Loktak lakeLocated in the Indian state of Manipur, Loktak lake is the largest fresh water lake in Northeast India. It is also called the floating lake due to the floating phumdis (floating island or heterogeneous masses of soil, vegetation and organic matter, at various stages of decay). The etymological meaning of Loktak is Lok means ‘stream’ and tak means ‘the end’. The Keibul Lamjao National Park is situated in the southeastern coast of this lake. The national park is also the largest of all the phumdis in the lake.
The Loktak lake also plays an important part in the economy of Manipur. The lake acts as a source of water for irrigation, drinking water supply and hydropower generation. It also serves as a source of livelihood for the fisherman who lives on the phumdis and the places surrounding the lake. The lake ecosystem has suffered severely due to the human activities near the lake. Presently, a population of 100,000 people lives in areas surrounding the lake.
During a scientific survey carried out between January 2000 and December 2002, a rich biodiversity with habitat heterogeneity has been recorded. The lake’s rich biological diversity consists of 233 species of aquatic macrophytes of free-floating , rooted floating, emergent and submergent leaf types
VegetationThe vegetables that grow in the lake includes Phragmites karka, Eichhornia crassipes , Oryza sativa, Limnophila spp., Cynodon spp., Zizania latifolia, Saccharum latifolium, Sagittaria spp., Erianthus pucerus, Erianthus ravennae, Carex spp.; Leersia hexandra, Phragmites karka.
FaunaVariety of birds including 57 species of waterbirds and 14 species of wetland associated birds can be found in the lake and also 28 species of migratory waterfowl can be found in the lake. Species of hornbills that can be seen includes the Rufous-necked Hornbill, Brown-backed Hornbill, the Pied Hornbill, Wreathed Hornbill and the Great Pied Hornbill
Rare animals that can be found includes the sambhar, Indian python and barking deer. The Brow-antlered deer or the Sangai, one of the most endangered deer can be seen in the Keibul Lamjao National Park that is located in the shore of the Loktak lake. Apart from these, other animals that can be found includes wild bear, Rhesus monkey, Muntiacus muntjak, Hoolock gibbon, Indian civet Viverra zibetha, marbled cat stump-tailed macaque and Temminck's golden cat.
Aqua FaunaEvery year 1,500 tonnes of fish is yielded from the lake. Millions of fingerlings of Indian and exotic major carps has been introduced by the State Fishery Department. Varieties of new fish introduced in lake were silver carp, grass carp and the old varieties of the local fishes like Anabus testudinius (ukabi), Channa punctatus (ngamu), pangba, tharak, Anguilla (ngaril), and ngashap now show a declining trend.
Tourist InformationThe tourists can enjoy the beautiful view of the lake. There are several Islands in the lake and the most popular among them are the Sandra and Phubala. These islands offers various facilities to the visitors.
The Sendra Tourist Home on the Sandra island, located on the middle of the lake is a favourite tourist spot. The tourist home also have a Cafeteria, where tourists can enjoy coffee and enjoy the beauty of the place. Another major tourist spot is the Phubala resort, located on the Phubala Island. The Moirang town is situated on the border of the Loktak lake. The Indian National Army Museum located in Moirang the town is another tourist destination. The exhibits in the museum includes photographs, letters, badges of ranks and different things associated with the Indian National Army. There is also a bronze statue of Netaji Subhas Chandra Bose in uniform in the lawn.
How to reachLoktak Lake is well connected by road to all important places in Manipur and the neighboring states. Manipur State Road Transport Corporation (MSRTC) and private bus services are easily available from all the important towns of Manipur and the bordering areas. Taxi and cab services are also available.
Moirang town, Bishnupur,
Ouick FactsEntry Fee: Free entry
Timings: 8:00 AM - 6:00 PM (all days of the week)
Visit Duration: 2-3 hours.
Best time: October to January