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Aoling Festival Tour 2020

Aoling Festival Tour 2020 – Spring Festival of Tattooed Headhunting Tribes of Nagaland

This 7 day Nagaland and Assam Aoling festival tour takes you from the plains to deep inside Nagaland, high up in the Patkai hills. During the second part of this Aoleang festival tour, you experience the deep-rooted tribal culture of the headhunting tribe of Nagaland, the Konyak. From living with the last surviving head-hunting tribes to eating and celebrating with them, this leg of the trip in Nagaland will be full of merry-making and a lot of fun. Songs, dance, various competitions –  you name it. And the Assam – leg of the tour will be no less. Very interesting in a different way with its unique satras, craftsmanship, and pottery. Calm, peaceful and in the laps of nature – in the Majuli islands.

Aoling Festival Tour 2020 – Kaziranga, Majuli, and Mon

The detailed itinerary of the Aoling festival tour including Kaziranga National Park and the Majuli Islands will be as follows:

  • Day 1 – Guwahati – Kaziranga
  • Day 2 – Jungle Safaris in Kaziranga National Park – Majuli
  • Day 3 – Exploring the Majuli Island
  • Day 4 – Majuli – Mon
  • Day 5 – Mon – Longwa
  • Day 6 – Aoling festival celebration in Longwa village
  • Day 7 – Longwa – Dibrugarh

Day 1: Guwahati to Kaziranga National Park

The tour starts from the Guwahati airport, where you will be received by North East Explorers’ representative. After a quick introduction, your drive from Guwahati to the Kaziranga National Park will start. Through the plains of Assam, crossing a number of big & small towns and some lush green tea plantations, you will finally reach Kohora, inside the Kaziranga National Park after around 5 hours of being on the road.

If you reach on time for the Jeep safari, you will head out for the same almost as soon as you reach Kaziranga. Kaziranga Jeep Safari is great for your tryst with wild Assam. But in case you reach late, you can always go to the Kaziranga Orchid park to enjoy so cultural performances. Or, you can just rest & relax at your stay.

kaziranga jeep safari
Kaziranga Jeep Safari

Day 2: Kaziranga to Majuli Islands

Depending upon which slot you are allocated by the forest department for your first Kaziranga Elephant Safari, you will have to wake-up somewhere between 4 AM and 6 AM in the morning. But believe me when I say, this trouble of waking-up this early will be so well worth it. While on the elephant safari inside Kaziranga, you will get a chance to see the one-horned rhino, among many other wild animals inhabiting the park, from very close quarters. Suffice to say, you will come out happy from the safari.

If you did not get a chance to go on the Jeep Safari yesterday, you will be going for it today, post breakfast. Enjoy the jungle once again, this time, for more than twice the time.

After your Kaziranga Jeep Safari, start for Neemati ghat and the cross over to the largest river island in the world, Majuli. And settle-down in simple Mising (local tribe of the island) bamboo-cottages, not far from the Luit river.

great Indian hornbill
Great Indian Hornbill in the Kaziranga National Park

Day 3 – Exploring the Majuli Island

Today will be a slow & easy day. You start our day by visiting the Satras, the birthplace of Vaishnavite culture in Assam. You will then visit the Samaguri satra to explore the unique mask-making art of Majuli. Interaction with the artists is a good way to learn how these unique masks take shape, from bamboo structures to the final product.  Not to mention, the stories your local guide, who is also a monk of one of the satras of Majuli, which are just as much filled with knowledge and interesting facts.

In the evening, either cycle around or relax by the river. Post dark, sit by the bonfire, share stories and sip your favorite brew.

We also visit a nearby Mising (the local tribe of this part of the region) village(s). While on the walking tour, we interact with the locals and know more about their daily life and their culture. We also learn and see first hand, how wonderful weavers they are.

satriya dance majuli
Monks performing Satriya dance at Uttar Kamalabari Satra

Day 4 – Majuli To Mon Town

Today is the day when we finally enter Nagaland, land of the last surviving headhunters. The journey is not very long but it is done in parts. First on a ferry and then on roads, part of which are great while the other part is pretty bumpy. But the experience that awaits you at the other end of the journey is well worth the bad roads. Not to mention the dense landscapes that accompany all the way till Mon, and beyond.

Depending upon what time you reach, you can head to enjoy part of the festivities of the Aoling festival or you can choose to relax for the evening.

mon district mountains
Blues hills of Mon district, Nagaland

Day 5 – Mon To Longwa

Today is unarguably the most interesting day of the tour. Today, you will visit the Indo-Myanmar border village of Longwa, today you will be meeting the last surviving konyak head hunters & interact with them and today you will meet and interact with the Konyak king as well. The Angh (king) rules on villages that spread across parts of Arunachal Pradesh, Nagaland, and even Myanmar.

