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An overview of Imphal
Imphal has an urban background as it is the capital city of Manipur. This place has a rich cultural background as well as it had witnessed the rule of many dynasties in the past. There are lots of commercial businesses as well in Imphal and it is the financial hub of Manipur. Manipuri or Meitelion is the official language of the people in Imphal. This is quite a religious place as there are lots of temples here.
History of Imphal
King Khaba was the first ruler of Imphal but later on the Pakhangba rulers took over. It was during their reign that the tribal clan of Ningthouja assumed importance. For many years after this, this tribe was fully in control of Imphal and they penetrated into many parts of the place. The Palace of Kangla is a huge tourist attraction here. Constructed by Khagemba and his son Khunjaoba, this palace was once the face of Imphal and drew lots of tourists from all over the world. However, when the British occupied Imphal, they destroyed this palace to a great extent and what remains today are the remnants of what was once a huge and majestic palace. It was the British rule that introduced war into the otherwise peaceful Imphal hill station. Until India attained independence in 1947, Imphal, like all the other major parts of India, remained under the influence of the British rule.
Geographical location of Imphal
The exact geographical identity of Imphal is 24.82 degrees towards the North and 93.95 degrees towards the East. The average height of Imphal is about 2579 feet above sea level. Imphal underwent two major divisions in the year 1997 as East and West.
How to reach Imphal and the local modes of transport
Air – Imphal airport, which is located at a distance of about 8km from the main city, is the nearest airport. This is connected with domestic flights to all the major cities in the country. Kolkata and Delhi are major cities from where international tourists can get connecting flights to reach Imphal.
Rail – The city of Imphal doesn’t have a railway station of its own. The closest railway station is located a distance of 215 km from here at Dimapur. It takes around 8 hours to go to Imphal from here. The other nearest rail station Guwahati is at a distance of 414 km away from Imphal.
Road – There are lots of buses plying every day to and fro from Imphal connecting it with major cities like Shillong, Agartala, Kohima, Itanagar, Aizawl and Dimapur. These buses are operated by the state transport departments of Manipur and Nagaland.
Local transport – There are lots of buses that operate within Imphal and help tourists reach the major tourist places. One notable feature is that tourists use bicycle very often while in Imphal.
Tourist attractions at Imphal
Kangla Fort – Also known as the Kangla Palace, this was once a majestic palace that attracted thousands of Indian and international tourists all through the year. However when the British took over, they destroyed this palace. Today, one gets to see only the leftovers of the palace. There are few temples inside the premises of this fort and a beautiful lake which is situated around this fort attracts lots of people.
Temple Complex of Hiyangthang Lairembi – There are lots of people coming to the temple during Durga Puja that happens every year during September or October.
Jama Masjid – This is an important place of worship for the Muslims in Imphal. Situated on the shores of Nambul River, this mosque is known for its architectural brilliance.
Govindajee Temple – This place has a nice structure with a couple of domes and a vast hall where lots of religious and cultural activities was used to be conducted during the rule of the kings.
War Cemetery – Imphal was known for its soldiers who fought during the Second World War and hence, there are lots of war cemeteries where tourists can pay their respects.
Ima Keithel - This is a market that is run and managed fully by women. This is the only full-fledged women’s market in the world today.
ISKCON Temple – Situated in close vicinity to the airport at Imphal, ISKCON temple is known for its architecture and peaceful ambience. The intricately carved structure of the temple and the beautiful idols add beauty to the temple.
Things to do in Imphal
Trekking, Shopping and Boating are some of the activities that tourists can indulge in, while they are in Imphal.
What and where to eat in Imphal
Nikheel Café, Big Chill, Azad Hotel, A to Z Restaurant, Classic Café, Uptown Café, Naoba’s Restaurant and Wills Restaurant are some of the good places to eat while tourists come to Imphal. Soups made from different kinds of coriander, Chinese chives, wavy bitter cress, water spinach, creeping wood sorrel, Japanese parsley etc. are some of the local delicacies that should be tasted while in Imphal.
Where to stay in Imphal
The Classic Hotel in Imphal is a 3-star accommodation here and it offers some amazing facilities for its guests. Some of the other sought after hotels in Imphal are Hotel Prince, Hotel Anand Continental, Hotel Bheigo, Hotel Nirmala, Hotel Krishna and Hotel White Palace.
STD, PIN and emergency helpline numbers in Imphal
The STD code of Imphal is 0385 and its PIN code is 795001. The Deputy Commissioner and Traffic Control Room can be reached at 0385 228387 and 0385 2412434 respectively. Fire, Police and Ambulance services can be sought by reaching out to 101, 100 and 102 respectively. Imphal Police services can be reached at 0385 2220002. Casualty and ambulance services and JN hospital casualty can be reached at numbers 0385 2414728 and 0385 2220385.
Hospitals, Banks and Tourist Office in Imphal
1 - ICICI Bank Limited
Near Nirmala Hotel, MG Avenue, West Imphal,
Manipur district – 795001
2 - Bank of Baroda
Thangal Bazaar, Imphal – 795001
Ph: 0385 2451396
3 - State Bank of India
Thangal Bazaar, Imphal – 795001
Ph: 0385 2227674
1 - Shija Hospital and Research Institute
Langol, RIMS road, Imphal Headquarters
Imphal – 795001
Ph: 0385 2413163
2 - Imphal Hospital and Research Centre
RIMS Road, Imphal Headquarters
Imphal – 795001
Ph: 0385 2410333
1 - Tourism Information Centre
Tourism Directorate, Imphal – 795001
Ph: 0385 224603, 0385 220802
2 - Tourist Office of Indian Government
Jail Road, Imphal – 795001
Ph: 0385 221131