Guwahati: Wikis

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Guwahati city
A view of the city
Guwahati city
Location of Guwahati city
in Assam and India
Coordinates 26°10′N 91°46′E / 26.17°N 91.77°E / 26.17; 91.77
Country  India
State Assam
District(s) Kamrup
Mayor Dolly Borah
Population
Density
808021 (2001)
3,935 /km2 (10,192 /sq mi)
Time zone IST (UTC+05:30)
Area
Elevation
216 km2 (83 sq mi)
55 m (180 ft)
Website www.guwahatimunicipalcorporation.com

Guwahati (Assamese: গুৱাহাটী, Hindi: गुवाहाटी, previously spelled Gauhati) is a major city in eastern India, with a population of 818,809 (2001 census). The largest city in the North-East Region of India, it is considered by some to be the "gateway" to the region. Dispur, the capital of the Indian state of Assam, is located within the city. Guwahati is one of the most rapidly growing cities in India; during the past few decades it has experienced expansion and also a steep rise in population. According to a survey done by a UK media outlet, Guwahati is among the 100 fastest growing cities of the world, and is the 5th fastest growing among Indian cities.

The city is situated between the southern bank of the Brahmaputra river and the foothills of the Shillong plateau, with LGB International Airport to the west, and the town of Narengi to the east. The city is gradually being expanded as North Guwahati to the northern bank of the Brahmaputra. The Guwahati Municipal Corporation, the city's local government, administers an area of 216 km², while the Guwahati Metropolitan Development Authority, the planning and development administers an area of 340 km².

Guwahati is a major commercial and educational center of North-East India and is home to world class institutions such as the Indian Institute of Technology Guwahati. The city is also a major center for cultural activities and sports in the North Eastern region and for the administrative and political activities of Assam. The city is also an important hub for transportation in the North East Region.

Contents

Etymology

The name Guwahati is derived from two Assamese words: 'guwa' (areca nut) and 'haat' (market place). The name used to be spelled as Gowhatty (pre-colonial and colonial), standardized to Gauhati (colonial-British), which was then changed to the present form in the late 1980s to conform to the local pronunciation.

History

View of part of Guwahati from the Sarania Hills, with the Brahmaputra river. The peaked Kamakhya Hills are to the left, the Saraighat bridge can be seen near the horizon, and on the right bank is North Guwahati. The Nehru stadium and the railway station are faintly visible, right bottom.

Guwahati's myths and history go back several thousands of years. Although the date of the city's beginning is unknown, references in the epics, puranas, and other traditional histories, lead many to assume that it is one of the ancient cities of Asia.

Epigraphic sources place the capitals of many ancient kingdoms in Guwahati. It was the capital of the mythological kings Naraka and Bhagadatta according to the Mahabharata. The ancient sakti temple of Goddess Kamakhya located in Nilachal hill (also important seat of Tantric and Vajrayana Buddhism), the ancient and unique astrological temple Navagraha located in Chitrachal Hill, and archaeological remains in Basista and other locations support the mythological assertions of the city's ancient past.

A view of Kamakhya Temple

The Ambari excavations trace the city to the 6th century AD. The city was known as Pragjyotishpura and Durjoya in different time periods, and was the capital under the Varman and the Pala dynasties of the Kamarupa kingdom. Descriptions by Xuanzang (Hiuen Tsang) reveal that during the greatest Varman king Bhaskaravarma (7th century AD), the city stretched 19 km and was probably the principal base for his strong naval force (30,000 war-boats, with officers who were knowledgeable of the sea-routes from the Indian Ocean to China - Xuanzang). The city remained as the capital of Assam till the 10-11th century AD under the rulers of the Pala dynasty. Excavations in Ambari, and the brick walls and houses excavated during construction of the present Cotton College's auditorium suggest that it was a city of great size with economic and strategic importance until the 9-11th century AD.

Digholy Pukhury, Guwahati

During medieval times between the 12-15th century AD, after the destruction of the Kamata kingdom, the city lost its earlier glory and became mainly a strategic outpost of the Koch Hajo and Ahom Kingdoms of western and eastern Assam. When the western part of the Koch Kingdom (Koch Bihar) fell to the Mughals, the eastern half (Koch Hajo) eventually became a protectorate of Ahom. Although the actual border between both powers (Ahoms and Mughals) fluctuated between the Kartoya river (now in North Bengal) to the Manas and Barnadi rivers, Guwahati remained an important outpost.

The city was the seat of the Borphukan, the civil and military authority of the lower Assam region appointed by the Ahom kings. The Borphukan's residence was in the present Fansi Bazaar area, and his council-hall, called Dopdar, was situated about 300 yards (270 m) to the west of the Bharalu stream. The Majindar Baruah, the personal secretary of the Borphukan, had his residence in the present-day Deputy Commissioner's residence (Baruah 1992:200-201).

