Nature has been extra kind to Manipur and blessed the state with astonishing beauty. Some of the exciting activities to indulge in Manipur are cycling and camping amidst spectacular landscapes.
Naorem Bobosana Meitei of Imphal – the capital of Manipur, thinks the same. He has been working as a tour guide since January 2019 and escorting visitors who come for trekking, camping, and cycling to Manipur.
Cycling in Imphal
Tourists who come to Imphal for cycling on the straight roads of Manipur through Naorem start from the heart of Imphal just 6 km away from Imphal International Airport.
Cyclists are provided all the essential equipment like helmets, knee pads, and a pump along with cycles with 6-7 gears. “We have escorted a maximum of 30 people at a time so far who had come for cycling in Imphal. When the group is large, along with the tour guide, a team leader and a physician are provided for the benefit of our visitors,” says Naorem.
There are many routes to cycle around in Imphal, but the best one is from Imphal to Loktak Lake. Roughly about 50 km, the route from Imphal to Loktak Lake takes almost 2 hours.
Cyclists on their way from Imphal to Loktak Lake Manipur
One of the many good things about indulging in this thrilling experience is the flexibility to halt and explore some of the places that fall in between Imphal and Loktak Lake. Cyclists are taken to Andro Living Museum, Andro Hills, and Andro Heritage Village, which is about 23 km from Imphal. It is one of the most popular and important villages in the state; here the travelers can also watch pottery-making and try local heritage brews as well.
Naorem says, “I feel proud and happy to show and introduce travelers to the local village life of Manipur and also show them the display at Andro Living Museum. All of these things mark the importance of the cultures and traditions of Manipur.”
Camping and Hiking in Imphal
You can witness the stunning views of low slope hills, lush greenery, and local villages and pass by local transportations while cycling through these routes in Manipur. Besides cycling, Naorem and others also organize camping, trekking, and wilderness activities. The most popular place to go camping and hiking is Dzukou Valley located on the border of Manipur and Nagaland. They also arrange such activities at Siroi Hills and Tamenglong and hiking at Shirui Kashong Peak and Phangrei Kasong Hill. According to Naorem, these places are some of the must-visit places in the state if you want a warm cuddle from nature.
Naorem with fellow hikers ready to hike through the trails leading to Dzukou Valley
Naorem and his team provide food, camping tents, tour guides, and all the necessary items for camping. Travelers can start either from Imphal or Dimapur Nagaland to go to Dzukou Valley. Naorem arranges the escort from both these places. If the campers and hikers start from Imphal, they have to travel by road; however, if they start from Nagaland they need to travel by train.
Camping at some of the best spots in Manipur
“We have arranged hiking and camping for 60 at a time till now and it was extremely fruitful and they all enjoyed it. But mostly we get to organize such activities for around 20-28 people at a time,” says Naorem.
Most of the people come from Delhi, Mumbai, West Bengal, Assam, South India, Greece, and Europe. However, Naorem and his team also arrange weekend camping for small groups of 4-8 people. Hence, he encourages more locals to indulge in such activities in Manipur and have the times of their lives.
Naorem and his team have been spreading smiles across many faces and giving them wonderful, thrilling experiences for a long time.
The best time to go cycling around these wonderful routes of Manipur is in spring between March-April, and the best time for hiking and camping is in autumn between May-August.
If you would like to go cycling or camping in Manipur, click here.