The hills of Jakhama


The beautiful hills of Jakhama (picture credits: Njulo Kent)

Photo of The hills of Jakhama by Chandrika Konwar

When I close my eyes and imagine the hills, I can see condescending prominence painted with tranquility in the moist breeze and the sweet scent of raw green nature. The hills lode the power to make one feel like the free birds soaring in the high skies and it is this feeling that my heart yearns for every time I visit them; Jakhama being one such place.

Jakhama is a small town adorning the hills of Nagaland in the northeastern part of India. It is the perfect recluse from the conventional reaches of wanderlust and makes for an interesting odyssey.

A few years back, I embarked on a 7 hour long journey from Jorhat (Assam) to Jakhama (Nagaland) with my family and a view of the most picturesque green paddy fields took us through irregular stretches of small houses perched on undulating terrain. A bird of the passage can never deny that there is a certain kind of thrill in the back breaking drive through the ox bow roads mired in tender wilderness. There was a feeling of euphoric trance in the changing landscape throughout the journey but the most beautiful part was the blazing red poinsettia burning the edges of the rusting hills to mark the nearing holiday season.

We were welcomed to Jakhama by some mint fresh air just as the sun disappeared into the night sky. Before long we filled ourselves with some good food and ended our exhaustion with some sleep in the lap of the hills. The locals had told us that the hills bare their soul to the early risers and therefore the next day we began our morning at 5am with a brisk walk around the campus of St. Joseph’s College, Jakhama. The pleasant mist hovering in the air and the songs of the chirpy birds did not disappoint our expectations. What was even breathtaking was the mesmerizing view of the lush green hills and the terraced farmlands. And the playful tease between the fluffy white clouds and the majestic hills felt nothing less than paradise.

The view of raw green nature

Photo of Zakhama, Nagaland, India by Chandrika Konwar

The morning service in the beautiful church of the college campus was attended by the entire student fraternity of the college and it actually taught me how a little faith can make any ordinary day special. We also had the good opportunity of meeting the welcoming authorities and students of the college who took us through the college campus endowed with the most state of the art infrastructure as well as the pristine view of the hills. Jakhama village which is a host to the much celebrated Hornbill festival is decorated with the traditional Naga huts called morung (morung is a bamboo hut having a gable roof with wooden planks at the front peak carved with special symbols like that of the hornbill). People of the village live in small wooden houses whereas the morung is used for community services. Life seemed to be simple, peaceful and happy there. For the love of some adrenaline and hiking, Dzouku valley isn’t very far away but that’s a story for another day.

Naga traditional hut "Morung" (Source: Google)

Photo of Jakhama Vill., Nagaland, India by Chandrika Konwar

The entire stay in Jakhama was fueled with a plethora of sentiments assimilated from an unmilled course. We met many people who showered their best on our friendship, we measured miles of nature with the playful dogs of the hills and we had the most stimulating discussions and debates on the dinner table. It was a time where I could truly understand the meaning of numinous and if you believe in the magic of nature then this is a place which can unleash the wayfarer in you.

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