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Heritage Sites

Assam

RANG GHAR

Rang Ghar is the oldest surviving Amphitheatre of Asia Continent. Rang Ghar sits with pride in Sivasagar districts of Assam as a witness to the long-reigning Ahom dynasty, which maintained its sovereignty for nearly 600 years and successfully resisted Mughal expansion in Northeast India. The building was constructed during the reign of Swargadeo by Pramatta Singha in AD 1744-1750. It is once served as the Royal Sports pavilion where Ahom kings and nobles were spectators at games like buffalo fight and other sports Particularly during the Rongali Bihu Session.

AGNIGARH

Agnigarh is a hillock located in Tezpur, Assam. In Hindu mythology, it is the site of the fortress which was built by Banasura to keep his daughter Usha in isolation. The name itself is derived from the words ‘Agni’ (meaning fire) and ‘garh’ (meaning fortress or wall) in Sanskrit. A war ensued between the Hari (Lord Krishna and his followers) and the Hars (Lord Shiva and his followers), rivers of blood flowed and the city was named Tezpur (City of Blood). The surrounding Mighty Brahmaputra river over the hillock make a mesmerizing place to roam around and lost in pre-History and amazing landscapes around and attract tourist from all over the globe.

TALATAL GHAR

It is located in Rangpur in Shivsagar districts of Assam and it is the grandest example of Ahom Architecture. The Talatal Ghar, together with its Above-Ground counterpart the Kareng Ghar, Is also the Largest of All Tai Ahom monuments This Palace was initially built as an army base. It houses two secret tunnels and three floors below ground level which were used as exit routes during the war. This seven-story palace along with Kareg Ghar was completed in 1769 and Was made by a complete indigenous mixture of rice grain, egg etc. The secret underground tunnels are closed for the public by Govt officials and contain some hidden Mysteries.

Joydoul & Joysagar 

The temple is popularly known as the ‘Kesavanarayan Vishnudole’ or ‘Joydole. It was built during the reign of Ahom king Rudra Singha (AD 1696-14) and dedicated to Lord Vishnu. It stands on the eastern extremity of the northern bank of the Joysagar tank which was excavated in memory of his mother Joymati. The temple proper has an octagonal Garbhagriha or sanctum sanctorum adorned by a dome-like structure and decorated with honeycomb designs and lotus medallions. The external walls of the main temple are also beautifully decorated with stone plaques richly carved with figures of various Brahmanical divinities including incarnation forms of Vishnu.

The Tank Jayasagar was dug by Ahom king Rudrasingha (1696-1714) to commemorate his mother Sati Joymoti, wife of Gadapani, later King Gadadharsingha (1681-1695). The place was chosen, where Siulikpha convicted Joyamoti through his Chaodangs to extract information regarding her exiled husband Gadapani. This is the biggest man-made tank comprising an area of 318 acres including the four banks. This is the Biggest Man-Made tank in Asia!

Sri Sri Surya Pahar

Sri Surya Pahar is located about 12 km southeast of Goalpara town and Bongaigaon is the nearest city from here. about 132 km northwest of Guwahati, is a significant but relatively unknown archaeological site in Assam, India. The site is a hilly terrain where several rock-cut Shivalingas, votive stupas and the deities of Hindu, Buddhist, and Jain pantheon are scattered in an area of about one km. The site is centered on the hills (Pahar) of Sri Surya which is profusely filled up with Shiva Lingas (Lingam). The popular belief is that 99999 Shiva Lingas were engraved here by Vyasa in order to build up a second Kashi (where there were 1,00000 Shiva Lingas) and once it was one of the holiest pilgrimage sites in the region. Some scholars even referred to the accounts of famous Chinese traveler Huen Tsang to claim that it was Sri Surya Pahar and not Guwahati that was the ancient land of Pragjyotishpur or the Pragjyotisha Kingdom, the capital of the Kingdom of Kumar Bhaskara Varman (600-650).

Jugighupa Caves

The spellbinding specimens of the architecture are visible as the remains of the five rock-cut caves at Jogighopa on the bank of the Brahmaputra River in the district of Bongaigaon. Although, most of the studies say that the caves were established during the Salasthamba period each of the caves has a brick and mud masonry made platform, which is in all probability was built during a later period. The art and architecture of the caves are great examples of the kind of art which were practiced during this time mainly in the western part of India. This translates to the fact that though far away, Assam was not cut off from the artistic movement in other parts of the country.

