Review and Ratings (126)
Gateway to North East India
Kiran B kutinha4.3/5
A city that's simple and full of HEART!
I wasn't there very long to have been able to tick off from my list of things to do, having said that I was there long enough to know there is something special about this place. I'm told Guwahati is the largest city in Assam and is also a major port city. Sitting on the North Eastern part of the country, Guwahati is like the distant cousin we barely talk or meet. And after my visit this time, I'm bound to question why?
In the little time that I was there, I knew what I already LOVED about this city.
1. The food: Yes, their food is absolutely delicious. I got the opportunity to eat at fine hotels as well as sample (in plentiful) home made meals. Being someone who loves spice, it is but only normal that I hooked on to the 'bhut jolokia' (or ghost chillies). They were something, writing this is already making me want to go back.
2. The Culture: So it is a big city in size but comparatively it still harbors a small town ambience and energy to it. Look of course this is my opinion and I may be wrong but what I thoroughly loved noticing was everyone seems to know everyone. Even if they didn't they was an unmistakable camaraderie that was very apparent. People always seem to have the time to smile back at you or ask if you needed any assistance. That, for me was a huge win.
3. People and Climate: I went in the winters so my opinion here is skewed I'm sure. I got only the cold and I didn't mind it. In fact I enjoyed the chill nights and early mornings. I thought it was very pleasant (but of course I can't say the same about Summers which I hear is incredibly hot). The people are exceptionally nice. I like that neighbors, friends and family gather together in the evenings to play a sport or sing over a bonfire, breaking bread and sharing a drink.
It's heartwarming to see such simplicity in our times of craziness. I KNOW I haven't seen too much of the place but my first impression is what governs this review. Will I go back? Oh yes and perhaps this time for a little longer. Also it's exciting the proximity of Guwahati to many of the other places I want to add to my travel list.
I am heading to Guwahati
History of Guwahati
Formerly known as Pragjyotishpur, Guwahati, also called as Gauhati, is considered as the gateway to the north-east region of the country. Located on the bank of the Brahmaputra River, Guwahati is also the largest city of Assam. The largest metropolis in the north-east region of the country, this city is also the second largest metropolitan area in entire eastern India. The history of the city dates back to the epic times. Guwahati has its first mention in the great epic Mahabharata as the capital of the demon king Narakasura of Pragjyotishpur. Due to this reason, the city came to be known as Pragjyotishpur, which means Light of the East. It is also believed that the city was the ancient land of Kamarupa. In this ancient land, the Hindu god of beauty, fertility and source of life was reborn.The destination, till the invasions of Ahoms, had been the nerve-centre of all cultural activities. In addition, the city has also been a battleground and witnessed plenty of intense struggles between the Mughals and Ahoms. The Mughals tried to invade the state around 17 times, however every time they were defeated by the Ahoms. During the time of battle, the army of Ahoms was led by the great Ahom General, Bir Lachit Borphukan. In 1897, the entire city was ruined due to a major earthquake. Most of the old city was wiped out because of this earthquake, which was followed by a series of devastating floods.
People and Culture of Guwahati
The present capital of the State of Assam is Dispur, which is located within the city and is also the seat of the Government of Assam. With world class institutions like the Indian Institute of Technology, Guwahati is also a major commercial and educational centre of North-East India. A hub for cultural activities and sports in the north-eastern region, the city is also the centre for political and administrative activities of Assam. Moreover, the destination is also an important transportation hub in the north-east region and is well connected to the rest of the country.Guwahati airport is the main airport of the region and has flights to places like Aizawl, Agartala, Delhi, Kolkata etc. The closest international airports are at Kolkata and Delhi. The city is part of the North-East Frontier Railway and is a major railhead of the region. It is connected by quite a few train services to different parts of the country. Buses also connect Guwahati to major destinations in and around the state. There are bus services to places like Darjeeling too which is in the state of West Bengal. These buses are operated by the state as well as private tour groups.
Things To Do in Guwahati
Guwahati attracts tourists due to its rich cultural mix and tribal traditions along with several colourful festivals. One of the most popular fairs that is held in this city is the Ambubachi Mela. This fair is organised every year during the monsoon season, which is attended by large number of devotees. Some of the major festivals celebrated in the city are Bihu, which is the National Festival of the Assamese and the Bahag Bihu during April. The Kati or Kangali Bihu and the Magh or Bhogali Bihu are some of the other festivals of Guwahati. The best time to visit Guwahati is from the months of October to April.