Nature lovers and wildlife enthusiasts have been drawn to Assam for ages. The state consists of a variety of landforms like the foothills of the Himalayas, the vast North Indian plains and a minor plateau. This geographical diversity coupled with a tropical climate has made Assam home to a horde of animal and plant species. The region is drained by the mighty Brahmaputra River, which originates in Tibet and flows into the Bay of Bengal. Along its course, the river makes its way through thickly-forested hills, especially in Assam, and they are ideal to see the rich wildlife of the state. The river too supports a wide array of marine creatures, and to see them, a Brahmaputra river cruise is a great option.
Such a trip will also allow you to learn about the culture of numerous tribes and ethnic communities living on the banks of the Brahmaputra. This cruise on Brahmaputra will be on-board the posh ocean liner named M.V. Mahabaahu. The 10-metre wide and 55-metre long liner has five decks for you to enjoy utmost luxury, and also see the natural beauty around the river. You may seek accommodation in two Suites, nine Superior Cabins with balconies or in 12 Superior Cabins without balconies. Every unit is equipped with air-conditioning, attached bathrooms, flat-screen television sets with satellite connections, mini-bars, telephones and electronic safes.
The Lower Deck has a spa, steam room, sauna bath, jacuzzi and massage parlour. You may enjoy alcoholic beverages at the Soma Lounge, and relish Indian and Continental delicacies at the on-ship restaurant; both of which are on the Main Deck. The open portion of Deck 1 has the Brahmakund swimming pool and sun lounge chairs for you to relax. Decks 2 and 3 also have the majority of their sections open, from where you may look at the scenery and wildlife. During this cruise, you may also spend some quiet time in the well-stocked on-board library, or enjoy a variety of board games for some fun and frolic.
DAY 1 (Thursday): Arrive M. V. Mahabaahu
Drive to Silghat from Guwahati to visit the Tea Plantation. The Tea plantation is set in perfect ambiance and encompasses tasteful hospitality in all its hues. Experience a walk through the manicured tea gardens and watch tea pickers at work followed by a talk on the art of making that perfect cup of tea!
After this visit, we drive to board M. V Mahabaahu.Overnight onboard ( D)
DAY 2 (Friday): Kaziranga National Park
Rise before the sun to set off for the Kaziranga National Park’s Kohora Gate and a once-in-a-lifetime elephant-backed safari where we search for the elusive rhinoceros and tiger. Designated as a World Heritage Site by UNESCO, Kaziranga National Park is located in the flood plains on both sides of the Brahmaputra. The most prized inhabitant of Kaziranga is the Greater One-Horned Indian Rhinoceros, but the Park is home to as many as 180 different mammals including wild elephants, tiger, deer, bison, and a rich variety of birds.
After breakfast at a resort in Kaziranga, we return to Kohora Gate to once again explore the wildlife experience in a Jeep Safari and to ensure we have had complete coverage of this magnificent park.
We return to the ship for lunch and sail towards Guwahati. A presentation on ‘Wildlife of Kaziranga’ late afternoon. Enjoy a massage in our spa, soak in the Jacuzzi or swim laps in the pool. One may prefer to scan the river for a fleeting sight of the Gangetic Dolphin or do some bird watching from the decks. Dinner onboard.Overnight onboard (B, L, D)
Day 3 (Saturday): Guwahati
Today, we sail full day to Guwahati. Enjoy a massage in our spa, soak in the Jacuzzi or swim laps in the pool. One may prefer to scan the river for a fleeting sight of the Gangetic Dolphin or do some bird watching from the decks.
Watch a DVD on the tribes of Assam. The book lovers are sure to enjoy our well stocked library.
Today, we enjoy our last dinner onboard together and share our experience of India over the Farewell Dinner. Overnight onboard (B, L, D)
Day 4 (Sunday): Guwahati Departure
After breakfast you will be met, assisted and driven to the Guwahati airport by our representative to board the flight for your onwards journey. (B)
Weather and Seasonal Information
As your Brahmaputra river cruise will be through Assam, it is essential that you have some handy information about the weather patterns in the state. Summers, winters, monsoons and autumn are the four most prominent seasons experienced in the region. The best time to come to Assam and take such a trip is in autumn and winters, which fall between the months of October and April. Winter mornings and days are usually warm and sunny, but at night, the temperature can drop to 8 degree Celsius. Though the cabins of the ship are centrally heated, you are advised to bring along with you warm clothing like jackets and hats as an added precaution.
One of the biggest highlights of the tour is the Kaziranga National Park, where you will be taken during the cruise. It is known for having the highest concentration of one-horned rhinos in the world. Apart from rhinos, the national park has over 35 species of mammals, roughly 480 kinds of birds, 42 types of reptiles and 42 species of riverine fish. The protected area is opened for tourism on October 15th, and closed on April 30th. During the initial days of October, it has a partially-open status, which means that its roads are in the process of being rebuilt after getting destroyed by heavy rains.
There will be no Jeep or elephant safaris between the months of May and October, and boat rides on the river will be offered to you instead. During the months when Kaziranga National Park is closed for tourists, you will still be able to explore its wildlife. Vast territories of the park lie on the banks of the Brahmaputra, and you will be able to see animals there while on-board small expedition boats. You will take the cruise on Brahmaputra along the shores of the river, which are within this famous wildlife hotspot. The river and the park have many riverine islands, which are inhabited by a large number of animals of different species. As M.V. Mahabaahu suspends operations at the night, the cruising period will be according to the hours for which the sun shines in various seasons.
1). Accommodation on twin sharing basis in superior cabin.
2). Accommodation at M.V Mahabaahu will be on full board basis.
3). Domestic wine/beer with Farewell and Welcome dinners.(Only for boarding or deboarding at Guwahati and Nimati)
4). All excursions/lectures/ Safari's /performances and activities as per the itinerary.
5). Services of English speaking guide during sightseeing at all the places as per the itinerary.
6). All Arrival & Departure transfers with Representative at the airport and Land transport by air-conditioned vehicles.
1). Expense of personal nature like laundry, telephone/fax calls, internet, imported wines & spirits, camera/video camera fee at monuments/National Park, medical expenses, Salon/massages, airport departure tax etc.
2). Any Insurance.
3). GST @ 5.0%
4). Any further tax levied by the government of India.
5). Evacuation charges in case of medical emergencies, insurance is available on request.
6). Expenses caused by factors beyond our control like rail and airplanes delays, roadblocks, vehicle malfunctions, political disturbances, taxes, lost luggage, etc.
7). Any tipping.
8). International & Domestic Air fares.
9). Any other services not mentioned in the inclusions.
10).Supplement of peak period from 20th Dec'13 till 5th Jan'14 will be advised on booking request for that period.