Manipur which means "A Jeweled Land" nestles between natural beauty and grandeur. Manipur is surrounded by high mountains with green carpeting all around; a traditionally rich state which executes the unspoiled beauty and innocence of nature.
Manipur is a treasure trove of natural beauties and most of them are yet to be revealed. This tiny northeastern state slices its borders with Nagaland, Assam and Mizoram. It also shares its boundary with the neighboring country Myanmar. Manipur border is considered to be one of the sensitive bordering areas of India; therefore, without permit entries are strictly prohibited.
Zoological Garden: Zoological Garden is a premier tourist spot of Manipur which is famous for rare species of Brow-Antlered deer. This garden is a perfect place to commence an eco-tour while staying in the heart of Imphal which is the capital city of Manipur.
Singda: A marvelous hill resort located 16 km away from Imphal and situated at an altitude of 920 meters is popular for its tranquil atmosphere. One can enjoy the unparallel views of the valleys of Manipur sitting in the resort house. The peacefulness in the atmosphere and the serenity of the nature provide added advantage to nature lovers.
Loktak Lake: Loktak Lake is probably the first thought comes into your mind once you tap into Manipur. Loktak Lake is an enlarged stretch of water which facilitates the tourists to enjoy boating and fishing while the plane land near the lake is a fine spot for picnic. A magnificent view of dawn and dusk can be enjoyed sitting near the windows of the adjacent tourist bungalows.
Langthabal: Langthabal is a gigantic hill located situated on the Indo-Burma Road. Many temples and historical places are also located in and around this place, therefore, visitors at a large number gather there during different occasions of the year.
Kaina: Kaina is a renowned pilgrimage situated at an altitude of 921 meters and is considered to be a sacred shrine of the Hindus.
Andaro: Andaro is a famous village which is known for its cultural complex. This complex showcases beautiful pottery items made in the northeastern region. The doll house of this complex is another major attraction which allures visitors from far corners.
Khongampat Orchidarium: Khongampat Orchidarium is a special and famous destination for eco-tourists who keep special interest in orchids.
Manipur is considered to be a land of festivals. Different holy festivals, rituals, occasion, fairs are a part of Manipuri culture therefore they are observed throughout the year. Festivals bring merriment into life and help to shade off boredom and are essential part of psychological development which brings positivity into our lives. Some famous festivals of Manipur are as followed:
Lai-Haraoba: Most of the Manipuri festivals are associated with different dance forms which are performed with great vigor; Lai-Haraoba is also one of those celebrations. Lai-Haraoba is celebrated in the month of May in which conventional Manipuri deities are being worshiped and man and woman perform traditional dances before a large gathering to please deities and their predecessors.
Rathe Jatra: Ratha Jatra is one of the most important festivals of Manipur. This occasion is celebrated for 10 days during the month of June or July every year. Thousands of devotees come down on the roads for offering payers to Lord Jagannatha with a wish and hope to please Lord Jagannatha and get his blessings.
Dol Yatra: This festival is celebrated for five days starting from a full-moon day during February/March. Rallies are being arranged to commemorate this premier occasion and folk dances are performed by boys and girls on the streets, which is an integral ritual of this festival.
Cheiraoba: Cheiraoba is the Manipuri New Year which is celebrated with great enthusiasm and passion. New Year is the festival to rejoice in happiness. The inhabitants cook special dishes to offer their ancient deities with a belief that if they can please their God then he would remove all worries from life.
Other festivals of Manipur include Heikru Hidongba, Lui_Ngai_Ni, Ningol Chakouba, Chumpha (Festival of Tangkhul Nagas), Christmas, Kwak Jatra, Gang-Ngai (Festival of Kabui Nagas) etc.
Just like its other north-eastern states Manipur also boasts with unblemished and non-polluted natural beauties. Due to its aesthetic beauty and tranquil atmosphere, Manipur has become an exotic tourist spot attracting tourists from different parts of the country in the recent times. Keeping into mind the growing tourist interests, the road, rail and air connectivity have also been developed.
