One of the smallest states of
the Indian Union, Nagaland is almost
unexplored, as far as tourist
destinations are concerned. Located
in the northeast corner of India, Nagaland
has Assam, Arunachal Pradesh and Manipur
on its domestic border and with Myanmar,
an international boundary on the east.
The main rivers that flow through Nagaland
are Dhansiri, Doyang, Dikhu and Jhanji,
and it,s six districts are Mokokchong,
Tuensang, Mon, Wokha, Zunheboto and
Kohima. A completely tribal area, set
within dense jungles, the Nagas are
a conglomeration of 15 tribes and many
more sub tribes, of which the Ao, Angami,
Lotha are the better known.
Warm and colourful Naga shawls, hand-woven
shoulder bags, decorative spears, woodcarvings
and bamboo works are traditional arts
handed from generation to generation,
with each tribe having it's own distinctive
style and color schemes.They make excellent
souvenirs. Sekrenyi, Moatsu, Tuluni
and Tokhu Emong are some of their important
festival. However, any moment of joy,
be it birth, marriages or the harvest
is enough for the Nagas to burst into
Kohima,the capital is a typical laid
back Asian mountain town, with no monuments,
monastries or temples to offer by way
of stock tourist attraction. However
the unhurried pace of life, calm and
serene environs and fresh, unpolluted
air makes a welcome change for a jaded
city dweller and an opportunity to soak
in the rich Naga traditions. Kohima's
unique attraction however is its war
cemetery, still respectfully maintained
by the British. A few lines about it:
In March 1944, the Japanese 31st Division
marched northwest ward into Burma, swept
through the Naga hills, invading India,
and lay siege on Imphal and Kohima.
The confident Japanese planned to press
on toward the India Plains., and only
Kohima lay between them.
A crucial battle ensued at Kohima where
some 2,500 British Empire troops came
under siege of a formidable Japanese
force numbering 15,000 soldiers supported
by 10,000 ammunition laden oxen. For
weeks the belligerents sparred in bloody
artillery duels interrupted only by
hand to hand skirmishes and bayonet
attacks. Finally, after 64 days, amid
terrible losses on both sides, the Japanese
were beaten. They withdrew from Kohima,
and their dominance in northern Burma
had begun to crumble.
Understandably, the determination and
gallantry shown by allied troops in
the Kohima was quick to become the subject
of folklore,poem, song, and legend.
Today in the Kohima cemetery, wherein
lay these brave men, among the 1,378
grave markers, is the famous Kohima
Memorial and it's historic inscription:
"When you go
Tell them of us,
For their tomorrow, We gave our today"
This picturesque town is the cultural
center of the Ao tribes of Nagaland,
one can have visit to Longkhum
a vanguard village in the days of head
hunting is situated at an altitude of
1846 metres and is 17 km from the Mokokchung
town and the village command a beautiful
view of the surrounding hills and valley
and the Ungma village the oldest and
biggest Ao village according to the
legend, the early Aos settled after
coming from Chungliyimti. This village
is any centuries old and can be of great
interest to people who have a desire
to peep into Ao folklore coustom and
tradition. And the Molung village has
the distinction of having the first
American Baptist Mission being eastablished
in the Naga hill in 1872 and the earliest
mission building is still intact and
preserved in the village premises. An
ancient leechi tree supposedly planted
by Dr. E.w. Clark, the first American
Missionary still exists.
Khonoma village located 20 km west of
Kohima, supports a predominantly agrarian
3000 people. Extensive rice terrace
have been carved out of the hill slopes
surround the village.The village referred
to as Khwunoria by the residents is
estimated to be around 400 years old.
The unique variety of soil and elevation
of its fields have resulted in about
20 different types of rice being grown
Khonoma's fame comes chiefly but though
not entirely through its standing as
a warrior village. In the villages of
Nagaland traditionally Khel was the
most important plateform of governance.
The picturesque village of Khonoma offers
delightful views of Nagaland's natural
beauty and ecological diversity. En
route look out for the memorial stones
erected to commemorates Feasts of
Merit, and intricate system of bamboo
pipes which carry waters from long distance.
