Tourist Places in Manipur
One of India's most picturesque states, Manipur, which translates to "A Jewelled Land," is situated in the northeast, where the natural world is awe-inspiringly quiet. This stunning landscape is known as the "Switzerland of the East" because of its swiftly moving rivers, a canopy of exotic flowers, and placid lakes. In Manipur, there are three highly well-known temples: the Shree Govindjee, Vishnu, and Shree Krishna temples available for Hindu devotees. The most popular tourist location in Manipur is Imphal, the regional capital, which is surrounded by dense forests.
History and Culture of Manipur
The establishment of Manipur in the first century AD resulted from the 10 clans coming together under the leadership of the Ningthouja tribe.
The modern-day Manipur's background and civilisation also date back to the British Indian Empire, when the State of Manipur was one of the princely states. Then, some Manipur natives agitated for democracy between 1917 and 1939 since they were under the control of princes. The princely state of Manipur began negotiating with the then-British government around the late 1930s. It declared that Burma, which was being split off from India, was not something it wanted to be a part of and that it preferred to remain a part of the Indian Empire. Consequently, Maharaja Budhachandra joined India by signing an Instrument of Accession in 1947. The kingdom was later merged with India by him through the signing of a Merger Agreement in 1949, which resulted in its transformation into a Part C State.
Additionally, during World War II, the state served as a hub for commerce lines connecting India and Myanmar. In fact, it also served as the battlefield where the Japanese and the allied troops fought. India officially recognised Manipur as a state in 1972. Today it is a state with distinct customs and culture. It has succeeded in creating a distinct identity for itself despite having a vastly various culture than other places. The Manipuri people's compliance with both traditional and modern styles is the most significant characteristic of Manipuri tradition.
With summer quickly approaching and there being nothing better to do than travel to highlands and mountainous areas for a vacation, Manipur offers an incredible offbeat tourism destination. The months from October to April are the greatest for travel there because of the pleasant weather, although the months from April to September have somewhat warmer temperatures. However, during such periods the weather turns hot during the day and nice and cool throughout the evening and night. But it would be wiser to avoid those times. Manipur is the finest option for a vacation, whether we are travelling alone or with our family. In this article, let's explore the top tourist places in Manipur.
1. Loktak Lake
Loktak Lake is the best tourist destination in Manipur and is 53 kilometres distant from Imphal. This capital city is situated in the heart of a lovely valley and is one of the oldest towns in India. Due to its extensive pastures and lush woodland, it also resembles paradise on earth. The Loktak nere is noted for its phumdis or spherical-shaped floating marshlands. This largest natural freshwater reserve covers an arena of 280 square kilometres. The last remaining natural habitat of the threatened "Sangai" breed is found there. Thus, it is famous for the brow-antlered deer, which is among the three kinds of Eld's deer found in Manipur.
Numerous animal and marine flora species are recorded within the lake's borders. But because it is home to uncommon bird species like the East Himalayan pied, Black kite, Burmese pied myna, Northern hill myna, Kingfisher, and Lesser skylark, this lake has earned the moniker "Birder's Paradise". Summer is the perfect season to explore this lake; since then, one can truly appreciate how serene nature is when the level of waterfalls. In addition, the 300-square metre Sendra Island is located in the middle of the lake and is a well-liked location for camping, rowing, and shooting. The adjacent areas receive hydroelectric power from it and freshwater for cultivation.
Senapati is a less well-known place in Manipur. However, one must have a stroll amidst the quirky surroundings in order to admire this heavenly space. One of the top tourist destinations in Manipur, Senapati, is a simple but captivating refuge that is bestowed with the abundance of nature. Here, lush forests occupy almost 80% of the land, with villages dotting the remaining 20%.
Its picturesque surroundings, which are embellished with glistening meandering streams and untamed mountains, end up making it no lesser paradise on earth. Senapati, another of Manipur's top hiking locations, also houses a variety of flora and fauna. If one is here, they should invest some time relishing the greenery and among the ferns and pay heed to nature's exquisite symphony.
The hamlet is the perfect getaway for anyone interested in learning more about Manipur's culture. It's possible that a visitor spends the day discovering the forest, and in the evening, they hang out with locals, some of whom might prepare a special meal for them.
3. Keibul Lamjao National Park
Keibul Lamjao National Park, which encircles Loktak Lake, is most renowned for its endangered brow-antlered deer, also known as Sangai, and its floating phumdis vegetation. Among the most stunning tourist destinations in Manipur, this national park spanning 40 sq. km. offers mesmerising views of the lake. Additionally, Keibul Lamjao National Park is well-liked by ornithologists, animal aficionados, and those who enjoy the outdoors because it is the world's only floating sanctuary.
