Umananda – The World's Smallest River Island

Tripoto
3rd Oct 2015

View of the island from the city...

Photo of Umananda – The World's Smallest River Island by Malab

Carvings on The Stone...Try finding these...

Photo of Umananda – The World's Smallest River Island by Malab

The Temple of Lord Shiva...

Photo of Umananda – The World's Smallest River Island by Malab

Temple of Hanuman...

Photo of Umananda – The World's Smallest River Island by Malab

Carvings on the temple walls...

Photo of Umananda – The World's Smallest River Island by Malab

Sat atop the ferry..the ceiling was too low inside.

Photo of Umananda – The World's Smallest River Island by Malab

A walk into the island...

Photo of Umananda – The World's Smallest River Island by Malab

At the entrance of the temple...

Photo of Umananda – The World's Smallest River Island by Malab

Offerings to the deity...

Photo of Umananda – The World's Smallest River Island by Malab

The entrance...

Photo of Umananda – The World's Smallest River Island by Malab

View of the island from the ferry...

Photo of Umananda – The World's Smallest River Island by Malab

An island just minutes away from the bustling city seems to be rather not so commonplace. I have been born and raised in Guwahati; countless times as I have commuted through my city, I have seen the island. Standing tall and placid on the mighty Brahmaputra, is a dense forest (as might appear to someone at the first instance). A closer view and you would realize..."It's an island". A view from the distance and one might think it's a small chunk of a hill perhaps.

I have had a long long urge to be there, so one fine morning, I packed my bag and left. I was confident enough that once on the island, I would be safe, but had no idea where I would get a ferry from. A few enquiries at the government water transport office led me to the ghats (river banks) near the Vivekananda Kendra. It is a cultural institute near the Latasil Playground. That's the landmark to it. The conveyance charges on the ferry were Rs. 50 only. I went aboard a ferry, but surprisingly the roof was too low to sit inside. With a few others, I sat atop the roof and the ferry started. I love ferry rides, but this one ended in less than five minutes.

Having spent two hours, exploring the island and the temples I returned gratified at having fulfilled the quest. A word of advice: Photography out there is unrestricted, but a visit to the temple first is preferable...so as to not offend the priests and the local inhabitants of the island. Once you've offered your prayers to the almighty, you're free to do later as you please. Do try finding the stone carvings of the Deities (photos attached). Watch out for the Golden Langurs (a rare species alike monkeys with golden yellow hair). Please beware of snakes and do not try swimming in the river. Happy Travelling!!!! :)

The city I was born and brought up in....
This spot served as a landmark, from where I boarded a ferry. As a child, I have visited this institute, on my parent's insistence. Back at that time, there used to be an informal Yoga session every Sunday from 9:00 hrs in the morning. A few breathing exercises, Surya Namaskar, etc. and then the fun games would begin. I always used to wait for those. All the participants, were of similar age group as myself, so I believe it made us gel together quite easily. While indoors, insistence was always given on discipline and silence. The institute also has rare volumes of books covering a variety of genres, in its library.
The island offers a great view of itself from the city. A few makeshift shops and tea stalls are available for the tourists, but not enough to burn an appetite asking for a lunch. The place is home to a rare species of mammals called the Golden Langurs. The island is named after a temple (built by the Ahom Kingdom) of Lord Shiva and his wife, as per the Hindu Mythology. Do take a walk through the island, and you would realize how small it actually is. Offerings to the deity (Prasada), maybe taken if you wish so.
Photo of Umananda, Assam, India by Malab
Photo of Umananda, Assam, India by Malab
Photo of Umananda, Assam, India by Malab
Photo of Umananda, Assam, India by Malab
Photo of Umananda, Assam, India by Malab
Photo of Umananda, Assam, India by Malab
Photo of Umananda, Assam, India by Malab
Photo of Umananda, Assam, India by Malab
Photo of Umananda, Assam, India by Malab
Photo of Umananda, Assam, India by Malab
Photo of Umananda, Assam, India by Malab
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