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Sun, 24 Sep 2017

Northeast Today

Haflong: Assam’s Scotland

Haflong: Assam’s Scotland
August 26
13:24 2017

July Edition, NET Bureau, Shrabani Barman

To beat the heat and for a soothing retreat,we generally tend to visit the hills. I am alsoan avid traveler and I love the hills too. Butunlike the famous hill stations of the Northeast, I loveto spend boring summer days in Haflong- a small hillstation of Assam.

Situated amidst the beautiful hills of Dima Hasao district (previously called as North Cachar Hills), the name ‘Haflong’ (meaning ant hill) is derived from Dimasa language meaning. The picturesque hill station is also called as the Scotland of Assam and is 310 kilometers from Assam’s capital city of Guwahati.

Reason to visit Haflong

If you are a nature lover, then you have plenty of reasons to visit the place. An absolute heaven for the shutterbugs, Haflong has some inexplicable reasons and some of the most beautiful location to make you go gaga and provide you with an undefined serenity.

Haflong Lake: It is one of the mammoth natural water bodies of Assam and is situated in the heart of the town. It is also Haflong’s most popular tourist spot.

Haflong Hill: Green to sooth your eye, the hill also offers the perfect opportunity to the adventure loving souls who love trekking and conquering peaks.

Maibong: Located 47 kilometers from Haflong, Maibong is an ancient center for art and culture in Assam. The town was the capital of the 17th century Dimasa-Kachari Kingdom and is now famous for the Ramchandi temple, heritage monolith templefamous as Stone House built by Dimasa king Raja Harichandra. The interesting part of this temple is it was constructed by cutting rock. The staircase is newly constructed.

Jatinga: - Located close to the Haflong ridge, it is one of the most famous places and made headlines for ‘bird suicides’. The phenomenon is observed every year from September to October. Jatinga is also famous for its oranges.

Panimoor Waterfall: Situated 120 kilometers from Haflong, the Panimoor waterfall is famous tourist spot. The Kopili river is obstructed by stones, but yet it turns into a gushing milky white waterfall.

Bendao Baiglai Waterfall: It is situated in Sampardisa village, 8 kilometers from Halflong. The lush green location is a popular picnic spot. For a smooth trip to the waterfall, there is a Samparidisa Ecotourism Society and they may charge Rs 30-50 per head for a trip to the waterfall.

Dilaima Waterfall: Known as the mini Pulpit Rock (Norway) of Dima Hasao, it is 80 km from Halflong town.

Notun Neikul Village: Notun Neikul Village is located at the Barail Mountains. A stone staircaseleads tothe peak. A heaven for trekkers, N Neikul Village is some 9 kilometers from Haflong.

Reaching Haflong

Trains from Guwahati to Haflong are available from Guwahati Railway Station. One can also rent cars and taxis from Guwahati. Rates are variable.

Food and Logging

There are a few hotels that make for a comfortable stay. Apart from the hotels, homestays are also an option. Government circuit house is also another option for a neat and a comfortable stay. Some of the best places to put up in Haflong are Landmark Hotel(03673-239009), Hotel Elite(03673-236708), Hotel Eastern (03673-236476), and Nathao Lodge (03673-236247),

Apart from the local Dimasa cuisines and brew, Haflong would also treat you with the popular North Indian and with dishes from the Northeast. From chicken to locally made pork and fish dishes, Haflong has a wide range of cuisines to serve you a mouthful.

Best Time to Visit

The best time to visit Haflong is during the winter season from October to February. Temperatures remain uniformly cool. There are a number of migratory birds visiting the region during winters and this will just add an extra fervor into your visit. I have never been to Scotland, but I have seen the photographs and I swear on lord, the roads, the valleys and the different alleys of Haflong do give us an impression that we are actually in Scotland.

Trivia: Mani Ratnam’s Dil Se, starring Shaharukh Khan and Manisha Koirala,was extensively shot in Haflong. Recently released movie Rangoon, directed by Vishal Bharadwaj and starring Shahid Kapoor, Kangana Ranaut and Saif Ali Khan was also shot in this beautiful hill station- in fact the only hill station of Assam.

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