Tourism in Assam
Assam, a state located in northeastern India, is a popular destination for tourists due to its stunning landscapes, diverse wildlife, rich cultural heritage, and warm hospitality. Assam offers a range of attractions and experiences that cater to different interests. Here’s more information about tourism in Assam:
Assam is known for its lush greenery, rolling hills, and picturesque landscapes. The state is blessed with numerous natural wonders, including the mighty Brahmaputra River, beautiful waterfalls like the Nohkalikai Falls, and scenic hill stations like Haflong and Jatinga. The tea gardens spread across the region add to the overall charm of the state.
Wildlife Sanctuaries and National Parks
Assam is home to several wildlife sanctuaries and national parks that provide excellent opportunities for wildlife enthusiasts and nature lovers. The most famous among them is Kaziranga National Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site renowned for its population of the one-horned rhinoceros. Other notable wildlife destinations include Manas National Park, Nameri National Park, Pobitora Wildlife Sanctuary, and Dibru-Saikhowa National Park.
Assam has a rich cultural heritage shaped by various indigenous communities and their traditions. The state is known for its vibrant festivals, folk dances like the Bihu dance, and traditional crafts like handloom weaving and pottery. The Kamakhya Temple, Umananda Temple, and Sivasagar’s historical monuments offer glimpses into the region’s religious and architectural heritage.
Majuli, the world’s largest river island, is a unique attraction in Assam. The island is famous for its Vaishnavite monasteries known as Satras, where devotees gather to practice and perform traditional arts, music, and dance forms. Majuli provides a serene environment, making it an ideal place for spiritual seekers and nature lovers.
Assam offers opportunities for adventure enthusiasts to indulge in various activities. Trekking in the hills of Assam, including the Dzukou Valley Trek and the Jatinga Ranges, is popular among adventure seekers. River rafting, angling, and birdwatching are other activities that attract visitors to the region.
Assam is known worldwide for its tea production. Tea gardens spread across the state offer tourists a chance to explore the plantations, witness the tea-making process, and sample different varieties of Assam tea. Some tea estates even provide accommodations for visitors to experience the tea garden lifestyle.
The Brahmaputra River plays a vital role in the life and culture of Assam. River cruises on the Brahmaputra provide a unique way to experience the region’s beauty, visit riverine islands, and observe wildlife. Sunset cruises and luxury cruises with onboard facilities are popular options.
The Assam Tourism Development Corporation (ATDC) and other private tour operators offer various tour packages, including adventure tours, wildlife tours, and cultural tours, to cater to different preferences. It’s advisable to check the latest travel information, permits, and COVID-19 guidelines before planning a trip to Assam.
Overall, Assam offers a delightful blend of natural beauty, cultural richness, and unique experiences, making it a captivating destination for tourists.
Things to do in Assam
Here are some things you can do in Assam:
Explore Kaziranga National Park
Kaziranga is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and home to the one-horned rhinoceros. Take a jeep or elephant safari to spot various wildlife species like tigers, elephants, deer, and numerous bird species.
Visit Majuli Island
Majuli is the largest river island in the world and offers a unique cultural experience. You can interact with the local Mishing tribal community, visit ancient monasteries known as “sattras,” and witness traditional arts and crafts.
Take a river cruise on the Brahmaputra
The Brahmaputra River runs through Assam, and a river cruise allows you to witness the picturesque landscapes and sunsets. Some cruises also offer cultural performances and visits to riverine islands.
Discover Kamakhya Temple
Located on the Nilachal Hill in Guwahati, Kamakhya Temple is a significant Hindu pilgrimage site dedicated to the goddess Kamakhya. The temple architecture, rituals, and the scenic view of the city from the hilltop are worth experiencing.
Experience Assamese cuisine
Assam offers a delectable culinary experience. Try traditional dishes like Assamese thali, masor tenga (sour fish curry), khar (alkaline dish), pitha (rice cakes), and various preparations of the famous Assam tea.
