Govindajee TempleThose of you who like to get away from the rest and try things off the beaten path should head of to Imphal. Situated in the north-eastern state of Manipur, Imphal is a place of exquisite natural beauty, lush hills, picturesque valleys and some exotic locales, as found nowhere else on the planet. One of the most ancient cities in the country, Imphal still appears to be shrouded in a mist of past with the remains of an old palace, ancient shrines and old houses standing as testimonials to its rich history. The tall pine and deodar trees that crowd the entire Manipur valley lend the place a mystique look and feel.
HOW TO REACH
By Air :-
Imphal airport is situated just outside the main city. Indian Airlines connects Imphal with Delhi via Guwahati on Wednesday and Sunday. Imphal is also connected to Calcutta and some other cities in east India.
By Rail :-
Dimapur, situated at a distance of 215 km is the nearest railhead. Taxis and buses are easily available for Imphal from Dimapur. A daily train connecting Delhi (Dep. 23:40) with Dimapur is the Brahmaputra Mail.
By Road :-
Manipur state transport buses connect Imphal with other neighbouring cities in Manipur and Nagaland.
WHAT TO SEE
Dedicated to Lord Vishnu, the holy Hindu shrine is situated near the Manipur Palace. Besides the presiding deity, the temple houses idols of Lord Krishna and Balrama. The unique architecture of the temple is adorned with two huge domes, a massive courtyard, giant walls and an assembly hall used to hold prayer and other ceremonies.
Shaheed Minar is a towering structure, built to pay homage to the war martyrs who gave up their lives defending their land against the intruding British in 1891. The war cemetry located nearby houses the graves of brave soldiers, both from the British and Indian armies.
Manipur Zoological Gardens:-
Situated in Iroisemba enroute Kangchup, the Manipur Zoological gardens is home to a number of rare and exotic species of birds and animals, making it one of the major tourist attractions in the region. The brow antelered deer is one of the rarest animal species in the world and a major attraction at the park.
Shopping in Imphal mainly includes buying local handicraft goods. Shopping at Imphal is best for clothes and accessories, which include jewelry and shoes primarily.Â The main shopping center of Imphal is the market of Khwairamband, which is run by more than 3,000 tribal women. In one section of the market, there are shawls, textiles and fabrics, including the “phanek , which is the traditional dress of the “Meitei” tribe of Manipur. In the other section there are household items like decorative and other such products.
Manipuri cuisine primarily comprises of rice, fish and green leafy vegetables. The vegetables consumed by Manipuris are grown in kitchen gardens at home and the fish eaten is reared in a small pond nearby. Hence, food consumed by Manipuri people is organic and healthy. Fish eaten in Manipuri cuisine is fermented and along with chillies, a lot of herbs are used while preparing the food.