In 1871-72, the disorderly conduct of Khalkom, a Mizo chief, compelled the British to establish an outpost that later became the Aizawl village. In 1890, officer Dally of the Assam Police and his 400 men arrived at Aizawl to support Colonel Skinner's troops during a British military operation against the Mizo tribals. On Dally's recommendation, Aizawl was selected as the site of a fortified post that Colonel Skinner had been ordered to construct. The troops constructed stockades and buildings at the site. In 1892-95 Aizawl became accessible from Silchar by fair weather road under the supervision of Major Loch. The Indian Air Force carried out air strikes on the town during the March 1966 Mizo National Front uprising, following which the MNF withdrew to Lunglei. Until 1966, Aizawl was a large village but the regrouping of Mizo villages after the uprising made it become a larger town and then a city. Aizawl has become the centre of Road network in Mizoram connecting the north and south, east and west. More than 25% of the Mizoram population reside in Aizawl.
Aizawl is located north of the Tropic of Cancer in the northern part of Mizoram. It is situated on a ridge 1,132 metres (3715 ft) above sea level, with the Tlawng river valley to its west and the Tuirial river valley to its east.
Aizawl has a mild, sub-tropical climate due to its location and elevation. Under the Köppen climate classification, Aizawl features a humid subtropical climate (Cwa) but very rainy. In the summer the temperature ranges from 20–30 °C (68–86 °F), and in the winter 11–21 °C (52–70 °F).
The Aizawl Municipal Council is the authority of civic administration of Aizawl city. It was formed in 2010 with 19 Members when the Congress-ZNP party coalition was voted to power in the state legisative assembly. The AMC office is being administered by one council Chairman, Vice-Chairman and three executive members. It consists of 19 elected members representing 19 wards of the city and others appointed by the Governor of Mizoram. One-third of the total membership is reserved for women, these six seats shall be rotated after every five years. The tenure of the council is five years. There is a Ward Committee in every ward that consists of a Chairman, who is an elected councillor from that ward, and two members each from all the local council within the ward. There are 78 local councils having a term of 5 years.
As of 2011 India census, Aizawl had a population of 293,416. Females constitute 50.61% of the population and males made up the remaining 49.39%. Mizos from various tribes make up the majority of the population. Christianity is the dominant religion in the city and is practised by 90% of the city population. Other religions include Buddhism 7% , Hinduism 2% and Islam 1%.
Presbyterians make up the majority of the population. However, there are also significant numbers of the Salvation Army, Baptists, Seventh-day Adventists, United Pentecostal Church and Roman Catholics in the city. There are also some cultural based Christian sects. Hinduism and Islam are also represented in very small numbers in the city population.
The economy of Aizawl is basically sustained by government services as it is capital of Mizoram. The major banks are also located within Aizawl. A 3-star category hotel, Hotel Regency, has recently been inaugurated at Zarkawt, a central location within the city. It provides a much-needed hospitality service for tourists and business visitors to Aizawl. There are several other hotels apart from Hotel Regency. Those include - Hotel Sangchia located in Zarkawt, Hotel Grand located in Zarkawt, Hotel Floria located in Dawrpui, Ritz Hotel located in Canteen Kual, Tourist Lodge located in Chaltlang, Chawlhna Hotel located in Zarkawt, Riakmaw Inn located in Zarkawt, Hotel Ahimsa located in Zarkawt, and other numerous affordable hotels.
Aizawl is connected by air transport through Lengpui Airport which it is situated near Aizawl. The airport provides connectivity to Kolkata Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose International Airport, Guwahati Lokpriya Gopinath Bordoloi International Airport, Shillong Airport and Imphal Imphal International Airport. Air India, Jet Airways and SpiceJet are the three regular airlines which operate flights to and from Lengpui Airport. A helicopter service by Pawan Hans was started in 2012 and connects the city with Lunglei, Lawngtlai, Saiha, Chawngte, Serchhip, Champhai, Kolasib, Khawzawl, Ngopa and Hnahthial.
Mizoram is connected by railroad up to Bairabi, there are plans to connect Bairabi with Sairang with broad gauge railway track, near Aizawl. The government is now planning to start a broad gauge Bairabi Sairang Railway connection for better connectivity in the state. There is also the plan for 5 km long Aizawl Monorail running between Zemabawk to Kulikawn.
