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Nagaland Tourism

3.5 /5
Hills & Valleys | Rivers & Lakes 

Ideal duration: 3 - 5 days

Best Time: October to May Read More

Major Airports: Guwahati in Assam

"Gateway to the heart of India"

Nagaland, India

Nicknamed as the ?Land of Festivals?, Nagaland is a quaint state in the north-east part of the country and is one of the most-loved hill station tourist destinations in India. Nagaland is as much about scenic beauty as it is about carefully preserved history and tradition, and a visit to this mesmerising state will open up a vista of things you can see and do to make your holiday a memorable one. Inhabited by the tribes who are very protective towards their culture and identity, Nagaland is another name for beauty and bounty. Colourful costumes, spicy cuisines, pleasant weather, traditional villages, beautiful dance forms and lyrical songs are all that define the north-eastern state of Nagaland.

Nagaland has many places to offer to nature lovers; Japfu Peak, Dzukou Valley, Shilloi Lake are some of the places where people can find nature in its bounty. Like the other north-eastern states, Nagaland is also rich in culture with a variety of tribes. As all the tribes have their festivals and ceremonies, Nagaland is always ready to welcome a festival with great joy, and gaiety and food remain as much a part of the celebration as the dances and songs. Naga people eat almost anything that they can lay their hands on, be it dog, pork, snails or even an elephant and no part of the animal is wasted be it the skin or intestine. It shows how much they relish food and drinks. These jolly, colourful and crafty people are the soul of the state while nature attracts tourists from all over the world.

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Holidify's Opinion

What's Great?

Untouched natural beauty and plenty of wildlife. Pleasant climate throughout the year. Culturally diverse region with many tribes.

What's Not So Great?

Difficult to access because of poor road and rail connectivity. Occasional violence and political instability.

For Whom?

For adventure enthusiasts, there are plenty of trek routes. The large area under forest cover ensures a lot of endemic undisturbed wildlife for nature lovers. The 16 tribes living in this state also offer a lot of different cultural traditions.

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Dresses of Nagaland

The tribes of Nagaland are the main reason why tourists visit the state, and their unique cultural practices, food and colourful costumes are a delight to all those who venture to this unspoilt gem. Each of the tribes and sub-tribes has their unique way of dressing, and it is how they preserve their identity. The dress consists of a blend of natural fabrics and other animal and plant products. Beads, shells, teeth and bones of animals, feathers and flowers feature prominently in all tribal costumes. In the past, each of these adornments had to be earned by the individuals by showing feats of valour and were worn as badges of honour. Since the awareness of nature conservation has reached the tribes, they have mostly stopped the killing of animals for using their parts in costumes and now use differently made products to the same dazzling effect. An unusual tree is the emergence of the fashion industry in this state which blends the ethnic styles of the tribes with the demands of the present market. Many Naga youth are now prominent names in the country's fashion industry.

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Hornbill Festival: Festival of Festivals

Nagaland celebrates all its festivals with great pomp and vigour, and the most renowned festival that tourists love to participate in is the Kohima Hornbill Festival. Also known as the ?Festival of Festivals?, as it is the most important and well-loved festival in the state, the Hornbill Festival takes place in December and is nothing short of a riot of colours, cultures, dance, music and delectable cuisines. Celebrated passionately by native inhabitants of the state, including the different local tribes, tourists are most welcome to take part in the celebrations as well, making this a must-visit activity if you?re visiting Nagaland in the winters.

This initiative was undertaken by the Government of Nagaland to promote tourism in the state using the myriad of cultures and festivals that are celebrated by different tribes of Nagaland. This 10-day long fest coincides with the Statehood Day - 1st December - and continues until 10th December. Tribes from all over the state as well from the other North Eastern States are invited to this festival to showcase their traditions and ways of celebrating. It is held at the foothills of Mount Japfü near Kohima and is a must visit for all tourists who visit the state. All tribes come in traditional attire with musical instruments, food and dances to showcase, making it a one-stop event to experience the whole range of Naga culture.

