Guwahati - A Gateway to the Northeast

Guwahati - A Gateway to the Northeast
Published Date: 6th Jul 2022

Places to Visit in Guwahati

Northeast India is an unexplored paradise, where tourism is now increasing. Places like Meghalaya, Sikkim, and Assam are full of hidden beauties that people have now started looking into. And to get into any of these upcoming tourist spots, Guwahati is the best city that connects them with the rest of India. It’s the reason why it is called the gateway to the Northeast.

However, what many of us don’t know is that Guwahati is more than just a gateway to the Northeast. It is a tourist spot in itself, filled with some wonderful experiences for you. Here are some memories you can take with you from this city:

Natural Experiences

Nature lovers who like to spend their vacation time surrounded by greenery or the calmness of the water, Guwahati has all kinds of experiences for you.

1. Brahmaputra Cruise

The widest river in India enters the country from Tibet, flowing towards Arunachal Pradesh and Assam. The river does pass through plenty of picnic spots and romantic destinations for tourists. This is the reason why you can avail a cruise on this river that could be either for an hour, a day or even for a week – you’ll find plenty of packages and offers from various operators.

Following are some of the cruise experiences you can avail of:

  • Wildlife safaris and bird watching
  • Tea garden visits
  • Escape to deserted river islands
  • Dance performances and live music
  • Watching the sunset over the river
  • Exploring villages and towns on a cycle rickshaw

2. Assam State Zoo cum Botanical Garden

Located in the Hengrabari Reserve Forest in Guwahati, the Assam State Zoo covers 130 hectares while the botanical garden ahead is spread across 82 hectares. Inaugurated in 1958, this zoo is home to 895 animals and birds, out of which 639 are mammals, 142 are reptiles and 389 are birds. These include plenty of endangered and rare species too.

The botanical garden is home to 345 species of plants, 105 species of butterflies, 154 species of birds, and less than 100 varieties of insects.

3. Pobitora Wildlife Sanctuary

Located at a distance of 48 km from Guwahati, this sanctuary is best known for being home to the rare one-horned rhino. Covering an area of 3,885 hectares, it is also home to leopards, barking deer, wild buffalo, wild boar, river dolphins, and 190 species of birds.

If you wish to take a safari, you can opt for an elephant or jeep for the same. Elephant safari is available at 6:30 AM, 7:30 AM, and 2:30 PM while jeep safari timings are 7:00 AM and 3:00 PM.

Temples & Monuments

If you’re the religious and spiritual kind who seeks peace in a vacation, here are the most popular temples to visit in Guwahati:

4. Kamakhya Temple

This is the most popular temple in Guwahati, situated on the Nilachal Hill at a height of 562 feet. According to legends, it is the spot where Sati’s womb fell when Vishnu cut her corpse into pieces in order to stop the “Tandav” dance of Shiva.

Kamakhya is known as the bleeding goddess as she represents feminine power. If you come here during the Ambudasi Puja or the annual fertility festival, you will observe that the color of the Brahmaputra River turns red.

5. Isckon Center

Located at a distance of 2 km from Guwahati, this temple is one of the most peaceful places of worship you can visit. Here, you’ll find the idols of Lord Krishna and his wife Rukmini. You’ll find the maximum crowd on Sundays and on festivals like Janmashtami, Holi, and Jagannath Rath Yatra. After offering your prayers, you can even visit the souvenir shop to get religious books and articles.

6. Umananda Island Temple

This is a 16th-century temple located on the Peacock Island, Brahmaputra River. It takes 45 minutes to sail here by boat or steamer. The temple is dedicated to Lord Shiva and looks the best on Shiva Chaturdasi, which falls on Amavasya.

Other Activities

If city tourism is something you’re fond of, here are some activities you might enjoy:

Assam State Museum

If you’re fond of historical art and sculptures, this museum will probably show you the widest collection you could come across. Out of 13,802 objects that are stored, 1,621 are on display. These date all the way back to the 5th century up to the 2nd World War.

Accoland Amusement Park

To those who need some fun and adventure in their trip, enjoy some thrilling roller coasters, water slides, and other rides in this amusement park. Some of the most popular rides here are Sky Train, The Vortex Maze, Cine Magix, and Multi-Lane Racers. For kids, the popular rides include Caterpillar, Baby Train, and the Rocking Rola.

Planetarium

Located near the High Court, this building is made for those who have an inquisitive mind in the field of astronomy and science. They conduct various different programs to educate people about the different mysteries of the universe. You’ll find a crowd of approximately 500 people in a day here.

Deepor Bil

This is a freshwater lake that happens to be a former Brahmaputra River channel and the only stormwater storage basin in Guwahati. It is home to 50 different species of fish and also happens to be a site for bird watching. You can spot 200 different kinds of birds here, many of which are migratory and endangered too.

Shopping

Whether you’re here for a day or for a week, no one leaves a city without taking its specialty with them. Here’s what you should be looking for in the markets:

Assamese Muga Silk

This silk is known for its durability and royal look. You can identify it with its yellowish-golden tinge and glossy texture. The best part about it is that its luster increases with every wash. You’ll find many sarees and traditional Assamese outfits made of Assamese Muga Silk.

Bamboo And Cane Handicraft

The northeast has bamboo and cane in abundance, due to which you’ll find products made with these materials to be very common here. These include baskets, trays, sieves, winnowing fans, mats, musical instruments, brooms, knife handles, curtains, handbags, wall hangings, ashtrays, vases, and umbrella handles.

Jewelry

You’ll get some really good designs for hand-made jewelry made of raw gold. Traditional Assamese jewelry has motifs of animals, birds, and musical instruments in its design. You can check out a good collection of necklaces, earrings, bangles, and rings from the stores.

Bell Metal Utensils

Bell metal is an alloy of copper and tin. You’ll find their utensils in almost every household of Assam which they use for all kinds of occasions. These utensils too are handmade. The most common products you can look into are bowls, water pots, dishes, trays, and cymbals.

Crafts

Other than the above items, some of the other famous handicrafts you’ll find here include brass cups, jute products, sitalpati mats, pottery, wood carvings, decorative candles, and products made of dried tea bushes.

Assam Tea

Two of the most popular destinations for tea in India are Darjeeling and Assam. The latter is known for its rich flavor, savory aroma, and multiple health benefits. They are known to have antioxidants, anti-cancer effects, and compounds that promote the health of the brain and the heart.

Bazars

Now that you know what to look for, let’s check out some markets where you can nearly find everything:

Fancy Bazar

This market is open from 10 AM to 9 PM, where you’ll find plenty of little shops and roadside stalls. The best products you get here are bamboo caps, Assamese sarees, Assamese shawls, home décor products made of betel nuts, and pickles made of bamboo & bhut jolokia. While you’re shopping, you can grab some Assam tea and steamed momos for a snack. You can also stop by at the JB’s restaurant to eat.

PAN Bazar

Situated at the banks of the Brahmaputra River, this market is for bookworms, where you’ll find many novels and academic books. Other than that, you’ll also find Assamese sarees, silk, and handwoven fabrics.

Paltan Bazar

This place is for those who are looking for true Assamese souvenirs. You’ll get some amazing bamboo products, clay toys, and Northeastern tribal clothes here. Additionally, you can buy a wide variety of Assam tea from here too.

So, Guwahati isn’t just a place you stop by for a few hours to go to the hills in the northeast. If you love traveling and exploring, give this city a few days too. We bet you’ll cherish the memories you take from here.


 

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