Being the capital city of Manipur, Imphal is considered to be one of the ancient cities in India with awe-full scenic landscape and greenery. The city is a mixture of hills, valleys, forests and several rivers like Iril, Sekmai, Thoubal and Khuga that appears to be no less than a treat to the eyes. Other than this, the city even offers the tourists a number of places to visit amongst which the most spotted one is the Kangla Palace, which was once under the control of the Assam Rifles till the year 2004. While exploring Imphal, tourists can even pay a visit to a unique bazaar which is run by women known as Khwairamband Bazar which is also popular as Ima Keithel literally translates to “Mother Market”.
A small valley tucked away in the northeast state of Manipur takes the tourists to a destination that offers a pleasant view of the scenic beauty all around along with the relics of an old, historical palace, well-planned temples and ceremonial houses amidst the tall pine and jackfruit trees. Visiting the city, tourists might even come across places that looks almost like painting-clouds hanging low lush green fields and small hills of the green-blue Koubou and Namaijing ranges that appear to be like a garland around the valley. In addition to this, there are hundreds of orchids that enhances the beauty Imphal that proffers much to a discerning traveller.
Imphal having too much in its store is an amazing place for the wildlife enthusiasts as the Manipur Zoological Gardens which is located at a distance of 8 km away from Imphal brings the tourists closer to the rare birds, animals and reptiles. Also, visiting the Manipur Zoological Gardens, you would get a glimpse of one of the rarest species of deer in the world i.e., the graceful Brow-Antlered Thamin deer. Other than this, the city has a variety of orchids which one could find it at the Khonghampat Orchidarium. Tourists are recommended to make a visit to the orchidarium between April and May when the orchids are in full bloom that would be a perfect view to make the most out your trip to Imphal. Also, a visit to the Manipur State Museum takes the tourists to the rich collection of Manipuri costumes, historical documents, relics, implements and more which is sure to give the travellers the taste of the state's complex history.
Coming to the core tradition of Imphal, it lies in the various ancient temples. The most important and visited one is the Shri Govindajee Temple which was constructed in the early 18th century. On visiting the temple, one could find how the temple is well constructed in a simple, twin-domed structure.
The magnificent temple comes alive during festivals when thousands of pilgrims are seen visiting the temple to offer prayers. Also, the festival of Holi is considered to be the best time to visit when tourists can enjoy the Thabal Chongba folk dance performed by the when boys and girls all night. One gets filled with sanctity and holiness amid the peaceful environment of the temple. Imphal isn’t going to disappoint the shopaholics as there are plenty of options that one can shop from. One of the famous markets is the Khwairamband Bazar which is considered to be different as it is run by women.
Visiting the market tourists can witness how the entire market is split into two sections on either side of the road. There are tribal women clad found in traditional and colorful attire, selling everything right from hand-woven shawls to skirts, vessels to mugs & mats, fish to lotus, oranges and orange-flavored honey and more. Tourists visiting the Khwairamband Bazaar buy any of these products as souvenirs to take back home.Built in the memory of Manipur’s martyr there is Shahid Minar which is at the Bir Tikendrajit Park. There are more such famous cemeteries of both the Indian and the British armies who died in the Second World War. Visiting the place, you would come across the stone markers and plaques which has records of the sacrifice made by the soldiers and is well maintained by the Commonwealth Grave Commissions.
Last but not the least, the city has to offer to the history buffs, a visit to the Old Palace would take them to the interesting ruins of an old fortress wall. Also, the captivating images inside the palace are bound to capture your fancy.
Being the capital of Manipur, one can find here a number of tourist attractions that are a must visit and are around every corner of the city. Right from the rich culture to the historical sites, religious places to adventure activities, Imphal offers the tourists the opportunity to explore the city wholeheartedly. Also, visiting the tourist attractions let the tourists come across stories of the past which is in richly built forts and museums.