The Mughals attacked Assam 17 times and Guwahati was captured many times. The Battle of Saraighat fought close to Guwahati in 1671 is the most well known war, in which the Mughals were over-run due to the strong leadership of Lachit Borphukan and hard work of the Assamese Army.

There are a number of historic features in Guwahati. The Dighali Pukhuri is a rectangular lake that was connected to the Brahmaputra, and was an ancient boat yard probably used by the Ahoms in medieval times. Moreover, there are many tanks, temples, ramparts, etc. in the city. The most important archaeological site is the Ambari excavation site close to Dighali Pukhuri.

Urban Morphology

Guwahati's Urban Morphology

Guwahati's 'urban form' is somewhat like a starfish. With a core in the central areas, the city has tentacles extending in the form of growth corridors towards south, east and west. In the past few decades, southern Guwahati areas such as Ganeshguri, Beltola, Panjabari, etc. began forming a southern sub-center surrounding the capital complex at Dispur, principally depending on the GS Road corridor. the area which is near about 5 km from dispur i.e. panjabari area is really very beautiful.it is place of full natural beauty and climatic condition are somehow similar to Meghalaya.Shankardev Kalakschetra is one of popular tourist spot in this area.

The core area consists of the old city with Pan Bazaar, Paltan Bazaar, Fansi Bazaar and Uzan Bazaar, each one facilitating unique urban activities. While Paltan Bazaar is the hub for transportation and hotels, Pan Bazaar is centered around educational, administrative, cultural activities, offices and restaurants. Fansi Bazaar is the hub for retail and wholesale commercial activities, and Ujan Bazaar mainly contains administrative, retail and residential areas. With these bustling areas, the city core is a busy and lively part of the Guwahati. Ulubari, Lachit Nagar, Chandmari and Zoo Road (R.G. Baruah Road), which have a mix of retail-commercial and residential areas, can be considered an additional part of the core.

Among the city corridors, the most important is the corridor formed along the Guwahati-Shillong (GS) Road towards the south (almost 15 km from the city-center). The GS Road corridor is an important commercial area with retail, wholesale and offices developed along the main road, and it is also a densely-built residential area in the inner parts. The capital complex of Assam at Dispur is situated in this corridor. This corridor has facilitated the growth of a southern city sub-center at Ganeshguri, along with other residential areas to the south developed during the past few decades.

The corridor extending towards the west (around 30 km from the city-center) contains a rail-road linking not only Guwahati but also other parts of the North Eastern Region east of Guwahati to western Assam and the rest of India. The corridor links residential and historically important areas such as Nilachal Hill (Kamakhya), Pandu, and Maligaon (headquarters of Northeast Frontier Railways) before it separates into two - one towards North Guwahati and the other continuing west towards LGB International Airport via the University of Gauhati (Jalukbari). There are also many river ports/jetties along this corridor.

The third major corridor extends towards the east (around 15 km from the city-center) linking Noonmati (Guwahati Oil Refinery - IOC Ltd.) and Narengi, and has facilitated residential growth along it.

Highway NH 37, which encircles the city's southern parts and links the southern corridor in Nomile to the western corridor in Jalukbari is currently supporting rapid development. Similarly, the VIP Road linking Zoo Road with the eastern corridor and recently completed Hengerabari-Narengi Road are also supporting massive residential development to the east.

In brief, the major components of Guwahati's urban structure are:

  • The core or the 'city center' with Pan Bazaar, Paltan Bazaar, Fansi Bazaar and Ujan Bazaar
  • The extended core with Chandmari, Zoo Road and Ulubari
  • The north-southeast Guwahati-Shillong (GS) Road Corridor
  • The southern sub-center of Ganeshguri
  • The western corridor towards Kamakhya, Jalukbari and LGBI Airport and
  • The eastern corridor towards Noonmati and Narengi

But the city is having notable changes in its morphology with rapid expansion. The Khanapara road is being converted into 4 lanes and it will be extended up to a place called Changsari in near future. Various projects are undertaken on the outskirts like the water park in Rani, which has brought those far flung areas under city reach by continuous visit by tourists. Also, two five star hotels are on the verge of being set up, arising hopes that by a decade or so, the city will be twice its size now.

Governance

Guwahati Municipal Corporation (GMC) is the local body responsible for governing, developing and managing the city. GMC has sub-divided the city into 60 municipal wards. The Guwahati Metropolitan Development Authority (GMDA) is a state parastatal agency currently responsible for planning and development of the greater Guwahati Metropolitan Area, which is currently revising the Guwahati Master Plan and Building Bylaws.

The Guwahati Development Department, a special department of the Government of Assam, has been recently formed for Guwahati's overall development.

