“The Battles of Imphal and Kohima were the turning point of one of the most grueling campaigns of the Second World War” – National Army Museum, United Kingdom”
The Battle of Imphal Tour covers sites in and around the city related to the Battle of Imphal and Manipur’s overall War experience. This includes (among others): a Second World War-era airfield (Koirengei or Imphal Main), two War cemeteries, a battlefield (Nungshigum), the colonial-era Slim Cottage and the Palace Compound. Take this tour to find out just why the UK’s National Army Museum named Imphal/Kohima as Britain’s Greatest Battle in April 2013 and to hear, for once, Manipur’s side of the story.
The Tiddim Road was where the Japanese 33rd Division (the ‘White Tigers’) faced off with the 17th Indian Division (the ‘Black Cats’), the main British force in the area, during the Battle of Imphal. Just off it is Moirang, where men of the Indian National Army (INA) planted the Indian tricolour, which featured a springing tiger, for the first time on the mainland.
The Tiddim Road Tour gives you a chance to discover this intriguing story, and much more. Heading out of Imphal on the Tiddim Road, this guided tour takes in the only Japanese War Memorial in India; battlefields along the way, including the town of Ningthoukhong where two Victoria Crosses were awarded in June 1944; the only INA Memorial Complex in the world at Moirang; Loktak Lake, the largest freshwater lake in northeast India; and, depending on your tour option, Keibul Lamjao National Park, the only floating national park in the world.
“The Battle of Kohima is often referred to as the “Stalingrad of the East” was the turning point of the Japanese U Go offensive into India in 1944 during the Second World War. The battle was fought in three stages from 4 April to 22 June 1944 around the town of Kohima in Nagaland in northeast India. From 3 to 16 April, the Japanese attempted to capture Kohima ridge, a feature which dominated the road by which the besieged British and Indian troops of IV Corps at Imphal were supplied. By mid-April, the small British and Indian force at Kohima was relieved. From 18 April to 13 May, British and Indian reinforcements counter-attacked to drive the Japanese from the positions they had captured. The Japanese abandoned the ridge at this point but continued to block the Kohima–Imphal road. From 16 May to 22 June, the British and Indian troops pursued the retreating Japanese and reopened the road. The battle ended on 22 June when British and Indian troops from Kohima and Imphal met at Milestone 109, ending the Siege of Imphal.
“The British National Army Museum voted the Battle of Imphal and Kohima to be “Britain’s Greatest Battle”
The nearest Domestic Airport is Salonibari Airport. It is well connected to Kolkata and Guwahati through Air India flight. The nearest International Airport from Tawang is Lokpriya Gopinath Bordoloi International Airport, Guwahati, roughly 480 Kms from Tawang. It is connected with the major cities like Delhi, Imphal, Kolkata, Agartala, Aizawl, Dibrugarh, Lilabari, Silchar, Dimapur, Jorhat and Mumbai.
The nearest railway station is Naharlagun/Itanagar, roughly about 4 hours drive from Bhalukpong. There are daily trains running from Itanagar to Guwhati and Rajdhani express which runs twice a week.
You can book a cab or travel by public transport from Guwahati.
The best time to travel is between October and March
Things to keep in mind before traveling
- Every tourist visiting Arunachal Pradesh needs to obtain an Inner Line Permit and a Protected Area Permit which can be collected from Delhi, Kolkata, Guwahati or Tezpur airports.
- The weather in the north-east is pretty unpredictable, so be prepared to have delays due to the bad weather.
- Roads in the north east are being converted into double lane, so right now they aren’t in the best shape.
- Locals are friendly and helpful. Be patient as not everyone will know fluent Hindi or English.
- Most cell phone networks don’t work well, so inform your family or friends about your whereabouts whenever possible.
- Don’t forget to carry some ready to cook food packets or instant noodles if you’re strictly a vegetarian.
- Carry extra batteries, power banks and most importantly warm clothing.
- Keep at least a couple of extra days in hand in case of any problems like landslides and bad weather on your way.
Day 1: Delhi- Dibrugarh: Arrive at Dibrugarh airport. Transfer to Hotel.
Day 2: Dibrugarh-Jairampur: 145kms/ 4-5hrs drive. After breakfast, drive to Jairampur on NH-153 pretty much on the Ledi road. Enroute stop at Ledo, visit the Allied landing strip. The visit to Tipong colliery where machines and facilities of the British era are still used a place frozen in time, then unto Digboi, the birth place of oil in India. Visit the oil museum and commomwealth war cemetery. Reach Jairampur late evening.Stay at Government guest house
Day 3: Jairampur- Nampong 26 kms : Visit the recently discovered cemetery of Chinese engineers who died constructing the Ledo road. During the construction of Stillwell road many laborers from China, Burma and India were engaged.. Apart from ground and air action, a heavy toll of human lives was taken by various jungle and water borne diseases like malaria, dysentery, snake bites and other calamities such as flood, landslides and forest fire. The mortal remains of aforeside casualties were buried in the cemetery.
Day 4: Nampong-Pangsaw pass 15 kms : Morning drive to the famous Pangsaw pass,from where you have a splendid view of the Lake of no return. The legend says that during World War-II, The Allied forces used this lake for soft emergency landing and in the course of this many aircrafts and their crews perished into the lake. Hence the name, “Lake of No Return”. Picnic lunch at the pass. Afternoon drive back Nampong. O/n Govt. guest house
Day 5: Nampong – Dibrugarh: 171 kms/ 5-6 hrs: Early breakfast, drive to Dibrugarh, on arrival check-in hotel, evening at leisure. O/n Hotel
Day 6: Fly out to Delhi/Kolkotta
Drive to Kohima. Overnite at hotel Japfu
Day 7: After breakfast visit the Kohima war Cemetry, state meuseum,local market and other important sites of IInd WW.
Day 8: Drive to Imphal. After lunch visit to the War cemetery and state museum
Day 9: Drive to Moirang and visit the INC museum then Loktak lake. Drive back to Imphal
Day 10: Early morning visit to the colorful Ima market.