Wedged between the banks of the Brahmaputra river and the foothills of the Shillong plateau, Guwahati is heralded as the Gateway to the north eastern region of India. The city is at the centre of Assam’s tourism industry and has everything to offer from temples to wildlife sanctuaries, museums and bazaars. With so much to choose from, here’s a list of some the more popular tourist places.
* Kamakhya Temple
The Kamakhya temple situated on the Nilachal Hill is a sacred Hindu temple that’s dedicated to the important tantric goddess Kamakhya. Made up of several individual temples, the Kamakhya temple is revered by Hindu and tantric worshippers and is a famous pilgrimage destination especially during the annual Ambubachi Mela festival.
* Assam State Museum
One of the biggest museums in India, the Assam State Museum reflects the rich cultural heritage of Assam and its people through the display of its varied collection of sculptures, paintings, handicrafts and other articles of historical value like coins, old royal garments, antiques, weaponry, utensils and some of the finest terracotta work. Many rare specimens of the Ahom Dynasty are also housed within the confines of the museum along with some old manuscripts. The museum which was founded in 1940. This is the great guwahati tourist places to visit.
* Nehru Park
Nehru Park is one of the best places to be if you want some peace and relaxation. The park is beautifully maintained with ample greenery, fish ponds and play areas for children. The most arresting feature of the park is a musical fountain that plays after sunset. Other features like an assemblage of concrete statues depicting different dance forms of Assamese culture, a jogging track, a rock garden and an open air theatre make Nehru Park a major tourist attraction. This is beautiful guwahati tourist places to visit.
* Assam State Zoo and Botanical Garden
Also known as Guwahati zoo, it is the largest zoo in the north east which draws tourists all year round. A total of 113 species of animals, birds and reptiles from various parts of the world are housed inside the zoo that’s located within the Hengrabari Reserved Forest. A botanical garden was the latest addition to the zoo in 1982 from whence it became known as the Assam State Zoo and Botanical Garden.
* Umananda Temple
The temple of Umananda built in the 17th century is a legacy of the mighty Ahom dynasty. The temple lies perched on the Peacock Island in the midst of the Brahmaputra river and is solely dedicated to the worship of Lord Shiva. The temple is marked by some rock-cut figures which are a representation of many Hindu gods. Getting to the temple entails a ferry ride which is just as much enthralling as the visit to the temple itself.
The rich cultural heritage and tradition of the entire north eastern region is showcased in Shilpgram which is the only crafts village of the region. It is a treasure cove of some of the finest works of art and handicrafts made by the artistic hands of the local people. Regular cultural events are held all year through in an open air auditorium making Shilpgram an important stop for tourists visiting the city.
* Chandubi Lake
Lapping at the foot of the Garo hills is the Chandubi Lake which arose from a destroyed forest during the Assam earthquake of 1897. Deep forests, tea gardens and small villages dot the landscape surrounding the lake to make it a place of utter bliss amongst visitors. A great sightseeing and picnicking spot, other provisions like fishing and rowing in the calm lake waters add to its attraction and has tourists flocking to the lakeside in large numbers. This is the best guwahati tourist destination to visit.
* Navagraha Temples
The only temple in Assam which is dedicated to the nine major celestial bodies that rule planet earth. The Navagraha Temple is set atop the Chitrasal Hill with a shrine representing the celestial bodies by means of nine Shiva lingams. The temple which dates back to the 18th century is still an important centre for the study of astronomy and astrology.
* Pan Bazar
Pan Bazaar in the city centre of Guwahati is a lively tourist hub with everything from educational institutions, to government buildings, shopping centres, restaurants, book shops, traditional arts and crafts stores and even a major drug and pharmaceutical market housed within its confines. A place definitely not short on entertainment.