East India is located by the east coast of India, near the Bay of Bengal, including the states of West Bengal, Bihar, Jharkhand and Orrisa. Eastern India also comprise of the easternmost states of India; Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Sikkim and Tripura. One of the most important rivers that flow through this region is the mighty Brahmaputra, which originates in Tibet and eventually empties itself into the Bay of Bengal. East India has been the ruling ground for many ancient empires such as the Maurya, Sunga, Kalinga and Pala Empires. On the other hand the states to the extreme east of India have a strong ethnic culture that escaped Sanskritization, and have a predominance of Tibeto- Burman language.
Orissa is known for its cities of Bhubaneshwar (also the capital of Orissa); known for its intricately carved sacred temples. This city was also the capital of the Kalinga Empire during the rule of King Asoka. The city of Konark in Orissa is known for its renowned Sun Temple that is more than 700 years old. This magnificent temple has been recognised as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO and hosts an annual Konark Festival, which features Indian classical dancers from across the country, performing in front of this elaborate temple. Puri, on the other hand is known for its beaches, temples and caves.
The state of Bihar, often underrated as a tourist destination, surprisingly has a lot to offer. Cities like Patna (the state capital) has a lot to offer tourists, like the Kumraha Excavations, Qila House, Khuda Baksh Oriental Library, Har Mandir, Golghar, Sanjay Gandhi Botanical Park and Patna House. Back in the 5th century, Nalanda was a very famous university. It is believed that Lord Buddha and Lord Mahavir (the founder of Jainism) visited this centre of learning. Bodhgaya in Bihar is the birthplace of Buddhism, it is believed that here seated under a tree, Prince Siddhartha Gautama, attained awakening and came to be known as Buddha. This place is frequented by many Buddhist and non-Buddhist to get to know more about Buddha and Buddhism. Many monks from Dharamsala also make their way down to Bodhgaya and it is believed that the Dalai Lama spends a few months of the year in here. Rajgir is another popular tourist destination in Bihar and is known to be a place of pilgrimage; it is believed that Lord Mahavir lived in this town for 14 years. Rajgir is known for its hot water springs and the Rajgir dance festival. Vaishali is famous for being home to two important religions, Buddhism and Jainism. Ranchi the state capital of the newly formed state of Jharkhand is famous for its many beautiful waterfalls.
Arunchal Pradesh with its capital of Itanagar is the easternmost state of India and is also known as "The Land of the Rising Sun". Some popular tourist attractions here are the Jawaharlal Nehru Memorial Museum, the Ganga Lake, the Indira Gandhi Park and the Ita Fort and Buddhist Monasteries. The state of Assam is known for its cities of Dispur (the state capital) and Guwahati, known for their tea gardens, the Kaziranga National Park (famous for the one horned Rhino) and many beautiful Hindu temples. Sikkim is known for its capital and largest city on the state, Gangtok, famous for its beautiful hills and mouth watering cuisine. The other north-eastern states like Manipur, Mizoram, Meghalaya and Tripura are known for their beautiful hilly terrain, their tribal population and tribal arts and crafts.
Cuisine of East India
Rice is the staple food grain in East India. States like West Bengal and Orissa consume a lot of fish whereas the Eastern most states prefer beef and pork.
West Bengal Cuisine
Bengali cuisine is known for its emphasis on fish and lentils served with rice, the staple food grain. Some popular Bengali dishes are Bhapa Illish, Roshogulla and Misti Doi.
Food in Orissa relies heavily on local ingredients, and popular local dishes are Fish Orly, Khirmohan and Rasabali.
Food from Bihar is primarily vegetarian and some mouth watering dishes from Bihar are Sattu Parantha, Tilkut, Khaja and Khubi ka Lai.
Food from this region is known to have a tribal influence due to the many tribes that inhabit this area, some popular dishes are, Thekua, Pua, Pittha and Marua ka Roti.
Aruanchal Pradesh Cuisine
The staple food of Arunachal Pradesh is rice, fish, meat and lots of green vegetables. Some popular foods from here are, boiled rice cakes and Apong (a local brewed beer).
This food is characterized by the use of lots of spices like ginger and garlic and not much oil. Common dishes from this area are Masor Tenga and Pitha.
Manipuri cuisine consists of rice, fish and green leafy vegetables, like Iromba, Kabok and Chakkoubba.
Rice, maize and fish are the staple foods of people from this region. Some popular dishes from Meghalaya are Jadoh, Kyat (local beer) and Bitchi.
Rice and pork are the staple foods of Mizoram and some popular dishes are Sawchair and Zu (a special tea).
Nagaland is known for its exotic meats but its simple and flavourful ingredients. Some popular Naga foods are Momos, rice beer and cherry wine.
Rice and vegetables form the staple of Sikkim food and some popular dishes are Momos, Thukpa, Gungruk and Seal Roti.
Rice and meat are the staple foods of this region and some popular delicacies of Tripura are Chakwi, Mwkhwi and Muitru.
Last Updated on : 07/10/2013
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