Fascinating Northeast

Fascinating Northeast

Five of us planned a trip to two out of the seven Rainbow states in Northeast India. We decided on a customised 5 night-6 day tour, arranged by Red River Tours and Travels, a unit of Assam Tourism Development Corporation Ltd. An Innova was arranged for us for the duration of the entire trip. 

A memorable visit to places like Guwahati, Cherrapunji, Shillong, Mawlynnong (Asia’s cleanest village), the living root bridge and Kaziranga Wildlife Sanctuary, were the stops on our list. 

On the first day, we visited the famous Kamakhya temple on Nilachal hill. We took the ferry to another famous spot from there; the Umananda Temple located on a small island in the Brahmaputra. After a quick lunch in Hotel Kalyaniz, we proceeded to go on a cruise. We were lucky enough to get a view of a beautiful sunset in the backdrop of the mighty Brahmaputra while sipping Assam Tea. There is another option to take a two-hour cruise after sunset with authentic Assamese dinner.

On the second day, we visited the Purva Tirupati Sri Balaji Temple — a beautiful white coloured temple with an idol carved out of a single stone. There are other temples dedicated to Lord Ganesh, Goddess Padmavati and Garuda within this 2-acre space. 

The 150 km ride from Guwahati to Cherrapunji was refreshing. On the way, we stopped at ‘Jeeva Veg Restaurant’ for tea. We reached Cherrapunji, locally known as Sohra, by evening. In the evening, we visited the Seven Sisters Falls, which were close to Cordial Guest House, where we stayed.

Next day, we set off to see A third day was planned to see places in Cherrapunji started early morning with a visit to Mawsmai Nongthymmai Eco-Park, followed by a trip to Mawsmai Cave. It was a 400-metre trek through 10-feet high limestone walls. After visiting Nohkalikai Falls later, we started our journey to Shillong. On the way, we saw the Mawlynnong village and the living root bridge. Before reaching Shillong, our driver suggested a stop at the famous Elephanta Falls. One can shop here for shawls and gift articles made of bamboo.

Day four was more hectic but equally enjoyable. Shillong Peak, at a height of 6450 feet, offers a panoramic view of Shillong town. The road to reach here passes through Air Force area, so there is stringent checking. The Don Bosco Museum is a seven-storeyed building with sensor lighting system, touch screen computers and a breath-taking view of Shillong from the rooftop ‘Skywalk’. We also visited Umiam Lake that day.

Next day, we got up at 4 am to go for the ‘Elephant Safari’. The one-hour has to be experienced to be believed. After lunch, we set off on a jeep safari.

During both rides, we were able to spot one-horned rhinos, elephants and deer. We went to see a cultural programme at the eco-park in the evening. A daily affair, it is a 90-minute showcase of dances and songs of Assam. 

On the last day, we started our return trip to Guwahati in the early morning. We gave ourselves some time to pick up souvenirs like Muga silk saris, Naga Manipuri jackets, woolen shawls, Assam tea and bamboo gift items. 

Plan your trip: Contact Assam Tourism Office in Guwahati with number of days and persons accompanying. A customised tour programme with dates will be given. An advance amount will have to be paid and remaining amount is cash on arrival. A list of tour expenses will be given by the Tourism office.The approximate total expense was Rs 30,000 per person, including flight ticket.


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