It had been a while since I last visited anywhere with family. After moving back, I had expected to travel more frequently, more so because now I will be closer to the mountains. The reality, however, has been different all I had been able to do in all these months here was one single day trip to Samdrup Jonkhar in Bhutan. I knew this had to change but at the same time, I did not see any interesting trip with family happening in the near future. So I decided to find something that fits somewhere ‘in between’. It was decided that we’ll go for a day-trip to Hajo, a historically and religiously significant town on the banks of the mighty Brahmaputra, around 25 kilometers from Guwahati. Hajo is one of the best weekend getaways around Guwahati.
Hajo – One of the top weekend getaways around Guwahati
Hajo in itself is just another small town but what makes the town interesting are its ancient religious sites and artifacts scattered in and around Hajo. While there are quite a few interesting ancient sites in Hajo, our plan for the day was to visit the Hayagriva Madhava Mandir, the most famous temple in Hajo and Poa Mecca/Puwa. Mecca (1/4th Mecca). Sitting atop the Garurachal hill and overlooking the flats below, this mosque built in 1657 AD by Sujauddin Mohammed Shah offers gorgeous views on all four sides.
Even it is believed to be 1/4th (Poa meaning a quarter), it seemed to me that not many people visit here, at least not on a regular day. The parking was all empty when we reached the top save for a tractor which was there to drop some construction material. Also, there are only a handful of shops selling stuff to be offered at the mosque and some souvenirs as you walk up the final few meters to the mosque itself.
In the mosque compound too, there were hardly any pilgrims except for a family with kids sitting by the tomb of Pir Giasuddin Auliya, who was one the pioneer of Islam in the region. Some residents also sat there relaxing. With not many people around, the place seemed really peaceful and we spent a good half an hour or so walking around inside and outside the mosque.
The intricate designs inside the most were really beautiful and called for more time to appreciate their beauty but because construction work was going on, both inside and outside the place, certain areas were off bounds. Once done, we decided to take a stroll through the meandering roads of the Garurachal hills and that is what we did and much to our delight, we were blessed with gorgeous views.
Gorgeous views of Hajo – From atop the Garurachal Hill
While the views were beautiful and refreshing, the roads were no less. Serpentine, very narrow at places and well-maintained, the roads themselves can be a good enough reason for any riding or driving enthusiast to make a trip here. Oh, and did I forget to mention the extra beautiful everything looked because of the fresh coat of green added by the monsoon?
As we drove down the serpentine roads and on our way to the Hayagriva Temple (more on that soon), we couldn’t have been happier. The weekend so far had been great!
Did you go somewhere last weekend? Where?