Assam is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful and underrated hill stations in India. Beautifully gracing the Himalayan foothills, Assam is truly a testament to the beauty that is the Himalayas. Being a part of one of the seven sisters of northeast India along with Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, Meghalaya, Sikkim, Mizoram, Nagaland, and Tripura. The hills of Assam are jagged and rough in some parts. Being a hill station, sure the natural beauty here is impeccable and the air is pure and pollution-free but there may be errors in your Judgement and you may find yourself caught up in some sort of trouble or another.
All this can be easily avoided if you just plan your trip accordingly and properly. It is important to not only keep yourself loaded with all the paraphernalia that you may require, but you should also do some homework about the geography and history of the region. It is also important to learn about Assamese people before going there in order to not offend them in any way and make your holiday in Assam special.
Know When to Visit
This has to be on the top of the list. The best time to visit Assam is during the months of November to May. This is an ideal time to explore the hills of Assam and go on sightseeing expeditions. The temperature offers the perfect balance between cold and hot weather which means you can go out with your family and loved ones to experience the pleasant weather conditions. If you love adventure activities on the hills like hiking, trekking, camping, or just exploring the wilderness then this would be the perfect time to plan your holiday. No rain, or scorching heat, only open clear blue skies, cool breeze, and the warming sun. Assam can also be the next best place for you to go on a winter vacation with your family.
Stay Close To Your Sightseeing Attractions
Sightseeing in Assam is a rigorous task. It can take you from the forests and wilderness of Assam to the magnificent monasteries, worship places and market places as well. It would be a wise decision for you to book your accommodation or hotels close to the places you have planned to see in your itinerary. It would save you a lot of time, energy and money in transportation.
Don’t Miss Out on Local Experiences
Every holiday is made up of experiences, especially the local ones that you go through every day while staying there. Assam is no different when it comes to offering one-of-a-kind local experiences. The best way would be to be a part of festivals and fairs that take place exclusively in Assam. It is important to plan your holiday along with the festival dates. This has to be one of the best ways to experience the rich heritage, customs, and traditions Assam has to offer. It is a much more real experience than going to sightseeing places.
Airport Access to Assam
Assam can be imagined as a gateway to the rest of the northeastern part of India. Being the only airport in the northeastern region of the subcontinent you can imagine that this airport is super important. If you are planning to catch a flight to Assam then you should know that there are 6 airports in Assam with one of them dedicated to catering international flights. The domestic airport caters to all the domestic flights from different parts of India and are called Mohanbari Airport, Lilabari Airport, Salonibari Airport, Rowriah Airport, and Kumbhirgram Airport.
Know What Language to Speak
Assam being a part of India is home to numerous tribes and ethnic groups that speak their native language. Majorly Assamese is spoken in Assam so it would be ignorant of you to assume that everyone would know English, Hindi, or any other language beforehand. Even the constitution of India has regarded Assamese as a major language. However, you can try to converse in broken English or some broken Hindi.
Budget-Friendly Option to Reach Assam
If you are travelling from somewhere far away from Assam like outside of West Bengal, then the most money-saving way for you to travel would be to take the train up to the railway station in Guwahati, Assam. This railway station has many roadways for different parts of northeastern states, cities, and towns of India. If you are traveling from somewhere around the vicinity of West Bengal then it would be best for you to choose a bus or taxi service. There are many national highways that pass through Assam making it a great option for an India-wide road trip! Some national highways include NH31, NH37, NH38, NH40, NH52, and more.
Wear the Right Clothes
In India, you could easily offend someone by the way you dress up. Mainly because the people here are not used to the kind of clothing people wear in western culture and societies. Wear clothes that cover you up well. Instead of wearing shorts or skirts or a revealing top, wear trousers, or at least knee-length shorts and cover your shoulders. The people would also be more welcoming if they see you respecting their thoughts and ideologies and would be warmer towards you.
Make sure to get your currency exchanged the moment you arrive in India or Assam international airport. No other currency than the Indian rupees works here. Also, make sure to carry a good amount of cash since most of the ATMs on the hills don’t work and many restaurants and hotels also don’t accept card payments. Cash is also needed to make payment for gaining entry into any sightseeing spot.
Stay Updated On the News
The northeastern territory of India is prone to many severe political unrest. There are regular riots, Bandhs, and insurgence that take place in a year. Read through the travel advisory and stay updated on the news regarding anything in northeast India. Not knowing this you may lose a lot of money and you may not even be able to go there in the first place.
Ferry Service Info
There are some ferry services available all along the Brahmaputra River that are very useful for travelers and locals alike. The north and south shores of the river have ferry services that connect Assam with the famous and iconic Majuli Island which is also a must-visit destination in Assam. There are also up-market cruises available that take you all along the river and surrounding areas. When in Assam you should opt for at least one ferry ride experience.
The roads in Assam valley are somewhat well maintained in a major part of the state however there are some seriously wrecked roads along the Brahmaputra River going up to Pasighat and Roing. If you are planning to explore Nagaland or Arunachal Pradesh then you have to be prepared to wait for long hours on the road. In short, these stretches of roads are in a terrible state and painfully tedious and slow. Due to the horrible road conditions, if you are planning to explore the vicinity or go outside Assam to explore some nearby other hill states, then make sure to only book an SUV like a bolero or Scorpio or any other car that has a higher ground clearance.