Tuophema located 41 km north of the
state capital trace its history back
as far as 1431 AD and gets
its name from the Erithrina tree which
is a symbol of victory to its inhabitants.
This tribal village is a tourist destination
with a difference in that each clan
(Khel) from the village runs a traditional
house, complete with modern facilities
for tourist to check into.
Apart from that visitors can visit the
cultural museum sample locally grown
organic food prepared in a traditional
Naga kitchen and even hear first hand
the fascinating folklore recounted by
Phek is the district headquarter and
home of the Chakhesang ( combination
of three tribes, 'Cha' of Chekru, 'Khe'
of Khezhe and Sang of 'Sangtam')
The culture and Chakhesang is very different
from other Nagas. Phek is famous for
its colourful Tsukhenyie festival which
takes place in March and April. Blythe
Pheasants are found in abundance here
as are exotic verities of orchids
The Semas live in homes strung along
a cluster of hillock in Zunheboto (150
The martial race among the Naga tribes
is renowned for their dazzling war dance,
flok songs and ceremonial war dresses.
Tuluni is one of the most important
festivals observed in the second week
of july every year.
The Konyak Nagas are the inhabitants
of this district and it is interesting
to see tattooed faces wearing feather
Konyaks are adept artisans and skilled
craftsmen. One can have an exciting
experience to pay a visit to Angh's
house at Chui, Mon Tangnyu, Sheangha,
Chingnyu, Wakching and Jaboka. Konyaks
are ruled by hereditary chiefs known
as Anghs and the institution of Anghship
is only prevalent among the Konyaks.
The most colourful festival of the Konyaks
- "Aoling Monyu" which is
observed during the first week of April
every year, is a spectacle worth a watch.
Shangnyu Village: Ruled by the
chief Angh, Shangnyu village is one
of the prominent villages in Mon district.
There is a wonderful wooden monument
measuring 8 feet in height and 12 feet
in breadth - believed to be constructed
by heavenly angels. Carvings of human
beings and other creatures are engraved
on this monument. Memorial stones are
also found in front of the Angh's palace
Longwa Village : One of the biggest
villages in Mon district; As the village
straddles on the International boundary
line, one half of the Angh's house falls
within the Indian Territory, whereas
other half lies under Myanmarese control.
The whole village is controlled by the
Angh and the village Council Chairman.
Another interesting feature of this
village is that the Angh of the village
has 60 wives and his jurisdiction extends
up to Myanmar and Arunachal Pradesh.
Veda Peak : The highest peak of
the district is approximately 70 km
east of Mon. This peak, offers a clear
sight of both river Brahmaputra and
Chindwin on a clear day. There is a
waterfall on the precincts of this peak
and this area is also considered as
one of the best locations in the whole
of Konyak countryside.
Wokha : The Wokha region is
home to the Lotha tribe. Hilltop villages
studded with monoliths (Longsu) erected
by rich ancestors depiciting their
high status surround it. The Lothas
are known for their colorful dances
and flok songs. The woman wears the
'Opvuram', the prestigious social
shawl and the man the 'Longpensu'.
Wokha district is reputed for its
excellent oranges and pineapples.
Rising 3048 m high above the verdure
of the valley floor, Japfu peak, 15
km south of Kohima, makes for a great
trek especially from November to March.
Behind it lies the Dzukou Valley, (2462
m), watered by a meandering stream which
often freezes in winter. In spring,
it is rich with wild flowers and pink
and white rhododendrons.
Located about 37 km from Dimapur and
11 km from Kohima, Intaki Wildlife Sanctuary.
Is the home of Hoolock Baboon, the only
gibbon found in India.the sancturary
also has a sizeable number of elephant
, tiger , mithun, Sambhar, wild dog
and sloth bear.
- Manas - Nameri - Kaziranga
is known all over the world
as the home of one-horned
Tribes, Monasteries, Temples,
Wild Life & Crafts of
Assam, the eastern most
state of the Indian sub-continent........