Known as the “City of Temples,” Sivasagar is rich in historical and architectural marvels. Explore attractions like the Rang Ghar (an amphitheater), Talatal Ghar (a palace and military station), and various temples like Sivadol and Joy Dol.
Enjoy the scenic beauty of tea estates
Assam is famous for its tea production. Take a tour of tea estates like Manjushree, Mancotta, and Singpho and witness the tea-making process. You can also enjoy a refreshing cup of Assam tea amidst lush green tea gardens.
Attend Bihu festivals
Bihu is the most important cultural festival of Assam, celebrated with great enthusiasm. Experience the vibrant music, dance performances, and cultural displays during the Bihu festivals, which usually take place in April, January, and October.
Explore Gibbon Wildlife Sanctuary
Located in Jorhat district, this sanctuary is home to the rare hoolock gibbons. You can trek through the forest, spot various primate species, and enjoy the tranquility of nature.
Visit Assam State Museum
Located in Guwahati, the museum showcases the rich cultural heritage of Assam. It houses a collection of archaeological artifacts, tribal crafts, paintings, sculptures, and manuscripts.
Remember to check the local travel guidelines and restrictions before planning your visit to Assam.
Assam Tour Packages
FAQs on Assam Tourism
Assam is a state located in the northeastern part of India. It is bordered by Bhutan and Arunachal Pradesh to the north, Nagaland and Manipur to the east, Meghalaya and Bangladesh to the south, and West Bengal to the west.
The best time to visit Assam is during the winter season, from October to April. The weather is pleasant during these months, with temperatures ranging from 10 to 25 degrees Celsius. It is also the best time to explore the wildlife sanctuaries and enjoy various outdoor activities.
Assam is well-connected to other parts of India by air, rail, and road. The state has its own international airport in Guwahati, which is well-connected to major cities in India and abroad. Guwahati is also a major railway junction, with regular train services from various cities. Assam is well-connected by road as well, with national highways linking it to neighboring states.
Assam offers a diverse range of tourist attractions. Some of the popular ones include the Kaziranga National Park (famous for one-horned rhinoceros), Majuli Island (world’s largest river island), Kamakhya Temple (a renowned Hindu pilgrimage site), Manas National Park (a UNESCO World Heritage site), Sivasagar (known for Ahom-era monuments), and Guwahati (the largest city and gateway to the region).
No, Indian citizens do not require any special permit to visit Assam. However, if you are a foreign national, you would need a valid Indian visa to enter the country, which applies to all states including Assam.
Assamese cuisine is known for its simplicity, unique flavors, and use of local ingredients. Rice is a staple food, and the cuisine features a variety of vegetarian and non-vegetarian dishes. Popular dishes include Assam tea, fish tenga (sour fish curry), masor tenga (sour curry with other meats), pitha (rice cakes), and various preparations of bamboo shoots.
Yes, Assam offers river cruises on the mighty Brahmaputra River. The cruises allow you to experience the natural beauty of the region, spot wildlife, and visit scenic riverine islands. You can choose from a range of cruise options, including short day cruises or multi-day cruises with overnight stays on the river.
Assam is generally a safe place to travel, but it’s always advisable to take necessary precautions and stay updated on any travel advisories or local guidelines. It’s recommended to be cautious in remote areas and follow basic safety practices like avoiding isolated areas at night and keeping your belongings secure.
Assam offers several adventure activities for thrill-seekers. You can go river rafting in the Brahmaputra River, trekking in the hills and forests of the region, bird watching in the various wildlife sanctuaries, and even indulge in elephant safaris in national parks like Kaziranga.
Assam celebrates a variety of colorful festivals throughout the year. Bihu is the most popular festival in the state, celebrated in three different forms – Rongali Bihu (in April), Kongali Bihu (in October), and Bhogali Bihu (in January). Other significant festivals include Durga Puja, Eid, Magh Bihu, and Ambubachi Mela at Kamakhya Temple.