Gauhati consists of two assembly constituencies: Gauhati East and Gauhati West, both of which are part of Gauhati (Lok Sabha constituency).[1]

Demographics

Guwahati is one of the most rapidly growing cities in India. The city's population grew from just two-hundred thousand in 1971 to more than five-hundred thousand in 1991, and in the census of 2001 the city's population was found to be 808,021. By 2011, it is estimated that Guwahati will boast more than a million residents.

In 2001, males constituted 55 percent and females at 45 percent of Guwahati's residents. It was found that 10 percent of the population is under 6 years of age. Guwahati has an average literacy rate of 78 percent, with male literacy at 81 and female literacy at 74 percent..

Economy

As a river port, Guwahati has traditionally been an important administrative and trading center. Separate income estimates for the city are not yet available as city-level income estimation is not a traditional practice in India, and is not practiced in a systematic and continual manner. However, by looking at the agglomeration of activities and employment patterns it can be easily understandable that the city contributes a lion's share of the state's income.

The major economic activities are trade and commerce, transportation and services. Guwahati is the most important trade hub in the North Eastern Region. It is a major wholesale distribution center, a marketing hub, and also a retail hub of the region. The Guwahati Tea Auction Centre is one of the largest in the world. As in other cities, 'mall culture' is slowly invading Guwahati. Manufacturing is also an important activity, although it is not comparable to those of India's rapidly growing industrial cities. The most important manufacturing industry in the city is the petroleum refinery of IOCL at Noonmati. The city is contains the headquarters or regional offices of several manufacturing and business establishments, e.g. Numaligarh Refinery Limited (NRL). Guwahati is also important for printing and publishing, as well as businesses related to electronic and print media. During the past two decades, businesses such as real estate development, finance, etc. have also intensified.

Tourism and recreation, education, research, cultural activities, etc. are also slowly increasing and contributing to city's economy.

Terrorism and insurgency

There is a fair amount of ethnic and religious diversity in Guwahati, but the city has been plagued by terrorism and insurgency in recent years. Several bombings were carried out in 2008 and 2009, claiming a total of at least 96 lives and wounding around 600 others.[2][3][4]

Terrorist groups believed to be active in and around Guwahati and Dispur include:

Infrastructure

Although being a medium sized city, ranking around 50th (in terms of population) in India, the city's quality of life is comparatively higher. A recent survey (2006) by a popular Indian magazine - Outlook (Money) ranked Guwahati 17th among all the major and medium sized Indian cities.

The city provides competitive residential and working environments with beautiful landscapes, pleasant climate, modern shopping areas, modern apartments and bungalows, and considerably good social infrastructure.

Yet infrastructure in the city still requires extensive attention, which can increase and revolutionize the city's reputation, investment environment, and overall growth pattern. Major investments in infrastructure are being planned in the city, covering many aspects of the utilities and transportation infrastructures, with financial assistance from the Asian Development Bank (ADB). Guwahati is to also to receive substantial city development funds from JNNURM (Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission) - the Government of India's recently conceived commission for urban development, and a development plan for the city has been recently finalized. The city suffers from the lack of sufficient utilities for the development of infrastructure. The existing water supply system is inadequate, depending largely on ground water resources (higher water level). It also lacks a comprehensive underground sewage system. Septic tanks at individual houses are popular. The storm drainage system is comparatively good, although many areas experience water logging due to heavy rainfall in the monsoon season. Extensive soil erosion from the hills and clogging of the drainage system is frequent and expensive for the city. Solid waste is being managed by the local authority with private partners. It lacks modern equipment, methods and practices.

Transport

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Air

LGBI Airport, Guwahati

Guwahati is serviced by the Lokopriya Gopinath Bordoloi International Airport at Borjhar, about 20 km west of the city center. Air connectivity has improved considerably in the last couple of years and all major domestic airlines fly into Guwahati. Helicopter services are operated from Guwahati to Shillong (30 min), Tura (50 min), Naharlagun (Itanagar), Tawang (75 min) by Pawan Hans, a helicopter service. Guwahati airport averages about 20 arrivals and departures a day. Guwahati is serviced with direct flights to Delhi, Jaipur, Indore, Mumbai, Kolkata, Hyderabad, Bangalore,Chennai and other major cities in India by different airlines. Indian connects Guwahati internationally to Bangkok once a week. A modernization plan is underway at Guwahati airport right now and once it is completed, the AAI plans to make Guwahati a hub of air connectivity.

Rail

Guwahati falls under the Northeast Frontier Railway zone of the Indian Railways. Guwahati Junction which is the major station of Guwahati is the headquarters of the zone. Two minor stations are Kamakhya and New Guwahati (for freight services) located towards west and east from Guwahati respectively. Major trains serving Guwahati are Guwahati Rajdhani Express, Poorvottar Sampark Kranti Express, Saraighat Express, North-East Express, Guwahati-Jorhat Town Jan Shatabdi Express.

