Guwahati is a major city in Assam with many tourist attractions and places of interest. This makes it a desirable travel destination for most travel lovers. Guwahati is well connected by flights and trains from the rest of the country so you can travel hassle free. But it’s always confusing for those who are visiting for the first time to decide what to see and do. So here’s a list of the places you should definitely visit while in Guwahati.
Places to Visit:
Kamakhya Temple is the most popular tourist destination in Guwahati. This is a Hindu temple of the Shakti cult situated on top of Neelachal hill near Maligaon. Ambubachi Mela and Durga Puja are the most important festivals observed here every year. During these two festivals tourists and devotees visit in thousands, and even on a daily basis a large number of devotees visit to offer their prayers to Goddess Kamakhya.
Read my blog post on Kamakhya Temple to know more about this religious place.
Srimanta Sankardev Kalakshetra
Srimanta Sankardev Kalakshetra is another popular tourist attraction in the city. This is actually a cultural centre where artists come together to conceive, create and perform their respective art forms. There’s an open space with a stage where shows are organized, a mini amphitheater, two museums, a children’s park among many other facilities.
The Kalakshetra is spread across a huge area and many cultural programs are organized here over the year. It also witnesses a large number of tourists throughout the year.
State Zoo cum Botanical Garden
Spread across an area of 432 acre Assam State zoo is the largest in the entire North-eastern region. Located off R.G.B.Road in the city the zoo witnesses a large footfall throughout the year and is popular with kids. The zoo is home to 113 different species of animals and birds from around the world.
The State Zoo however is temporarily closed for quite some time now.
Accoland Water Park
The first of its kind amusement and water park in the North-East. Accoland witnesses a large number of visitors every day, especially during the summers because it’s vacation time for schools. Located at Rani in the outskirts of the city Accoland is popular with kids and makes an ideal family destination.
The Park is, however, temporarily closed following the protocols of Covid-19.
The Saraighat Bridge is the first rail cum road bridge over river Brahmaputra with a length of 1492 meters. The Bridge is known to connect the North-East India with the entire country. This is two-tiered bridge built around 1962 by Hindustan Construction Company. The Bridge also connects north Guwahati with the rest of the city.
A new Bridge has been built beside to the original bridge which was inaugurated in 2017.
Regional Science Center is a non formal science education destination located at Jawahar Nagar, Khanapara. Many science based interactive activities can be enjoyed here along with science shows, science movies. The museum was built to promote, enlighten and educate people about pre-historic times, and science and technology.
Summer camps are organized here for kids which include a lot of fun activities based on science. Basically the Guwahati Science Museum is a fun place for kids to visit.
Purva Tirupati Balaji Temple
Balaji Temple located at Ahom Gaon, Lokhra is a Hindu temple dedicated to Lord Venkateshwara. The architecture of the temple is unique and the calm peaceful ambience is very unlike other Hindu temples in Guwahati.
Also do read my blog post on Popular Hindu Temples in Guwahati for more information
Brahmaputra Waterfront and Cruise
Brahmaputra is the main river of the region and cruising over it would be a very good experience. Also you can enjoy its beauty by sitting in the park on the banks while adoring the magnificent statue of Bir Lachit Borphukan standing tall amidst the water.
Mighty River Brahmaputra is the main source of life for most of the people in Assam. Read my blog post Mighty River Brahmaputra: The Metaphor of Life to know more.
Dighali Pukhuri and War Memorial
Dighali Pukhuri has been a very popular tourist attraction. It is actually a man-made lake in the heart of the city. Legends say the lake was created by King Bhagadutta of Pragjyotispur by digging a canal from the river Brahmaputra. This was later used as a naval base during the Ahom reign.
A War memorial has been recently built beside the lake. Activities like rowing and boat rides are available in the lake. Assam State Museum, Handique Girls College, Guwahati High Court are located on the three sides of the lake.
Where to Shop:
#1 Fancy Bazaar
Fancy Bazaar is like Delhi’s Sarojini Market, you can find everything here at much reasonable prices. The mantra to shop here is bargain. This is a huge area with shops at every alley. The pavements are also thronged with makeshift shops which have some of the most trendy items one can ever imagine. There are quite a few shops dealing in Assam silk, Muga, Eri clothes.
Fancy Bazaar is the best flea market in Guwahati surrounded by Panbazar and Lakhtokia. From high end shops to a bazillion small shops Fancy Bazaar has it all. This area is also a Street food paradise.
#2 City Centre Mall
City Centre Mall is a hub of all the high-end stores with a food court, PVR with five screens, Gaming zone, salons and restaurants. Some of the popular brands in this mall are Hamleys, Apple store, MiniSo, Marks & Spencer, Aldo, Barista, Chumbak etc.
City Centre is the most popular hangout place in Guwahati specially with youngsters.
Apart from these there are many other malls like Guwahati Central, Central Mall, Roodraksh Mall, and stores of Pantaloons, Reliance, Vishal Megamart, Max etc. But Fancy Bazaar is undoubtedly the best place to shop.
Mode of Transport:
#1 City Bus Services
City Bus service is definitely the best and cheaper option to travel within the city. You can board a bus every 5-10 mins at all major locations. But be sure to read the route which is written on the body of the bus or ask the conductor to confirm.
#2 Car Rentals
There are many rental companies which rent out cars if you fulfill their requirements. You can even opt for a self drive car. They have a fixed rental charge and it also depends on the type of car you choose.
Auto services are available with no fixed rates. You can book an auto from anywhere but should be able to negotiate the rates which is a must anywhere across India.
#4 Cab Services
Uber and Ola cab services are available in Guwahati city too and you can avail their services as per their alloted rates.
Budget hotels in Guwahati:
Ginger Guwahati: Located at VIP Road, Upper Hengerabari the hotel offers airport transfers and has an in-house restaurant and coffee shop.
Gateway Grandeur: Located centrally at G.S.Road, Christian Basti the hotel has easy access to the shopping malls, hospitals, restaurants and all modes of transportation.
Hotel Vishwaratna: Located at A.T.Road which is the business hub of Guwahati, the hotel is also closer to Fancy Bazaar and Guwahati Railway Station.
Landmark Hotel: Located at B.Barooah Road, Ulubari the hotel is very close to the Indoor Stadium and some of the major tourist attractions like Dighali Pukhuri, Assam State Museum etc.
Kiranshree Portico: Located centrally at Paltan Bazaar Kiranshree Portico is very close to Guwahati Railway Station and Paltan Bazaar market.
Royale de Casa: Located at Beltola-Basistha Road the hotel offers luxury accommodation with in-house restaurant and bar facilities.