and let the magic of nature heal you.

Many trekking trails pass through here. You can explore them, and who knows you might discover a path that no one knew before.

Finally, you can engage in some nature photography. The Eaglenest is full of picturesque spots, that are even therapeutic to look at. You will often find many professional photographers coming here and setting up their gigantic cameras to get those perfect shots.

Where To Stay

Lama Camp
source: rhinoecotours

When you are visiting the Eaglenest Wildlife Sanctuary in Arunachal Pradesh, then the best way to get a wholesome experience is to stay in the area itself.

The Bompu Camp, Sessni, and Lama Camp allow you the magic of staying inside the forest and waking up to bird calls and a scintillating sunrise.

To experience this, you need to first come to Lama from Bhalukpong. Stay the night at the Lama Camp and then make your way to the Bompu Camp from here. The camps are located quite close to each other.

Staying inside the forest will also allow you to witness the forest at night. Try and look at the twinkling night sky from the gaps in the forest canopy. It looks quite sensational. You can easily book these camps from a few agencies. They also tend to add a bird watching tour in their packages.

What To Pack

  • No matter when you are coming, it is best to pack warm woollen clothes. It can get quite chilly in the early dawn and after dusk. The temperature suddenly dips and there is a chilly nip in the air.
  • The weather at times can get quite unpredictable, so always pack your raincoats or windcheaters.
  • If you are carrying cameras then being rain protection gears for them as well.
  • Carry trousers, loose shirts, and trekking shoes. This will help you ward off leeches and insects.
  • Do not carry colourful and vibrant clothes. You should be able to blend with the forest and not stand out. Vibrant colors can attract animals who may come charging towards you or just run away.
  • Do not use deodorants or strong perfumes, as they might attract insects.
  • If you are planning on staying the night, then carry torches. It gets eerily dark in the night, so you will need a torch.
  • Always carry extra batteries for your equipment.

Permits and Fees

To witness the grandeur of the Eaglenest Wildlife Sanctuary, you will need to have a permit to even enter the state of Arunachal Pradesh.

If you are an India then you will need an Inner Line Permit. If you are a foreigner then you need to have a Protected Area Permit (PAP).

The Offices from here you can get these permits are located at Tenga, Sing Chung, Bhalukpong or Bomdila. If you are going through a travel agency then they will take care of your permits.

The entry fee for the sanctuary: INR 100 for Indians, and INR 500 for foreigners. The Eaglenest Wildlife Sanctuary is a hidden wonder of India, that must be explored at least once in your lifetime. It is the perfect confluence of peace and unparalleled beauty that will make you want to get lost in the woods. Just open your mind, and let the magic of the forest take control of your senses.

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