But the city still lacks direct connectivity through railway to Bhopal Junction, Indore Junction BG, Jaipur, Gwalior, Ahmedabad and many central as well as western cities of India.

Road

National Highway 31 connects Guwahati with the states Bihar, Jharkhand and West Bengal. National Highway 37 from Goalpara in Assam to Dimapur in Nagaland traverses the entire length of Assam and connects Guwahati with almost all the major cities of Assam including the cities of Jorhat and Dibrugarh.

Local transport

Lack of sufficient road space is also a major problem. The length of surfaced road within the city is presently at 218 km (ARSAC). The major corridor roads suffer from insufficient right of way, illegal construction methods, and improper planning and design. The roads in the residential neighborhoods are extremely narrow (lack of proper regulations) causing problems related to both traffic and infrastructure installations. Cul-de-sacs are neither planned nor designed properly.

Guwahati has a good public transit system. A government agency - Assam State Transport Corporation (ASTC) and many private operators provide a considerably good city-bus system. It requires further modernization and integration with city planning and management initiatives. Guwahati is the first city in the North-east where low floored buses were introduced.

Guwahati is very well connected with adjoining regions via bus services. Two nodal points, Adabari and Paltan Bazaar, provide bus services to towns and cities in Assam and adjoining states. Some of these services are run by the government agency ASTC, whereas a vast majority of them are run by private companies. "Night supers", or buses that run overnight, and luxury coaches, are very popular.

The Inter State Bus Terminus (ISBT) located at the outskirts, provides connectivity with other regions of the Northeast with regular buses for major cities and tourist destinations of the neighbouring states.

Education and Health facilities

IIT Guwahati Academic and Administrative Buildings
Cotton College buildings

The city is home to Gauhati University in Jalukbari. The century-old Cotton College is one of the most reputed colleges in eastern India, and possesses great scholastic and cultural value.

The Indian Institute of Technology Guwahati is the sixth member of the high-profile world's renowned IITs in India. Since its establishment in 1994, IIT-G has proven itself as an excellent institution for research and education, evidenced by its high ranking among the IITs in India as reported by a variety of national surveys such as India Today and Dataquest.

The Assam Engineering College and the Gauhati Medical College and Hospital are the two important institutions for science and technology and medical education.

Among the city's many other institutions of higher learning are the Gauhati Commerce College, College of Veterinary Science,SJN Govt. Homeopathic Medical College, Government Ayurvedic College, Arya Vidyapeeth College,B. Borooah College, Handique Girls College (the latter two have both Arts and Science streams), Assam Engineering Institute (engineering diploma courses), Pandu College, LCB College, West Guwahati Commerce College, and K.C.Das Commerce College (1983).

The city is an important center for health facilities in eastern India, featuring many government and private specialty hospitals. The most important are the Guwahati Medical College and Hospital, Guwahati Neurological Research Centre (GNRC), Down Town Hospital, B. Baruah Cancer Institute, and Sankardev Netralaya. Medical education and research are also important activities.

Guwahati also has branches of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI), and the Institute of Company Secretaries of India (ICSI).Guwahati have world class institutes like Royal School of Business and Royal School of Engineering & Technology.

Sports

Guwahati has considerably good sporting facilities, boasting the Nehru Stadium, while the Kanaklata Indoor Stadium in the R.G. Baruah Sports Complex (in the Ulubari locality) is older sports complex of the city.

There are smaller stadiums in Maligaon (the N.F. Railway Stadium) and in Paltan Bazaar area where the SAI Sports complex is located.

Recently completed sporting facilities specially constructed for the 33rd National Games include a large stadium at Sarusajai—the Indira Gandhi Athletic Stadium, the Dr. Zakir Hussain Aquatic Complex, and the Karmabir Nabin Chandra Bordoloi A.C. Indoor Hall. Other new sports structures include the Maulana Md. Tayabullah Hockey Stadium at Bhetapara, the Deshbhakta Tarun Ram Phookan Indoor Stadium at Ulubari, Rajiv Gandhi Indoor Stadium at Amingaon, and Chachal Tennis Complex.

The other renovated sports complexes include—Ganesh Mandir Indoor Stadium, Khanapara, Rudra Singha Sports Complex, Dispur and Gauhati University sports stadium.

Moreover, along with the Brahmaputra river, there are many lakes and rocky hills in the city suitable for various water and adventure sports.

Places of Interests

A beautiful view of sunset across the Brahmaputra river near Sukleswar ghat in Guwahati.

Guwahati possesses many places of interests with its lively urban activities, ancient temples, numerous scenic natural features, and the recreational activities they provide. Guwahati is also situated at the center of an attractive region (within 200 km radius) with natural parks, wildlife sanctuaries, hill stations of different types, and a colourful cultural landscape.