Naga Heritage Village

This Village was specially built to preserve the unique culture, language, costumes and lifestyle of all tribes and sub-tribes of Nagaland and is located 10 kilometres from Kohima. This is the venue of the famous Hornbill Festival and has been developed as a tourist and cultural centre. It has also become a symbol of unity among the various tribes who work together for economic progress and respect each others' traditions. The complex has sixteen clusters of houses and halls built according to the architectural styles typical of each of the sixteen major tribes. It also has the traditional adornments, furniture and the respective symbolism. This complex also houses many other sportings such as musical and fashion events throughout the year.

Unspoilt Nature

Lush tropical and subtropical rainforests cover over 20% of the land in this state, and these forests are home to some of the very rare and endangered species of animals and birds. Since Nagaland is a relatively unexplored destination, the woods there are unspoilt and not commercialised. Known across the country for its unparalleled natural beauty, Nagaland is a haven for wildlife enthusiasts. Rare birds like the Amur Falcon and Greater Hornbill come in large numbers to roost in these forests. The Intanki National Park is the largest reserved forest area, and it has many large and small animals like tigers, sloth bears, monitor lizards and a variety of rare endemic snakes. The landscape of urban areas too are lined with greenery, and this makes a trip to this state a feast for the eyes.

History of Nagaland

The history of the Naga tribes is unclear, but there are records of them having lived together, though there were numerous inter-tribe battles. The East India company had tried to establish their control over this region for a very long time but were always repelled by the Naga tribes. The British presence in the area was minimal, as a policy of non-interference was widely followed. This resulted in the preservation of Naga tribal culture until today.

After independence, there were many conflicts between the government and the tribals, but an autonomous region within the state was established to give the tribal population an administrative autonomy. Eventually, this area was granted statehood on 1 December 1963. The insurgent activity was common in the state until the last decade impeding economic growth but peace has now been established, and this has resulted in a dramatic rise in tourism, which is currently an essential part of the state economy.

Geography of Nagaland

Nagaland is one of the seven North-Eastern states of India bordered by the states of Assam, Arunachal Pradesh and Manipur and also shares an international boundary with Myanmar on its eastern side. The capital of this state is Kohima, and the largest city, the hub of commercial and tourist activity is Dimapur. The state is predominantly a mountainous region and consists of the Naga and Patkai hill ranges. Many rivers like Doyang, Diphu and Barak, flow through these mountains and join the Brahmaputra, making the state a lush green haven for wildlife.

People Of Nagaland


The population in Nagaland is entirely tribal. The prominent tribes of Nagaland state include Chakhesang, Angami, Zeliang, Ao, Sangtam, Yimchunger, Chang, Sema, Lotha, Khemungan, Rengma, Konyak, Pochury and Phom. Christianity is the prime religion followed by the majority of the people. Nagamese is the language which is spoken by almost all the people of Nagaland. The weaving industry is one of the prominent industries of Nagaland, and the art of weaving is primarily the domain of the female folk of Nagaland. Wood carving is one of the traditional arts which produces beautiful products that have an internationally acclaimed status. Naga people excel in almost all sorts of art and craft be it weaving, embroidery, wood carving, basketry, bamboo works, cane works, pottery as well as metalwork.

Festivals in Nagaland

Holding on to its tagline, "Land of Festivals", Nagaland has a plethora of festivals that take place every month of the year. These festivals are organised by the various tribes residing in the state to celebrate life in all its colours. Sekrenkyi celebrated by the Angami tribe, the Moatsu celebrated by the Aos after the sowing of the seeds is done and the Tsokum by the Khiamgan tribesmen are some of the few festivals observed here. Other festivals include Monyu, Ngada, Tokhu Emong, Amongmong, Metemneo, Naknyulem, Tuluni and Aoling Mongu.

Nagaland Reviews

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Rohit Shroff 10 months ago
Nagaland is a beautiful state offering a culture unlike any other part of India. While it's a little difficult to reach, but it's definitely worth a visit. Places like kohima, dzukou valley, mokokchung are a must visit. Do try the local food and rice beer. Also, if possible, visit here during hornbill festival that happens in December first week.

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