This area is home to a variety of wildlife, including sambar, wild boar, hog deer, and jungle cats, as well as numerous endangered and common bird species, including the East Himalayan pied kingfisher, spotbill duck, ruddy shell-duck, Burmese Pied Myna, and Indian white-breasted waterhen.
4. Tharon Cave
One of the intriguing tourist destinations in Manipur is the Tharon Cave, also known as The Uluan Cave. This 650 metres long cave tunnel, which is close to Tamenglong, features engravings and excavations from North Vietnamese Hovnanian culture.
This cave, which has 34 joints and 5 exits, is a favourite of hikers and thrill seekers. Each year, the Manipur State Tourism Department hosts a cave exploration programme where participants can experience the excitement of exploring the dark passageways.
5. INA Memorial Complex
While on vacation in Manipur, one should check out the INA Memorial Complex, which was erected in honour of the brave soldiers of the Indian National Army (INA) who gave their lives to secure the nation.
The INA Memorial is located in Moirang. From the viewpoint of the Second World War and India's independence struggle, Moirang town is significant. On April 14, 1944, Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose raised the Indian National Army flag for the first time at Moirang. The INA's official headquarters relocated to Moirang. Later, the area became an INA installation.
The complex includes a sizable bronze statue of Subhas Chandra Bose, a stone monument commemorating the inaugural raising of the Tri-color flag of Independent India, and recreation of Singapore's INA War Memorial. Additionally, the building houses a war museum that showcases images and records from the liberation movement and World War II. Each year, a sizable influx of visitors, mostly from Japan and England, to the complex who pay respect to the War dead can be witnessed.
6. Manipur Zoological Garden
One of the nicest places to visit in Manipur is to explore this zoo, where one can see wildlife and soak in the tranquil atmosphere. Manipur Zoological Garden, which opened in 1976, is one of the state's most well-liked tourism destinations, particularly by families and young children.
This 8-hectare zoo is situated in Lamphelpat, close to Imphal, and is encircled by verdant mountains. Numerous common and rare creatures, including the Sangai, wild boar, deer, hog deer, bear, and about 55 species of birds, call this place home.
7. Shree Govindaji Temple
Shree Govindajee Temple, one of the most popular tourist attractions in Manipur, is devoted to Radha, Krishna, Jagannatha, Balarama, and Govinda. An important area near the Kangla fort is home to a Vaishnav temple devoted to the Lord Sri Baikunth Nath, who is said to grant eternal peace to Thounaojam Kunjakishwor Singh's departed soul.
This red-brick temple, which is close to the Royal Palace and features Nagara-style architecture, draws visitors all year long. Govindajee's idol is located in the central chamber, whereas additional deities may be found in other rooms on each of the temple's four corners.
When Maharaja Nara Singh constructed it in 1846, it had two gold-plated domes, a paved patio, and two enormous gathering halls. Maharaja Chandrakriti restored it in 1876.
8. Dzukou Valley
Dzukou Valley, which is well-known for its natural setting, is situated on the boundary between the states of Manipur and Nagaland. The Dzukou lily, a unique flower found exclusively in this region, gave the valley its name. It is certainly the essence that dreams are made of, with stunning valleys, crystal-clear water, and lush green trees. The Blyth's tragopan, the state bird of Nagaland, resides in this valley, which is abundant in vegetation and fauna. It welcomes visitors all year long and entices them with its splendour.
If one plans to visit this location in the summer, one can witness the stunning spectacle of innumerable seasonal blooms. Therefore, if one wants to spend a bit of time in peace or if they enjoy hiking through beautiful natural surroundings, this is the spot to spend the best of their time in.
9. Leimaram Waterfall
Another well-known major tourist spot in Manipur is the Leimaram Waterfall. Because of its picturesque beauty and serene surroundings, it has recently developed into a fantastic tourist destination.
If one visits this place, they might admire the breathtaking views of not one but three waterfalls and won't be able to resist capturing them on camera. For everyone travelling to Manipur, seeing this waterfall will be a magnificent encounter and a must-see tourist attraction.
The abundance of nature is showered upon Chandel, the entrance to Myanmar. Not only that, but the area is one of Manipur's most beautiful tourist destinations and features a culturally diverse environment. So, in this oasis, which in itself is one of the most stunning Manipur destinations, one would get the best of both worlds.
A hike here in the morning is a complete getaway since one might confront hazy grasses and soft sunlight. One must keep their camera handy throughout because they might come across some uncommon animals and birds when touring the denser areas.