Awesome Assam - The Land of mighty Brahmaputra

Assam is a state in northeastern India known for its wildlife, archeological sites and tea plantations. In the west, Guwahati, Assam's largest city, features silk bazaars and the hilltop Kamakhya Temple. Umananda Temple sits on Peacock Island in the Brahmaputra river. The state capital, Dispur, is a suburb of Guwahati. The ancient pilgrimage site of Hajo and Madan Kamdev, the ruins of a temple complex, lie nearby.

Soothing beauty, offbeat tourists attractions, spiritual ambiance, the sacred river, humble people, and zealous culture, Assam boasts plenty of fascinating secrets. Being one of the Northeast India's iconic seven sisters, a holiday in Assam is about witnessing a heady mix of history, culture, and nature at the same time. The state happens to be the land of many wildlife reserves, which are further home to the one-horned rhino, one of Assam's tourism best-known mascots.

A heady mix of serenity, and spontaneity, Assam hangs on to the rest of the India by a thin chicken neck (Siliguri Corridor). It is a gothic grandeur by the river that begs to be discovered. Located in the far-flung Northeast India, Assam is a part of captivating and iconic seven sisters, which are hard to reach yet their ageless forests and formidable mountain ranges are always on the back of almost every traveler's mind. With 78,440 Sq km area, Assam happens to be the second largest state in Northeast India after Arunachal Pradesh. Another thing that best geographically defines Assam is its closeness to the foreign lands like Bangladesh and Bhutan. The state has got an influence of every neighboring state, and country and a devil's own charm. And not to forget the long Brahmaputra, Asia's mightiest yet most enigmatic river that makes it way through Assam. If tourist's idea of a holiday is relaxing on the river island; treating taste buds with scrumptious food; indulging in shopping spree; going crazy on a wildlife safari; soothing the thirsty spiritual soul by visiting some of the quirky sacred centers then a vacation in Assam is what they've been longing for. From wildlife adventure to sightseeing places to pilgrimage circuit tour, one can enjoy every possible type of holiday in Assam. Some of the best places that one must explore in Assam are Guwahati, Sualkuchi, Hajo, Tezpur, Jorhat, Majuli, Sivasagar, Dibrugarh, Barak Valley. And the iconic Kaziranga National Park, home to the one one horned rhino.

Best Time To Visit Assam : -Assam is located in the North- East region of India and experiences a tropical monsoon rainforest climate. The regions receive a high rainfall, that's why it won't be a good time to visit during the monsoon season. But visiting here during the winter season would be good as option as the weather is pleasant, just the right time to go for sightseeing.In summers, Assam is a refreshing retreat; the climate is not too hot and not too cold but it's humid. Kaziranga National Park, Jatinga, Jorhat, Sibsagar, Majuli, Guwahati, Haflong, Tinsukia, and Dibrugarh are some of the places that one should visit in Assam during summers. Moreover, summer happens to be an offseason, and one can get good hotel and travel deals.

Local Cuisine of Assam : - The cuisine is characterized by very little use of spices, little cooking over fire and strong flavors due mainly to the use of endemic exotic fruits and vegetables that are either fresh, dried or fermented. Fish is widely used, and birds like duck, squab etc. are very popular, which are often paired with a main vegetable or ingredient. Preparations are rarely elaborate. (The practice of bhuna, the gentle frying of spices before the addition of the main ingredients so common in Indian cooking, is absent in the cuisine of Assam.The preferred oil for cooking is the pungent mustard oil.A traditional meal in Assam begins with a khar, a class of dishes named after the main ingredient, and ends with a tenga, a sour dish. The food is usually served in bell metal utensils made by an indigenous community called Mariya. The belief is that when food and water is served in such utensils its good for health and boost up immunity. Tamul (betel nut, generally raw) and paan generally concludes the meal..

Places to Stay in Assam !

Here are my select set of hotels with great views of the snow peaks. Visit the links and read detailed reviews to know about all aspects of the hotel including service and amenities before you decide on one. Remember, only a great view isn't just enough to make a hotel a great one.

