Kohima - how to get there?

Discussion in 'WW2 Battlefields Today' started by Jonathan Saunders, Mar 20, 2006.

  1. Have any members travelled to Kohima and do they have advice of how best to get there, where to stay, what to do after visiting the battlefield, approximate cost?

    Many thanks in advance for any help.
     
  2. Chris Basey

    Chris Basey Senior Member

    John

    The Burma Star Association might be a good bet -HERE

    Good Luck
     
  3. Owen

    Owen -- --- -.. MOD

  4. Many thanks for the suggestions.
     
  5. lionboxer

    lionboxer Member

    You won't get there at all without the correct entry visas. Nagaland and Manipur are out of bounds to tourists as such. I was lucky enough to go on a British Legion Pilgrimage two years ago now and absolutely amazing it was too.This will probably be your only hope of getting there and back safely. We had armed escorts from the Assam Rifles and police the whole time as there is a lot of serious disturbance, though I didn't feel the slightest bit threatened by these lovely hill people. Give me a shout if you want further details.
    Lionboxer
     
  6. Paul Reed

    Paul Reed Ubique

    I remember reading - of all places - an article on visiting this battlefield in 'Guns Review' magazine back in the 1980s. The author found foxholes, mortar positions, and loads of ordnance and other items all over the battlefield area. If you do go Jon, would love to read about it!
     
  7. lionboxer

    lionboxer Member

    Jon,
    I'm afraid you won't be able to wander about on your own or escorted at all. I was just half a mile from where my father fought at Imphal and had a large security escort (armoured jeeps with heavy machineguns and many Sepoys) but was unable to go to the base of the hill where my father was positioned during a battle. There may well be ordnance etc about as we were given a load of shrapnel and spent bullets by an old woman who tended the Royal Scots memorial at Kohima and a young lad came to the hotel in Imphal with a load of gear. But there's no way you'll get anything back through the security. The situation in Nagaland and Manipur is still dangerous with daily shootings etc. Checkout some of the websites eg Kanglaonline, E-Pao. I will post some photos and an account of my experience there if I can. I tried to when I came back (two years April) but was unable to and gave up!! I'll get some technical help.
    Lionboxer
     
  8. I appreciate your further comments. I didnt realise the problems associated with visiting Kohima but the fact its difficult to get to makes me more determined to fit this in to my schedule - probably not this year but for 2007.
     
  9. mikky

    mikky Member

    Hi Jonathan.
    Did you get to Kohima? I would love to see any photographs, or read any stories members might have
    Cheers Mike
     
  10. Hi Mikky - I have just come across this thread again and your unanswered question. As yet I havent got to Kohima but it is still on the agenda. My best option appeared to be Royal British Legion tours to Kohima (and I had mentally pencilled one for this year) until they released the price of £3500 inc single suplement. I wasnt expecting it to be cheap but not that much and the tour included other parts of India that would not be so interesting to me. Recently I have been talking about visiting Kohima with a friend of mine and we have agreed we are both interested in making the trip - its now down to pushing each other to see if we can "backpack" there.

    So sorry I have no photos for you.

    If anyone else has any good ideas or previous experience of visiting Kohima, I would appreciate the benefit of their wisdom.

    Regards,

    Jonathan S
     
  11. jawan

    jawan Old Hand

    Hi Mikky - I have just come across this thread again and your unanswered question. As yet I havent got to Kohima but it is still on the agenda. My best option appeared to be Royal British Legion tours to Kohima (and I had mentally pencilled one for this year) until they released the price of £3500 inc single suplement. I wasnt expecting it to be cheap but not that much and the tour included other parts of India that would not be so interesting to me. Recently I have been talking about visiting Kohima with a friend of mine and we have agreed we are both interested in making the trip - its now down to pushing each other to see if we can "backpack" there.

    So sorry I have no photos for you.

    If anyone else has any good ideas or previous experience of visiting Kohima, I would appreciate the benefit of their wisdom.

    Regards,

    Jonathan S
    Jonathan,

    I have spent the past five years working in India and have visited Kohima on four occasions. It is possible but you will need to pass through all the hoops as others have said the area is restricted. Plan on flying to Kolkata (Calcutta) then fly to Dimapur from where Kohima is about three hours drive. You cannot travel between Kohima and Imphal by road. I strongly suggest a local tour agent and can give details but best we speak I suggest - let me have a contact number. Trips to Imphal are more difficult and again flights from Calcutta - but once in Imphal you cannot travel outside the town. And forget backpacking anywhere in Nagaland or Manipur - you will likely get shot, arrested or both!! Have a look on line at the flights from Kolkata to Dimapur and accommodation in Kohima. The recent British Legion tours have been cancelled due to lack of numbers. Do get back to me, Jawan
     
  12. Hi Jawan - thanks for your message. I'll discuss this with my pal and also look at cost of flights. A trip will not be this year as we are both off to Gallipoli but we are both very serious about getting to Kohima. My Pal served in the successor unit to 4/RWKs and has the Kohima Dinner ocming up shortly, so timing to contact him could be appropriate.
    Regards, Jonathan S
     
  13. jawan

    jawan Old Hand

    Thanks Jonathan. Frankly it may well take almost a year to plan the trip!! Be aware you need to avoid the monsoon season and therefore you really should visit in Sep-Dec or Feb-Apr. Just get in touch when you want to move things forward. Best wishes, Jawan
     
  14. No4Mk1

    No4Mk1 Member

    Hi Everyone
    I am considering a trip to Kohima, where my father fought with the RWK in April 1944.
    I'm looking for suggestions for a way of undertaking such a trip with my daughter - his grand daughter - next Mar/April (2025)
    Any information/ideas would be most welcome.
    Regards
    Mike
     
  15. Tony258

    Tony258 Member

    Travelled to Kohima in November last year. Sampan Travel were superb in terms of organisation and i would thoroughly recommend them. I added a trip to Chittogong to the itinerary as my father had been based there for a time. Again, well organized By Sampan Travel. Not cheap but overall, i felt safe and enjoyed the company of knowledgeable travelers. T
     
  16. No4Mk1

    No4Mk1 Member

    Thanks Tony. Just what I was looking for.
    I'll check them out.
    I'm guessing you have some personal WW2 connection with Kohima. Did you find the trip satisfied your interests?
    Kind Regards
    Mike
     
  17. Tony258

    Tony258 Member

    Mike,
    My father flew in India/Burma predominately over the Arakan so for me it was a trip to get a feel for the area and cover a little of the ground that he flew over. In terms of the trip Bertie Alexander (Sampan Travel) has a great knowledge of the Kohima area and on my trip utilised the skills of Yai Kangjam to do all the local "fixing" - both great guys and if Imphal is on your agenda Yai is the man as he lives there (and guides there as well)! We also had the luxury of having Rob Lyman, the author on our trip so got an excellent daily take on the conflict. Would go back to the Naga Hills tomorrow if funds allowed!
    Tony
     
  18. No4Mk1

    No4Mk1 Member

    Thanks for the insights Tony. My father was there during the siege - I'm not sure, with Kohima now being a modern city of 100,000+, how much I'll be able to relate it to his experience.
     
  19. Tony258

    Tony258 Member

    Mike...whilst Kohima has grown out of all proportion the key geography has not changed, but i would say that without someone like Rob Lyman to explain what happened and where, you might not get full value from the time spent there? I have no connection with the Sampan team other than the fact i thought it was good value for money and i certainly wouldn't attempt to go it alone having been. With your father's direct connection to Kohima, albeit 80 years now, i think it would be a rewarding but emotional trip. Go for it would be my recommendation......Regards. T
     

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