Chitralekha Udyan 

In the beautiful city of Tezpur, a picturesque park is located, called the Cole Park. The park was built in 1906 by a commissioner of Assam named Mr. Cole and was later reconstructed by M.G.V.K Bhanu in 1996. The park has recently been renamed as Chitralekha Udayan Park, after the name of a famous person in the Aniruddha Usha love story. Located amidst a number of misty hillocks and green terrains and blue lakes, this park is well known for its breathtaking scenic beauty. Inside the park, there is a serene lake, in which boating can be done. Moreover, some of the ancient relics from nearby areas have been transported to the park, in order to facilitate public viewing, among which the most important being the inscription of Bhomoraguri, depicting an ancient plan of building a bridge on the River Brahmaputra is the most prominent one. There is also a model of MIG 21 fighter plane and a map of India, with state divisions prior to 2000.

Majuli 

.Majuli is the World Largest River Island. Majuli apart from the world largest river island is a place for knowledge. Majuli worships knowledge and knowledgeable. It proudly stands as an important place of Assam’s Heritage. It comprises several Satras which are founded by Sri Sri Sankardeva.Satras are Vaishanav Monastery and plays an important role in Assam Traditions. The Most oldest Xatra is Sri Sri DakhinPat Satra of Assam.where we can witness the centuries-old scriptures, Royal Jewelaaries, Utensils and Royal War materials.Sri Sri Dakhinpaat Xatra established in 1584.In the Dakhinpaat Xatra, We can see Two poles of this monastery which was from Tulsi Tree. Yes, you heard it correct!! This poles dated back to the 17th century And according to the pujari or we call them self ‘Deu’, this pole is not set up by humans and Deities indeed. God knows the mystery. In the Dakhinpaat Xatra, We can see Two poles of this monastery which was from Tulsi Tree. Yes, you heard it correct!! This poles dated back to the 17th century And according to the pujari or we call them self ‘Deu’, this pole is not set up by humans and Deities indeed. God knows the mystery.The main point of interest about this Mukha Xatra is, Its centuries-old tradition of Mask making, which literally called ‘Mukha Silpa’.This form of Art is carried by the artist from their ancestors from centuries. Mask is played a vital role in Majuli’s heritage. Mask is used in Bhaona-a ancient Assamese play of mythological stories and other art forms. The main artist told us that recently British museum of London published a book named Krishna in the Garden of Assam and depicts the famous Mukha silpa with the interview of the Artist.

Tripura 

NEER MAHAL

It is one of the two only Water palaces of India Located in the Sipahijala district of the state of Tripura. Neermahal means water palace (Neer-Water, Mahal-Palace) is a former royal palace built by King Bir Bikram Kishore Manikya Bahadur of erstwhile Kindom of Tripura in the middle of the mesmerizing Rudrasagar Lake. This palace is completed in 1938 is an Architectural mixture of Hindu & Muslim Art.

UNAKOTI 

It is the prime tourist spot of Unakoti Tripura District in the Kailashahar Subdivision in the North-eastern Indian state of Tripura. It is Shaiva pilgrimage and dates back to 7th – 9th centuries if not earlier. The marvelous rock carvings, murals with their primitive beauty, waterfalls are not to be missed. Unakoti means one less than a crore and it is said that these many rock-cut carvings are available here. As per Hindu Mythology When lord Shiva was going to Kashi along with one crore gods and goddesses including him, he made a night halt at this location. He asked all the gods and goddesses to wake up before sunrise and proceed for Kashi. It is said that in the morning, except Shiva himself, no one else could get up to set out for Kashi himself cursing the others to become stone images. As a result, we have one less than a crore stone images and carvings at Unakoti. These carvings are located at a landscaped forest area with green vegetation all around.

There is also another story that suggests about a blacksmith who wished to live with Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati on the Kailash Mountain. Lord Shiva had bet him that if he could make a crore (koti) idols of Lord Shiva, with in the period of one night, He would take Kallu, the blacksmith, with him to Kailash Parvath. When counted in the morning, the idols were one less than a Koti (crore). This made the name of the place be changed to Unakoti, literally meaning one less than a crore.

Ujjayanta Palace

This Royal House, which stands in the Capital city Agartala covering one square km area was built by Maharaja Radha Kishore Manikya during 1897-1901. It is two storied mansion, having a mixed type of architecture with high domes, the central one being 86′ inches high. The palace is set with huge lavish gardens and beautified by two sprawling lakes in front. Floodlighting of the compound and fountains on the fornt side have also added its beauty.

