Places to visit in Assam
1. Kaziranga National Park
Kaziranga National Park is a national park located in the district of Nagaon and Golaghat of Assam. In 1985, UNESCO declared this wildlife sanctuary as a World Heritage Site. The park is home to large propagation of elephants, wild water buffalo and swamp deer. This national park reside at the edge of Eastern Himalayan biodiversity hotspot. This could be the ideal reason to visualize high degree of diversified species with great visibility. It is also the home for a number of engendered species and migratory birds.
FLORA IN PARK
Kaziranga National Park has mainly four types of vegetation namely, Tropical semi-evergreen forests, Alluvial inundated grasslands, Tropical moist mixed deciduous forests and Alluvial savanna woodlands. There is a contrast in altitude between the western and eastern area of the park with the western being at the lower altitude. In addition to forest and grasses, the sanctuary is covered with Lotus, Water Lilies, Water Hyacinth which fabricate the surrounding more alluring. Different flora coverage in Kaziranga National Park is- 11% short grasses, 4% swamps, 41% tall grasses, 8% rivers and water bodies, 6% sand and 29% open jungle.
FAUNA IN PARK
The park which is rich for one horned rhinos provides shelter to a diverse wildlife. The Sanctuary also has a decent population of Wild Buffalo and a large flock of wild elephants. It also includes other species like- Golden Jackal, Hog Deer, Barking Deer, Leopard, Mongoose, Leaf monkey, Swamp Deer, Fishing Cat, Indian Porcupine, Assamese Macaque, Asiatic Black Bear, Alligator, Snake, Tortoise etc.
Best Time to Visit: The best time to visit the Kaziranga National Park is between November to April. The National Park remains continuously open for six month from 1st of November to 30th of April. Since, it lies in the bank of the river Brahmaputra, the area has to face the flood situation during the monsoon season every year. Hence it remains completely close during June to September as the management also has to take care of the precious species.
Where to Stay: Some of the best resort in Kaziranga National Park are-
- BORGOS RESORT
- IORA- THE RETREAT
- INFINITY RESORT
- KALIABOR MANOR RESORT
- LANDMARK WOODS
- UNITED 21 GRASSLAND RESORT
2. Majuli Island
Located just 20 km away from the city of Jorhat of Assam, Majuli is the world largest river island. The island is formed by the river Brahmaputra in the south and the Kherkutia Xuti, an anabranch of the river Brahmaputra, connected by the Subansiri River in the North. The Government of India has proposed to nominate the name of river-island Majuli for inclusion in the ‘cultural landscape’ category of the UNESCO. Mostly inhabitat by the tribals, the lifestyle of the people of Majuli is unique and that is why the island is termed as the cultural capital of Assam. It is a lush green environment-friendly island and is known as the paradise for bird watchers.
The place is famous for its Sataras, the Hindu Vaishnavite monestries, and centers for art. Among the Satras, the first was raise by Shrimanta Shankardeva who is known as the father of the Neo Vaishnavism in Assam. Some of the famous Satras of the region are Kamlabari, Garamur, Dakshinpath and Auniati. These places are counted as the must visit tourism places of Assam. These Satras are early repository of the cultural tradition like the ‘Jumora Dance’, ‘Chali Dance’ and the ‘Borgeet’. The chief festival in Majuli town is called Raas and is celebrated with tremendous joy.
Best time to Visit: The best time to visit the Majuli Island is in the month of April during the Bihu festival. The island is in the peak of its culture and traditional festival and you can soak in all the excitement of the fairs.
Where to stay: There is nothing like resorts or hotels in Majuli but there are some cottages and guest house. They are-
3. Kamakhya Temple
Situated in the Nilachal Hill in the western part of Guwahati City of Assam, Kamakhya Mandir is the main temple in the complex of individual temple devoted to the 10 Mahavidya’s namely, Bhuvaneshwari, Matangi, Kali, Tara, Sodashi, Bagalamukhi, Kamalatmika, Bhairavi, Dhumavati and Chinnamasta. It is one of the oldest Shakti Pithas which is dedicated to Goddess Kamakhya. It is an important pilgrimage destination for the Hindus and laregely for the Tantric worshipers. The devotee who visit the temple have to que up at the entry gate in order to enter the dark altar to offer their prayers to the Goddess Kamakhya.
One of the most beautiful thing to do here is to attend the evening Aarti. The temple has a mighty dome which overlooks the picturesque Nilachal Hills in the background which makes the evening more beautiful and the spritual atmosphere of the temple imparts peace to one’s mind and soul. A huge number of devotee is seen here during the Ambubachi Mela and during the Manasha Puja. The Ambubachi Mela is a celebration of the Goddess Kamakhya’s fertility. The temple remains close and the Goddess is bathed for those 3 days after which the normal activities of the temples are resumed.
Best time to visit: The best time to visit the Kamakhya Temple is during the Navaratri days. The temple is decorated very beautifully and visitors from all over the world visit the temple to take part in the festival.
Temple Timings: 08:00 AM to 01:00 PM 02:30 PM to 05:30 PM
Entry Fees: General Public- Free For Defence, Paramilitary Forces and Police- INR 10 Special Entry- INR 101 Direct Entry- INR 501
4. Kakochang Waterfalls
Located 13 km from Bokaghat- a small town in Golaghat district of Assam and with a trek of approximately 4 km to the waterfall base, Kakochang waterfall is a well-known tourist attraction/picnic spot. It is a beautiful waterfall cascading down furiously between the rubber and coffee plantation of the district.
Apart from providing exhilarating retreats the Kakochang Waterfall provides stunning views of the lush green plantation and the ruins of Numaligarh which are of great archaeological value. The captivating thing about this popular picnic spot is that you can always plan a trip while you are travelling to world heritage Kaziranga National Park as it is only 23 km away but you cannot plan both Kakochang and Kaziranga on the same day.
Best time to visit: The best time to visit Kakochang Waterfall is during post-monsoon months i.e. between the month of October to March.
What and where to eat: Before you start for Kakochang trek, make sure that you carry sufficient food items along with you as there is is no food stall along the way. If possible plan your Kakochang trek on Sundays so that that you can grab the taste of some local flavoured items as there are local market held nearby.
Things to carry along:
- A good pair of shoes
- A good camera
- Few bottles of water and snacks
- Put Sunscreen
- A pair of floaters
Experience Awesome Assam, an initiative by Department of Tourism, Assam Government:
There are many more beautiful places to visit in this incredible land which I will be publishing soon. Till then, stay tuned!
Also check out: Best places to visit in Meghalaya