Place Of Visit-Sightseeing

Kaziranga National Park : - Kaziranga National Park is a protected area in the northeast Indian state of Assam. Spread across the floodplains of the Brahmaputra River, its forests, wetlands and grasslands are home to tigers, elephants and the world's largest population of Indian one-horned rhinoceroses. Ganges River dolphins swim in the park's waters. It's visited by many rare migratory birds, and gray pelicans roost near Kaziranga village.

Kamakhya Temple : - The Kamakhya Temple also Kamrup-Kamakhya is a Hindu temple dedicated to the mother goddess Kamakhya. It is one of the oldest of the 51 Shakti Pithas.Situated on the Nilachal Hill in western part of Guwahati city in Assam, India, it is the main temple in a complex of individual temples dedicated to the ten Mahavidyas: Kali, Tara, Sodashi, Bhuvaneshwari, Bhairavi, Chhinnamasta, Dhumavati, Bagalamukhi, Matangi and Kamalatmika.Among these, Tripurasundari, Matangi and Kamala reside inside the main temple whereas the other seven reside in individual temples.It is an important pilgrimage destination for Hindus and especially for Tantric worshipers.

Majuli : -Majuli or Majoli is a river island in the Brahmaputra River, Assam and in 2016 it became the first island to be made a district in India. It had an area of 880 square kilometres at the beginning of the 20th century, but having lost significantly to erosion it covers 352 square kilometres as at 2014.

Manas National Park :-Manas National Park is a UNESCO Natural World Heritage site, a Project Tiger Reserve, an Elephant Reserve and a Biosphere Reserve in Assam. The only tiger reserve in Assam and also famous for the rare golden langur and the red panda, Manas is one of the best-kept national parks in India.Manas is recognized not only for its rich biodiversity but also for its spectacular scenery and natural landscape which includes a range of forested hills, alluvial grasslands and tropical evergreen forests. It's home to India's second-largest tiger population. It is also famous for its population of the Wild water buffalo. Manas harbours the maximum number of endangered species from India as listed in the IUCN Red Book.One can easily spot rhinos and tigers while sitting on an elephant. Forest officials arrange rides on elephants from Mathanguri for visitors to Manas. You can see tea pickers going about their job in groups during the tea season. Best time to see activity is October till first week of December and again from mid March onwards.

Guwahati :-Guwahati is home to a huge number of old temples, all of which have interesting stories and legends behind them. The Kamakhya temple, arguably the most visited temple in the city, is a temple dedicated to the goddess Kamakhya, who was also known as the goddess of desire. Associated with a legend that finds its way in the pages of history, this temple hosts the annual Manasha Puja and the Ambubachi Mela, celebrations which see pilgrims from far and wide congregating to attend them. Other temples in Guwahati worth visiting include the Umananda temple and the Navagraha temple.

Hajo :-The ancient pilgrim centre of Hajo finds it uniqueness in being an attraction for three religions - Hindu, Muslims and Buddhists.At a distance of about 24 km from the city of Guwahati, Hajo adores the banks of Brahmaputra. Shrines dedicated to Durga, Shiva, Vishnu, Buddha and major Muslim saints are found all over this place, making it an important pilgrimage center for people from all these three religions. The most famous temple is the Hayagriva Madhava Mandir which also attracts Buddhists as it is believed to be the site where Buddha attained Nirvana while the Powa Mecca Mosque finds popularity among Muslims.

