Tripura is a land of amazing transition; a satisfying compromise between the old order and the new; a delicate fusion of the styles and cultures of the hills and plains. Previously a princely state, and subsequently a Union Territory of Independent India, Tripura was elevated to the status of a state, on January 21, 1972. Tripura is a predominantly hilly region, with altitudes varying from 50 to 3080 ft above sea level, though the major population of the state lives in the plains. Characterised by moderate temperatures and highly humid atmosphere, Tripura is best visited after the south - west monsoons, in October. 60% of the total area is covered by hills and forests. This tiny state, with an area of about 10, 500 sq. kms is peopled largely by 19 tribes, Bengali, Manipuri and other communities.