City Attractions

There are several interesting and lively places in the city. These areas provide the city with hotels, restaurants, shopping and business areas, the most lively being the city center. Momos and chicken rolls are a popular form of fast-food available in almost every restaurant. Moreover, there are several good restaurants offering Indian, South Indian, traditional Assamese, Chinese, and continental food. There are also several good book shops and music stores. A few of these areas are:

Brahmaputra with Ferry; Fancy Bazaar

Pan Bazaar: A lively part of the city center on the southern bank of the Brahmaputra. Cotton College, Digholy Pukhury (Dighali Pukhuri), The State Museum, RBI, District Court (Kamrup District), etc. are all major landmarks. Moreover, the area also possesses many libraries, major government offices, and a shopping district. Restaurants and bookshops in the area provide a unique environment. It also contains a major wholesale market for drugs and pharmaceutical products, and a hub for printing and publication. Close to Digholy Pukhury, there are many stores with traditional arts and crafts from Assam and other parts of the NER. Kacari Ghat, next to the district court is an important local river port.


Fancy Bazaar: Situated in the western part of the city-center is a busy commercial district for both wholesale and retail. Originally called Fansi Bazaar after the district jail that executed criminals by hanging (fansi, in the local language), the name has slowly transformed to Fancy Bazaar to denote the retail stores for clothes and garments. The place is also the hub for various wholesale products ranging from food and beverages, garments, to hardware and building materials.

Paltan Bazaar: In the central part of the city-center is the hub for transportation and hotels. With Guwahati railway station, the regional bus stand (ASTC), numerous hotels, restaurants and offices and stops of numerous private regional bus service providers, this area is the busiest and most congested. There are also many small shops selling traditional garments from various parts of the NER.

Bor Sola Beel

Ganeshguri: A newly developed commercial area in the south, outside of the city-center. Its proximity to the state capital complex and rapidly growing southern residential areas have made it an important city sub-center. Ganeshguri is a busy part of the city with retail shopping areas, hotels and restaurants, and small businesses.

Beltola Bazaar: A traditional weekly fruits and vegetables market with historic importance. The market has existed since its historic past and is an important traditional trading point between the people from the Khasi hills (Meghalaya) and local people. It is a rich market with various types of local food products. It is located in Beltola, a predominantly residential area in the south.

G S Road: A long stretch of road between Ganeshguri and Paltan Bazaar, G S Road has emerged as the new commercial hub of Guwahati. G S Road boasts of some of the finest malls and restaurants Guwahati has to offer, and is considered by many to displace Fancy Bazaar and Pan Bazaar as the major shopping centers in the years to come. It is now also one of the most important and expensive pieces of property in Guwahati, containing some of the most commercially important buildings.

Guwahati War Cemetery: A World War II war cemetery, maintained by the Commonwealth War Graves Commission[5]

Key attractions

The key attractions are:

A view of Umananda Temple in the beautiful pea-cock island

River Cruise: One of the major attractions of Guwahati is the River Cruise on the Brahmaputra river.To go a cruise on the mighty river is thrilling experience.There cruise vessels like 'Jolporee','Charaidew', 'Alfresco' , 'Baginadi' etc that will take the visitors on joy rides on the Brahmaputra river.Sitting abroad these luxurious cruise vessels tourists can relax and enjoy the beautiful view of the sunset int he evening hours.

Umananda Temple: Situated on the peacock island in the middle of the Brahmaputra,this temple as built in 1664.This is a Shiva temple.It is believed that Lord Shiva by using his third eye burnt Kamdeva at this place.Every year Shivaratri is celebrated in this temple in great way.This temple island is believed to be the worlds smallest human inhabited island.

Shankardev Kalakschetra's Rang Ghar Gate

Accoland: Accoland Family fun kingdom is North-East's only amusement park.named after Acco,the mythological king of amusement.This 'Family Fun Kingdom' is located at Athgaon, Rani.

Srimanta Shankardev Kalakschetra: Shankardev Kalakschetra is a place that visitors should never miss in Guwahati.Shankardev Khalakchetra name synonymous with the great Vaishnava saint and scholar of Assam Srimanta Shankardeva.It is a multipurpose cultural complex in Assam that has fulfilled its aim in protecting, promoting and preserving the cultural heritage of the different communities and tribes of Assam and the entire country.

Guwahati Planetarium: Situated in Uzanbazar this planetorium is the only one of its kind in the entire North-Eastern region and a centre of astronomical research.


Assam State Museum: Situated near Dighali Pukhuri this state museum houses many rare, specimen of Ahom Dynasty.Many articles equipment, dress materials belonging to the Glorious past of Assam are found here. Many antiques, statues, manuscripts, written on Shashi-paat and other valuable articles are preserved and displayed here.

