Come and explore the serenity and appreciate nature on the outskirts of Nagaland’s very own Mokokchung Town. This perfect abode houses some of the best offbeat Northeastern villages and only way to explore the villages of Mokokchung is by travelling to great lengths and heights to some of the nature’s best. A district in the Indian state of Nagaland, Mokokchung is the main urban hub for passersby and an ultimate halting ground to venture on the rocky mountain villages. Breathe the country’s fresh air and relish the beauty of nature, for these offbeat trails often skips the beat of one seeing the heavenly nature.
We have penned down for you some of the unconditional must-see offbeat places in and around Mokokchung, Nagaland:
Stone Bridge, Photo: https://goo.gl/avlLyV
Longkhum is an Ao village located in Ongpangkong hill range at an altitude of 1480 meters, the highest altitude in Mokokchung district. This village used to be a vanguard village of the Ao tribe in the early days of head-hunting. Longkhum Village is a small suburb which provides a good opportunity to see the daily liveliness and lifestyle of the local people. Witness the fertile farm and rolling ranch lands that lay perfect in these mountain ranges. Well known for its Rhododendrens, Longlangba (stone bridge), Mongu Ki – Cave on a cliff (eagle’s nest) and one of the captivating locals you will ever meet in your offbeat destination. Legends have it that Longkhum is the resting place for the spirit of the dead on their onward journey to paradise.
Longkhum is a beautiful place for a short one day trip; it is surrounded with history, rhododendrons and plenty of pine trees. The village attracts many visitors for its beautiful scenic landscape; it is appreciable through the way the villagers beautifully align cherry blossom trees on both sides of the road making the drive even more interesting. Visit the ‘Memorial Site of Imkongmeren’ – one of the earliest Naga freedom fighter, a lovely stage that provides a perfect marker for landscape photography and sightseeing the lush green forest of the Naga Hills, including some few villages from the spot. Take a small trek down through the rough rock formations locally known as ‘Longlangba’ where you can see the footprints left by Ediben and Jina, the Romeo and Juliet of the Ao tribe and get a birds-eye view of the Doyang River and the surrounding Naga Hills. Catch a glimpse of Eagle’s Nest or locally known as Mongu-Ki where eagles have been nesting there for centuries. The highest point in the village is Jubilee Tower where you can lay eyes on a panoramic view of the entire village and if you are lucky don’t miss out to see the distant snow capped Himalayas of Arunachal Pradesh that are visible on a clear day.
A visit to Longkhum is not complete without interacting with the locals and trying out their delicious home-made rice beer or locally known as Mejemtsu. This unpoluted and historical village is about 17 kilometers south-west of Mokokchung district. Local taxis are found in Mokokchung in ‘Police Point’ (main town); however it is advisable to book a taxi for the entire visit as finding a taxi back to civilization maybe burdensome. A lodge is provided by the tourist department if you wish to stay the night.
Time-Pillar, Photo: https://goo.gl/HZgxqF
A drive to Mopungchukit village is another pioneering adventure. Mopungchuket is an Ao village which is associated with legend such as the romantic story of Jina and Etiben of Longkhum village. In the vicinity of the village there is a lake with boating facility and a guest house to help you simmer down. Places to visit in Mopoungchuket are the Time-Pillar, Village Cultural Museum, Morungs (traditional Naga huts made from bamboo and cane) Log drums and monuments that are worth visiting. The monument in the outskirts of Mopungchuket village is where the Atoms (descendant of the ethnic Tai people) were given shelter.
A symbol of pride and honor of each village, the Morong is emblazoned with hunting trophies and wood carvings. Traditional weapon like dao (type of sword), spears and shields are kept secure and intact. The Morong used to be a male dormitory where young boys were kept and taught the ancestral folksongs and folktales and they could leave only when he gets married. The central attraction on the village is the Etiben tower monumentalising the love story and struggle of Jina and Etiben and it gives an imposing view of the entire village and the countryside.
With the approval of the village committee some home stays has been provided. You can experience a simple life by staying in one of these houses to experience local pleasure but what’s more winning is the love of the local people. Naga people take great pride in their kitchens especially in villages and meals are served in kitchens, where fireplace is always occupied by the salted pork hanging above the fire, getting smoked and cured for later consumption and a huge kettle of water boiling for a very light local tea.
Mopungchuket is a 13 kilometer drive from Nagaland’s third largest urban center Mokokchung, local buses and taxis are found scattered around, you can either hop on and off at stops or take a taxi from the stand for a secured and reserved seat.
Ungma Village: Oldest Tribal Village
Infused with rich Ao Naga culture, Ungma village is the oldest and the largest of all the Ao villages. However in Nagaland it is the second largest after Bara Basti of Kohima. The rich Ao culture and tradition is guarded by the villagers even today, taking great precaution to preserve the Ao society and the place is considered to be a living museum of the traditions of the tribe.
An old log drum, a Baptist church and a wondrous pleasant park located on the outskirts of Ungma are the famous tourist spots mostly visited and loved not just by the tourists but the locals as well. The Nature Park also known as Tzudir Yimka is famous for its vibrant collection of plantation and tree houses for adrenaline lovers. The park full of greenery relinquishes fresh air in the otherwise modern village. Feel the breeze cooling you down in Ungma’s watch tower and witness the outstanding beautiful landscape nature has to offer. Ungma village provides limited number of guest houses although you can stay in the cottages in the park itself.
Located 5 kilometers away from Mokokchung, getting there is easy. There are plenty of bus and taxi service all day long. If you feel like talking a long walk then Ungma village is about 30 to 40 minutes walk from the town.
The Nagas are wonderfully pleasing and happy people with an incomparable story and culture. As you ascent up the mountains from the plains of Assam you will come across this quite village Changki. Get a spectacular view of the Changki valley right below and the Japukong range and check out the plains of Assam visible far away.
Changki is the perfect place to find peace and solitary, its narrow roads and people are all very welcoming. Places to visit whist your stay in this peaceful environment are not much, except the two beautiful churches where every Sunday you are bound to meet familiar faces.
Changki is more or less a pit stop for passengers travelling towards other parts of Nagaland. As many tourist buses make their stop for passengers to find grub at eateries while some people drink warm tea and few explore the local vegetables brought right from their backyards.
Situated 39 kilometers from Mokokchung, Changki is beautiful with scenic landscapes and zip zipping road, treacherous terrains and plentiful trees and valleys. Getting to this village is just a ticket away. You can either catch any taxis or buses heading towards Mokokchung or towards the plains or rent a taxi to make your journey worthwhile.
Spend a picture perfect, quite and soul rejuvenating holiday in these villages around Mokokchung that will awestruck you by its unending charm. If you want to know more about this paradise kingdom and plan a visit soon we would be happy to help you plan a trip to Nagaland or answer any of your travel queries. You can contact us for your travel plans by giving us a call at +91-9212553106/07 or drop an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Also, if you liked this blog, please make sure you like and share it.