Basistha Temple

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One of the most recognized tourist place of Assam is the Basistha Temple, also known as Basistha Ashram located at Beltola area (south-east) in Guwahati. It is one of the famous and historical temple located on the bank of the river Basistha. The natural and scenic beauty of the upstream of the river is a prime attraction of the Ashram, that brings in large number of visitors. It is a very old Shiva temple, the history of which dates back to the Vedic period. During Shiv Ratri this temple is abuzz with pilgrims. Moreover in the month of ‘Sawan’ people go to fetch water from the spring of Basistha temple and then pour it in the respective Shiva temple of their choice.

History/Legend

The name Basistha Ashram (or ‘Vasishtha Ashram’), is considered to be the hermitage of the legendary sage Maharshi Basistha of the Hindu Epic Ramayana who brought an end to his life in that very place where the present temple now stands. The place where the body of the sage took eternal rest draws visitors and tourists who come there to revere him. Many sculptures can be seen in the place as well as by the side of the tri-juncture of the hill streams of Sandhya, Lalita and Kanta. The famous Ahom king Rajeswar Singha constructed this temple in between the year 1751-1769. It is believed that he also presented a land of 835 bighas for the development of an ashram. The temple and the location are endowed by the terracotta and stone sculptures both within the premises of the temple and the nearby hills and stones. The ashram though has a temple yet the cave in which the Muni Vasistha is believed to have meditated is located 5 K.m. inside the ashram.

Location

The ashram is located at about 10-12 kilometer from the center point of Guwahati city, on the outskirts of Garbhanga reserve forest which has an ample population of Elephants. It stands on the bank of the mountain streams originating from the hills of Meghalaya, which takes the name of rivers Basistha and Bahini/Bharalu while flowing through the city. The Garbhanga reserve forest is also a proposed Butterfly reserve.

Natural Beauty

A small rivulet that flows past the temple gives this place a serene look and feeling. The temple is a perfect scenic spot for pilgrimage and is very popular among the city-dwellers. There are several small hills around the ashram. The natural beauty of the ashram and the stream, the Basistha Ganga make one feel so welcoming. Walking barefoot on the rocky place near Basistha Ganga and the way up to a nearby Mansha Mandir would be a very joyous experience for visitors. The temple and the area around has got good green cover but is infested with hundreds of monkeys who sometimes may become a nuisance. Down from the temple towards the stream one can enjoy picnic with family and friend but the sanctity of the holy place needs to be preserved. Despite everything the place permits you to find your faith amidst Nature.

How to Reach

As the Basistha temple serves as a popular tourist spot known for its ideal scenic spots, it is well connected by different modes of transport. The City Bus operates from Adabari to Basistha. Tourists can also avail buses from the Inter State Bus Terminus Guwahati. There is a very good bus connectivity from Paltan Bazar Railway Station as the Bus Stop is located nearby the station. The LGB International airport which stands as the only airport in the city has a number of Government AC Bus services available to Paltan Bazar and shared and hired cab and auto etc can be availed to reach the temple. Slowly the lonely surrounding is mushrooming with hotels, and shops making it convenient for visitors.

Map

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JayB

A self-described travel enthusiast...

1 Comment

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