Tripura Heritage Park

Tripura Heritage Park is an oasis of serinity over an area of about 4 hectares at kunjaban in Agratala. It atkes the vistor of to sureal world, providing a glimpse of the natural and cultural heritage of Tripura .Its natural undulating terrian offering a back drop  of majestic eucalyyptus , acacia, and litchi trees,emabraces vistors and takes them to an enviournment rich in tranquality.The Park abounds in a varity of indigienious pplants and trees, including medicinal herbs which support a varity of avian fauna. An assertment of Artifacts in various forms are scvattered around the park , including heritage benches ,pottery , wood craft, stone work etc.

Debtamura (Chabimura)

Debtamura is famous for its panels of rock carving on the steep mountain wall on the banks of river Gomati, There are huge carved images of Shiva, Vishnu, Kartika, Mahisasurmardini Durga, This Place is also called Chabimura>These Images fdates back to 15-16th Centuries.

Manipur

According to an ancient legend, Guru Sidaba, regarded as the supreme Lord of the Universe in Manipur, asked all 3 of his sons to travel to the 4 corners of the world & laid down the condition that the one who came back first would be crowned the King of Manipur. Even as the 2 elder sons sped away, the youngest son, Konjin Tingthokpa, stayed behind. When plodded along by his father to hurry up, the youngling refused and said ‘No one else can match my exalted father, Guru Sidaba. So, I shall circumambulate the four corners of my father’s throne.’ He did so. And so it happened that Konjin Tingthokpa was anointed as Nongda Lairen Pakhangba (Nongda or God-sent; Lairen or mythical Snake-empowered; and Pakhangba or Pa = father + Khangba = one who knows the real father). It is because of his mythical ability to move about at night as a dragon, the royal emblem of Manipur has always been the dragon. It is also Pakhangba who is said to have given birth to the seven clans of the Meitei society!
As a matter of fact, the recorded history of Manipur begins with the coronation of the first Meitei King, Nongda Lairen Pakhangba in 33 A.D.!

Kangla Fort – the foundation of the kingdom of Manipur!

The former seat of the Meitei rulers of Manipur, Kangla fort is an old palace/fort on the banks of the Imphal river. At the peak of its glory, it extended on both sides of the river & led to the establishment of the Kingdom of Manipur itself. It has seen scores of battles by enemy forces & the British. As a result, it is a but a shadow now of the majestic palace it had once been, limited to only the western side of the river. There is hope still, for the ‘Concept Development Plan’ of the Manipur government is restoring this place. Many sculptures such as the ‘Kangla sha’ have already been restored.

Literally translating to ‘Dry Land’, Kangla fort is also a sacred place for the Meiteis, in addition to being the most important political & archaeological site of Manipur. A few of the sacred places are:

  1. Nungjeng Pukhri – Believed to be the abode of Lord Pakhangba, it houses the holy pond in the North-West side of the palace. Other ponds include Manung Nungjeng, Chingkhei Nungjeng

    and

    Lai Pukhri.

  2. Nunggoibi – This shrine is the important place for Huyein Lalu Chanba (a ritual ceremony) and is dedicated to the Goddess of War.

  • Manglen – This corner houses several graves of the Manipur Kings. The cremation site was constructed in the year 1738 AD by Maharaj Garibaniwaz.

  1. Kangla Men Surung – In the days of yore, this was the official place to conduct erat-thouni (coronation ceremony). Depending on the result, the King decided for how long he should be able to rule the state.

  2. Other structural buildings are:

  3. Main Gate (Kangla Gate),

  4. Two Statues of Kangla Sha

  5. Temple of Shree – Shree Govindajee

  6. Stone Inscription

  7. Marshal General Slim’s Cottage

  8. Sir Akbar Hydri’s tomb,

  9. Samadhi of Maharaj Bodhachandra

  10. Memorial Stone at Kekrupat.    

Willong Khullen – India’s very own Stonehenge!!

 Who would have thought that one could stumble on to a Stonehenge in India & not have to go all the way to the UK!! As surprising as it sounds, India does have its very own Stonehenge in Manipur, near Maram village. If you have the urge to go to mysterious & unexplored places, then this is the place for you, for Willong Khullen is arguably one of the most mysterious & unexplored places in the world!

Located at a distance of 112 km from Imphal, a trip to this ancient site stuck in time will need a 3-4 hrs drive. So, a whole day’s trip is recommended to explore this place & bringing your own food and water is essential as there is really nothing that you will find nearby.

According to folklore, it is impossible to count the number of stones which stand majestically on this site, as it is said that a spirit tries its best to confuse you when you’re counting. Still, there are approximately 150 stones standing 7 meters tall on an average.

While the mystery as to why these stones were placed here remains, it is undoubtedly a beautiful journey as one passes through the stunning vistas of Manipur to reach this site.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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