Actually, there’s more. We will also visit the king’s palace which is divided between India and Myanmar. And, we will stay in the village for the night. But first, we will head to the Mon festival ground to enjoy the biggest Aoleang festival in Mon district. After spending enough time in Mon, we will start for Longwa village. The drive will be bumpy but just like yesterday, the views will more than makeup for that. And the bonus is the sunset view from Longwa. Undisputedly, one of the best sunsets you would have seen ever!

sunset longwa village
Pictures almost ever do justice to the real beauty

Day 6 – Aoling festival celebration in Longwa village

Today is going to be a busy day. Busy at the festival grounds. The full-day will be spent today enjoying the celebrations by the village folk. Dancing, singing, firing in the air and then, some more dancing.

While all this is going on, we will also take out some time to walk around the very simple but lovely village. We will then also visit the gun-maker’s home and see him in action. We will meet some more headhunters and listen to their stories of the times when headhunting was still in practice.

Last but not the least, we will walk up to the Indo-Myanmar border pillar, situated on the edge of the village. As darkness sets in, we will take refuge at the king’s palace and watch the village folk discuss random things and laugh their hear out while smoking locally grown opium.

Day 7 – Longwa To Dibrugarh

We take it easy in the morning. Maybe a relaxed morning walk around the village and some final photographs of this unique place and its people is something you would want to go on. Feel free. Half of the village will already be in the festival ground, or maybe not. After a relaxed breakfast and multiple rounds of Tizit tea, you start your drive back to the plains of Assam.

We reach Dibrugarh by late afternoon which would mark the end to one of its kind memorable trip.

Inclusions

  • All permits for Indian Nationals as required.
  • All Toll Charges.
  • A dedicated vehicle with driver cum guide for the entire trip.
  • Local guide wherever required.
  • Accommodation on a twin-sharing basis.
  • Breakfast on all mornings from Day 2 till last day’s check-out.

Exclusions

  • Any personal/sanitary/medical expenses.
  • Any extension in the number of days staying.
  • Food and snacks.
  • Parking Fee
  • Anything that is not mentioned in the inclusions section above.
  • 5% GST.
  • Any Gratuity money

