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Kohima Tourism And Travel Guide
13.5° C / 56.4° F
November to February
2 to 3 Days
Dimapur Airport (74 kms)
Dimapur Railway Station (74 kms)
Kohima was founded in 1878 when the British made it the headquarters of their rule in the Naga Hills. Named after the wild Kewhi flowers that grow in the mountains here, Kohima now serves as the capital city of Nagaland. It is a charming city with pristine beauty and characterized by the cultures and customs of the different tribal communities who thrive here. A visit to Kohima gives an opportunity to witness tribal people and their lifestyle and forms the chief attraction of the place. It also holds the distinction of being the only city in India which played a role in WWII as it served as a battle ground for power tussle between British and Japanese forces. Here is a snippet of travel guide to experience tourism in Kohima.
How to Reach
Kohima does not have an aerodrome and has to depend upon Dimapur for air accessibility. Dimapur Airport is located 74 km from Kohima and can be reached by road by cans or buses. Dimapur is well connected by flights with the greater part of the country and helps to keep the state connected to the mainland. Public and private air carriers operate regular flights to and from Dimapur.
Kohima does not have a railway station either and for rail connectivity too has to depend upon Dimapur. Dimapur Railway Station is situated 74 km from Kohima and can be easily traveled by cabs or buses. Dimapur, the gateway of Nagaland has several trains passing through it or terminating at the station. Shatabdi Express, Dibrugarh Town Rajdhani Express, Nagaland Express, BG Express etc. are some of the several trains that help keep Nagaland well connected with the rest of the country.
Devoid an airport and a station, Kohima has to completely depend upon road for connectivity with neighboring cities, towns and states. NH 29 is the national highway that passes through Manipur, Nagaland and Assam connecting the cities of Amlakhi, Dabaka (Assam), Dimapur, Kohima and Cizam (Nagaland) and Jessami (Manipur). Nagaland State Transport buses and private buses operate regular bus services to connect Kohima with neighboring cities and states.
Several local modes of transportation are available here to take tourists around the city. Rickshaws are very popular and cheap. Buses and taxis are readily available. Public transportation has a good frequency and well connected. Rental cars are also available for tourists for sightseeing.
Weather and Best Time to Visit
Summer (March to June):
Though summer in Kohima is moderately hot and dry, the initial days of summer are good. The weather is quite pleasant and it is neither too hot nor cold. It is comfortable enough for tourists to go sightseeing, for exploring the city and indulging in outdoor activities. There is no discomfort. As the heat increases, Kohima experiences occasional showers which increase the humidity in the air.
Monsoon (July to October):
If you want to witness the beauty of Kohima then make a trip in the monsoon season when the entire surrounding gets covered in green and exudes a freshness that is truly rejuvenating. They create a sight to behold. The rains are moderate to heavy and all the places remain drenched nevertheless it would be a treat to experience Kohima in the rains. For rain lovers, this must feature in your list of destinations.
Winter (November to February):
If you enjoy dry weather and not really attracted by rains then winter is the season for you to go sightseeing in Kohima. The skies clear up, there are no rains, and the weather is absolutely gorgeous and fascinating. It does tend to get quite chilly but it feels good and is enjoyable. There are some parts of the city that may experience some light snowfall but it is not a regular feature here.
Things to Do
Visit to Khonoma Village:
If you are in Kohima you would not want to miss the chance of visiting a tribal village and that too the First Green Village of Asia. The village has a special place in history as the last remaining village that saw an intensely fought struggle between the British and the Nagas in which the latter lost. Inhabited by the Angami Nagas who are dependent on natural food for centuries, today all forms of hunting has been banned in the village by the tribe to create a more sustainable ecosystem and it is truly appreciative.
Trek to Mt. Japfu Peak:
Mt. Japfu is the second highest peak in Nagaland and located about 25 km from Kohima. The trek to the peak through villages and rainforests is truly engaging and involves a bit of rock climbing as well. The trek is quite strenuous and demands physical fitness. Guides are recommended to help you in completing the trek. Once you reach the peak you get a stunning view of the Dzukou Valley which is known as the Valley Of Flowers.
Visit Kohima War Cemetery:
When in Kohima you must pay a visit to the War Cemetery and Memorial. Kohima has been drawn into the adversities of WWII unintentionally when it became the battleground for a closely fought battle between the British and Japanese forces. Several British soldiers lost their lives as did a fair number of Indian soldiers who had fought on behalf of the British Empire. The war cemetery has more than 1400 burials of Commonwealth soldiers and a memorial was constructed dedicated to the 900 plus Hindu and Sikh soldiers who were martyred.
Taste the World’s Hottest Chilli:
When in Kohima do not miss the opportunity of taking a bite into the world’s hottest chili known as Bhut jolokia or ghost peppers. This chilly is cultivated extensively across the northeastern states of India and is widely used in the food here. Apart from being used in cooking these chillis are used for application on fences and as smoke bombs to ward off wild elephants.
Eating in Kohima
Authentic and traditional Naga food is relished by the people of Kohima and Nagaland. They are extremely fond of meat and fish and they form an intrinsic part of Naga cuisine. Smoked, dried and fermented are the different forms of cuisine that are popularly practiced here. A typical Naga dish comprises rice, meat, chutney known as “Tathu” and a dish of boiled vegetables. Boiled vegetables consist of carrot, cabbage, melon, beans etc. are much loved by the locals. Axone is also a regular ingredient in Naga cuisine. The taste is quite unique and for outsiders, it requires much courage to try it for the first time. Bamboo shoot features regularly in Naga food preparation. There are a number of eateries where you can get a flavor of Naga cuisine.
Shopping in Kohima
No trip is complete without the routine dose of shopping. Tourists like to pick up local stuff as souvenirs of their trip or for gifting and there is no dearth of markets and shops in Kohima. There is wide assortment of items to be picked up and each of them boast of exquisite artistic skill and craftsmanship. Handwoven bags, colorful Naga tribal shawls, woodcarvings, tablemats, woven bamboo works, beadwork, tribal jewelry, handloom items etc. can be found easily and they are stunningly beautiful. Local markets and handloom emporiums are the best for these purchases and in the entire state, Kohima is a shopper’s delight.