A Rhino at Assam State Zoo

Kamakhya Temple: Situated some 5km. away from the mai city on the Nilachal Hill, the Kamakhya Temple is one of the most sacred Hindu Shrines of India. Goddess Kamakhya is worshipped here.

Nehru Park: Situated at heart of the city at Panbazar by the side of Cotton College. Nehru Park is another place that visitors should never miss.The highlights of the park are the concrete statues of Bihu dance, Ojapali dance, Deodhani dance, Jhumur dance, Bhoor tal dance etc. There are altogether 45 concrete statues depicting these various aspects of Assamese life and culture.

NEDFi Haat: NEDFi Haat is located at a leased building of Industries & Commerce Department Govt. of Assam.In NEDFi Haat visitors can buy various handicraft & handloom products . As well as they can buy varieties of traditional food items produced by the Self Help Groups of the State in the Bihu seasons.


Assam State Zoo Cum Botanical Garden ( Guwahati Zoo): Assam State Zoo is located at Hengerabari Reserved Forrest in the city.


Basistha Temple: Basistha Templeis situated on Sandhyachal Hill,on the southern part of the city, this beautiful tourist spot was once the ashram (harmitage) of sage Basistha.


Sukreswar Temple: Sukreswar Templeis an ancient Shiva temple built by Ahom king Pramatta Singha on Dakini Jogini hill by the side of river Brahmaputra.

Navagraha Temple: Situated on the Chitranchal hill, this temple of nine planets (Navagraha) was built by Ahom king Rajeswar Singha. There is a stone imprint of solar system inside the temple.

Digholi Pukhuri: Situated at the herat of the city at Uzanbazr and surrounded by the High Court on the north and the State Museum and District Library on the south. This is a huge man made tank.It was excavated by the mighty king Bhagadatta to celebrated the 'sayambar' of his daughter Bhanumati who was married off to Kourava prince Druyadhana.There is boating club on the Dighali Pukhuri.


Ugratara Temple: Situated at the heart of the city banks of Joar Pukhuri(twin ponds).The Ugratara temple is another shkati peeth temple where the eyes of sati were believed to have fallen.

Balaji Temple, Guwahati: This temple is a recent additoin to the religious places of Guwahati.It is situated at Betkuchi area of the city.Balaji temple with striking South Indian architecgture is unlike the other temples of this place.In the evening illuminated by electric lights the temple looks very beautiful.

Other Attractions

  • Kharghuli Beach
  • Sarania Pahar
  • Urvashi Island
  • Chandubi Eco Camp
  • Lonkeswar Temple
  • Nepali Mandir
  • Digheswari Temple
  • Narengi Golf Club
  • Pandu
  • Pandu port
  • Rudreswar Temple
  • Asom International Trade Fair (annual)
  • Guwahati International Annual Book Fair (annual)
  • Rest Camp Kalibari
  • Loco Colony


Jyotichitrabon: Jyoti Chitraban Film and Television Institute is North-east's only film studio.

Notes

  1. ^ "List of Parliamentary & Assembly Constituencies" (PDF). Assam. Election Commission of India. http://archive.eci.gov.in/se2001/background/S03/AS_ACPC.pdf. Retrieved 2008-10-05. 
  2. ^ Assam blast toll rises to 81
  3. ^ Death toll in Guwahati serial bombings rises to six
  4. ^ Terror blasts ahead of PM's visit rock Assam, kill 9
  5. ^ Hewson, Eileen (2007). Guwahati War Cemetery Assam India, ISBN 1906276056 9781906276058

References

  • Buaruah, S. L. (1993), Last Days of Ahom Monarchy, Munshiram Manoharlal Publishers Pvt Ltd, New Delhi 

External links

See also


Travel guide

Up to date as of January 14, 2010

From Wikitravel

Guwahati is the largest city in Assam, Northeast India. It used to be the capital before it moved to the planned city of Dispur.

Understand

Excavations trace the origins of the city to around the 6th century and it was the capital of Assam until the 10th century. Currently, the city has a population of around one million, making it the largest city in the state and its main center for shopping and business, attracting people from all over the north east as well as from Eastern Bhutan. The slow, meandering Brahmaputra River is a focal point of the downtown while the lush hills of the Shillong Plateau provide a verdant backdrop for the suburbs. The pleasant environment, however, is somewhat tempered by the lack of investment in the region, which is apparent from the low quality of roads. Still, despite the weak infrastructure, private investors have been drawn to the city in recent years and there has been something of a boom in the construction of shopping malls and high quality condominiums, which has helped raise the economic profile of the city.

Climate

Guwahati's climate is subtropical. Summers last here from April to May, monsoons from June to September and winters from October to March. Temperatures here approximately range between 19°C and 26°C. 161.3 cm is the average yearly precipitation level here. Humidity is more than 80/90% often.