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Latest Reviews

North East Explorers
4.7
Based on 26 reviews
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Reshma Narasing
Reshma Narasing
13:25 28 Dec 19
I am a solo female traveler and a travel blogger, and travel independently most of the time. I was on a long trip to... north eastern states of India, and I took a trip with North East Explorers to Arunachal, having heard very little of this state. And it was the best thing to do! They organized a perfect trip, took me to the hidden gems of Arunachal, and I enjoyed my time with the locals, experienced local food, got a glimpse of their culture, and would not have wanted to travel in Arunachal in any other way! They are not your typical travel company. They offer customers what they want and more, and your money is worth and so is your time. You can get customized trips according to your budget, and plan trips as per your preferences. You will get a fulfilling customer service until your trip is over. North East Explorers are handsdown the best way to travel in north east India.read more
Neha Pandey
Neha Pandey
09:03 18 Nov 19
The trip was very well organised. Our trip operator Rajiv Verma was very quick in responding throughout our... communication. He was very helpful in sorting out any queries and issues throughout the trip. The trip was designed well to cover all the best spots throughout Meghalaya. We had an experienced driver who accompanied us through the trip provided by NE Explorers. Rajiv customised our trip the way we wanted to. He also suggested what is best for us. His mail included all details of inclusions and exclusion. So, there was no confusion at all with him. Highly recommend them. I have travelled a lot and booked trips with D Paul's and Make my trip. But, NE Explorers I really wanted to try because they were the local operators. And, they have really impressed me.Had a lovely time. It was so relaxed and easy thanks to them for taking care of everything so amazingly!!! 10/10 would definitely get in touch with them soon for our next travel plans !!!read more
wilson mathews
wilson mathews
07:38 18 Jun 19
We had a great and unforgettable experience in Arunachal pradesh (Dirang -Tawang- Bum la pass). Right from the minute... we landed in Guwahati, Rajiv took us under his wing. He made sure that we were taken care of every minute. The itinerary was followed to the tee. The driver Mr.Kamal handled the rough terrains expertly. The picturesque villages and streams were quite a sight. The homestays arranged were clean and the owners received us with great love. They looked after us as if we were their own family. The homestay in Tawang (Dondrub homestay) definitely deserves 5 stars. In all this was one of the most memorable vacations we took. Looking forward to another trip with North East explorersread more
Rahul Maheshwari
Rahul Maheshwari
08:26 10 Jun 19
We had a wonderful trip of North East organized by Rajiv from Northeast explorers. I searched for north east tour... operators and based on positives reviews shortlisted Northeast explorers. Rajiv, demonstrated his knowledge of the region and experience he has gained in this field. He clearly mentioned about stay only in homestays during the entire journey as he does not deal with hotels. After having communication with Rajiv we agreed on itinerary (Guwahati-Shillong-Cherrapunji-Mawlynong-Guwahati-Dirang-Tawang-Dirang-Guwahati) started our beautiful journey. Special mention to our expert driver cum guide Topeswar who was very knowledgeable and also took us to good restaurants along the trip. Also, Rajiv from NE Explorers was constantly in touch with us over phone/whatsapp while we traveled giving us tips. The homestays were mostly good except the one in Mawlynong which is small village. I have one feedback here if they can provide couple of homestays options in advance at each place to choose from then that would be great. Rest all was very good and especially host at Tawang homestay was amazing and helped us in Bumla trip. Overall a very mesmerizing experience. I would definitely recommend North East Explorers.read more
Arun Madhavan Govindarajan
Arun Madhavan Govindarajan
03:03 22 May 19
We were 6 people and went on an amazing trip this year to the NE thanks to Rajiv. From the very first interactions... that we have had with him, it has been plesant experience. He takes personal care with the planning of the trip, hand picks the places that we stay in and overall makes the experience a memorable one. The places you stay are all homestays, which is the speciality that Rajiv offers. We were initially skeptical about the same, but Rajiv assured that this was the best part of the travel where you get the feel of a home like stay. He was indeed correct. you can get to experience the genuine love of NE people through these home stay. They were well prepared for our arrival and took great care of us. Travelling with a 5 year old, this was very important. Most importantly the our driver Nagesh who accompanied us through the trip was very knowledgeable. He understands your tastes and preferences very quickly and chooses restaruants very wiesly. The plan that he does is also pretty amazing. A couple of times where we started late, we still did not find the pinch of time and were able to see all the places we had to cover, thanks to Nagesh. This he does without overspeeding. A very careful driver and a wonderful person to interact with. The most unusual part of the trip is the followup you get from Rajiv. He calls you couple of times every day, takes personal care in ensuring that everything is fine. We also met him on the way, where he says that he makes is a point to meet his guests atleast once during their journey. Very different from a lot of tourist operators who get you started with a trip and don't care from there. During our trip we had an unfortunate emergency. The urgency with which both Nagesh and Rajiv helped us out through the same was quite amazing.They took a lot of care in ensuring that we got all the help possible during the time of crisis which meant a lot to us. Overall we had a very memorable experience of the NE, thanks to Rajiv. I would definitely explore more of NE and would definitely do that wth the help of Rajiv and his team.read more
Naveenkumar Muguda
Naveenkumar Muguda
11:01 21 May 19
We had a wonderful trip of Meghalaya organized by Northeast explorers. Their website was informative, Rajeev was... knowledgeable, itinerary was well planned, we got a comfortable car with a safe driver. Then why 3 stars? 1 )The driver Vicky, wanted to start the day late and worse would delay it further. This resulted in we not completing the itinerary 2) repeated complaints to Rajeev didn't help 3) At the Dorki river, the driver colluded with locals and forced us to take a costlier package. 4) The driver would skip items from the itinerary, when it suited him and this was done silently at times. 5) even after factoring in perks(planning, website etc), the trip cost was way more costly compared to what others paid for same homestays and transport. This was the observation of other patrons of Northeast explorers. We loved the Northeast, Northeast explorers not so much.read more
Philipp Z
Philipp Z
16:07 08 Apr 19
We had a fantastic trip in guwahati and kaziranga. Jamerr is a very nice and safe driver, who brought us to very good... restaurants and shows us some nice places of Assam. The homestay houses have been very clean and nice hosts took care of us and our wishes. Safari was well organized. We skipped the morning safari to take another visit i kamakya temple in guwahati. The agency was very flexible and always answered very fast to our questions. Some Things which haven't been like we imagine, has been cleared and fixed immediately always to our contentment. We had a great time in India and especially in clear and green Assamread more
jakub chmelik
jakub chmelik
13:00 05 Jan 19
We are living 4,5 years in India and we decided to discover also North East. We googled travel agents and we started... communication with North East Explorers to prepare our trip. North East Explorers, especially Rajiv Verma, prepared for us wonderful itinerary and we spent amazing holidays in North East. We enjoyed individual trip to Assam and Meghalaya with excellent selections of homestay´s with clean places, excellent foods and amazing owners. Driver Nagesh was very helpful and fulfilled every our wish. In 2nd part of our trip we joined prepared catalogue trip to Nagaland. We spent wonderful time with the rest of the group at Hornbill Festival and continue with our adventure in deep Nagaland till Myanmar border. Also in this collective part of our holiday we enjoy selection of hotels and driver of our traveler. During both parts of our trip we enjoyed also all guides selected by Rajiv and accompanied us to life roots bridges and other parts of Scotland of East or in wonderfull clean villages of wild Nagaland. We would like to thank you to Rajiv and North East Explorers for wonderful holiday.read more
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