Feast on music, culture, food at Hornbill Festival 2016

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Feast on music, culture, food at Hornbill Festival 2016

There’s precious little we know about that enigmatic part of India’s geography we collectively club under the term ‘north east’.

There is a wealth of culture, music, food and nature waiting to be explored in the land of the Seven Sisters, the seven states that make up the region. And what better way to immerse oneself in this mystic land than at the iconic Hornbill Festival, that’s held in Nagaland every December?

The Hornbill festival gets its name from the most apotheosized bird species in the state. 85 per cent of Nagaland’s population still depends on agriculture, and naturally most of its festivals and festivities revolve around the crop cycles. But the Hornbill is also held to revive, protect, sustain, and promote the richness of the Naga heritage and traditions.

Nagaland is known to be a land of festivals, and naturally the Hornbill, which gets pride of place, is called the festival of festivals. The ten day long festival is a celebration of all the Nagas hold dear, and all the Naga tribes come together during the festival to showcase their age old traditions at the Naga Heritage Village, Kisama which is 10 kms from Kohima, the capital city of Nagaland. Traditional Naga huts and Morungs (boy’s dormitories) are put up on a small hillock in Kisama. The place itself is scenic and mystical.

What to expect –

For the first three days of the festival, cultural dances, indigenous sports, and folk songs take centrestage. There is a colourful display of warrior log drums, multicoloured headgear, soulful war cries, and exquisite costumes, and an array of delicious local delicacies to tickle the adventurous palate are served in their respective Morungs along with the finest rice beer.

Cultural troupes from all the seven northeastern states converge on Nagaland to participate in this week-long celebration.

Music, so integral to the life of the north east, gets its place of honour too with the biggest Rock Festival of the country being hosted at Kohima every year during this festival. An adventure car rally and various other contest and events are organized during this festival. If you have an adventurous bent of mind, there are the Pork eating contest, the King Chilly eating contest etc to test your endurance.

Also on board is the Kohima Night Bazaar, with the town coming alive for seven nights with food, music, and fun. The streets overflow with food stalls serving amazing delicacies and handicrafts.

Be sure to check out

  • Traditional archery
  • Naga wrestling
  • Car rallies
  • Flower shows
  • Chilli eating contest
  • Sixteen of the Naga tribes have their own distinctive tribal dance form.
  • Hornbill International rock competition


The festival is one of the top tourist attractions in the state, and draws a lot of tourists from in and around the Nagaland State. If you are someone who constantly wants to experience new culture, make sure you head to Nagaland for Hornbill festival this December.

If you want to book this experience without any hassle, go here and allow us to help you.




Leo, a passionate dancer, literature lover, movie buff, foodie, lover of theatrics and all shades of dramatics , wanderlusting at most times.