Aizawl is connected by road with Silchar through National Highway 54, with Agartala through National Highway 40 and with Imphal through National Highway 150. The yellow-and-white taxis are widely available; Maruti cars are most widely used. Privately owned blue-and-white mini buses are on regular service as city buses.
Newspaper: The major media in Aizawl in Mizo and English Language are:
Radio: All India Radio also has a studio that host programmes at scheduled hours. FM Zoawi is a popular radio station in Aizawl.
The main places of interest in Aizawl are:Bara Bazar is the main shopping centre of Aizawl in Dawrpui Veng locality. The steep Zion Street is lined with stalls selling garments. The main bazar is where the people are best seen in their traditional costumes selling produce from the farms as well as imports from China brought through Myanmar border area. The Millennium Centre in the same locality is a popular shopping Mall.
Mizoram State Museum is located in the centre of the town at Zarkawt. This museum gives a good insight into Mizo traditions, culture and history.
Reiek Tourist Resort a tourist spot 12 km from Aizawl, is a beautiful place at an elevation of 1548 metres with a traditional Mizo Village.
Durtlang Hills situated on the northern side of Aizawl offers a fine view of the hill station from either Durtlang Hospital or Aizawl Theological College.
Hmuifang is about 50 km from Aizawl with an elevation of 1619 metres, the mountain is still covered with virgin forests reserved since the Mizo Chief's time
Berawtlang Tourist Complex situated 7 km from Aizawl is a recreational centre that hosts cultural activities. It is also considered a popular picnic spot.
Baktawng Village 70 km from Aizawl is the place where Pu Ziona lives with the "worlds largest existing family" with 39 wives, 94 children, 14 daughters-in-law and 33 grandchildren.
Solomon's Temple, Aizawl Mizoram, India located in Kidron Valley, Chawlhhmun is a grand temple complex operated by Kohhran Thianghlim of Mizoram.
Khuangchera Puk is a cave in Ailawng near Reiek, about 30 km from Aizawl.
Folkland Amusement Park Located in Aizawl city's northern outskirt, it is the first amusement park in Mizoram. It has many entertainment services like go-karting, futsal, laser tag, dj hall and restaurants like warehouse café. The park also hosts events like open mic nights, jam nights etc
There are both state and private schools. Parochial schools are run by the Baptist Church of Mizoram, the Presbyterian Church of India (Synod), several Roman Catholic(St. Pauls Higher Secondary School, Mary Mount School, St. Lawrence School, St. Mary's School) religious orders and the Seventh-day Adventists (Helen Lowry). Kendriya Vidyalaya, Aizawl, is another school run by the Kendriya Vidyalaya Sangathan, the school situated close to Zembawk. Other schools include Home Missions School, Mount Carmel School, Oikos Higher Secondary School.
Pachhunga University College was among the earliest colleges founded in 1958. Aizawl College, the second oldest college in Aizawl City was established in the year 1975. Govt. Hrangbana College was established in 1980, located in Chanmari, Aizawl with Pu Lalrinawma as the Principal, it has 57 teaching staffs with 22 non - teaching Staffs and more than 2000 students in Commerce and Arts Departments. Mizoram University established in 2001 provides affiliation to all the Colleges in Mizoram. Mizoram University also provides post - graduate education as well as B.Tech education and other departments. ICFAI University located in Durtlang, Aizawl West College, Govt. Aizawl North College, Govt. J. Thankima College also provides Under Graduate courses. Mizoram Law College provides education to people who seek profession in Law. Indian Institute of Mass Communication and National Institute of Technology Mizoram has already started operations. Plans are being made to start a medical college in Falkawn.
Football is the most popular sport in Mizoram with a number of footballers playing in national leagues in different parts of India. Some of the more important playing facilities in Aizawl are:
- Rajiv Gandhi Stadium Mualpui, with a seating capacity of 20,000, is currently being constructed at Mualpui, Aizawl.
- Hawla Indoor Stadium is the largest indoor stadium with basketball, badminton and boxing facilities.
- Lammual stadium is a single tier stadium. The stadium under construction will have a seating capacity of about 5,000 spectators.