Manipur is a state in northeastern India, with the city of Imphal as its capital. Manipur consist of Meitei Pangal, Naga, Kuki and Meitei and is bounded by the Indian states of Nagaland to the north, Mizoram to the south and Assam to the west; it also borders Burma to the east. It covers an area of 22,347 square kilometres (8,628 sq mi). Geographically, it falls under the Southeast Asia region.
Culture of Manipur:
Theatre and society in Manipur are intimately linked, as in many parts of the World. Manipuris are a culturally enthusiastic people. Cultural spirit has never been allowed to be blown out despite the area's remoteness from the outside world. This is why it still thrives in the Manipur valley.
Theatre has always been part of the Laiharaoba festivals since time immemorial. Theatre in Manipur today can be broadly divided, based on the texts, into religious and secular. The former is the adaptation of religious epics or some episodes from them, performed mainly in the sacred sphere such as temples. Within this Gauralila (the story of the childhood days of Caitanya Mahaprabhu), Sanjenba (an episode from the play between Krishna and his cows and his Gopis), and Udukhol (an episode from Krishna's childhood days) can be incorporated. They are seasonal performances commanding spiritual devotions among the audience.
The climate of Manipur is largely influenced by the topography of this hilly region which defines the geography of Manipur. Lying 790 meters above sea level, Manipur is wedged between hills on all sides. This northeastern corner of India enjoys a generally amiable climate, though the winters can be a little chilly. The maximum temperature in the summer months is 32 degree C. In winter the temperature often falls below zero, bringing frost. Snow sometimes falls in some hilly regions due to the Western Disturbance. The coldest month is January, and the warmest July. The ideal time for tourism in the state, in terms of climate, is from October to February, when the weather remains bright and sunny without the sun being too hot.
The state is drenched in rains from May until mid-October. It receives an average annual rainfall of 1467.5 mm. However, the rain distribution varies from 933 mm in Imphal to 2593 mm in Tamenglong. The precipitation ranges from light drizzles to heavy downpour. The normal rainfall of Manipur enriches the soil and helps in agricultural processes and irrigation. The South Westerly Monsoon picks up moisture from the Bay of Bengal and heads toward Manipur, hits the eastern Himalaya ranges and produces a massive amount of rain in the state.
A classical form of Manipuri dance based and inspired by the theme of Lord Krishna and his beloved Radha's love story and the devotion of the Gopis (companions) toward Lord Krishna. This graceful and slow movement of the dance makes it one of the most acclaimed classical dances of India. The costume is elegant, as there are nicely embroidered clothes that give luster to the beauty of the art. This dance is very exciting dance.
Manipur, as the name suggests, is a land of jewels. Its rich culture excels in every aspects as in martial arts, dance, theater and sculpture. The charm of the place is the greenery with the moderate climate making it a tourists' heaven. The beautiful and seasonal Shirui Lily at Ukhrul (district), Sangai (Brow antlered deer) and the floating islands at Loktak Lake are few of the rare things found in Manipur. Polo, which can be called a royal game, also originated from Manipur. Some of the main tourist attractions are:
Keibul Lamjao National Park:
Keibul Lamjao National Park, 48 km (30 mi) away from Imphal is an abode of, rare and endangered species of Brow Antlered deer (Scientific name: Rucervus eldii eldii). This ecosystem is home to 17 rare species of mammals. The greenery of the place and the moderate temperature makes a pleasant experience to visit. It is the only floating national park of the world.
Loktak Lake is a freshwater lake where most of the people of Manipur get their share of fish. The special treat to watch are the floating islands popularly known as Phumdi which is made out of the tangle of watery weeds and other plants. With a nominal fee, people can hire small boats and see the fascinating way of life on these floating islands. The wetland is swampy and is favourable for a number of species to thrive on. It is in the district of Bishnupur. Etymology of Loktak is "Lok = stream and tak= the end" (End of the Streams).
Other places of interest:
- War cemeteries
- Khonghampat Orchidarium
- Manipur Zoological Gardens
- Loktak Lake and Sendra Island
- Manipur State Museum
- Maibam Lotpa Ching
- Leimram Waterfall