Escaping To Another World: JHARKHAND, KERALA, MAHARASHTRA
LOKTAK LAKE – Serene and breathtakingly gorgeous, Loktak Lake is one of the loveliest destinations in the Northeast. It’s also home to the 40sq km Keibul Lamjao National Park, the world’s only floating wildlife sanctuary. This is where you come seeking Manipur’s graceful brow-antlered ‘dancing deer’, or the sangai, living on its unique habitat of bowl-shaped islands— phumdi (made of weeds), which float on the surface of the lake, a big attraction for birders. Boats are available for hire. Plan a trip during the annual Sangai Festival, held in November. It can be accessed from Imphal, just 45kms away.
CAVING – Meghalaya is fast emerging as a hot-spot for caving with 1,284 registered caves to be explored; a caver’s paradise with most of the deepest and longest of South Asia’s caves located here. What’s making business pick up are the several professional outfitters who are now leading these spelunking tours in familiar terrains. The Shnong Rim area in the Jaintia Hills offers different caving experiences. The limestone caves around Mawsynram are a big favourite with tourists—with Krem Mawjymbuin just a short hop away. Also in the Khasi Hills is Krem Mawmluh, reputed to be the sub-continent’s fourth-longest cave, along with the Siju Caves in the Garo hills, which is the third-longest cave system. Best accessed from Shillong.