Our first stop was the Loktak lake, which is the largest freshwater lake in North East India. It is located in Moirang, an hour's drive from Imphal, and is home to huge masses of floating phumdis, which are vegetation in various states of decomposition. Which basically means, the lake is dotted with hundreds of small floating islands, the largest of which is is Keibul Lamjao National Park, home to the Sangai deer. A government official who supervises the tourist activity in the area told us that rampant tourism and fishing activities have caused a depletion in the green cover, but serious efforts are on to preserve this biological wonder. I had always thought such exotic locations could be found only on foreign countries. And to have one in our own country and not even know about it! Two of the largest Phumdis's Sendra and Phubala, offer boarding and dining facilities to the tourists. Imagine living on a floating island of weeds! We immediately cancelled our plan to return back to Imphal that night and stayed on at the Sendra Tourist Home. We stayed up till late in the night, watching the night descend on the peaceful waters, the stars playing hide and seek with their reflections and listening to the calls of the birds and animals.