Situated in the North-Eastern part of India, Nagaland shares its borders with the states of Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, and Manipur. Also known as The Land of Festivals in India, Nagaland is quite famous for the variety of vibrant and unique festivals that take place throughout the year. The state is home to more than 16 tribes, each of whom adds to the diversity and cultural heritage of the state. This exuberant diversity of the state can be observed through the different festivals prevalent in the state. Today, let’s take a journey through the numerous and diverse festivals that are part of Nagaland.
The Hornbill festival is the most popular festival that takes place in Nagaland. It is the biggest festival of the state and takes place in the Kisama village during December. The Government of Nagaland organizes the festival to popularize the culture and traditions of the land among the visiting tourists. The festival hosts rock concerts and exciting dance performances, along with delicious food fairs. Every tribal community of the state takes part in this festival. Traditional art and crafts, folk songs, games, and traditional archery are some of the other popular events of this festival.
Sekrenyi festival is a ten day long festival that seeks to promote harmony among the members of the Angami tribe. Each day of the festival is quite significant and marks an important event of the festival. The primary purpose of the festival is to promote amity and harmony among the members of the tribe. The festival is also considered a purification festival and is believed to purify the people from all the past sins. The festival features a number of rituals and customs which are followed by the members of the tribe. The festival takes place from 25th February to 5th March, in the Kohima district of the state.
Tsukheneyie is a unique harvest festival that takes place in the Phek district of Nagaland. Celebrated by the Chakhesang Tribe in March, the festival is known for its festivity and vibrancy. It marks the end of the harvest year and hence sets the mood for celebration and joy. The festival provides a means for us to witness and appreciate the varied culture and heritage of the Chakhesang tribal community in the state. The festival spans about five days, and celebrates unity. The festival is quite vibrant and will undoubtedly be a unique experience for anyone who visits it.
Aoleang festival is celebrated by the Konyak tribe of Nagaland. The festival usually takes place in the first week of April. The festival is celebrated after the seeds are sown in the fields. It also marks the end of the year and welcomes the New Year. The festival is a faithful representation of the rich culture and traditions followed by the Konyak tribe of Nagaland.
The Mim Kut festival is celebrated during the second week of January by the Kuki tribe of Nagaland. Mim Kut is a harvest festival and is celebrated after the successful harvest of the season’s final crop. The festival sets a mood for rejoicing and is hence accompanied by dance performances and enthralling music. Apart from this, the different games, fairs and concerts which are a part of the festival also help to enliven the spirit
Busu Dima is an exuberant festival which is celebrated by the Dimasa tribe residing in Nagaland. The festival is observed to mark the completion of the January harvest. During the festival, members of the tribe wear traditional attires and spend the night dancing and singing in a cheerful mood. The last day of the festival is considered to be quite important, and during this day, the members of the tribe spread joy as a well earned reward after the hard toiling days at the fields.
Commonly known as Moatsu, the Ao tribe celebrate this festival, and like many other festivals of Nagaland, are related to agriculture. This festival is celebrated when the fields are cleaned, and new seeds are sown. The festival usually takes place during the month of May. The Moatsu festival is considered to be a time of rejoicing and hope for the Ao people. During the festival, members of the tribe light a fire, called Sangpangtu. All the members of the tribe gather around the fire, dressed in their traditional outfits. They also express gratitude to the forest and hope for a better harvest next year. The festival also includes traditional dances, songs and a tug of war among the male and female members of the group.
Tuluni is an important festival for the Sumi tribe of Nagaland. The festival brings with it a festive and joyous ambiance. It is a celebration of the culture and traditions of the Sumi tribe. During the festival, people offer prayers and offerings to the deity of fruitfulness, Litsaba. It also includes other activities such as traditional dances and folk songs.
Tokhu Emong is a post harvest festival celebrated by the Lotha Tribe during the month of November in Nagaland. This festival is celebrated by the members of the tribe by singing, dancing, and having an exquisite, delicious meal. The day of the festival is celebrated as a day of relaxation after the hard toiling days in the field. The festival brings with it a jovial and festive mood and is quite vibrant in its celebrations.
The Naknyulum is an important and quite popular festival celebrated in July by the Chang Naga tribe in Nagaland. The festival is said to have had its roots in the history of Nagaland. The festival takes place by the end of July, precisely from 29th July to 31st July. The festival celebrates goodness and advocates the inevitable victory of good over evil. The first day of the festival is known as Wenshi, the second day is known as Youchem, and comprises many games and activities that build a joyful ambiance. The third day is known as Nakseng, and during this day, men beat drums from dawn to sunrise, which symbolizes their victory over darkness.
Nagaland is aptly known as the Land of festivals in India. The festivals celebrated in the state are unlike any other. The customs and traditions practiced by each tribe is carefully incorporated in their festivals, which make them incredible and extraordinary. The varied diversity and heritage of the state is well evident in the vibrant and marvelous festivals of Nagaland.