Get in

By plane

Guahati has daily flights from Kolkata,Bangalore,Hyderabad,Mumbai and New Delhi, and twice weekly flights connecting to Mumbai and Bangkok [1]. There are connections to most North East Indian cities from Guwahati. Alliance Air, Jet Airways and Kingfisher fly to Silchar, Dimapur, Dibrugarh, Aizawl, Imphal and Agartala while the hill resort cities of Shillong and Tura are connected by regular scheduled helicopter services run by Pawan Hans.

By train

Guwahati is connected by train with major cities like Kolkata, New Delhi, Bangalore, Thiruvananthapuram,Chennai and Mumbai

By car

By road - NH-31, NH-37 and NH-40 pass through Guwahati. It is a three hour drive to the Bhutanese border town of Samdrup Jongkhar.

By bus

It is connected to all major cities of North East India by bus. There are overnight bus services for Kohima, Imphal, Itanagar, Siliguri.

By boat

Luxurious vessels with AC upper deck connecting Guwahati to Dibrugarh passing through Kaziranga & Tezpur.

Get around

By Bus

It is the cheapest way of travelling around the city.Guwahati is well connected to most of it's city area with city bus(local service bus).recently air conditioned bus service started between airport and the city.

By auto

Compared to other cities in India, autos charge a hefty price for the ride. There is no meter system used by the autos, the auto driver will simply refuse to drive you if you insist on the meter - the best you can do is negotiate in advance ( check with a local on what it should cost you). Small distance charges are high.

  • Kickstart Adventures- an adventure tourism firm, has pioneered motorcycle tours in North East India. This adventure motorbike tour covers the states of Assam, Meghalaya, Nagaland, and Arunachal Pradesh, giving a traveller to visit to not only popular places but also rural parts of the region to experience first-hand of tribal cultures and traditions. The firm conducts tours all round the year.

River crossing

If you can not go on the river cruise, at least cross the river on the ferry. Ferries provide transport to the local people - they leave the jetty at Fancy bazar every half an hour and the round trip will take around 45 minutes. Tickets are rs.3/- one way. It's a simple way to enjoy the scenic beauty of the river Brahmaputra.

  • Uma Nanda Temple, A 17th century temple dedicated to Shiva. Umananda temple is on an island in the middle of the Brahmaputra river-Peacock island. You need to take a boat to reach the island. You can get a shared boat or reserve the entire boat for yourself. You will get boats from fancy bazaar Ghat near the Sukreshwar temple. From the island you will get a good view of the riverside. Those who love nature can spend sometime here just watching the Brahmaputra flow around the island.
  • Janardana Temple
  • Ugro Tara Temple, Lotaxil. A temple dedicated to the deity Tara.
  • Assam State Museum, southern end of Dighalipukhuri tank. The museum is closed on Mondays.
  • Guwahati Planetarium
  • Assam Rajyik Museum
  • Regional Science Center
  • Navagraha Temple, Chitrasal Hill. An 18th century temple dedicated to nine Celestial bodies.
  • Kamakhya Temple
  • Bhubaneswari Temple
  • Pandu
  • Vashistha Ashram It is a place of pilgrimage in the Sandhychal hills. This is near the Balaji temple which is near the ISBT-inter state bus terminus. Vashistha Ashram was established by the great sage Vashistha. Three rivulets Sandhya, Kanta and Lalita meet here, bestowing the Ashram a natural stream. Water from the rivulets comes gushing down the rocks creating a unforgettable setting and ambience.
  • Assam State Zoo
  • Botanical Gardens
  • Shankardev Kalashetra,Panjabari Road
  • Ethnic handicrafts of the north east and Assam are available in many shops in the city.
  • Malls. The city boasts several shopping malls. These are the major ones: The Hub Mall, Bhangagarh; Dona Planet, G.S.Road; Vishal MegaMart; The Cube Mall and Sohum Shoppe; Kolkata Bazaar;Salasar etc.Upcoming shopping Malls are Big Bazzar, Pantaloons and others in FFORT MALL at Kachari Basti,G.S.Road
  • Handlooms & HandicraftsThe Assam Silk & Golden SIlk "Muga" is world famous. You will be fascinated to see the designs and colours of the etnic dress called "Mekhela - Chadar".

Eat

If you've arrived in Guwahati after traveling through more remote areas for a while you'll find the city a good place to quench your thirst for decent and hearty Indian food again. For a real treat head to Tandoor

Brindavan , Paltan Bazar===Budget=== there are many good dhabas on the highways on the outskirts of guwahati.in the city.