By Air: Imphal Tulihal Airport is the only airport of Manipur which is located at a distance of 8 km from the capital city Imphal. Regular domestic air services connect this state with major Indian cities like Kolkata, Delhi and Guwahati. Imphal is also connected with other north eastern cities like Silchar, Aizwal and Dimapur through regular or weekly flight services.
By Bus: Manipur roadways network is very strong and one can move to and fro within the state while enjoying vacation in Manipur. Public and private owned busses and other luxurious coaches are available for the tourists. Two national highways, NH 39 and NH 53 connect this state with Guwahati, Dimapur and Silchar.
By Rail : Manipur has not yet been introduced in the railway map of India therefore; direct railway services are not available for this state. Guwahati and Dimapur are the two nearest railheads from where visitors can board a bus or flight to come down to this state.
Wildlife in Manipur: Not only for the nature loves and devotees, Manipur is an ideal destination for wildlife enthusiasts also. This state is a natural habit of many rare species and enchanting birds. A trip to Manipur remains half explored if someone misses out the two interesting reserve forests called Keibul Lamjao National Park and Sirohi National Park.
Keibul Lamjao National Park is located in the extreme southern part of the famous Loktak Lake at Bishnupur District. Keibul Lamjao National Park showcases a number of wild species like Sangai, Assamese Macaques, Hoolock Gibbon, Sambar, Hog Deer, Wild Boar, Viverra Zibetha, Common Otter, Hooded Crane, Shaheen Falcon, Black Eagle, Brown-backed Hornbill, Great Pied Hornbill, Pied Hornbill, Wreathed Hornbill, Tortise, Viper, Python Common Lizard and Cobra and so on. One can take the pleasure of a Jungle Safari or Bird Safari to have a thrilling experience of watching wild creatures from a very close distance.
Wildlife adventure opportunities are accessible in Sirohi National Park as well, which is a small reserve forest located near Indo-Burma border. Sirohi National Park is situated at Sirohi in Manipur. Tiger, Wild Boar, Leopard, Deer, Vultures, Owls, Eagles, Tits and Antelopes are some common species that could be found in this national park.
Adventure Sports in Manipur: Adventure sports in Manipur include a variety of thrilling opportunities. Polo as an adventure sport has received wide acceptance in Manipur and it is said the game of Polo has originated from Manipur. Other adventure sporting events include mountaineering, trekking and white-water rafting. The geographical location and positioning of this state offers enough opportunity to its habitants and even the visitors to boost up their mind and body with some recreational facilities and adventure sports.
The best time to book a trip for Manipur is between Octobers to February. The weather during this period remains comparatively amiable which attracts tourists from different parts of the country.
According to the royal chronicle â€˜Cheitharol Jumbabaâ€™ the state Manipur came into existence during the 1st century AD. Previously it was a kingdom built in the union of ten majestic tribes under the direction of Ningthouja race. The historical background of Manipur is also very strong as it used to be the trade route for import and export between India and its neighboring country Myanmar. During the 2nd World War, Manipur served the purpose of a battle ground for Japanese and its associated forces. Therefore, the historical significance of this place is quite high. This state became a part of India in the year 1949 and become a full-fledged state on 21st January 1972.
However, the reference of Manipur could be traced out from the Hindu epic Mahabharata; hence this region is assumed to be an integral part of the undivided ancient India. The state comprises of nine districts namely Chanfel, Imphal East, Imphal West, Bishnupur, Churchandrapur, Thoubal, Senapati, Tamenglong and Ukhrol. The forest resources of Manipur are also very significant and contribute a lot to the state government treasury.
The geography of this hilly terrain has influenced the climate of Manipur to a great extent and the three seasons like summer, winter and monsoon are very prominent in Manipur. The weather is normally moderate though winter in Manipur is very chilly and freezing. Summer observes a maximum temperature of 32 degree centigrade and in winter it falls below minus. The extreme hilly areas of Manipur enjoys snow fall during the peak winters. January is considered to be the coldest month in Manipur and July being the warmest. Manipur receives heavy downpours during monsoon and rain lusts till October. The annual average rainfall observed in this state is approximately 1467.5 mm.