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Travel | Exploring Shilloi Lake: Nagaland’s Limpid Legend

The mountainous regions of North East India exude a remarkable harmony with its abundant flora and fauna. With picture-perfect scenery that resembles postcards, these regions are home to indigenous tribes and communities, leaving an indelible impression on all who venture there. The magic of this region is that it steers you out of your comfort zone and offers a beauty so raw and untouched that your adventurous spirit feels at home in these hills and valleys.

One such destination is the Shilloi Lake in Nagaland. It is the largest natural lake in the State. About 290 km from the capital town of Kohima, Shilloi Lake is located in the Phek district,and takes about 10-12 hours by road (from Kohima).


Tourists at Shilloi Lake Nagaland | Photo courtesy – Colo Meru

The water body is surrounded by mountains, a captivating skyline, green scapes, and wildflowers – a picturesque postcard image! Perhaps, that is why it is often considered a traveler’s haven.


Photo | Shilloi Lake, Nagaland

Legend of Shillo Lake

Not only is the place a sight to behold but it speaks of an enchanting folktale that any local will be willing to feed your ears with. Folk tales are an important ingredient of any travel story. It makes the travel experience more enriching and memorable.

Just like the waters of the lake, the legend is bewitching and limpid. People believe that a spirit of a girl child resides at the bottom of the lake. She protects the people of the surrounding region from harm and is considered the Queen of the Lake

#DidYouKnow: The Shilloi Lake is in the shape of a human foot


Shilloi Lake | Pic courtesy – Colo Meru

How to get there?

The connectivity to Shilloi Lake can be arduous for some. Fortunately, there are villages on the way such as Chizami and Meluri where one can spend the night and rest. Zhipu village also offers travelers wayside amenities and one can enjoy the sight of the magnificent white stones known as Pillow Lava at Lumüsüpa. Those, seeking adventure will be able to tread this perfect route to paradise without complaints 🙂


Lumüsüpa (Pillow Lava) white limestone deposit at Moke Village on the way to Shilloi Lake | Pic courtesy – Colo Meru

Where do stay –

The place has comfortable and cozy homestay cottages and dormitories that one can tuck in as the night approaches. Pantry facilities are also available for those who prefer cooking on their own.


Cottages at Shilloi Lake, Phek district in Nagaland

Some recommended activities to enjoy at Shilloi Lake:

Whether it is hiking, bird watching, boating, angling, or simply soaking in the verdant environment, there are plenty of outdoor activities you can choose from.

And if you are not an active person at all,  do not worry; the ariel view of the lake from atop a nearby hill is enough to make your visit worthwhile. Als highly recommend an early morning or evening walk in the quietness of the lake area and soaking in the freshness of the surroundings. With the crimson sunrise and sunset on the horizon, silence transforms into serenity effortlessly. Guaranteed to rejuvenate your body and soul…


Boating and fishing scenes at Shilloi Lake | Photo credits – Colo Meru

A little beyond the lake, after about 20 minutes of scraping, lies the historic couple stone at Phukungri village. The Myanmar border stretches in a line of endless trees and hills. 


Couple Stone at Phukhungri village in Myanmar border under Meluri Sub Division, Phek District.

Planning a trip to Shilloi Lake already?


Bonfire at the homestay cottages near Shilloi Lake.


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