THE AOLING FESTIVAL OF THE KONYAK HEADHUNTERS
8 Nights/9 Days
1st to 6th April every year.
Located at the very remote eastern most corner of Nagaland, Mon is home to the fascinating Konyak Tribe. Deadly headhunters once upon a time, the tribe today lives a peaceful existence and spend most of their time practicing agriculture, drinking local alcohol, smoking opium and occasional hunting.
During the first week of April after having completed the sowing of seeds in their new jhum fields, the Konyaks celebrate their most important festival; the Aoling Festival, which marks the beginning of spring season and a new year. It is a time when the Konyaks are at their most jovial mood, displaying a huge appetite of fun and laughter.
The first day of the festival is called the Hoi Lah Nyih. It is spend in preparing for the festival where the villagers collect firewood and vegetable items, prepare rice beer and weave new traditional cloths and ornaments. On this day, every family also partakes in the ritual of soothsaying, where chickens are sacrificed and the future is predicted by the shape of the intestine. The nest two days, Yin Mok Pho Nyih and Mok Shek Nyih, are spent searching and gathering domesticated animals which will be killed in the festival. Young tribal boys are also trained during this period in traditional male practices.
The fourth day, Lingnyu Nyih, is the most important and lively. Men and women of the Konyak Tribe wear their charming colorful traditional dresses and ornaments. The entire day is spent celebrating through beautiful dances, singing, heavy drinking, community feasts and endless merrymaking. The ancient headhunting ritual of the Konyak Tribe is also reenacted during this day, where Konyak men start dancing from the village gate, shoot their guns in the air and appear to hold their enemy’s head in their hands as a display of victory.
The remaining days of the festival, Lingha Nyih and Lingshan Nyih, are spent honoring and meeting each other’s families and relatives, and remembering the loved ones who have passed away.
In this tour, you will visit remote lands which feel far away. You will get a chance to take part in the Aoling Festival , where you will be left speechless and high by tribal hospitality & zest. You will visit sustainable villages and houses of the Konyaks in and around Mon, such as Lungwa, a village where the chief’s hut is bizarrely located half in India and half in the Union of Myanmar. Naturally, the village folk here have dual citizenship. In some of the villages, you will be left astonished by the great collections of human skulls which act as a reminder of the Konyak Tribe’s savage history. But above everything else, you will get ample time to interact with the people, learn about their unique culture and be delighted by their simple ways of living life.
- Visit Mon District in Nagaland, a remote land blessed with verdant hills and friendly people.
- Experience the Aoling Festival of the Konyak Tribe, a fascinating festival which displays an unique tribal culture.
- Take part in festive activities such as dancing, singing, feasts and merrymaking.
- Visit various villages of the Konyak Tribe and get to interact with them.
- Visit the medival ruins of the Ahom Dynasty at Sivasagar.
Minimum persons required - 1
Day 1 – March 31st
Arrive at Dibrugarh Airport and drive to town for overnight stay. Evening free to explore market area or take a walk alongside the scenic Brahmaputra riverbank. o/n at a standard hotel.
Day 2 – April 1st
After breakfast, drive through scenic tea plantations and verdant mountains to reach Mon (5-6 hours). En route visit the medieval ruins of the Ahom Dynasty. Your stay in Mon will be in a basic hotel/guesthouse.
Day 3-7 – April 2nd – 6th
You will be participating in the Aoling Festival of the Konyak Tribe. You will get to observe religious ceremonies, dances and attires, and taste traditional cuisines and drinks of the Konyak Tribe. At other times, you will visit various remote villages near Mon such as Lungwa where you will get a chance to observe the sustainable lifestyle of the tribal community, interact with the people and visit their houses.
Day 8 – April 7th
After breakfast, return to Dibrugarh. o/n at hotel.
Day 9 – April 8th
Drive to Dibrugarh Airport for departure flight. Tour ends.
As Mon in Nagaland is a very remote hilly area with the least of amenities, your stay will be in a basic hotel or a guesthouse. In Dibrugarh, the accommodation will be in a comfortable standard hotel.
Price & Booking
Price & Booking Information
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