The road to Thenzawl has one of the most spectacular views with rolling green hills covered in clouds that float beneath the ridges like a misty sea. Thenzawl and its surrounding places offer some of the best tourist attractions Mizoram has to offer. Rife with a plethora of historical sites along with nature parks, nurseries and splendid waterfalls, it is also the handloom hub of the state.
Furthermore, Thenzawl is likewise called Naples of the East. Thenzawl was all thick timberland where wild creatures were routinely spotted. Thenzawl is one of the most exotic villages in Mizoram that should be in every tourist’s itinerary. Falling under the administration of the Serchhip district, Thenzawl was once upon a time only dense forest.
Thenzawl has located about 90 km from Aizawl – the capital of Mizoram. Till 1961, Thenzawl was all dense forest where wild animals were regularly spotted. However, after 1961, the forest cover was cleared, cultivated and then inhabited. It is believed that Benghuaia Sailo created the village sometime in 1963. Due to the March 1966 Mizo National Front uprising, Thenzawl was one of the villages where people were grouped together in 1968. The tropic of cancer runs through this picturesque town.
Thenzawl is not the slightest bit the quintessential visitor goal. Thenzawl tourism obliges the individuals who search for odd travel. It is an off the beaten path town that is wealthy in wide vegetation. Thenzawl tourism comprises of a couple yet stunning visitor places. It is an out- of- the- way spot that is rich in flora and fauna. Thenzawl is a flat area with a beautiful grassy landscape.
The Tuirihiau Falls is located 5 km south of Thenzawl in Serchhip District. Tuirihiau Falls is the most beautiful of all the waterfalls and cascades in the fast-flowing rivers of Mizoram. It is located in Vanva River near Thenzawl. The uniqueness of this waterfall is that one can step inside from behind the fall as it caves like an arc. Of all the waterfalls and cascades in the rough and fast-flowing rivers of Mizoram, Vantawng Khawhthla or “Vantawng Fall” is the highest and the most spectacular one. Also located in Vanva River near Thenzawl, it is named after Vantawnga who was said to be an excellent swimmer. Known for his swimming skills Vantawnga, so the story goes, that he could hover in the cascading water as well as a fish. But unfortunately, during one such feat, a drifting log fell from above and killed him.
Hmuifang Tourist Resort is an ideal getaway located at the scenic peak of Hmuifang mountain, 50 km to the south of Aizawl. With an elevation of 1619 meters, the mountain is still covered with virgin forests preserved since the days of the Sailo Chiefs. The patches of grassy glades on the peak are also suitable for picnics and outdoor camping in the midst of nature. From here one may visit the Hmuifang village situated on the hillock to see the typical rural life of the Mizos.
Thenzawl Golf Course & Resort is one of its kinds in North East India. Canada based Golf Course architectural firm, Graham Cooke and Associates has designed the Golf Course at Thenzawl, Mizoram with a total site area of 105 acres and the play area of 75 acres. It is an 18 hole Golf Course with Sharing Fairway and automated sprinkler irrigation system by Rain Bird, USA, having all the facilities of international standards. The golf resort also has a fully equipped clubhouse, a modern state-of-the-art convention centre, gazebos and a big food court with viewing gallery. One can witness the cultural dances of entertainment including the famous Cheraw dance in the evening. Dance to the tune of traditional songs and enjoy a scrumptious spread of Mizo dinner.
Thenzawl Deer Park is the home to the state animal Serow, and is the only one of its kind in Mizoram. It was established in the year 1994. Thenzawl Deer Park is recognized as a Mini Category Zoo with more than 10 hectares of open area. The Park was created to give a protected home to the deer and is a must-visit place in Thenzawl. They are kept in their natural environment, and only the boundaries are protected. One can visit the park and see these pretty animals quite close. Pony Riding at Thenzawl is an interesting activity, which is set up by the Animal Husbandry Department, Govt. of Mizoram. The ride takes place in wide-open valleys where anyone can enjoy riding these ponies. There is a beautiful lake beside this pony riding facility; boats are available for anyone interested in boat riding. This is a popular picnic spot amongst the locals.
From those initial days of settlement, today Thenzawl is popularly known for its Mizo handloom industry. The weaving products by the Thenzawl town are gaining worldwide popularity. Loin loom or backstrap loom is the main source of income for the people of Mizoram, especially women. ‘Puan’ which means cloth, is the traditional clothing of the native people of Mizoram and plays a special role in their life. Out of the many clothes, Puan plays a special role in the social fabric of the Mizo’s. The weaving of the Puans is done by women on the loin loom. The loin loom is very versatile in the sense that it supports a range of possibilities that can be woven with intricate designs and motifs.
With its exquisitely rich hand-woven products produced nationally and internationally, the northeast region is widely praised for their indigenous variety and interesting use of colour and motif in their weaving. One such traditional product is the dress of Mizoram known as ‘Puans’ (Puwaan), meaning cloth in Mizo language. Puan is occasionally woven on a frame and is mostly worn by young girls during the festive season.
The weaver sits in front of the loom, fixes the back strap and rests her leg on the footrest. The footrest can be adjusted to keep the loom in tension. The weaving is done on the loom by a shedding motion, a picking motion, and a beating motion. The length of Puan is normally 60 to 65 inches. It takes a week or more to finish a plain Puan, and a month or more for one with patterns, on a loin loom. With its varieties of floral print, Paun occupies a place of pride in a Mizo woman’s wardrobe. These motifs hold traditional and cultural significance to each tribe. The traditional way of wearing Puan is to wrap it around the waist.
Handloom industry plays a crucial role in the socio-economic development of the majority of rural masses in the northeastern region. Women are the sole weavers of Mizoram and through this; they have found a niche in the international markets of handloom and handicraft. This has made them self-reliant financially and helps them lead life with dignity and respect.
Reference: The Shillong Times
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