Battle for Imphal
A World War II Trail in Manipur
25th February - 1st March 2020 | Price: INR 45000/person (see inclusions below) | Only 8 places
Heritage Walk Calcutta in association with Imphal Battle Remembrance Tours offers you a unique opportunity to explore the Second World War history of Manipur in northeast India.
In 1944, when the Japanese and INA forces launched a major offensive from Burma to capture the Indian northeast as their first step towards Delhi, Imphal, the capital of the then-Kingdom of Manipur, became their primary target. This tour traces the history of the Battle for Imphal by exploring major battle sites, the locations of fierce tank battles, and important logistical hubs.
This tour is a product of painstaking research by Arambam Angamba Singh (Bobby), the Founder of Imphal Battle Remembrance Tours, and presents the story of this epic battle from all perspectives: Japanese, INA, British, Indian, other allies, and most importantly, the local Manipuri population.
The detailed itinerary is below. We look forward to having you explore with us.
15th February 2020
Heritage Walk Calcutta will conduct a complimentary War, Famine, and Riots Walk for the tour participants to provide some context of the Second World War in Calcutta and how the city was linked to the advanced Allied bases in northeast India, including Imphal, as a major supply base.
16th February 2020
(Time & Place: TBD)
Full pre-departure briefing for the tour participants.
25th February 2020
Fly to Imphal from Kolkata on a morning flight accompanied by 2 Heritage Walk Calcutta team members.
Mid-morning arrival at Imphal. Non-Indian passport holders, including OCI-holders, are required to go through an easy police registration process at the arrivals lounge of the Imphal airport.
We will be picked up from the airport and take a small detour into Imphal to have a classic Manipuri Thali lunch. Post-lunch, we will travel to Loktak Lake and check-in at the Sendra Resort, located on a hill in the middle of the lake.
Arambam Angamba Singh (Bobby), the Founder of Imphal Battle Remembrance Tours, will brief us about the tour and provide us with historical background for the Battle for Imphal.
Dinner at the resort.
26th February 2020
Check-out from Sendra Resort after breakfast.
Visit the INA Museum and INA Headquarters building in Moirang. The Museum is located near the spot where the INA hoisted the Indian flag for the first time on liberated Indian soil.
Have lunch at Moirang in a local, family-run "Chak" Hotel (Rice-hotel).
After lunch, we will drive to Maibam Lokpaching (Red Hill) to visit the newly inaugurated Imphal Peace Museum dedicated to Manipur's World War II History, as well as an older Japanese Peace Memorial. Along the way we will take a detour via the Old Silchar Track, a crucial battle site between the Japanese-INA coalition and the British-Indian Army.
After visiting the Imphal Peace Museum, we will take a short hike up the adjacent Red Hill to explore the remains of the fierce battle that took place there in May 1944. The Battle of Red Hill is considered to be a decisive turning point for the Japanese offensive into India and was one of the bloodiest battles of World War II.
We will then proceed towards Imphal, and visit two Commonwealth War Cemeteries dedicated to the Indian and other Commonwealth soldiers of the British-Indian and Allied forces.
Finally, we will check-in at Sangai Continental Hotel at the heart of Imphal.
Evening off, and dinner on guests.
27th February 2020
Breakfast at the hotel.
Leave for the Naga village of Shangshak (alt. 3500ft) on the Imphal-Ukhrul Road. Shangshak was a small garrison of the British-Indian Army that was surrounded and taken over by the Japanese in early 1944, one of the first major engagements in the Battle for Imphal. We will visit the sites in the village associated with the battle, including the remains of trenches used during the battle.
On the way to Shangshak, we will stop at a couple of important logistical sites associated with the Allied war effort, and visit the neighbourhood in Imphal where some of the first Japanese bombs fell in April 1943. We will also stop at Finch's corner, dedicated to the memory of the Australian engineer who designed the motorable Imphal-Ukhrul road in the early 1940s, a road that later proved a crucial supply-line for the Allied forces.
After exploring Shangshak, we will have a home-cooked Naga lunch served by a local family, before making our way back to Imphal.
Evening off, and dinner on guests.
28th February 2020
Check-out from Sangai Continental after breakfast.
Head to Moreh, the last Indian town on the Myanmar border. The Imphal-Moreh road saw intense action during the Japanese advance towards Imphal. We will stop at a couple of battle sites along the way.
Arrive at Moreh and check-in at the hotel.
Indian Citizens can cross the India-Myanmar border to do some sightseeing in and around the Burmese border town of Tamu. We will also have lunch at Tamu. Please note that a valid Indian Photo ID (Passport/Voter ID) is required to cross the border.
Citizens of other countries (including OCI-holders) are currently not allowed to cross the border. They will have the opportunity to tour the South Indian Community in Moreh. The community arrived here as refugees from Burma during World War II and have since settled in Moreh.
Dinner on the guests at Moreh.
29th February 2020
Breakfast at the hotel.
Indian citizens can cross the border into Tamu for an early-morning shopping. Citizens of other countries can shop in Moreh.
Check-out from the hotel followed by a local-style South Indian Lunch.
Return to Imphal and check-in at the Sangai Continental Hotel.
1st March 2020
Walking Tour of Imphal including Kangla Fort and the Ima Market. The walk will include a history of Polo and the Anglo-Manipuri conflict of the 1890s.
Lunch at OK Chicken, a restaurant with a curious World War II link.
Check-out from Sangai Continental and airport drop-off for an afternoon flight back to Kolkata.
PRICE: INR 45,000/PERSON
Price includes: Return Airfare (CCU-IMF-CCU), 3-Star Accommodation (on double-sharing basis), Two Meals per day (generally breakfast and lunch; lunch and dinner provided on Day 1), All Transportation during the tour (except for airport pick-up and drop-off in Kolkata), Research and Guiding Charges, and All Entry Fees.
HOW TO BOOK
Please send an email to expressing your interest in joining the tour. We will provide you with our bank account details for you to make the initial transfer (see below). You can either deposit the money in cash/cheque (subject to realisation) or make a direct bank transfer via NEFT/IMPS. After you have deposited the money, please email us the transaction reference. You will be issued with a receipt once the money has been received in our account.
Please note: Since we have a limited number of spots for this tour (only 8 places), we cannot hold bookings unless the initial payment is made.
We will then ask for your passport or other ID details and biographical information to book your flight and stay. The details will be stored securely with us until the end of the tour, at which time all information will be securely destroyed.
We will also email you a health and safety form for you to fill in and return to us. This is mandatory.
HOW TO PAY
Advance non-refundable payment for INR 22,500/person is required on or before 25th December 2019 to reserve a spot.
The balance of INR 22,500/person must be paid on or before the 2nd of February 2020 to confirm participation.