Kiphire is home to the Yimchungrü, Sangtam and Sumi Naga tribes. It has a strong historical significance because of the stories about the movements of these tribes from and within this district, when they were settling in Nagaland hundreds of years back. This is the home to the famous Saramati Peak and other mountain trails.
Kiphire is a small town, situated at an elevation of 896 m above sea level and is the headquarters of Kiphire district. On the whole, the climate is humid and hot during summer and cold during winter with winter temperature touching a low of 2.7 ° C and a high of 37.0 ° C during summer. Monsoon period extends from June to September and sometimes up to October.
As in the case with other Naga groups, each of the diverse ethnic groups is distinguished by their distinctive language. Owing to the many generations of co-habitation, all these ethnic and linguistic groups understand each others’ language and the people often converse interchangeably. Though there are variations in the details of the various cultural practices and customs among the tribes of the district, on the whole, their society is organized along similar structures.
Although the people are mainly Christian, with the Catholic and the Baptist Churches having a strong presence in the district; their traditional festivals are still observed but with touches of Christian elements. The important festivals celebrated in the district are Mongmong observed by the Sangtam during September; Metümnio observed in the month of August by the Yimchungrü and Tuluni observed in July by the Sümi.
All the three tribal communities have close social and cultural affinity with their counterparts in the districts of Zunheboto and Tuensang. The Sangtam and the Yimchungrü tribes of Kiphire and Tuensang district have a shared history and culture with their respective counterparts. Similarly, the Sümi of Kiphire district also shares similar socio-cultural ties with the Sümi of Zunheboto district.