Mizoram (“land of the Mizo people”) is one of the Seven Sister States (of Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Meghalaya, Manipur, Mizoram, Nagaland, and Tripura) in North Eastern India, sharing borders with the states of Tripura, Assam, Manipur and with the neighbouring countries of Bangladesh and Myanmar. Mizoram became the 23rd state of India on 20 February 1987. Its capital is Aizawl.
Aizawl, the scenic capital of Mizoram, is a religious and cultural center of the Mizos. The meaning of Aizawl is “the home of the highlanders”. Aizawl is the largest city in the state of Mizoram. It is one of the remotest capitals, perches precariously on the steep slopes of a sharp ridge, straddling the watershed between the Tlawng and the the Tuirial river valleys. The city is located at an altitude of 3500 feet above sea level. It is a city of rich tribal cultural extravaganza. The town is blessed with exotic natural beauty and this place is famous for its handicrafts. The river Tlawng flows quietly on the east and on the north side is the hills of Durtlang. Not many people are aware that the Tropic of cancer passes through Aizawl.
The whole state of Mizoram was a part of Assam until 1972 when it was made a Union Territory. Until 1987,there were insurgency problems in the region. When Mizoram was declared as a state, all problems of terrorism and demands for freedom subsided.
How to Reach Aizawl
One can reach Aizawl by air from Kolkata (1hr 45 minutes), Guwahati (40 minutes) and Imphal (30 minutes).
NH 54 connects Aizawl with the rest of the country through Silchar. State run buses may take 6-8 hrs from Silchar to reach Aizawl.
Important places to visit
Dampa is a tiger reserve located in West Phaileng district and 127 kms from Aizawl. It is better to book the Govt. lodge well in advance as there are only 2 rooms in this lodge. You need the permit from forest officer staying in West Phaileng to enter Dampa forest. This can be alternately done from Department of Forest in Aizawl.
Durtlang Hill is perched on the northern side of Aizawl, capital of Mizoram. It is perfectly located as a hill resort and offers a glorious view of the picturesque scenery of the city.
Paikhai is a picturesque tourist spot situated around 16 km north of Aizawl. This cool breezy place is ideal for a day’s recreational jaunt. Bung Picnic Spot is adjacent to this place. Local buses and taxis are available from Aizawl to Paikhai. Bairabi Railway Station is the nearest railhead, around 130 km from Aizawl.
Tawi Wildlife Sanctuary
Tawi Wildlife Sanctuary in Aizawl District of Manipur is one of the first sanctuaries in Mizoram. It is located in the central part of the state, about 115 km from the capital town of Aizawl. Notified in 1978, its vegetation includes tropical evergreen and semi evergreen forests, which are home to many rare and endangered species of flora and fauna. The most favorable time to visit is between October and March. The sanctuary can be accessed easily by road from Aizawl via Chhingchip. Accommodation facilities are available at the inspection hut in Hualt.
Mini Zoological Garden
Mini Zoological Garden is located at Aizawl, the capital city of Mizoram. This zoological garden is situated on a hill called Bethlehem Vengthlang. The Mini Zoological Garden is home to a number of rare animals found in Asia. The prime attraction is the endangered Sun Bear. This place also houses a collection of animals and birds, which are mostly found in the hilly regions of Mizoram.