The “Sadu Chiru falls” is a picturesque waterfall in the foothills of Sadu Chiru Hills. Although technically under the Senapati District of Manipur, the waterfall’s propinquity to Leimaram in Bishnupur district has given it the popular name of ‘Leimaram Waterfall’. Although the place is reported to have three scenic waterfalls, only the nearest to the foothills have been made accessible to the public.
The ‘LeimaramFalls’, since being opened as a tourist spot, has become a popular picnic destination for tourists and local populace alike. The falls is located a short distance away from Imphal, the capital town of Manipur (India), with only a road distance of about 23 kilometres from the town. It’s a pleasant ride, barely half an hour’s drive, along the Tiddim Road (National Highway-150), and then taking a diversion a little after Oinam, cutting through Irengbam village and then a short climb up the scenic foothills of the Sadu Chiru village. It has been made accessible right up to the foot of the falls. The only hitch we had was the rocky un-metalled road and the steep slope on the foothills which proved too much for our poor old Maruti 800 (one of the two vehicles we took) which was smoking like a steam engine by the time it managed to reach the parking space (a little distance away from the falls), even after off-loading all the passengers and a number of cooling-off stops in between. So be cautioned if you are taking an old carriage, you just might end up doing a lot pushing rather than riding!
From the foothills is a short climb (a long one if you are on foot !) up the hill, passing through a small Kuki village consisting of some scattered houses. When we visited the location somewhere in April 2011, we could see new houses coming up along the way, perhaps encouraged by the improved accessibility. Otherwise it was a sparsely populated village and the location quite virgin. For a few brief moments I drifted a while thinking how the landscape would change in a few years down the line and the accompanying nuisances that tourism would bring to the place. Not that I hate tourism but the people around these part of the world still needs to be educated on being responsible tourists and the proper ways of conducting themselves in an eco-friendly manner. A bunch of drunk idiots going full throttle on the bumpy road and chucking out empty packets of chips and snacks along the way, which really stuck out like a sore thumb in the pristine environment, perhaps evoked my repugnance.
A jolt and a skid over a few loose rocks brought me back from my meanderings thoughts to the task in hand, to get my old Maruti Zen to the base of the fall in one piece. Soon enough we came to a large clearing which served as the parking space. Off loading the occupants, I headed back again down the unsavoury road to collect the rest of the group who were off loaded by the other Maruti 800. On regrouping at the parking lot, we then headed to the waterfall on foot which was a short climb on cemented steps. Recollecting my time spent in the mountains, I thought treading on the natural ground and meandering through the foliage would have been so much more fun for the kids rather than walking on those boring concrete steps. It would have given the natural feel of the environment, which was what we actually came for.
The steps led right to the base of the falls. The view wasn’t disappointing. Although not as big or mesmerizing as some of the falls in the world, yet still it was an exhilarating one and it was our own! Enjoy the view.