About the Festival
Hornbill festival is one of the most popular festivals in the whole of Northeast and the Nagaland Tourism rightfully takes away all the credit for putting the festival on the map. The festival runs for more than a week with cultural programs and events which are being conducted for past 18 Years. The festival displays the life, history, culture, traditions, and practices of the Naga people. Once at the festival, you will get to see the Naga people, dressed in traditional attire, rejoicing to the tunes and getting immersed in the charisma of the festival. Hornbill festival is one of the most visited and well-organized festivals in this part of the world. People, there are very heart-warming and they welcome you with wide smiles. The festival is held at the iconic Kisama Heritage Village which is located just about 15 kilometres from the capital city of Kohima. all the tribes and sub-tribes of Nagaland take part in the festival that usually takes place between 1st to 10th December every year. Hornbill festival has rightfully earned the tag of ‘festival of festivals’ because of the growing popularity and importance over the years. Each tribe has representatives who let you know about the tribe’s heritage and culture. For food lovers, Hornbill festival is almost like heaven. Traditional cuisines are a major hit there and it gets hard to not taste every dish. There’s a certain aura that attracts so many people to this beautiful festival. Be it the food, the music, the displays, Hornbill festival is almost like a heartthrob that never fails to amuse people.
Things to Do
Enjoy the events: Several events are lined up for the 10-day sojourn. Witness the events, or take part in it and get mesmerized for life. Events like traditional wrestling competition, Naga Chili eating competition are major hits among people.
Visit the Stores and Stalls: Ethnic food Stalls and Cloth stores are aplenty at the festival. Take away souvenirs and traditional handicrafts of the Naga culture to highlight your drawing rooms. Relish the street food and traditional dishes there because in no point in time you can afford to regret.
Dance to the tunes of the bands: Famous International and Local bands perform at the Hornbill festival and sways people of all ages. Over the years several noteworthy artists have taken the platform of Hornbill Festival and have lived up to the hype.
Visit nearby places: Nagaland is a tourist hotspot and being a hilly region it is never short of spell-binding places. Go trekking to the Dzukou Valley, set up camps, and capture breathtaking views from the top. Dzukou is one of the best places to visit in Nagaland over the few years it has really been a top choice for tourists. It is located about 25 kilometres away from Kohima. You can as well visit Khonoma Village; one of the most beautiful villages in Nagaland, Mon Town, Wokha, and Mukokchang. These are exciting places and worth a visit.
Get your bookings done well in advance because finding accommodation can get really tough during the festival time. There several budget-friendly and high-end hotels in Kohima but the real beauty can be enjoyed staying in a campsite. You can book here your tent and wake up to the beautiful sunrise that Nagaland is famous for.
How to Reach
The nearest airport is located in Dimapur which is about 70 kilometres away from Kohima. Several passenger and express trains halt at Dimapur Railway Station and boarding a train might just be the cheapest means to travel. Share taxis from Dimapur Airport and Railway Station usually charge around 200/- to 300/- per head to Kohima. You can take the road from Guwahati, or from any other city in Assam as well.
Get your Inner Line Permits done beforehand. You can easily get your permit from Guwahati, Dimapur, Kolkata, New Delhi, Shillong and Kohima. The foreigners have to register themselves at the Foreigner Registration Office once they enter the state.