Visit to Nagaland

#1 Aug 4th, 2012, 16:00
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  • Acrodad is offline
#1
We are planning to spend a few weeks in Nagaland this October and are seasoned India visitors having spent a month in India for every one of the last nine years.
I want to visit my Grandfather Saleh Akbar Hydari's grave in Imphal (he was the first Governor of Assam after independence) and apart from that get to know a bit about Nagaland which he loved. Does anybody have any tips which avoid the more obvious tourist haunts?
#2 Aug 4th, 2012, 16:27
It's all Greek to me, but Benglish will do
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#2
Hello Acrodad, and a warm welcome to IndiaMike!

IndiaMikers KSBluechip and Sadanand Kamath visited Nagaland last year to attend the Hornbill Festival and took some amazing photographs. They wrote about their experiences in this thread:

http://www.indiamike.com/india/other...alaya-t154943/


I don't really have an answer to your question about avoiding obvious tourist haunts.

Are you a British passport holder or are you a PIO? If the latter then you may be able to travel to more off the beaten track places.

Please keep us updated. I am also planning a trip to Nagaland.
#3 Aug 10th, 2012, 22:39
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#3
I was in Nagaland in May and spent time in Mon, Mokukchong and Kohima and not sure I came across too many 'obvious tourist haunts' although I suspect any visitor would include at least one of the 3 places mentioned on their itineary if not more.

Mon was my preferred destination of the 3 due to easy access to a number of tribal areas and Kohima was bottom of the list and couldn't see any reason to visit outside of the Hornbill festival.

From Kohima had intentions of heading south to Imphal and beyond but I just couldn't get anyone to take me due to ongoing 'border issues' but there is a bus service plus even the occasional flight I believe.

Be warned the roads in Nagaland are pretty horrible especially in the north and Mokukchong is 100% closed up on Sundays except for the churches. Missionaries certain done a job on this town.

Good luck.
#4 Aug 12th, 2012, 21:05
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#4

Nagaland

Thanks for the useful Info, I am a PIO so hopefully it will help. I will definitely visit Mon!
#5 Aug 14th, 2012, 18:20
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#5
Acrodad,
Think of adding Longwa to your itinerary!
#6 Aug 15th, 2012, 15:44
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Acrodad, don't set your sights too high as Mon is more than a bit rough at the edges and I think it was Lonely Planet who described it as a having a 'frontier town feel' and very true but the people were fine and the surrounding villages are the reason you are there. I stayed at Helsa Cottage and the rooms and food were decent plus one of the lads there will act as a guide to the tribal villages for a fee.

Most of these shots are from Longwa. The upright stones in the first shot are where the severed heads used to be displayed and the last is wishful thinking on the wife's behalf!

https://picasaweb.google.com/1091016...35017/Nagaland
#7 Aug 15th, 2012, 16:45
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#7
Mahseer,
Helsa Cottage seems to be the only place to stay in Mon! Is that correct? (Other than the Government Circuit House, which is probably quite hard to book. Though I have just found the phone number, which I'll mention here for purposes of general information: Contact +91 3869 221246.)

Acrodad,
Whilst meandering around the villages of Nagaland on a virtual journey these days, I came across a really excellent video, which mentions several fascinating places:



Nagaland - Journey Through the Choir of Clouds
#8 Aug 15th, 2012, 16:58
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I have also uploaded to my computer a map from the official Nagaland Tourism site.


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Map courtesy of: http://tourismnagaland.com/index.html




So I have a couple of questions for you both (or for anyone else reading this thread):

It seems that from Kohima to Mokokchung there is a major road. How many hours of travel does that represent?

From Mokokchung to Mon there is no apparent major road (which does not surprise me). How many hours does it take, roughly speaking? (Rough being the operative word, I guess.)
#9 Aug 15th, 2012, 17:23
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#9
I have just done a Google distance search, and they provide the following solution:


Name:  Screen Shot 2012-08-15 at 1.49.47 PM.jpg
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Map is c/o : Google Maps




But I am guessing that Kohima to Mokokchung represents a full day's driving; and perhaps Mokukchung to Mon is equally arduous.

Thanks in advance for any replies on this.
#10 Aug 15th, 2012, 21:05
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#10
Hi theyyamdancer, there are other places to stay that we checked just down from the police station (that is what the sign said it was but no evidence of order within) but nothing compared to Helsa Cottage. One place which had a reception desk one floor up was completely devoid of activity but looked pretty basic - think that 'hotel' one floor up in Daporijo style. Not good.

Helsa Cottage has a few strong points: In secure compound, used by travelling dignitaries (they sleep in the house, our room was down one level), decent food and bedding, well priced at 1,000 including room 5 which is the 'honeymoon' room and very nice too at same price so if booking ahead go for this one.

Mokokchung to Kohima was 5 hours on a decent 2 lane road to the outskirts and another hour for the final 10kms and to find the hotel. It's a modern town with traffic to match.

Mon to Mokokchung is how I travelled and there are 2 ways. Firstly is to head north to the border with Assam on a rough track and on to Sonari on a good road before turning to the south west on a brilliant road as far as Amguri then south to the border and on to Mokokchung. This took 8 hours. The Nagaland roads in the north really are poor and disintegrate before you loose sight of the border.

Second way. From Mon find the road to Wakching. It's just below the market and was being built/widened in May but the track is decent. We actually tried going this way as the border north was closed due to people being killed on both sides and must have got over half way before finding out there was a bridge out and had to turn back but if you do go this way you may save an hour and the scenery at times is excellent but do confirm that the track is both open and secure as it's pretty remote out there.

Note I had the Nelles north eastern India map and the track from Mon to Wakching is shown as starting north of Mon but that is incorrect.

Best of luck.
#11 Aug 15th, 2012, 21:36
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#11
Thank you very much, Mahseer, for your detailed reply.
#12 Aug 16th, 2012, 09:05
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#12
Note that while in Mokokchung we tried to do a day trip to Tuensang as there is tribal activity there supposedly but as soon as we turned off the main road we were on the oh so familiar track and aften 15kms we gave up and turned back.

It can of course be done and I would have laughed all the way there in my youth but the old bones don't bounce so well these days. Still wondering what we missed. Anyone?
#13 Aug 20th, 2012, 19:18
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#13
Does anyone have a telephone number for the Helsa Cottage or the (new) Helsa Resort in Mon?
#14 Aug 20th, 2012, 19:52
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#14
According to LP:

Cottage: 9436 433782
Resort: 9436 000028

I havn't tried either of these.

Best of luck
#15 Aug 22nd, 2012, 08:16
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#15
Hi Mahseer,
How safe it is to travel Mon and nearby villages all alone. Though I am contemplating a visit to this place but little apprehensive about getting there alone. I prefer to travel by public transport. Do I need private vehicle for visiting interior places like Longwa etc.At present I am in Sivsagar but still this place looks so alien and so far off. Will love to see this place.I can spare only 2 to 3 days.

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