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Rise with the sun each morning and enjoy hearty Naga food: brown rice, crackers, watercress, plenty of pork and – for those with a taste for adventure – a teaspoon of roughly chopped king chillis. The Nagas were once ardent hunters – anything that moved was once fair game. Such exploits are behind them now. With gusto and vim the Nagas have taken to preserving their fauna and flora and your guide can draw your attention to local plant life of interest and the chirrup of indigenous birds. Those who are keen can join the villagers fishing or the children playing traditional games.
Eventually you will reach Khonoma, Nagaland’s “first green village”, and one of the most beautiful of all North East India, perched high on the hills. It was here in this village, the Naga Angami tribe made some of their first and fiercest rebuttals to British rule. And your guide will – with perhaps a little pride – show you where some early imperialists were skewered. Spend time with the people of Khonoma this evening in a traditional Naga morung – the central communal space for unmarried Naga men. Proceed to Kohima in the morning – site of the pivotal battle of the Burma Campaign.
This journey can be stretched or truncated depending on your energy and your time. Idyllic villages such as Benreu, and jaw-droppingly beautiful villages like Khonoma, invite guests to stay here for more than one night. Extra overnight stops can be added in villages along the way, allowing for more gentle trekking during the day and more time kicking-back in the villages themselves.
A car will be on hand throughout this journey. This means you do not have to worry about carrying all your luggage with you on your back. Warm and clean clothes as well as other comforts can be left in the car and available to you upon arrival at the night-stop. Those with tired legs can also jump in the car and reduce the time trekking.
At the homestays, you will be treated to the intimate of Naga village at nigh time. Some of our hosts speak English, some do not. But all are pleased to look after you and will make you feel welcome. Sit around the fires in the kitchen and enjoy cups of hot tea. Learn about Naga life both in the past and now, and marvel at some of the most striking landscapes in North East India.
A lovingly restored planter’s bungalow overlooking the hills of Tukdah near to Darjeeling.
Tea bungalow in Assam. Wake up amongst the plantation with tea in dainty porcelain.