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Guwahati Tourism and Travel Guide

GuwahatiGuwahati History
The name Guwahati is derived from two Assamese words: guwa (betel nut) and hat (market place). It was situated midway between two powerful kingdoms: the Ahom and the Koch kingdoms. Later when the Koch regions were overrun by the Mughals, Guwahati would intermittently be the seat of a forward Mughal commander. Neither the Mughals nor the Koch could maintain power at Guwahati, however, and it became better known as the seat of the Borphukan, the civil and military authority of the region appointed by the Ahom king.

Your plans of visiting the city of Guwahati will probably primarily be preceded by the query of ‘how to reach Guwahati’. Since the transportation access in and around this city is operated very smoothly your itinerary in Guwahati will run well. In fact, reaching Guwahati gets easier with the accessibility of a variety of transportation options.

Following are the various alternatives of transportation access in Guwahati:

By Air

By Air

The Gopinath Bordoloi Airport is located at 23 km from the city and connects Guwahati to major Indian cities by air. Regular flight services to the city of Guwahati are available from Delhi (2½ hours), Kolkata (1½ hours), Agartala, Imphal, Dibrugarh, Aizawl, and Jorhat. Indian Airlines and most private airlines operate early morning flights to this city. The airlines served by this airport are as follows:

  • Air India IC routes (fomerly operated by Indian Airlines (Imphal,Delhi, Kolkata)
  • Air India
  • Air India Regional (Aizwal, Agartala, Bagdogra, Dimapur, Delhi, Imphal)
  • Pawan Hans - Helicopter services (Shillong, Tura, Naharlagun (Itanagar))
  • Air Deccan (Bagdogra, Bangalore, Delhi, Dibrugarh, Kolkata)
  • IndiGo Airlines (Imphal, Delhi, Kolkata)
  • SpiceJet (Kolkata, Delhi)
  • Jet Airways (Agartala, Bagdodra, Delhi, Kolkata, Jorhat, Mumbai and Bangalore( both via Kolkata))
  • Kingfisher Airlines (Agartala, Kolkata, Imphal, Hyderabad,Bangalore, Mumbai)
  • Jetlite (Dibrugarh, Delhi, Kolkata, Bangalore (via Delhi))

By Rail

Guwahati The Paltan Bazar railway station of Guwahati connects various parts of India by several train services. Four trains ply from/to Delhi, and plenty of others to/from cities like Kolkata, Chennai, New Jalpaiguri, Bhubaneshwar, Bangalore, Kochi, Mumbai, and Thiruvananthapuram. It is also well linked to the other important places of the state.

By Road
The good road transport system connects Guwahati with Kaziranga, Shillong, Dimapur, Siliguri, Silchar, Bomdila, Hajo and Sualkuchi. The Paltan Bazaar Bus Station offers a number of private and Assam State Transport Company buses linking Guwahati to Kaziranga (215 km), Tezpur (198 km), Jorhat (303 km), Sibsagar (359 km) and Silchar (341 km). Cars on hire can also be availed of from travel agencies.

By Water

Ferry services help you cross the Brahmaputra River at nominal rates.

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Temples & Monuments

Basisthashram Situated in the southern-most rim of Guwahati city on the Sandhyachal hill is a well known holy cum picnic spot, called Basisthashram, after the great vedic Sage Bashistha, who is said to have lived here. Three rivulets named Sandhya, Lalita and Kanta meet here and flow perenially adding scenic grandeur to the place. It is 12 Kms. from the Guwahati Railway Station. City buses ply regularly to the Ashram.

Mahabhairab Temple

An ancient temple where King Bana worshipped Mahabhairab, another incarnation of Lord Shiva. A place of pilgrimage.

GuwahatiMadan Kamdev

Barely 40 kms. away from the sprawling metropolis Guwahati, on N.H. 52 Madan Kamdev is an enigma, a mystery, a marvel and in the words of Omar Khayam, "a veil past which I could not see". Very little is known about the origin of this magnificient archaeological ruins.Written history is almost silent on it, leaving wide room for conjectures and hypothesis.

Kamrupa - the ancient name of Assam, is believed to have derived its name from the legend that love God Kama or Madan, after being turned into ashes by an angry Shiva, was reborn here. One school believes that Madan was reborn and united to Rati on this tiny hillock. The season to visit is from October to May.

The Institution of Satra is a unique feature of Vaishnavism in Assam, founded by Sankardeva, the father of Assamese culture. Satras are basically monasteries which propogate neoVaishnavism. They also became centres for education and dissemination of the art of harmonius living.

In 15th century the first Satra was founded in Majuli. Since then sixty five Satras have come up for the propagation of ethics and socio-cultural ideals. However, at present there are only twenty two Satras in Majuli. The others had to be shifted to safer places due to the devastation of flood and erosion. The main existing Satras are:

Dakhinpat Satra: Founded by Banamalidev, an exponent of Raasleela, which is now observed as one of the National Festivals of Assam. During Rasotsava several thousand devotees visit these holy Satras every year.

Kamakhya Temple
The Shakti Temple of mother Goddess Kamakhya situated on the top of Nilachal Hills is 8 Km. away from the railway station of Guwahati. The greatest shrine of tantric Shaktism find mention in the inscription of the Allahabad pillar of Samudragupta. Devotees from all over India converge on this holy place during Ambubashi and Manasha Puja. City buses ply regularly to Kamakhya. It can be easily reached by auto-rickshaw as well.

Nabagraha Temple
The temple of nine planets situated on Chitra Chal Hill in Guwahati. It is 3 km away from the Railway Station. In ancient times, it was said to have been a great centre of study of astronomy and astrology. This is also one of the reasons why Guwahati is referred to as Pragjyotishpur or the city of eastern Astrology. It can be approached by taxi or auto-rickshaw.

GuwahatiUmananda Temple
The great Shiva temple situated on the Peacock island in the middle of the Brahmaputra in Guwahati attracts devotees from all over the country during Shiva Ratri. One can visit the temple by crossing the river by country boat plying from Kachari ghat. On the north bank of the Brahmaputra, opposite Guwahati, where the third Pandava Arjun is believed to have watered his horse while undertaking journey during Ashwamedh Yajna. Regular ferry services are available to this place.

Hotels in Guwahati

Hotel Brahmaputra Ashok
Hotel Nandan
Hotel Rajmahal