Keibul Lamjao National ParkIt is the state animal of Manipur.
How to Get To Keibul Lamjao National ParkKeibul Lamjao is about 50 kilometers from Imphal, the capital of Manipur. Imphal is well connected by air and Rail from the main cities of India. You can explore the national park by boat.The serenity of narrow water channels can be best enjoyed in canoes. A guide is a must, to keep you updated with tidbits about this wonderful and serene land teeming with flora and fauna. There is also an option of a one-day trip to Loktak lake and Keibul Lamjao which is offered by the Manipur Tourism. The observation towers, are the ones you wouldn't want to miss as the view from the towers is splendid. You get to see the aerial view of the circular swamps and the variety of birds and animals in their natural habitat. The environment is calm, serene and one feels at peace and one with nature. Even when you leave, Keibul Lamjao remains with you.The FloraWith 233 variety of aquatic plants, your expectations have to be gargantuan. The aquatic flora ranges from Khoimom (Saccharum munja) which is a grass found along the banks of the river and with beautiful white flowers to Alpinia galanga, which is an herb used in cooking, mostly in Thai cuisine. The phumdis are covered with grass called as Cynodon dactylon (Tinthou).
Our enthusiasm only heightened the next day, when we got ready to explore the Keibul Lamjao National Park. We reached the park by a boat, and were greeted by signboards and pamphlets giving detailed instructions for what to do and what not to do in the park. Our guide had advised us beforehand with some of these, like wearing dark colored sparing clothing, and no perfumes, so we were ready. The park is home to a diverse fauna, like crocodiles, deers, Sengai, boars, civets, and flying fox, among others. Hence it is in our best interest that the animals are not disturbed. So no loud music, no heady perfumes and no boisterous voices.
Kaibul Lamjao National Park, the floating national park
The Keibul National Park is located in Manipur. It is probably the world’s only ‘floating’ national park. It comprises of 40 sq. km. of wetland overgrown with 1.5 m. deep floating vegetation (called phumdi). This is the only natural park which refuges the dancing deer, which was thought to be an extinct species for a long time. Unfortunately we couldn’t see any. The best part of the Keibul National park was the trek through the forest walking through the phumdis. However, it is not entirely safe because they are not hard ground and some places might be just a few centimeters thick. But that just makes it even more exciting, doesn't it ?