Taking a 40 km drive from the state capital of Guwahati in Assam towards Probitora Wildlife sanctuary, one will reach the land of black magic – Mayong. The village is situated in Morigaon district on the very edge of the mighty River Brahmaputra.

The best way to reach Mayong is by hiring a private car for the day since public transport leading to the village is very bad, since very few commute on a daily basis to Guwahati. The journey takes around 90 minutes one way.

Once in the village the whole quest to hear, see or experience something unusual or devilish is limited to a small run down museum which has old utensils, animal horns and bones, and a glass chamber with numerous books covered in red cloth. These books are believed to be the ones which contain the magic spells.

But no one from the current living generation knows how to read these books and hence, the art of witchcraft and magic does not exist anymore. Locals claim that the art was lost a good 4-5 generations ago.

Since Mayong is known as the ‘land of black magic and witchcraft’, a brief chat with any elder from the village and they will happily narrate stories associated with black magic, where people of Mayong made people disappear into thin air. Some claim, they could control beast with their magical power and could convert human into animal as well.

An elderly man from the village claims that his grandfather was a specialist in magically causing love attractions between two individuals and could travel between cities in a minute by a magical mantra.

The village also has plenty of mystery surrounding it, with one version that claims the name may be based on the Sanskrit word Maya (illusion), or the Dimasa word for an elephant (Miyong), or from Maa for Mother Shakti. While others believe that Manipuris from the Moirang clan used to inhabit this area and hence the name Moirang became Mayong with time.

In close proximity of the village, along the banks of the River Brahmapurta is a temple dedicated to Lord Narashingha. The temple has a ritual where everyone entering the temple has to wash their feet below the tap and then enter. The entire temple and surrounding has a very serene feel.

Most of the villagers from Mayong now are excellent hand magicians and will happily show case a few of their teasers. The sad reality is that today most of the villagers are work as labourers in nearby villages.

The houses in the village are still mostly built with the traditional method out of bamboo and cane sticks. This is done since construction of a concrete house is not advisable with the River Brahmaputra flooding nearly every year.

Accommodation in the village is limited to a handful of guest houses which are not very economical. A night stay is only needed, if one intends on visiting Probitora Wildlife sanctuary. Food options in the village are nil though villagers will offer you chai or rice beer willing. The best eating options are near the Probitora sanctuary entrance.

Mayong is a village which has lot of folklore clubbed with tales of yesteryear glory days but as of today, it’s nothing but a village stuck deep in an economical tangle. A day trip from Guwahati starting at around 10 am is more than enough to visit the village explore the region and hear some tales from the crypt and return back to the capital by sundown.

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