  • City Dhaba
  • JBs at M G Road(Riverside)
  • JBs at Christian Basti(G S Rd)
  • Dispur Dhaba
  • U turn
  • Momo gharThe best bake and sweet that you can drool in Assam
  • Shaikh Brothers, Panbazar, 913612736615. Century old bakery. Well known throughout entire North East India for its delicious pastries, cakes and cookies.  edit
  • Nashraj Restaurant, S.S. Road, Fancy Bazaar (inside Hotel Nova), +91 361-251-9465. This restaurant is popular with locals and foreigners, and serves tasty Indian, Chinese and selected Continental cuisine.  edit
  • Green Valley Resort
  • Makhonbhog
  • JB's at MG Rd(riverside) & at Christian basti(G S Rd)
  • Gopal Maharaj,Kamrup Chamber Road, Fancy Bazar
  • Delicacy,Ganeshguri Famous for ethnic Assamese cuisine
  • GAM's Delicacy Ganeshguri, Near Fly over . Ph. 0361-2233402. +919864434969

Drink

Guwahati is said to have the highest number of wine shops.

  • Silver Streak,Hotel Bramhaputra Ashok
  • Blues- Disco
  • Kamakazi- Disco
  • Delight
  • Crystal- Disco
  • Q'Ba - Ulubari- Disco
  • The Lounge Bar, Christian Basti
  • U-Turn, Chandmari Fly-over- Bar
  • Ivory, Below Hotel Amrit Regency, Ulubari Flyover- Bar/Pub
  • Mazbaan- Ganeshguri - Bar - Disco -DJ Ronnie
  • brahmputra (panjbari, sixmile). this is a small family hotel. good clean rooms, simple food. nothing fancy but economical. not in the centre of city but near kalakshetra.  edit
  • Hotel Suradevi, M.L.N Road (Pan Bazaar), +91 361-254-5050. Slightly out of the action, this is a decent budget choice. There's a good little restaurant here too. Rs 100, Rs 150 w/private bath, Rs 230 w/TV.  edit

"Hotel Brindavan" Paltan Bazar, M E Road. 9864091882. Check out time 12 noon. 3 min walking distance from Rly Station. Room Rate Rs. 270/- to 400/- only

  • Hotel Nova, S.S. Road (Fancy Bazaar), +91 361-251-9465. A decent mid-range choice, it is centrally located, reasonably clean and friendly, and has a good restaurant on site. Hot running water, TV with satellite connection, same-day laundry available. Rs 750-1500, A/C rooms Rs 1350-1850.  edit
  • Hotel President
  • Hotel RajMahal
  • Belle View
  • Hotel Vishwaratna
  • Hotel Maruti
  • Hotel Rituraj
  • Hotel Dynasty, S.S. Road (Lakhotia), +91 361-251-6021, [2]. Guwahati's nicest hotel, it's centrally located, warm and comfortable, and the staff are friendly. Tandoor is one of the two in-house restaurants, and probably the best place to splurge on food in the city, with live music in the evenings. Rooms Rs 3400-5000, Suites Rs 8000-15,000.  edit

Contact for travel/taxi assistance

Jai Mata Di Tour & Travels, Guwahati, ☎ 9435040946, [2]. We provide All types of Car for rent..@very resonable Rate. for details contact 9435040946. Also we deal Car GPS sequrity systems.

Get out

[3] Accoland ,airport road,amusement park

  • Resorts on sonapur road - The Sonapur Road ( Guwahati - Nagaon road, NH 37) has many dhabas that are within 10-15 kms of the city outskirts ( Khanapara). These resorts provide a good weekend break. Brahmaputra resort in Tepesia is one such resort.
  • Balaji Temple - Balaji temple is on the National Highway By-pass - it is easily reached by taking the National Highway ( from the city head towards Maligaon/ Adabari and beyond till you reach the Jalukbari junction). It takes about 20 minutes from the junction to the temple. It is supposed to be a replica of the temple in Tirupati - the temple provides a nice place for solitary meditation, being in a peaceful setting.

Deepor Beel , a wetland and a very picturesque picnic spot, not yet discovered by tourists. A bird-watchers paradise, especially in winter when the migratory birds come down. Access is from the National Highway, Gorchuk Ali.

Hajo - Hajo is an interesting place to visit near Guwahati. The place has religious significance for Muslims, Hindus and Buddhists. It takes about an hour and half from the city center to reach Hajo by own transport ( buses are there from Adabari bus stand). Interesting places to visit are the Hayagrib Madhab temple and Pua Mecca. While at the temple, make sure to go down to the temple pond to see the resident turtle.

Kanchuki Sarma Jan 2, 2009

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Simple English

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Guwahati is the largest city in the north eastern region of India.

It houses the capital complex of the Legislative Assembly of Assam. The first bridge across the Brahmaputra river is situated at the northwest perimeter of the city. Guwahati serves as the gateway to the rest of the Seven States of Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland and Tripura.

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