Umananda Island :- Umananda Island is the smallest river island in the midst of river Brahmaputra flowing through the city of Guwahati in Assam, a state in northeast India. The British named the island Peacock Island for its structure.According to Hindu mythology, Shiva created the island for his wife Parvati's happiness and pleasure. Shiva is said to have resided here in the form of Bhayananda. According to a myth in Kalika Purana, Shiva burnt Kamadeva with his third eye on Umananda when he interrupted Shiva's deep meditation, hence its alternative name Bhasmachal

Nameri National Park :- Nameri national park is famous for its elephants and other animals including tigers, leopards, gaurs, wild pigs, sambars, etc. and also for being a bird watchers paradise.Safaris are available and are the most popular way to create a trip full of excitement, into the national park. Also, along with the rich fauna of the place, the lush and evergreen flora too, tends to enchant the visitors. Facilities for activities such as water rafting, fishing, swimming are available though permission from the forest department is essential for fishing. One can also dwell a little in peace and sunbathe in the area.

Dibru Saikhowa National Park :-Dibru Saikhowa National Park is one of those places which boast of a rich collection of flora and fauna, many of them endangered. It is one of the few remaining protected sites in the Endemic Bird Area of the Assamese Plains.Dibru Saikhowa National Park is a river island national park and one of the 19 biodiversity hotspots in the world. This National Park is situated 12 km north of Tinsukia in Assam. Of the seven parts of the park, one is a wetland and the rest is mainly covered with grasslands and dense forest. Animal life to be viewed in their natural habitat includes royal Bengal tiger, hoolock gibbons and leopards, it is also home to some restricted-range species, such as the White-winged Wood Duck, Bengal Florican, Lesser Adjutant Stork, spotted-billed Pelican, White-bellied Heron, Pallas's Fish Eagle, Swamp Partridge, Jerdon's Babbler, Black-breasted Parrotbill and Striated Grassbird. Marsh Babbler, Swamp Prinia and Yellow Weaver.There are no roads and hence no jungle safari or elephant rides for roaming in the park, so you can explore the park only by trekking, although boat service is available which can take you to various spots. Guijan Ghat and Saikhowa Ghat are the national park's entry points.

Sivasagar :- Dating back to the Ahom dynasty, this cultural town is full of historic tourist attractions from forts with underground architecture to numerous temples.Sibsagar is a state of Assam that provides various tourist attractions related to architectural marvels, history and culture. Some of the most popular places here include a water tank called Bhorpukhuri along with Joysagar, a man-made lake, Ahom Museum, Rudrasagar tank and temples, Gaurisagar tank and temples. One can also visit the Kareng Ghar and the Rang Ghar.

Orang National Park :- The Orang National Park also known as Rajiv Gandhi Orang National Park which is located on the north bank of the Brahmaputra River in the Darrang and Sonitpur districts of Assam, India, covers an area of 78.81 square kilometres (30.43 sq mi). It was established as a sanctuary in 1985 and declared a national park on 13 April 1999.The park has a rich flora and fauna, including great Indian one-horned rhinoceros, pygmy hog, elephants, wild buffalo and tigers. It is the only stronghold of rhinoceros on the north bank of the Brahmaputra river.

Pobitora Wildlife Sanctuary :- Pobitora or Pabitora Wildlife Sanctuary is a wildlife reserve in the Morigaon district of the state of Assam in India. It is located about 30 km east of Guwahati. The Pobitora Wildlife Sanctuary is about 48 km by road from Guwahati.

How to reach Assam

by Air: - Assam is well connected with Delhi, Bangalore, Mumbai and other major cities of India via national carrier and private airlines. Guwahati's Lokapriya Gopinath Bordoloi International Airport is the nearest airport which is only 25 km away from the city.

by Rail: -You can travel to Assam with ease as there are direct train services from Calcutta, New Delhi, Mumbai, Chennai, Bangalore, Cochin and Trivandrum to Guwahati, the rail hub of Assam.

by Road :-You can easily reach Assam via road. Highways are pretty much smooch, so you don't feel any pain of jerk in your back while traveling in bus to approach Assam.The Inter State Bus Terminus (ISBT) located at the outskirts, provides connectivity with other regions of the Northeast with regular buses for major cities and tourist destinations of the neighbouring states.Guwahati is also well connected by road with the rest of the country.National Highway 31 and 37 are the two road connections to Guwahati.Guwahati is well connected with rest of the State by ASTC services and many private transport systems.

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