Thursday, November 3, 2011

Assam is a state located on the southern part of the eastern Himalayas that encompasses the Brahmaputra River and the North Cachar range. Assam is well known for its diverse geographical features, tea gardens, wildlife sanctuaries and temples. Assam Silk and its petroleum resources. It has made an international mark with the export of Assam tea. The Karaganda National Park and the Manas National Park are two important centers of wildlife tourism. They are also World Heritage Sites. Indian Holiday offers information on what to do, what not to do in Assam, its tourist places and the things to avoid.    

Things to do in Assam
As Assam is a land of geographical and social diversity, its cities and towns are replete with a number of attractions. Here is a list of places you can visit during your north east India tour.

Brahmaputra cruises and fishing – Brahmaputra is the main river flowing through the north eastern state of Assam. It is a source for sustenance and tourism as well. To enjoy the sight of the beautiful landscape surrounding the river, opt for a Brahmaputra cruise ride. It is one of the exciting activities to indulge in while you are in Assam.

Visit Majuli – River Brahmaputra forms the largest river island in the country, Majuli Island. There are ferry rides to this island available from Jorhat city. It is around 200 km from the capital city of Guwahati. This island is famous for its variety of flora and fauna and you will see birds such as pelicans, storks and the Siberian cranes. Other things which can interest the tourists on this island includes pottery making, the aboriginal tribes and the Paal Namm festival held during the months of December-January.

Guwahati – The capital city, Guwahati is a prominent tourist destination besides being the main gateway to other north eastern states in the country. It is a beautiful city featuring the meandering rivers, lush hills, vibrant markets and shopping malls. It is also home to famous temples such as the Uma Nanda Temple, Kamakhya Temple and the Nabagraha Temple. The Kamakhya Temple is situated on the Neelachal Hills and draws pilgrims from both India and abroad. It is a ‘Shakthi Peetha’ that has thousands of devotes visiting during the festival of Ambubachi. Guwahati also has other places of visit such as the Assam State Zoo and Botanical Gardens, the planetarium, Assam State Museum and the Regional Science Center.

Kaziranga National Park – Listed as a World Heritage Site, Kaziranga National Park is located in Golaghat. This park is a popular site for ecotourism and wildlife safari. You will see the rare species of the Great Indian One-Horned Rhinoceros here. Two-thirds of this species of Rhinoceros is said to be living here. There is also a separate bird area and a Tiger Reserve. Important things to do at Kaziranga National Park include bird watching, safari and wildlife viewing from the observation towers. This sanctuary remains closed from April to October.

Excursion to Hajo – This is a small township situated on Brahmaputra banks and is a revered place for pilgrimage. It is a day’s excursion from the city of Guwahati. The ancient shrines of the Hayagriva Madhava Mandir and the Kedareswara Temple are major attractions here. The Poa Mecca mosque here also makes it a revered place among the Muslims.

Tour Karbi Anglong – The wildlife enthusiasts mostly visit Karbi Anglong, the largest district of Assam. This district has a large forest cover offering stunning views. You can visit Garampani, a sanctuary that is part of the Nambor Reserve Forest. Other picturesque locales in this district are Diphu, Amreng and Silbheta. Silbheta is an acclaimed picnic spot.

Jorhat – This was the 18th century capital of the Tunkhungia Ahom Dynasty and is a major tourist destination presently. The Gibbon Wildlife Sanctuary, Garakhiadol Temple, Gymkhana Club and the Tokolai Tea Research Center are some of the top places to visit.                                   

Tea gardens of Assam – Cultivation, processing and tea export is an important industry in the state of Assam. The upper and central Assam districts are major tea growing regions. There are around 800 tea gardens spanning across 500 acres.

What not to do in Assam

Indian Holidays offers travel tips for tourists visiting Assam. Check out the things you should avoid while you are here for a safe vacation.                                                                                                                  

  •     Book 4-wheeler vehicles for park safari in advance
  •     See that authorized mahouts and guides of the forest departments accompany you  for safari 
  •     Be cautious while on wildlife safaris, do not irritate animals
  •     Do not venture out at night into areas where there is no police patrolling
  •     Report of unattended luggage to the nearest police station
  •     Avoid withdrawing cash from ATM that are located in deserted locations
  •     Though tourists have never been targeted, there are often cases of violence and agitation reported in parts of Assam, tourists should be cautious of such incidences.
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