Naamai Zho- Little known Cosmos Paradise

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Naamai Zho, a picturesque destination located in the Senapati district of Manipur, is becoming a popular spot for visitors when the festive season approaches. The area is known for its blooming of seasonal flowers, the cosmos, and its serene biodiversity. ‘Naamai’ literally means ‘Residents of Koide Village’ and ‘Zho’ means ‘a day of complete vigil’.

Naamai Zho is situated in the village of Koide, around 90 km north of Manipur’s capital, Imphal, and 60 km south of Nagaland’s capital, Kohima. The area is located on the banks of the state’s largest river, Barak, and offers a beautiful view of the green and pristine valley of the hill district.

Naamai Zho
Courtesy: Instagram | Creator: @fika_ria_chajio

It is believed that this site was used by the vigilantes of the village to safeguard their lands from intruders during the headhunting era.  The hillocks form part of the slope of Naamai Vaotao (Hills of Koide). Naamai Zho is on the periphery of Vourei and Vurei , the tribunals of Barak River. The beauty of the ‘Zho’ short of Naamai Zho or  Zhophao is unseasonal.

Visitors to Naamai Zho are often amazed by its beauty. During the spring and summer, the hillocks are wrapped in green sheets of grasses giving a spectacular sight to the landscape and at the onset of autumn, the vales will be garlanded with the sprightful dances of the cosmos flower giving the feel of a heavenly abode.

Namai Zho 2
Courtesy: Instagram | Creator: @naamai_zho

Whereas in winter, when all the colors seem to have gone hibernating, the snow would peck a kiss on the surface of dried grass or on the bare plain giving the scene of a winter fairyland.

The Naamai Ecotourism Society of Koide village has plans to not only grow the cosmos flowers but also to cultivate medicinal plants and plant trees to promote and conserve the natural environment and wildlife. The Cosmos flower festival, which has been held in previous years, will be held again this year for three days starting October 8th.

Naamai Zho 2

The Koide Women Society transformed Naamai Zho, previously considered a barren land, by scattering cosmos seeds and organizing the first one-day cosmos festival in 2021. The seeds are collected in November and sown in February, resulting in an array of pink, orange, red, yellow, white, and maroon cosmos flowers blooming across at least 5 acres of land. Despite poor road conditions, visitors continue to flock to the area to see the beauty of the flowering cosmos.

It is to be noted that an Inner Line Permit (ILP) is required for non-locals to enter and stay in the Indian state of Manipur. The permit can be obtained through the official website of the Manipur Inner Line Permit System, which is designed to regulate and monitor the entry of non-locals into the state. The permit can also be obtained from designated offices in the state, and it is usually issued for a period of 15 days, although it can be extended. The ILP is intended to protect the rights and interests of the local population and to maintain peace and security in the state.

(To know more about Manipur State Tourism check the link here.)

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