This little corner is a paradise on Earth where Mother Nature has bestowed her bounty extra generously. Manipur`s exotic scenery, mystic atmosphere and salubrious climate are all that fascinate tourists. Abounded with festivals, Manipuris are best introduced by their world famous "Manipuri Dance"- one of the major dance forms of India.
South of Nagaland, Manipur borders Myanmar. The state is inhabited by over two dozens tribes. Manipur claims to have invented the game Polo, the main sport of Manipur. Loktak Lake with floating- Weed- Island and dancing deer Sangai, is of tourist interest. Nestling deep within a lush green corner of North East India, is the wondrously beautiful little Shangrila called Manipur. Literally meaning - "a jewelled land", this little corner is a veritable, paradise on earth.
Untouched and undiscovered, Manipur promises to be the great tourist discovery of the 21st century. An oval shaped valley surrounded by blue green hills, rich in art and tradition has inspired descriptions such as the "Switzerland of the East" with cascading rapids, tripping rivers, carpets of flowers and exotic blooms. It lies to the south of Nagaland & north of Mizoram. It shares the international boundary with Myanmar on the western and southern side.
Legend has it that the discovery of Manipur was the result of the delight that Gods took in dancing. Still practised today, is a classical dance form, marked by graceful and restrained movements and delicate hand gestures, known as Manipuri dances.
Blessed with an amazing variety of flora & fauna, 67% of the geographical area of Manipur is hill tract covered forests. Depending on the altitude of the hill ranges, the forests range from tropical to sub-alpine. The wet forests, the temperate forests and the pine forests together sustain a host of rare and endemic plant and animal life.Orchids in Manipur, abound in their natural habitat growing in soil or on trees and shrubs.
48 kms from Imphal is Loktak-Lake & Sendra Island. This is a saucer shaped fresh water lake that attracts many species of birds. Part of it forms a rare ecosystem. This huge and beautiful stretch of water is like a miniature inland sea. The islands of Loktak are unique as they 'float' and comprise of marsh & grass and root of solid earth. Situated on the fringes of the Loktak Lake is the Keibul Lamjao National Park. Habitat of the endangered dancing deer, the brow-antlered-deer of Manipur, it is the only floating National Park of the World. The Hoolock Gibbon, the Slow Loris, the Clouded Leopard, the Spotted Linshang, Mrs Hume's Barbacked Pheasant, Blyths Tragopan, Burmese Pea-Fowl, four different species of Hornbills etc. form a part of the rich natural heritage of Manipur.
The state is best represented by its classical and folk dance forms. The Ras Leelas or dances are essentially lyrical and have extremely graceful movements. A spring festival, the 'Lai-Haraoba' held in April and May is symbolised by a traditional, stylised and ritualistic dance performed for peace and prosperity. The tradition of sports, dates back to the political history of Manipur - a history of a small kingdom, which were in keen competition with one another. Wars between Manipur & Burma resulted in martial tradition, which in turn gave due impetus to the promotion of sports. " Sagol-Kangjei " (Polo) originated in Manipur. The game flourished during the reign of a long dynasty of kings. The Manipuri Pony is the most versatile, swift and agile Polo Pony in the world. It is still a popular game - international players participate in tournaments in imphal. "Mukna Kangjei" (Wrestling-Hockey) is also a very popular game in manipur.
The people & tribes of Manipur include Meiteis, Naga and Kuki-Chin-Mizo groups and other colourful communities, which have lived in complete harmony for centuries. These are the people whose folklore, myths and legends, dances, indigenous-games and martial-arts, exotic handlooms and handicrafts are infested with the mystique of nature. In the field of art and culture, the state is best represented by its classical and folk dance forms. Ras-Leela songs and dances depict the Leelas (Sports) of Lord Krishna as a child with the Gopis (Milkmaids) of Brindavan, and express their yearning for communion with the Lord.
|Manipur Cities||Culture of Manipur|
|Bishnupur||Festivals of Manipur|
|Chandel||Archery in Manipur|
|Churachandpur||Dance & Music|