Majuli is the world’s largest river island. This picturesque river island is situated on the Brahmaputra River, and had toppled Marajo in Brazil to clinch the top spot as world’s largest river island. Apart from lush greenery, huge variety of flora and fauna, one thing that makes Majuli purely a tourist hotspot is its vibrant culture.
But there is danger looming ahead. Constant erosion and flood has reduced the world’s largest river island to less than half its original size. One of the questions that is haunting the experts, as of now, is, ‘Will the Brahmaputra eat away one of the world’s largest river islands’? And if findings are to be believed, experts believe that this island will completely submerge by 2030 because of excessive sediment discharge.
Majuli means ‘the land between two parallel rivers’ and, as a matter of fact, this island was formed by the confluence of Brahmaputra and its anabranches. However, because the mighty Brahmaputra River changes its direction frequently, coupled with numerous erosions, Majuli Island might just disappear in the future.
So, before nature plays its role and this island disappears, pack your bags and visit this gorgeous haven, which is also Assam’s prized possession.
Here are some bits of information regarding this largest river island:
How to reach
You can reach Majuli Island by a ferry. Two ferries leave from Jorhat, Assam, to Majuli at 10 AM and 3 PM. Visitors arriving at the Guwahati International Airport will need around seven hours to reach Jorhat, from where they will take a ferry to reach Majuli Island.
The nearest town to this island is Jorhat, which is well connected by bus, train and even has an airport.
Where to stay
It is best to pre-book your stay in Majuli. Homestays, bamboo cottages, resorts, and several government-run hotels are available in this region, which you can choose as per your requirement. Hotels that are available here are not that fancy. However, all these staying options will provide you only basic amenities. For that authentic and rustic feel, bamboo cottages should be your pick.
What to see and do
The best time to visit Majuli Island is between October and December. This island has been known as the ‘cultural capital of Assam’ since 16th century because of the vibrant cultural scene that exists here. During mid-November, Raas Leela festival is celebrated that lasts for three days. You can schedule your visit accordingly and be a part of the festivities.
Visit the Vaishnava Satras (Vishnu monasteries)
Majuli Island is the most ancient site of Assamese neo-Vaishnavite monastery, or first Satra. Its roots can be traced back to the 15th century and, in fact, there are around 22 Satras on this river island, which will give you a peep into the culture, and that can be witnessed in the area through artefacts, literature, arts, crafts and weapons.
Of all the major attractions around the Majuli Island, exploring the Satras will definitely be a soul-enriching experience. Some of the Satras that you should definitely pay a visit are Kamalabri Satra, Auniati Satra, Dakhinpat Satra, and Samaguri Satra.
Apart from these, you can opt to relax at Tengapania, where you will be amid nature and away from the hustle of the city life. The Golden Temple structure, which is built in the Ahom architectural style, is one of the most popular attractions of this place.
Here, the locals will welcome you with open arms. You can also spend a day with them and indulge in local village activities. Take part in making handmade products, such as pottery, tribal masks etc., and take them back home as souvenirs.