Mizoram is a mountainous state nestling in the southern tip of the north-east region of India. Covered with verdant forests dominated by thick bamboo groves, teeming with vibrant wildlife, sheer cliffs and breath-taking waterfalls, dotted with unique landmarks of myriad folklores and picturesque villages of houses built on stilts, a land of dramatic seas of morning mists that enfold islands of hills and peaks. This is the land of the Highlanders, or the Mizos. For anyone looking for a quiet holiday or outdoor activities in pristine and peaceful setting, this is a destination worth your while.
Standing aloof from the adjacent plains of Assam and the other neighboring states, Mizoram remains an exotic location sharing more than one-third of its boundary with Bangladesh and Myanmar and its capital, Aizawl is still one of the least-frequented cities in India. With a population of 888573 only, it is one of the most sparsely-populated states. Mizoram has a moderate and pleasant climate throughout the year, and is an idyllic land of great natural beauty having rich variety of flora and fauna.
Though still considered remote and hence, an unfrequented destination, the location of Mizoram itself helps maintain its quaint appeal, as do its scenic landscapes of bluish hills and mountains, steep rocky cliffs, serene lakes and deep valleys of gurgling streams plunging down sheer drops to form spectacular waterfalls. To the more adventurous spirit, the rugged terrains and rivers are ideal for various outdoor sports and activities. Again, the fantastic array of wildlife, especially the birds, is an added attraction to the nature lovers.
History often varies from legends. But the story of the Mizos getting out into open from the neither world through a rock opening is now part of the Mizo fable. Chhinlung, however, is taken by some as the Chinese city of Sinlung or Chinlingsang situated close to the Sino-Burmese border. The Mizos have songs and stories about the glory of the ancient Chhinlung civilization handed down from one generation to another.
It is hard to tell how far the story is true. It is nevertheless possible that the Mizos came from Sinlung or Chinlungsan located on the banks of the river Yalung in China.
All cities, towns and villages are located on top of mountains.This is because in earlier times, Mizo tribes used to fight with each other and to make attacking enemy's job more difficult, it was considered safer to create habitats atop a mountain. About 400 years back, similar strategy was used by Chhtrapati Shivaji Maharaj in Maharshtra when he built/acquired over 300 hill forts to fight successfully against Mughals and other tyrant powers in the region.
Festivals of Mizoram are full of splendid gaiety and are a great insight to the rich cultural heritage of the Mizos. The festivals are celebrated with pomp and fervor and traditional dances form a major part of the celebrations. And, since agriculture plays a significant role in the lives of people, almost all these festivals of Mizoram are centered on agriculture: the sowing, the harvesting, the seasonal cycles etc.
Chapchar Kut festival of Mizoram is a spring festival and marks the preparation before the onset of the sowing season. This is time when jungles are cleared, bamboos and trees are dried and kept for burning, and the land is set ready for jhum cultivation. Chapchar Kut usually falls during the first week of March and is celebrated with great zeal and zest.
Thalfavang Kut is celebrated in the month of November and it marks the onset of the harvesting season. Traditional games and cultural activities are the main highlights of the celebration. Thalfavang Kut is also an occasion where all the different communities come together, connect, and showcase their cultural plight. It is indeed, one of the most important festivals of Mizoram that harnesses the rich cultural heritage of the Mizos.
Mim Kut is a very significant festival of Mizoram which celebrates the harvesting of Maize in the state. It usually falls in the months of August and September. Mim Kut is also a time when people come together and give respect to the dead by erecting a memorial platform. It is believed that the deceased souls come and visit during this festival and maize, bread, clothes, and other accessories that are usually required for a living are offered to the deceased souls.
Pawl Kut festival of Mizoram is one of the main harvest festivals and celebrated for 2 days. It falls during the months of December and January and is a post-harvesting celebration. Pawl Kut is a feasting time and feasts of meat and egg are prepared in every household. Chawnghnawt is a customary ritual where mothers and their children gather on a memorial platform and feed each other with various meat and egg dishes. Pawl Kut is a thanksgiving and celebration of life.
IMPORTANT INFORAMTION :
Domestic tourists require the Inner Line Pass (ILP) for entry into Mizoram, for persons other than Government employees. ILP can be obtained from the Liaison Officers in New Delhi, Kolkata, Mumbai, Guwahati, Shillong, and Silchar. It can also be obtained on arrival at the Lengpui Airport (nearest airport to Aizawl)
Foreign nationals have to register themselves at the office of the Superintendent of the Police (CID/SB) of Mizoram within 24hours of arrival. However, citizens of China, Afghanistan and Pakistan require prior approval of the Ministry of Home Affairs before entering the state.
Foreign tourists no longer require a Restricted Area Permit (RAP).
The best time to visit Mizoram is from October to May. Aizawl in Monsoon (June - September) The monsoon season is not an advisable time to visit Aizawl as it experiences torrential rainfall. The place remains drenched most of the time making it difficult to explore the tourist attractions.
BY AIR :
Mizoram's only airport, Lengpui Airport, is near Aizawl, and can be reached from Kolkata by air which will take around 1hr and also from Guwahati by air in 30 min. The road from the airport to the city takes another 1 h, and the taxi rate is 600 rupees.
BY TRAIN :
Mizoram is connected through its rail head in Bairabi in Kolasib District, which is basically at the most northern part of the state. It is best for a tourist to rule out a travel by train, as the track ends there at Bairabi.
BY ROAD :