Just took a tour of Guwahati a few days back. The weather these days here is pleasant as it has been raining heavily. The peak summer seasons in North East start around June, which means you can expect a pleasant weather if you are planning for a trip until the earlier weeks of May.
I came to Guwahati for the first time when I was in my 9th Standard. I have been here several times, and witnessed the transformations this city has undergone over a period of time. In the earlier days, the city used to be silent, not much crowded and not many travelers used to turn their sails this way.
As I see it now, there has been a tremendous change; for the good of course!! The area around the railway station has come up well, and there is a lot of potential for tourism in this city. It was 5 pm in the evening. I wanted to take a stroll around the railway station area to find out what changes this city had seen since I came here after 5 years. So, I decided to take a walking tour around the Railway Station Area to revive some of my older memories.
The Guwahati Railway Station
The first time I had come here, this station was in shambles and dilapidation. Today, it feels good to see as the changes are clearly visible. The station has been redesigned, aesthetics improved and it feels more lively to be here. Today, it happens to be a prestigious landmark of this small tinsel town.
On the left side of the entrance gate, is the model of the very first rail engines of the North East Frontier Railways. Showcasing and reviving the old memories, I remember the first time when I had traveled to Guwahati from Kolkata, it used to take more than 24 hours to reach Guwahati. The trains had diesel engines and ran on narrow gauges, and were so slow, that one could step down the running train, buy some donuts and climb back in, yet one would not miss the train. By the time I reached Guwahati, my head was spinning, and when I stood on the platform, I felt that I was still on the moving train; the hallucination was so prominent.
The Alfresco Park
The Alfresco Park of today used to be a wreckage and an adhoc parking lot back in 2008. There used to be river cruises but the clumsiness of the shore made it less attractive, and this made the river cruises less noticeable. However, it had been and still continues to be the most preferred evening leisure spots of the town. As I saw it this time, so much had changed. The parks and the areas adjoining the shore has been well made up with a small joggers park and now it is a great evening spot attracting the visitors not only to enjoy the sunset at the shore but also for a river cruise on the Brahmaputra River. Now, I can say it is more of a happening spot 🙂
Assam State Museum
The Assam State Museum is on the Gopinath Bordoloi Street and just 10 mins walk from the Guwahati Railway Station. This museum has a magnificent collection of stone, wood, metalwork, ivory paintings and sculptures as old as the prehistoric times. It is a showcase of the traditions, customs and culture of the state of Assam and is a must see place when you are located close to the railway station.
The Assam State Tourism Office
One thing that I liked about the Assam State Tourism Office is that it is located next to the railway station, and the other thing is that it also has a small shop which offers the legacy of the state of Assam, the Assam Tea Collection. Organic, green tea, CTC (Cutting, Threshing, Curling) leaves,herbal or whatever your taste is, as you pass by, just keep looking to the right as you proceed from the railway station towards the end of the street, and a small alley to the right will show you the way to the souvenir shop. If you are looking for pamphlets, brochures, information about Assam State, then the right place is to drop into the Assam State Tourism Office. Collect some of them to orient yourself with the place.
Located on the Md Shah Road, this temple is a landmark for the travelers passing the street. Located bang on the street, the majestic view of the temple immediately attracts the visitors towards it. The Radha Krishna Temple is maintained and looked after by the Gorkha Community since 1932, after the plot of land had been allotted to them by the British during that year.
Sree Chaitanya Gaudiya Math
Sree Chaitany Gaudiya Math is another landmark that caught my eye as I kept moving along the low profile Md Shah Street. As I passed by the gate, I was not able to identify it from up close, as there was no market around, when I saw it the first time. Now, the large buildings around the math seem to conceal the identity of the math.